I was recently asked by a friend to do a 5 Day Black and White Challenge. This required me to post to a social media site a black and white image that I either created or shared from my archives. As I didn’t have the time to create an image a day I chose to dig through my catalogue for the shots required and that’s when I realised that I’m going through a phase where I disliked the images I’m creating. So I thought I better have a closer look and examine what I have been producing since I started photography in 2010. By looking over my images I can see I’m headed in the right direction and by sharing what I did might help you become a better photographer too.
Sometimes you can see the improvement from one particular image onwards. Was it purchasing a tripod to get sharper images? Was it a new lens that captures a wider view, allowing you to get closer to the foreground and capture the entire scene? Was it a tutorial or going to a workshop that improved how you use your camera? Or perhaps the filter that lets you capture longer exposures, or a tip from a friend that changed the way you see the world? I can remember how I felt with that new knowledge or gear that helped me move to that next level. I was excited and motivated to get out there and capture more images. That feeling is an important one for us to remember and relive as it can help us get through those dark moments which will always return. Then when we get to those “Aha Moments” it will make it all worth while.
So I’m looking back to help me move forward. If you are looking at your work now and comparing it to others there can be a huge difference between the two which can be discouraging, especially on social media. They have more followers and get more likes than I. Most of the people we look up to, have been in this game a lot longer than we have and have made great sacrifices to get where they are today or have just had a lucky break which accelerated their career. What we need to do is recognize and give credit to our achievements. Each step up is a move in the right direction. They may be small steps but very important ones in our progress as a photographer. To quote Zack Arias “Some of you are in the top 10 percent and we don’t know you exist.” So I say to you, keep on PUSHing (Persist Until Something Happens).
Be Persistence – Learning take time and practice
I may dislike SOME of my work now and see the flaws in the images. They will be fixed over time with more practice and experience. We just have to be more mindful that we are on the right path no matter how dark it seems.
All of this reminds me of a quote I have hanging on our fridge. “Don’t worry about others leaving you behind. They are not going where you are headed. It’s not who finishes first, but who saw the most of life.” Unknown source.