Over the years, we’ve featured many great photographers here on DIYP and we’ve heard plenty of great advice from them. At a recent Sony Kando trip, Taylor Jackson met 29 of his (and ours) favorite photographers and YouTubers. In this video, he brought them all together and had each of them share a piece of photography advice. So, he ended up with a valuable collection of tips for both aspiring and experienced photographers.
We were all beginners once, and it was only after a few years’ experience that we noticed some mistakes we made back then. This is why the older and experienced version of Matthew Vandeputte created this video for his younger self, a beginner in timelapse photography. These ten tips come from years of experience, and if you are new to timelapse photography, this video is for you.
It has recently come to my attention that exactly 10 years ago, almost to the date, I took my very first step into the world of photography. I was fresh out of high school when I got conscripted to the army and later served as a military photographer. Whether it was to my liking or not, this is how I was set on this long path which has, since then, flourished and developed my passion for photography into my current career as a traveling, cultural and documentary photographer.
After many years of doing photography as an amateur, I came to a few simple and rather trivial realizations.
1. Focusing on the flaws of your camera is just an excuse to buy new hardware. Re-reading reviews of your current camera is the best remedy for that. The awesome features that made you buy the camera and overlook its shortcomings are still there.
2. Practically any current DSLR and mirrorless camera from Sony, Olympus, Canon, and Nikon is more than good enough if you are an amateur or enthusiast. That has been true for a while.
3. Reading the manual that comes with your camera is not a bad idea at all.
Photography is a wonderfully dynamic form of expression. It is technical, artistic, timeless, evolved. We are in a phase in the industry where cameras and lenses are being designed to take images of mind-blowing quality. They are getting sharper and producing better color than ever before. Autofocus systems are to a point where you can tell the camera which eye to track. The focus of the industry has undoubtedly shifted toward technical perfection.
However, amidst the ever-improving image quality, we often lose the emotional connection that images from generations past have. The more we focus on how sharp the lens is and what settings someone used, the more we forget about why we started taking photos in the first place.
There’s a segment of readers (yes, those of you who have life and your career all figured out) who will dismiss this as drivel. This is for the more humble among you…
Is it meeting your needs…
Or merely creating new wants?
Is it honoring your time or squandering your time?
Is it connecting you with those you care about, or separating you from them?
Is it exposing you or giving you a place to hide?
Is it important, or only urgent?
Is it right, or simply convenient?
Is it making things better, or merely more pressing?
Is it leveraging your work or wasting it?
What is it for?
…and, immediately, I began to reflect on my own career as a creative professional.
There is a problem plaguing photography blogs, waiting in the wings, ready to ensure their demise. And, as all of you armchair pundits are excitedly clicking to the comments section to inform me of my blatant hypocrisy, allow me to save you the effort and admit right here: I know there will be multiple examples of hypocrisy throughout this post. Good…I saved you thirty seconds of valuable input. [Read More…]
One of my favorite photography quotes comes from long-time National Geographic photographer Jim Richardson. “If you want to be a better photographer, stand in front of more interesting stuff.” Like so many pieces of Life’s really great advice on topics big and small, it is both ridiculously simple and deeply profound at the same time. It’s the simplicity, though, that really resonates with me. I was discussing this with my students the other day when they pointed out to me that much of my advice to them is just as basic, simple, and straight-to-the-point.