This is something I’ve struggled with from time to time, and I think every photographer (or artist of any kind) does. Hell, there was a period of three months or so where I didn’t even pick up my camera (due to a large number of factors), but still. It’s safe to say I wasn’t enjoying photography then.. because if I was, I’d have used my gear.
Anyhow, I came across a post today on PhotoFocus that was from August 13th regarding five secrets to enjoying photography. Thought I’d share it here:
If you’re reading this site, chances are about 99-to-1 that you enjoy (on some level) photography. But this post is intended to help you REALLY enjoy photography. It’s based on nothing but my own observations and opinions so feel free to consider it carefully or reject it outright. Maybe it will help someone – I hope so. Here are MY five secrets to really enjoying photography.
1. Get off the couch and go make a photo. Thanks to the Internet, and media in general, there are literally hundreds of thousands of possible distractions out there that can keep you on the couch. Unless you have a VERY interesting living room, go out and shoot.
2. Photograph what you love. Period. End of story. Don’t photograph something that you think you SHOULD love – or that someone else is telling you to photograph (unless they are paying of course) and just shoot what matters to you.
3. Stop worrying about new – and worry about being you. Just be yourself. The mistake too many photographers make is thinking that they have to do something nobody has ever done before. Just go make pictures from your heart that represent your interests and the rest will work out.
4. Don’t fret over gear. Go shoot with whatever you have. Your passion, your eye, your desire to tell a story with a camera – any camera – will lead to more satisfaction than having a fancy camera. In fact, it can make things even more fun if you purposely limit your gear.
5. Ignore the trolls. No matter what you do, how good it is, or how great is is, there is still someone back on the couch who’d rather be an armchair quarterback than actually go do something that matters. Stay off the online camera forums and let the trolls talk to themselves. You’ll have a better time out there with your camera.