So I thought it might be fun to do my first ever “rant” blog so buckle up.
What makes a good photographer? That’s simple! A good photographer is someone that can produce a good image with a reasonable degree of regularity. What qualifies as a good image? Well, that’s up for everyone to decide for themselves. I’ve been doing this long enough to know that what qualifies as good to others often bears no resemblance as to what qualifies as good to me. If you like a photo then I guess it’s good to you. If someone else likes a photo then I guess it’s good to them; even if it’s garbage… LOL.
So we’ve covered what I don’t know and what I can’t determine for you. So let’s move on to what I do know. Things that make a good photographer do not have anything to do with any of the things pictured above. When people use things like shooting in manual mode, shooting RAW, or what brand name is on their gear as testimony of their skill as a photographer I laugh; and often out loud. If these are the things your proud of with regard to your photography skills then my guess is you probably have none.
I’ve been doing this for 35 years and the last 10 being paid with photography as my main gig. Do I know how to shoot in manual? Yes, but I can honestly say I spend at least 75% of my time in aperture priority. Do I shoot RAW? Most of the time, but 90% of my processed and delivered images come straight from Jpeg and the RAW’s sit in a backup folder somewhere shot and kept simply as an insurance policy. Do I shoot a name brand and am I loyal to that brand? I shoot Sony but as soon as someone else produces a camera and system that I like better that will be the day that I switch. Don’t believe me?
If you have the skill necessary to forget the tech and shoot from the heart then you’ve pretty much won the battle. In short; if you can take a decent photo and do so with a degree of humility and grace then your a good photographer in my book; all other qualifiers are just noise. Concentrate too much on all that noise that the T-shirt makers think is necessary to be a good photographer, you’ll most certainly fail to capture what makes a good photograph.