“What I like about photographs is that they capture a moment that’s gone forever, impossible to reproduce.”
― Karl Lagerfeld
I’ve always loved beautiful pictures. Not the pictures that you pass by and say, “That’s nice,” but the ones that make you stop in your tracks and render you speechless. The perfect sunset on a tropical beach. The torrential rain frozen in time. The rising moon peering over a bitterly cold mountain. A beautiful cup of tea. Whether its a unique angle showing an object as we’ve never seen before or a hidden moment in nature which is lost in just a moment, photography can open entirely new worlds to people.
That was why I have always enjoyed photography, but I have never been really good at it. A couple years ago, I invested into a nice digital Canon camera (not extremely expensive for a camera, but even a couple hundred dollars is a lot to me). And since then, I’ve been telling myself that naturally my photos will just get better. If I’m displeased with the lightening in one photo, I will simply give the excuse that I’m an amateur and that, eventually, my photos will be as gorgeous as the ones dotting Pinterest and travel magazines.
That was, until a few weeks ago when I actually took the time to take my camera out of auto-mode and into manual, and realized I had no idea what I was actually doing besides pointing, focusing, and shooting in hopes that the picture would turn out good. I knew nothing about composition, shutter speed, aperture, Iso, etc. And it was only when I took the time to look up what any of that meant that I realized I wasn’t just an amateur, I wasn’t really a photographer.
As a writer, I have learned the one thing that makes you a writer is actually writing. But being a successful writer is about learning from your mistakes and perfecting your craft. When I decided I wanted to write seriously, the first two things I did was to examine other writers’ books and to read books about how to write. And it has helped me so much in any writing I do, whether simply writing this blog post you are reading now, or composing the multiple books I have written.
Photography is exactly the same. I would look at a photo, but never take the time to examine why it was good or bad.
So I’ve been trying to remedy my error over the last few weeks. I’ve been watching a lot of videos on YouTube to understand the basics of my camera and look at photography with a more critical eye. Instead of admitting I like a picture, instead I examine why I like it. Is it the lightening? The composition? The angle?
In learning anything, I find the more you learn the more you realize how little you actually know. But I’m trying.
This blog post is more of a confession, I suppose, a declaration of my goal to become a better photographer. So if you start seeing more photos on this blog, don’t be too surprised. I’ll probably bring back my Thursday picture and quote posts, which will be fun.
What is something you are striving to better yourself in? It could be a reading goal or it could be a life goal? Let me know your thoughts down in the comments, follow my blog for more madness and, as always,
Best wishes in your life full of adventure,