How to Grow as a Photographer

Growing as a photographer is not an easy or obvious thing to do. This particularly insightful video is here to help, though, offering practical advice for photographers seeking to elevate their craft, regardless of whether they are beginners or long-time enthusiasts.

Coming to you from Ted Forbes with The Art of Photography, this fantastic video discusses how to grow as a photographer. Forbes divides the discussion into two parts: a mindset shift and actionable steps. He emphasizes the importance of being specific in goals and understanding personal limitations. For example, one might focus on mastering a particular type of subject matter or experimenting with specific lighting techniques. He argues that growth in photography often involves self-imposed constraints. This concept is illustrated through ideas such as a challenge by photographer Keith Carter to take 12 compelling photographs within a mile of one's home and Forbes' personal experience of limiting himself to a rangefinder and a 50mm lens for an entire year. These constraints, he explains, can lead to more creative problem-solving and a deeper understanding of one's tools.

Analyzing and understanding one's work is another key point. Spending time with your own photographs, questioning what could be improved, and learning from each shot can significantly elevate a photographer's skills. Forbes also stresses the importance of being inspired by others' work. He encourages photographers to explore and learn from both the historical and contemporary photography scene and other creative fields like art, literature, and cinema. He suggests finding a mentor or taking workshops, which can provide guidance and accelerate learning.

Altogether, Forbes offers a lot of valuable insight sure to help you improve. Check out the video above for the full rundown.

Alex Cooke's picture

Alex Cooke is a Cleveland-based portrait, events, and landscape photographer. He holds an M.S. in Applied Mathematics and a doctorate in Music Composition. He is also an avid equestrian.

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1 Comment

Excellent video. Lots of great information. I find the 50 mm lens thing pretty interesting. Over the holidays, I am going to try it. Thanks for sharing all the information, Ted.