Photography equipment can be expensive, and the truth of the matter is that getting new gear won’t help your photography skills.
Learning more about photography will help your photography skills.
New equipment should help you do your work as a photographer more fluidly.
For example, the flash that was built into a camera that I was using recently was limited in […]
What if you were to borrow someone’s camera because you didn’t bring your camera to an event.
Could you work the camera to make the photographs that you wanted?
You could if you had a good foundation in the basics of photography.
You would dig into the camera settings and change the settings to suit your way of […]
Most students who register for a basic photography course say that they want to realize the full potential of their camera.
I’d rather have you realize your full potential as a photographer.
Take a basic photography class with Sam
Many artists want nothing to do with business. They feel that business may lessen their work as artists, make them “sell out”, do work that is unfulfilling, etc.
Many business people want nothing to do with art. They feel that art doesn’t pay, life as an artistis unpredictable, art is unstructured, etc.
The business person in us […]
I was recently asked if I teach night photography classes and I answered “yes, the classes that I teach in the evening start at 6:30 pm and usually end at 9:30pm.”
I misunderstood the question. The question was about whether I taught a class that specialized in creating photographs at night.
Do you really need a special […]
The composition of your photograph should be filled with intent.
If you, or your camera, are picking exposure settings in a haphazard manner, or based solely on the amount of light that you are working with, the composition of your photograph is lacking the visual depth that can only come with intent.
Everything from the choice of your lens to the the exposure […]
Good article from the The Observer about street photography.
Among others, some of the photographers who influenced me are mentioned.
Lee Friedlander, André Kertéz, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Robert Frank, Garry Winogrand and Helen Levitt.
I like my photographs like I like my food, unprocessed and real.
Of course a photograph is not “real” but it can be truthful or contrived.
Truth is easy, contrivance takes some work.
Contrivance can happen pre-production with staging something, or it can happen post production in editing software.
Contrivances that happen from pre-production involve setting up the picture, advertising, posed portraits etc.
Then look less.
Photography is more about seeing than looking.
Many photographers look for things to photograph instead of seeing things to photograph.
Looking is searching.
Seeing is discovering.
You don’t have look for things to photograph, everything is right in front of you.
All you have to do is see what is interesting about what is right in front of you and show […]
Your work as a photographer really begins when your preoccupation with the camera ends and your observation and study of light is your primary interest.
Photography is probably the easiest medium in which anyone can be competent.
Anyone can be a marginally capable photographer and produce a decent photograph.
The hard part of photography is developing a personal vision that is idiosyncratic.
The hard part of photography is separating yourself visually from the rest of the photographers who are making decent photographs.
Your photography has to become more than decent and has […]
Do you spend your time making a photograph or editing files?
You make a photograph with your camera, you edit files with your computer.
Some photographers get the photograph completed in the camera.
Some photographers rely on photo editing software to complete their pictures.
Photographers that get the photograph completed in the camera rely on their understanding of photography to create their final […]
Expression is letting your thoughts or feelings be known.
Most of us use words to do this. As a photographer you’ve chosen to use a photograph.
Unless you’re working as a photojournalist, you can use your camera as a means of expression. Instead of words, you can let your thoughts, feelings and emotions be known by making a […]
If I were to give you a prescription to improve your photography, and for you to improve as a photographer, here’s what it would be:
To make better pictures and to be a better photographer take at least one picture a day in fully manual exposure mode.
Take the recommended dose at varying times of the day, in different locations and […]
You: A thoughtful and creative being looking for a way to express itself.
A Camera: A tool that records light that can be used as a means of personal expression.
When you learn the craft of photography and learn to use the camera in manual exposure mode you have all you need to create expressive photographs.
Sure, you might need a flash […]
Next time you’re viewing a photograph try to imagine how the photographer made the picture.
Do you think that they used a large aperture or a small aperture?
How about a fast or slow shutter speed?
What about the ISO?
And the focal length lens?
What do you think the the white balance setting was?
Of course no one knows the […]
Photography is a thought process.
As a photographer you can think more or you can think less while creating your picture.
Put your camera in an automatic exposure mode and you think less.
Put your camera in a manual exposure mode and you think more.
You get out of your photography what you put into your photography. In this case more is more.
Technical mastery is not enough.
While you can fill your photograph with technical mastery and dazzle your audience with your technical skills, without your heart and personal vision your photograph will always be empty.
Remember, technique serves creativity. You need both.
Introduction To Photography
A new technique that becomes popular among photographers tends to become an overdone fad.
Just because you know how to use a technique doesn’t mean you have to use it all of the time. If you do, then the technique defines you as a photographer. You get to be known as the photographer who uses such and such technique.
Drawing Inspiration-Nan Goldin
Drawing Inspiration is a series of posts dedicated to photographers who have inspired me.
If possible, I’ve included a quote and a link to their work.
“A lot of people seem to think that art or photography is about the way things look, or the surface of things. That’s not what it’s about for me. […]
Many people equate good photography with equipment. They’ll see a photographer with the newest, top “o” the line camera and lenses, and a bunch of other equipment and think that this photographer must be good photographer.
Being a good photographer is different than looking like one.
There are a lot photographers who have tons of gear but don’t know how to […]