Its NOT about the equipment. Its NOT about the equipment, Its NOT about the equipment.
I have been telling myself this faithfully for three years. In my business as a Wedding photographer I have struggled with camera envy more than a time or two. In this day and age, there are most certainly going to be guests attending a wedding with a camera better than yours, more expensive than yours, lenses that are so long and projectile that those around you, as all humans do- will be making comparisons and assumptions on whose is better.
You can sometimes hear the comments ” wow that is a really great camera ” People always assume a camera with a battery grip is amazing, because it appears to be so big. They will always think a big ol’ zoom lens is über professional, because it’s expensive. I’m still learning to not care about what people think. To be honest other DSLR shooters while I am working mess with my confidence, and I allow it to happen.This week especially I had a guest with the best DSLR camera that money can buy. A camera that had triple the megapixels, of mine. I was freaking out big time. I just took my shots, all the while knowing that I could never live up to that camera. At the end of the night, this wonderful gentleman introduced himself, and said something to the effect that he has a lot of respect for photographers that do what I do, and that he couldn’t shoot people. It was like an instant relief this man, with the amazing camera wasn’t a threat or competition, he was just a human. He even chuckled a little and said he really doesn’t know what he’s doing with his camera. As he flashed through a few photos on his LCD I could see that he had tuned his ISO up way too high, and allowed the ambient light to flood his sensor, making everything very orange. I however found just the right balance of ISO and shutter-speed and thought my shots looked great in- camera. I learned a valuable lesson that evening, and tried to let it soak in on the long drive home. NO equipment, not even the best that money can buy, can make up for knowledge of your craft.
So in light of this important life lesson, I wanted to share three ways to perfect your photography skills, no matter what camera is in your bag, these are the things that have changed my life, I still learn everyday and become better at what I do through these practices.
1. Sleep with your camera, and your manual. Read that manual and take practice shots, play with different ISO levels, different shutter speeds , different apertures. Take shots and compare them. Do this thousands of times until you know and understand the exposure triangle completely.
2. Create photo assignments for yourself. For a whole month, work on just shallow depth of field. Next month make the theme lens flares, or black and white, or whatever you feel suits your style. Each month delve completely into each topic and most importantly practice by taking hundreds of photos.
3. Network!! Get out there and meet your peers, you will find less competition and more brother/ sisterhood than you think. Find a teacher or mentor, take a class, join a meetup or photography club even take an online class but surround yourself really or virtually with other successful photographers.
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Serving Winston Salem, Greensboro, High Point, Lexington, Thomasville, and Kernersville in stylish and affordable Wedding Photography, Shanna Duffy, Wedding Photographer.