The 4 Components to Getting a Great Photo

Article by Aaron Johnson, Owner & Inventor of SHOTBOX

I often get asked if the SHOTBOX takes good photos. The issue with this question is that it is misinformed—the SHOTBOX doesn’t actually take any photos at all. Its job is to cast good, balanced light so that another device—a camera or smartphone—can take the photo. Because of the SHOTBOX lighting, the result is superior to trying to take the shot with poor lighting.

However, there are basically four key components in good photography. These essential elements are lighting, hardware, software and user.


Light is the hardest component to fudge. Ask any professional photographer and I’m sure they’ll agree—correct light is critical to the desired result.




This is another way of saying “camera,” or “photo taking device.” Whether you’re using a DSLR, digital point-and-shoot or even a smart phone, having some method of capturing your shot is pretty obviously important. While DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras are still the staple for professional and amateur photographers alike, smartphone manufacturers seem to be gunning for a full-spectrum camera market. Regardless of what you choose to shoot with, quality hardware is a key component to quality results.


The software of your “picture taking device” carries its own importance in this process. On a smart phone, this software is encapsulated in the camera app. There are additional apps available; so many, in fact, that it can be hard to know what will be best. The default onboard cameras are generally good, though I also recommend apps such as Camera+ or Afterlens. You can do a considerable amount of correction and adjustment with these softwares before you even push the shutter button. Oftentimes you can adjust focus, balance, intensity and contrast.

Software is also found on digital and DSLR cameras within the auto-modes and manual settings. It is all controlled by buttons and switches and occasionally even touch screens, but it ultimately all controls an internal software. This internal software is specifically designed to provide more control over the desired photo results.

You can also consider editing applications like Photoshop another essential type of software. You can find online programs like Picmonkey and Canva. There are also basic editing tools found on most computer operating systems. All of these typically allow for cropping and some minor editing to more closely achieve the desired outcome.


The user or, more specifically, the knowledge of the user is the fourth crucial element in producing great images. In other words, we ourselves are at the root of good photography. It is your expertise in whatever format you choose that can possibly make all the difference in your personal photography. By understanding the other elements and gaining some command over them, the end result is visually obvious. The challenge is on us to learn this craft, get good at it, and enjoy taking great photos for whatever purpose is motivating us.

The SHOTBOX is intended to work with each of these elements to improve your photography game. It excels at providing a great lighting environment, can be used with any camera or smartphone, and maximizes what software can do while minimizing the amount of actual post-editing required. All you have to do is add a user! If you don’t already have one, get your hands on a SHOTBOX today!

And for making it to the end of this post, here’s a little gift to you from me—use the code AARON20 at checkout on for $20 off your purchase!

Go forth and produce great photos!