The Importance of Keeping an Open Mind and Being Flexible in Photography

One of the central principles we hear over and over in photography is the importance of pre-visualizing shots and planning one's work in advance. And while those are absolutely important, it's also just as beneficial to keep an open mind and to be willing to adjust to the conditions you've been given to come away with the best possible image. 

Coming to you from Adam Gibbs, this excellent video talks about the importance of staying flexible as a photographer. Though the video is focused on landscape photography, its message really applies to many other genres. When you spend a lot of time preparing yourself to get a certain shot, only to show up and to realize that the light or some other aspect is not cooperating, you may fall prey to the sunk cost fallacy and end up trying to force the shot, only to find you've wasted your time or created an inordinate amount of post work for yourself. That's when it's important to be willing to let go of your original plan and to reevaluate what sorts of shots will work with the conditions at hand. Doing so will make you a better photographer and give you a higher chance of coming home with worthwhile images. 

And if you really want to dive into landscape photography, check out "Photographing the World 1: Landscape Photography and Post-Processing!"

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Mike Gillin's picture

I think this is an interesting point, and something to keep in mind, but it's not something you can, or should always apply. There are definitely times when it does pay to adapt, or change concept based on what is. There are also a lot of times where you need to get the shot you had in mind for one reason or another. I guess I would say its good to keep an open mind, but be selective in how you apply that.

Jay Jay's picture

That's bad, I just closed my mind