So You Want to Become a Better Photographer?

So You Want to Become a Better Photographer?

There are many tips online. Five step listicles of composition, post-processing, editing, getting the model to smile more, and to capture a story in the best way possible. You can be friendlier to clients, communicate your vision to the team, client or model, use on or off camera flash, and setup your camera in a better way to enable easier ways to capture the shot. You can learn about better workflows and how to increase your productivity in post too. All these tools are available on for you to learn and use in your everyday photography career and life. 

But, like anything, the only real way you’ll improve and become what you set out to be is to practice. It’s the same with writing, painting, editing video, or presenting to client or speaking in-front of a group of people. Practice does not make it perfect, but it will make it much better than if you didn’t practice. Get out there and shoot, go out and share your vision of a project with the people you think can give advice or play a role in it. Pack the gear, get the camera, and get out. Go do it. It might not be exactly what you wanted, but at least you did it. Give it your best shot, literally.

Imagine two scenarios. One, is where you arrange the shoot, you’ve got everything together and you produce something worth the time you put in. It’s looks good, you learned something, like you do with every shoot you do, and you take the knowledge to the next one.

Scenario two, you don’t do the shoot now, you do it in a year or five. The process is the same, you might have some more experience and your vision might differ a bit, but if you shoot it then, it won’t really be much different. It's still your idea, your interpretation and vision of what it is you wanted to shoot.

What I’m trying to tell you is that you need to hone in on the skills by practicing as much as possible. Develop your style, and show only your best work. Get out there, and get shooting. For some extra motivation, here is a video of John Free below. He's in the car talking about his skills and how important yet fun it is to go out and shoot your vision.

I learned this while living in Paris for two months. We were there on Bastille day, and although there were terrorist attacks in Nice, we we're spared and Paris gave her people a spectacular fireworks display. I took a time-lapse, and although it's not the largest file with 10 stops of dynamic range, I still have a shot I can use to teach me a lesson every time I look at it. If you want to stack some images too, read all about it here.

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