Don’t Believe Your Photography Teacher

Don’t believe what I, or any of your other photography teachers, tell you.

I’m not suggesting that we’re lying to you. We’re providing you with good information that you can use. The thing to understand is that our experience of photography is limited to our experience as photographers.

I think you should test whatever your teacher tells you by bringing whatever you learn into YOUR experience as a photographer.

This requires testing the information that you learn during class within the context of  your own way of working as a photographer.

While you’re in my class I can tell you WHY I choose certain ways to meter and expose, but ultimately it’s in your best interest to find your own way to create a photograph.

I think that wide-eyed questioning, curiosity and exploration will serve you better than blind faith.

If it works for you who am I, or anyone  else, to tell you that you should be doing things differently.

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3 thoughts on “Don’t Believe Your Photography Teacher”

  1. It’s also a good idea to learn and understand Ansel Adam’s “Zone System”. The physics of the inverse square law for exposure and pre-visualization remain as constants. Aesthetic decisions fall in place more spontaneously when creative endeavors are supported by the laws of physics. Internalize it. Make it “second nature”. Then do it.

  2. I agree, if you are talking about the artistic side of photography. What I think is a good picture and worth NOT deleting from my camera might be very different from what anyone else thinks is a good picture.

    1. Hi Cassandra,

      This absolutely applies to the artistic side of photography, but it also applies to technical decisions too.

      For example, in my classes I suggest that students meter in spot metering mode however, since there are multiple metering modes, I suggest that students try the different metering modes under a variety of conditions to test how each mode works and to see which one suits the way they work.

      The same applies for focusing and exposure modes as well as white balance settings.

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