Learning Photography and doing it self taught leads to all kinds of self doubt. I have decided to go ahead with the choice that I know I’ll look at in 2 years and say, “What was I thinking? I had no idea what I was doing.” However; if I don’t start now it will soon seem overwhelming and I’ll never do it. So I’m doing something for me 10 years from now. Because I think that guy will say, “I’m sure glad I did that”. — Kevin Wenning
I have invested money and time to teach myself to take “good photographs” intentionally. The time has come to start tracking progress and see if I’m actually improving. Since the beginning of this year, I have increased the frequency of sharing photos on Instagram. I enjoy using Instagram because it’s immediate; and to be honest, I like some of the photos I edit on my phone better than what I get out of Lightroom. The end result though is a small image and I like to see them as large as possible. This image of a sheepherder in the mountains of Ecuador was edited on an iPhone 6. I liked the vintage postcard feeling so I posted it to Instagram. The resulting image was saved very small and I really can’t do anything else with it besides share it on social media.
When learning photography there is a big difference between casual social posting and looking like a pro. I don’t want to post to professional photo sharing sites through my iPhone. The images often get compressed and fuzzy on small screens and social networks, and that’s just not making me happy. Plus, who knows which social networks and photo sharing sites will even be around in ten years. I’ll control my own, thank you.
Onward and upward. I started using SmugMug, Google+, and 500px. SmugMug is a great online gallery for displaying the full size images. Google+ and 500px are full of amazing photographers to get inspired by, and I visit Ello to see art that challenges my perspective … I digress.
Why keep a travel photography log?
- To show a body of work. To show persistence and improvement in a craft. To show that I’m still creating and working.
- To answer friends questions like, “Where have you been? What was it like? Where are you going next?”
The goal is to log my travels for the sake of my own memory and see if my shooting and editing skills get any better. A secondary goal is to determine what my style is. So far I’m a travel, culture, landscape photographer. I’m still not entirely sure what I really like to photograph. We’ll see where that goes. I’m fairly certain that learning photography is not a short journey but one that will develop throughout the rest of my life. I cannot guarantee that my images will adhere to common photographic practices and rules because sometimes breaking them looks better to me. Reasonable minds may differ. Differ away.