Great job on this assignment. What’s interesting is that both of your photographs are simplified and non distracting. Most photographers for this assignment “clean up” a photograph by zooming in. This clears up the edges of the photograph, focuses in on a manageable palette of colors and helps both the photographer and the viewer focus on the essential elements of the photograph rather than secondary or distracting components.
However, your “beast” photography is simple, coordinated and clean. I bring this up because it’s interesting to analyze a photograph based on what we don’t like about it. There is obviously something in your first photograph (the beast) that lacks drama. However, as I mentioned above, it’s not the main culprit; composition.
After closer analysis, I’ve realized that it’s the flatness of the objects and the composition, coupled with poor lighting. While the composition is balanced and boring, it’s not wrong. The problems with your beast photograph is that the flat object, against a flat white wall, on a flat white surface simply lacks depth. You have no foreground, a almost unnoticeable middle-ground and your background is flat, white and boring.
Your second image corrected all of these things. You’ve angled your shot to correct the flatness of the image, you’ve used a stronger foreground presence and your put some creative thought into your background while at the same time tying it into the tone of the overall photograph.
This is a great first assignment! Keep up the good work.