It’s the new year, are you making photography resolutions? (Besides 2048 x 1365 or similar, ha ha.) My editor at Lynda.com asked if I had any New Year’s article ideas and I was excited to write this one: “Want to Be a Better Photographer? Get Out There and Shoot.”
I know, I know, it sounds horribly clichéd, a point I acknowledge in the piece:
I knew that sounded like the most obvious, clichéd, bumper-sticker answer one could come up with. Just do it! Carpé diem! Seize the sunrise! All that.
But to be a better photographer, you’ve got to develop and nurture a photographer’s eye. And to do that, you need practice, which means going out and making photos.
My point, however, is that too often we limit ourselves by only waiting for the right opportunity to make photos. The camera sits unused until a vacation or photo workshop, or we don’t bother looking for interesting shots if the light isn’t just right.
Instead, we need to make photo opportunities, which can be done in our own backyards. The photos in the article were all taken either close to home (like the one above, shot during the fantastic window in the spring when the rhododendrons next to our house bloom) or in less-than-ideal conditions. This photo, for example, was made during a weekend at a beach house under gray, rainy conditions. (Oh, but that fog! I’ll endure almost anything for good fog.)
So, get past the initial skepticism of the cliché and make an image anywhere you are. The more photos you create, the better prepared you’ll be for when the great photo opportunities come up.