Based on my last post, hopefully you just bought or received a new digital camera as a gift. After you took it out of the box, I bet you just couldn’t wait to take pictures. Lots of pictures! Clicking the shutter button is completely irresistible! Most novices start shooting away with abandon.
While it doesn’t cost anything to click the shutter several hundred times, if you really want to improve your photography, avoid the temptation to shoot everything – whether it moves or not.
In the first lesson with my students, I teach them one simple rule: Don’t shoot it, if it doesn’t excite you. In other words, there should be a reason why you’re clicking the shutter button. In the lesson, we look at different types of photography. I show them a series of images: portraits, landscapes, wildlife, travel, sports, and night photos. In an effort to show them what’s possible, I select only the best professional photos. They marvel at the images, often exclaiming “Wow!” The goal of the lesson is for them to find their passion. I ask them: What images stir something inside them? Which photos make them jealous? (making them wish that they had taken the photo). At the end of the slideshow, I ask them to select two categories that truly excite them. Those are the types of photos that they should seek out and create.
My point is that your best images often include subjects that you’re most passionate about. Shoot what you love, and you’ll be surprised how that passion comes across in your photography. The novice, who tries to capture everything, usually ends up with nothing. They’re just snapshots that don’t say much. The first step to better photos is to find your passion and shoot it.
Next Post: From Snapshots to Great Shots