A simple tip you can use to improve your photography is to add people. Photography beginners always want to remove people from their photographs. This is totally wrong. This tendency goes hand in hand with another beginner notion, that you need to put everything right in the middle of your image. Why everyone thinks these things when they start out in photography is unknown.
When you're struggling with a photo or you want to enhance the image add a hand, or a person, or a face. Adding something human to a photograph will always help the viewer of your photograph relate almost immediately. It brings a sense of scale to your photo and it will make it more interesting.
Here are a few examples related to the subject of chess in photography with no people:
photo by cmogle
photo by alancleaver
photo by kwl
The photographs above aren't terrible. However when you add people (below) they look downright mundane in comparison. Take note that images may even be worse from a technical standpoint but they are more interesting to look at! What would you rather have, a technically perfect photograph or a really interesting image? Ideally you want both but when you're just starting out you often just have to pick one...
photo by IanSane
photo by proimos
photo by austinevan
Notice there is movement and action in the last photograph. This image has some serious technical problems but it serves as a perfect example of how even a poor quality image can be more interesting if the subject matter is compelling.
Like most topics in photography this is entirely subjective. Whose to say what is and what is not interesting. Just keep this tool in your belt when you're out shooting photographs. It almost never hurts to add people!