Something that I have found that comes up quite often lately is, how do I grow as a photographer? How do I become a better photographer?
Well, there is no set in stone, stock standard way to get better. There are multiple ways for one to improve on your skills and to learn new techniques as a photographer.
Let’s take a look at some of the main things that first come to mind.
- Be open to criticism
- Move out your comfort zone
- Look at other photographer’s work
- Practice, practice, practice
Be feedback fit
Although many photographers often take images just for themselves (which is not a bad thing at all and is the main reason I take photographs) it is nice to be able to share experiences and special moments with others – this often leads to feedback on your images. Now, in photography and the beauty thereof, is that we all have a different eye for it, we all like different things and we all take different images which is great. So there will always be criticism around your images. The important thing is to be feedback fit, someone else who sees different things in the image may be able to help you improve the image for next time, its not that it is a terrible image, its just a different way of looking at it and enhancing the end result.
Move outside your comfort zone
It is very easy to fall into a rhythm that you feel comfortable with, often we find something that works well for us – this is fantastic but can also cause us to fall into a photographic rut and breaking out of that rut can be a very difficult to do. In order to keep getting better and broadening your photographic range, you need to test yourself. Push through your comfort zone, this may be a daunting thought and you wont like everything you try but it allows you to pick and choose what you like and forget the rest. What this does is all part of developing into a better photographer and to find your own style. DON’T BE AFRAID OF CHANGE.
Look at other photographer’s work
I find it is quite helpful to look at other photographer’s images, I am not saying copy their work, what I’m trying to say is look at their images and try identify what they have done. What sticks out in the image? How did they highlight their subject? What angle did they use? Do you see where I’m going with this? By doing this it gets your own mind thinking and subconsciously, when you out in the field you will think of new ideas and different ways to capture your subject that maybe you would have over looked before.
Practice, Practice, PRACTICE
The only way to get better is to practice. In photography, there are a number of reasons why practice is good. Becoming more familiar with camera in hand is merely one aspect – this allows you to make quick adjustments in the heat of the moment, and of course knowing your settings – being able to understand what to change and when to change it, will add huge value to your image as you will find that you will spend less time post processing and have a much more natural feel to your image.
I have spent many hours in my garden, walking around camp and photographing my pets trying to work on my skill set and understanding my camera. You don’t need a good subject to practice, in fact it is probably better to do it in a calm relaxed environment which enables you to play around and if you take a bad picture it doesn’t really matter, you can use that image, analyze it and improve your skills for the next time you faced with a similar situation.
I really hope you find this blog helpful and remember, in order to improve you need to push yourself, challenge your ability and break through your comfort zone.
Until next time,