Why Do I Forget to Photograph?

I am a photographer but I often forget to shoot. Isn't that a ridiculous thing to say? I must admit, it's my reality more often than I'd like to admit.

Led Light Photography by Walid Azami

In this video, I am responding to a last-minute urge to just create something, even if it's terrible. I remind myself that much of my earlier work was terrible, but it was fun to shoot and grow, to try new things. I remember just photographing anything and enjoying the process, really loving what I captured. I remember the excitement and frankly, I miss it. I miss just creating because at heart I am an artist.

Why Am I Reluctant to Shoot?

I grew accustomed to budgets, processes like getting approval from the ad agency or the client. I grew accustomed to hiring a crew, negotiating their contracts, looking for locations, and conducting casting calls. I forgot that it was the small insignificant shoots that prepped me for where I am today. I am reminded that picking up the camera and leaving the front door is an incredible feeling. 

And as our careers progress, we have to remind ourselves of the first days. We have to remember the fun of downloading a card, hoping for one or two excellent images. Not everything has to be about a committee approval, your brand, or getting the biggest budget possible. 

We Grow Accustomed to Big Shoots

On top of becoming accustomed to a bigger process, I grew accustomed to working with others and relying on a big team to get the creative done. That means I'm building incredible skills working with a team but I am losing rogue shooting. I am forgetting to walk out there and photograph the random things that may never have a home like a magazine or a record cover. I decided to change that and jump on a last-minute urge to shoot something. 

Led Light Photography by Walid Azami

What I Learned From Just Shooting for No Reason

I took the opportunity to just shoot without any direction, ideas, or even location. What I learned was that it was fun. I forget to have fun with photography. I learned that the photographs will likely be terrible and that's alright. It's OK to have a terrible photograph because the world won't end. I learned that a terrible photograph can be a great learning opportunity for a future shoot and that we need more practice rounds. 

All in all, I learned that photography was fun. I'm going to do create more random photography without a plan. I'm going to encourage other photographers to do the same. It's about the balance between paid jobs and shoots that help you learn about yourself.  That's what this video is about. I wanted to use a cheap lens, a cheap LED light, and give some plants an overhaul. 

Walid Azami's picture

Walid Azami is a Photographer/Director and creative consultant from Los Angeles. He got his start working with Madonna + Co by contributing to her many projects. It was then he realized his place in the creative world & began teaching himself photography. He has since shot Kanye, Mariah Carey, Usher, Bernie Sanders, JLO, amongst others

Log in or register to post comments

great post, I make a living taking photos, but I try to take bad photos every day. here's one of my knee.

but which lens?!

my favorite, 28-70 f/2.0 :)