How and Why.
Sunrise at Winnats Pass,Peak District.
A three shot blend of a BMW M3.
Pre wedding shoot at Bolton Abbey.
You’re probably wondering about the title and what I’m talking about. You have to know the how and the why to capture the emotion. A good shot edited well goes a long way and that takes time.
My friends often tell me the same thing when faced with the opinion of what they think of my photography. I am told I have my own unique style. I am told that they can recognise my work almost instantly when they see it. It’s a style that has become my signature. It is unique.
The main reason for being a photographer is that the image has to capture more than what you see, it has to represent the current mood of the photographer and the ambiance of the atmosphere. This is not something that comes over night, it does take time. But it is easier when you shoot what you enjoy. Everyone should take inspiration from other photographers. There is nothing wrong with being inspired by others’ work. It’s a challenge to achieve the same level. I follow many other photographers for inspiration. It’s the final image, the end product, which will stand out amongst the crowd. How did you take the shot, what did you do to make it yours? Long exposure, fine details, or black and white imagery are just a few techniques that could be your signature style. A lot also depends on the mood of the photographer and the location.
As a photographer who shoots what I enjoy, I get to express myself with much more ease. Maybe you shoot landscapes, food, architecture; all these subjects can show what the photographer is feeling and trying to say. It does take years of shooting images. It is very important that you are honest with yourself. Look at your images and tell yourself why you like and dislike them. What have you learned from the shoot and what can you learn on the next shoot. Take the time and invest the time in yourself. Get to know your gear. How good is your camera, your lens? How far can you push them, can you do all the jobs you want to do, what is limiting you? If, at first, you fail is it the equipment or is it you? Learn to edit images as clearly as you see them in your head.
Now you are already half way there. It won’t come all in one day, but it will come with time. It has taken me over a decade but I’m still not where I want to be. On every shoot I try to better myself from my previous shoot. Make a check list and go by it. Be realistic about your targets; don’t expect to be a Photoshop master in one week by watching Youtube. It won’t happen overnight nor will it happen after a one-day course. Both of these tools will help in the long run. They will help so long as you know what you are looking for. One step at a time is all takes.
Another critical factor to consider is your own mood. This is hugely important as it will reflect in the final outcome of the image. Not in the mood to shoot? Then don’t. Instead, why not write a blog about the last shoot or plan your next one. Planning is crucial for any shoot. By planning you’re not wasting time, rather reflecting upon it. Take time to find your composition. If it doesn’t work then find another one and maybe come back and try again. Don’t always go for the obvious shot; try to find your own take.