|Greetings from the Critique Club!
Free Studies are notoriously difficult to do well in, as everyone else is bringing their best pic from the whole month, so if your image is not up to par you will soon feel it. Let's take a look at why this pic ended up where it did.
Basically the composition is okay in that it obeys the rule of thirds. But it looks like a snapshot, meaning that it was taken on the fly, without any thought going into it. The lighting is flat and uninteresting, there is glare on the metal railings next to your subject which draws the eye away from him. There is no catchlight in his eyes, which gives him a somewhat dull and lifeless appearance. I honestly cannot even tell if he is even looking at you. I just get a sense of disconnection. There appears to be very little if any post-production work done, which gives this pic a very rough and unfinished appearance next to more polished up competition.
Also, if this was indeed shot in Chinatown...then SHOW us Chinatown!! The setting here gives a very generic look, it could have been taken in NYC, Melbourne, London, Toronto, Los Angeles...but I am not getting a sense of any sort of Chinatown here at all.
You may want to look at the portfolio of librodo. Though no longer active here, he was very active in Asia and I believe still is. You will soon see why his images and in particular his portraits are just stunning and still revered here.
Sorry in advance if this critique is a bit harsh, but that's simply my honest opinion and analysis of this image. Please learn from what I have mentioned her, and do feel free to PM me with any questions.
Message edited by author 2017-02-15 21:22:09.