Being the best

October 04, 2021
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Passing storm at Wells Next Sea
Being the best by getting very wet

 

 

I was listening to Desert Island Discs. A lady Judge was being interviewed and she said the way she had got there was by being the best at what she did.

Just for a laugh, I put this into google. Well, technically, the search was “how to be the best photographer”.

I found this

11 Tips for being a better photographer. Meetstheeyesstudios.com

  • Buy only the equipment you can afford.
  • Learn manual settings.
  • Learn the rules of photography then break them.
  • Always shoot in RAW
  • Practice in different outdoor lighting
  • Get Studio experience
  • Know your lenses
  • Learn Composition
  • Learn photo editing software
  • Know your value
  • Study other photographers then find your style

OK, some good advice. most of the other results had variations on this theme.

Being the best requires dedication you can’t find answers to questions like this on google. It is not camera tricks. It is dedication, passion, and a desire to push yourself beyond where you thought you could go. Walk that extra mile, get up an hour earlier. Travel to different places, push the limits, and when you think you have gone far enough. Go further, push harder, practice harder, and most importantly……(skip to the end or read it first)

So

Let’s take the list from top to bottom. However, remember that photography is highly subjective and what is right for me may not be right for you. It is a question of trying and seeing what happens and when you find something that is right for you build on it and practice.

This one is a good one. 

Debt for professional photographers can be a killer and buying Nikon D6, EOS, or Hasselblad is not a requirement to be a good photographer. Some really good results are coming from phones and lower-end cameras. Buy the best you can afford and live with it. Learn it inside out what it can and can’t do in any situation.

Learn manual settings.

I understand why people get hung up about this. I learned on a manual camera, and it is second nature to me. But, it looms in people’s faces like a mountain something mysterious to be fought with but it’s not. Once you know the exposure triangle it’s a question of putting it into practice then, practice. However, if you are in a pressure situation manual can be slow and not give you the results you want. It depends on what you are doing and the results you want. It’s not good missing that killer shot because you are fiddling around with shutter speed. What it does do is put you in creative control of the shot and if you have the time it can render some awesome results. It is not a badge of honour though.

Sorry “Rules” of photography?

Learn to operate within the guidelines certainly, but do not think of them as rules. Understand why you are breaking them and for what reason then question the result.

Why would you limit yourself?

Always shooting in RAW. There are very good reasons for this but, I met a photographer recently who always shoots in JPG. Again, it’s about what is best for the situation and what results you want

Learn light,

This is the substance we work with. Learn about it, study it, look at it, see how it falls see how it changes. Don’t restrict yourself to just being outdoors, learn indoors as well. Learn about colour of light, times of day, harsh light, soft light. but do not limit yourself to one sort. Find out what works best for you then….Practice

Studio

I have never been in a studio never intend to be in one. Try it by all means if you like it then try more but do not feel restricted to do it just because someone has said you must.

Lenses

Agree with this one. Know your lenses inside out what they can do. What is the best aperture to work with? Where are they the sharpest? What does the depth of field look like? Will it give you the results you want?

Composition

This is one of the fundamental building blocks of photography where do things go into the frame and what do you leave out. These are guidelines, not rules. Learn them, see what works for you and then have fun with them. I questioned a professional photographer on one of my shots once and why it worked when it followed no “rules” The answer, “We like different things for different reasons”

Photo Editing Software.

As much as you need to do what you want with your images. I would rather be out in the field than stuck behind a desk, So I try to get it as close as possible in-camera. Then I do not need to spend hours fiddling with photoshop, lightroom, or capture one.

Know your value.

I am not sure about this, certainly, for a pro this would be paramount. But for an eager hobbyist who just wants to have fun and get better?

Study other photographers and learn your style.

Style is something that is born within you and comes out as you practice. Studying other photographers and trying to emulate them is not your style it is their style copied. It’s like going to so-called honey pot sites and taking the same image or asking for settings. This is not your image this is theirs redone. This may give you an insight into how they worked but it is better to learn your craft and use what you have learned to put into images and tell your story. What do you see? How can you put this into an image? What do you want to say about what you are looking at?

The word “you” comes up a lot. This is because it is you behind the camera telling a story of what is in front of you. How do you want to tell the story? What have You got to say about it? You are behind the camera controlling it.

 

So, this is my list to becoming a better photographer

  • Learn
  • Practice
  • Repeat

 

….Never ever give up.

If you didn’t skip Thanks for reading

My work can be found HERE take a look and on my website

 

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