An Exercise in Patience: 24 Hours All for One Photograph

Landscape photography, like most things that produce a glamorous-appearing final product, is rather unglamorous behind the scenes. All the skill, patience, and devotion can still lead to coming home empty-handed or in this case, with a single image. Whether it's worth it is up to you.

Coming to you from Thomas Heaton, this great video highlights the pursuit of images only to see them evaporate before your eyes, yet remaining devoted and persevering in spite of the setbacks. I was particularly impressed by his restraint in choosing compositions. I would be lying if I said there haven't been times I've gone out to shoot some landscapes, not really found a proper composition given the conditions, but still taken a bunch of shots that were ok, but not good enough to take the time to edit and put into my portfolio. So, I ended up spending an hour culling shots that I would never use anyway. Yet, I always find myself going back out, because I love it. And really, I suppose that's the test of love for the craft: the ability to come home with nary a shot and still itch to get out the door for the next sunrise. 

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Anonymous's picture

I like his videos but it always feels like I'm watching one of the Weasley brothers. :-)

Ben Horne is also a great Youtube channel to follow, if you don't mind a photographer going entire days (or more) without clicking a single photograph. It's very thought-provoking, for those folks whose enjoyment of landscape photography may have lately turned into a maniacal scramble from one scene to the next, madly snapping thousands of photos only to ever publish one or two of them on 500PX or Instagram... ;-)

Spy Black's picture

I recently started a series of photocompositional projects which requires background plates shot in natural environments, and I have to say half the time I'm just wandering around the woods waiting for "that shot" to come before me. Although I know what I'm looking for, it takes a good amount of time for it to finally materialize before me. Unlike the other half of the project which will be shot in controlled studio conditions, this requires far more patience.

I also quickly learned I have to dose myself with more bug repellant than I care to have. My shots are image stacked macros extending to infinity, and being relatively still in one place for an extended period of time in the woods is an invitavtion to a bug party! I perservered however and fortunately came home with more than "one shot", and no bites. :-)

Eric Kai's picture

Guy redetermined me a character from Firewatch videogame (which is just as awesome as this video)