What Photography Taught Me

1.      Be open, look for a different perspective. Or more specifically, a different angle!

Think you’ve gotten the best shot possible? Think again. There is always another perspective, another angle, another filter etc. you can try. In photography you’ve got to be open to the possibilities, otherwise there will be missed opportunities.

 

2.      Be patient

Generally, the more patient you are, the higher the probability of you taking some amazing shots. I know this is especially true in nature photography. Sometimes the perfect moment presents itself to you relatively quickly, but usually it takes some time. Even when you think that you might never get the shot you want, with time, you may be able to. Keep at it, and have patience.

 

3.      Don’t care what others think

In public, time and time again I have to remind myself to focus on the photography and to enjoy it. The people around you probably won’t even bat an eye and if they do, so what, let them be curious, you’re the one having a great time. The moment is too short – while you’re caring what other people might think of you as you maneuver your body into strange positions to get a shot, that special capture, that certain pose, will get lost. You won’t be able to grasp that moment in time again. Take the photo you want!

 

4.      Just keep going, but - know when to stop

Sometimes, actually most of the time, getting that perfect shot isn’t easy. You might be kneeling in rocky terrain, your neck may feel strained, your back may hurt. Your model may be getting tired. Sometimes, it’s worth it. Sometimes, it’s better to take a little break. The trick is to know when to do what.

 

5.      Notice the little things

I can’t count the number of times I am surprised at what I find when I just examine the environment more closely. Sometimes, even when I feel sure there couldn’t be anything interesting here, when I take a closer look, there is. That’s how recently I saw a baby praying mantis for the first time. Even in other forms of photography, the little things can make a difference. Maybe the lighting in one area looks more “special” than in another. Maybe the quirky, lopsided chair can make a good prop. Maybe the way that apple hangs from the tree will add a nice touch to your landscape shot.

 

6.      Enjoy the moment

It’s nice to finish a photography “session” knowing you’ve gotten some amazing shots, but sometimes you aren’t able to, at least not the ones you wanted to capture. I’ve learned to be fine with this; to be more flexible. In nature photography, nature is the focus, the essence. You can’t forget to enjoy the time you’re spending outside, and observing the nature around you. Not everything is about the perfect shot. Enjoy photography while you’re in the act of doing it!

 

7.      The learning never ends

Even when you’re not set out to learn something new, you might just stumble across it as you mess around with your camera settings. And if you are, there are a lot of resources online to learn new tricks and techniques. You can always learn a lot from your fellow friend photographers as well. Seeing how and what they shoot, what end shots they get and how they edit them, can be inspiring and helpful.