July 2020

Your "Why"

Why are you taking pictures? Who are you taking pictures for? Why do you post your photos?

Think about it for a moment... or two. 

Do you take pictures so that you can get Instagram Likes? Facebook Comments? Are you shooting to please others or are you shooting to please yourself? Is it a competition?

Do you try to get every photo perfect? Do you just want to capture the moment? 

If you are trying to please only other people with your photography, you are setting yourself up for a letdown. If you are only posting photos to get comments and likes, you may end up disappointed. If you take photos for you, it might surprise you to find that others like them too. 

What if...  you take photos to only please yourself? What if... you don't compare? What if... you don't monitor likes and comments? What if?

Very few of us will be National Geographic photographers and have award-winning photos. We might win a competition or get published, and that's great... but is that the goal?

This month as you take your photos, don't think about how others might receive them. Take them for making yourself happy.

Don't worry if your bird photos aren't as crisp as others. If you want to capture that bird, you do it.

Don't worry if your kids don't look as if they stepped out of a magazine or catalog. Capture the moments.

Don't worry if your landscape doesn't have the sunburst or the smooth water. Capture the scene to remember.

Shoot for yourself. Enjoy capturing the moments. Don't compare. 

What is your "why"?

Monthly eBook

What do you do when you are struggling to find your creative voice?

When our photos are not turning out how we’d like, we often go down the road of thinking that if we had a different lens, or a specific filter, or different editing software, or even a different camera, everything would be better.  We turn to books and tutorials filled with lots of ideas about things we can try or buy to improve our photography.  After traveling this path, I often meet its end feeling more overwhelmed and frustrated  than inspired and energized.  In such times, it is best for me to step back and simplify.

I find it helpful to limit myself to one lens, usually a prime lens, for an extended period of time.  Doing this make me work a little harder for the shots sometimes, but it also teaches me to move, to change my perspective, to rely on the artist within rather than equipment I have or wish I had.  I have done this experiment with both a 50mm lens and 105mm macro lens.  Placing these kinds of limitations on your shooting has much to teach about the process of taking pictures.

The same kind of simplifying process works with limiting your aperture.  If you tend to shoot wide open most of the time, stop down for a few weeks, or vice versa.  You may not like the results.  They may not accurately reflect your personal style, but you will learn something along the way.  And, it is one less thing to worry about when you set out to take photos.

If you could only shoot at one aperture for two weeks, what would it be?

If you could only use one lens, which one would you use?

Give this experiment in simplifying your shooting choices a try.  The benefit comes from thinking about what you discovered along the way.  Share what you learned in the Facebook group.

PHOTOGRAPHY TIP OF THE MONTH

When the going gets tough and the creative juices aren't flowing like you'd like, simplify.  Focus on one aspect of your shooting at a time.  Changing too many things at once usually results only in frustration.

Team Members

Garnett
Garnett
Kris
Kris

SNIPPETS FROM THE TEAM

AMY

With only having a couple of lens picking one for month isn't too hard ~ I would have to go with the most versatile one my Olympus 12-40mm f2.8 Pro it was a splurge a few years ago and well worth it! When there is not user error it is very sharp and the bokeh is always dreamy! 


GARNETT

This is a tough one because I like all of my lenses for different purposes. If I could only use one for a month, I would pick my most versatile lens... the Canon 24-105. It allows me to shoot landscapes at pretty wide angle, and zoom in on people as well. It also focuses to infinity for night photography and does well in bulb mode. This is the lens that is on my camera most days.


KRIS

If I could shoot with only one lens for a month, I think it would be a 50mm 1.4.  This is a versatile lens that makes me move around and carefully consider how I compose my photos.  Admittedly, I usually have a 24-70 on my camera and let the lens do the moving rather than me.

 


LEE 

Oh interesting question, but I have a stand out winner for my everyday photography, and that is the Canon Zoom Lens EF 24-105mm 1:4 IS USM, this lens spends the most time on my camera, it is the most versatile lens that I have, and it isn't too heavy!