Is it true that the Photographer is the important part of taking photos?

grayscale photo of woman holding a dslr camera
Photo by Gabe Morales on


Are you confident when you go out and take your photos?  Do have a certain amount of anxiety when you go out and take photos?  Are you unsure of your camera because you are not sure how the photos will turn out?  Would you like to feel that when you return from a photo shoot that you will more than feel great that your photos are better than you could imagine after that?  So what is the best way to improve your photography?

man and woman taking selfie near gray train
Photo by veerasak Piyawatanakul on


If you are anxious or worried about your photographs then you are probably not going to be so happy with your photos.   As photographers, every time we go out and take pictures, we generally like to think that our photos are improving.  I don’t know of any good photographer who isn’t serious about improving their photos every time they go out and take photos.

Photography is so much more than learning about dials and buttons and which ones to turn to make the photos come out better.  The best way to improve your photography is to forget about your camera.

Photography is more popular than ever.

Photography is currently more popular than ever.   People are taking more photos to day than ever before in history.  Why?  Because they can.  They have a camera with them almost all the time, and because it is easy.

SL Temple golden hour
Cell phone cameras have made photography easier than ever.  This photo was taken by me of the Salt Lake Temple in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA at the Golden hour with my cell phone. 


It is easier and more convenient than ever to be able to take and share your photographs. Most people can take a photo with their phone very easily and without much knowledge of photography technique. Most phone camera users are not concerned with their shutter speed or their ISO setting.  But, they are not concerned, so much about taking outstanding photos.  And that is the key:  OUTSTANDING PHOTOS.

When people are taking pictures with their phone, they are taking pictures of the moment, not the mechanics of how to take the picture.  Once you learn how to take pictures and understand the mechanics, then you start taking OUTSTANDING photos.  And that is the difference.

Make time to learn:

Make time to study how your camera works.  If your camera is new, learn the real basics of your camera first.  Learn how to get the basics of focusing down first so that your focus is always sharp.

photo of woman near plants
Photo by Min An on

In any situation you need to feel confident in adjusting your settings without losing concentration of your subject.  Learn carefully what the depth of field can do for you first, then learn what shutter speeds can do for you second.  Learning the concepts of depth of field in portraits and closeups will be the real key.

If you are constantly trying to figure out how to use your camera when you want to take great photos, you will not be successful.  You need to learn that before you go to your photo shoots.

camera event live settings
Photo by Donald Tong on

For more advanced photographers, never stop learning about the functions of your camera.  There are some different ideas about the functions of your camera that you can always learn.  I am just learning myself about histograms, and what they can do for me.  So, how many of you who have new DSLR’s even know that  you have them?  Something new for sure is always lurking in these new cameras.

Be Prepared:

When you are going to go to a photo shoot, do you have everything you need?  Will you need a flash?  Will you need a telephoto lens, or wide angle lens?  Will  you need a tripod?  Be mindful of the real necessities, such as batteries, or memory cards?  If not, don’t carry it with you, it will only hinder you.

Always try to anticipate ahead of time what you will need.  Think ahead of what you are going to take a picture of first.  Will it be a bride coming out of the building?  Will you need a big lens for that?  Have that ready on your camera.  Think ahead of the first thing you might be taking a picture of first.

adult affection beautiful bouquet
Photo by Inna Lesyk on

Review and critique:

Always look at your photos after the photo shoot, including the bad ones or the duds.  It is a good way to learn from them.  What went wrong?  Why did the duds turn out bad?  Can you correct yourself in the future from them?  I know a photographer that made copies of all the duds and made notes of what he did wrong and used them to learn from them.  He never showed them to his clients.  It was for him to learn from.

Study your photos for subject material, for composition, etc.  Try to find things that you could improve on for the next photo shoot.  Some professional photographers are their best critics.

If you are brave enough, have another photographer critique your photos.  He may see something you are missing.  And if your friend is a photographer too, you can become his critic as well.  It can work both ways.


Art and Science:

afterglow art backlit bokeh
Photo by luizclas on

Photography is an art.  At least to those who take it seriously.  Photography is very much a whole brain experience.  The left side of your brain engages to manage the technical aspects.   Your right brain is focused on the creative aspects.  There must be a cohesion and a balance.

If you are too focused on the technical aspects of photography, you will not produce such creative pictures.   If you are focused on the creative part of photography you may not be focused enough on the focusing or exposure aspects of photography.

amazing background beach clouds
Photo by Pixabay on

Being confident to use your camera, whichever one you choose, will help you be more successful.  Understand how to use it, and adjust the settings to the point that you can do it comfortably, will give you unbelievable results.  And this takes time, study, and practice, but, once you do this, it will be so worth it.






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