I AM GUESSING ALMOST EVERY PHOTOGRAPHER, AT LEAST SOME POINT IN THEIR PHOTOGRAPHIC CAREER, IS KICKING THEMSELVES BECAUSE THEY DID NOT HAVE THEIR CAMERA READY WHEN SOME INCREDIBLE SHOT HAPPENED RIGHT IN FRONT OF THEM, AND THEY MISSED IT ! AM I RIGHT? I THINK EVERY ONE DOES THAT AND THEY LEARN QUICKLY HOW TO GET TO THE POINT WHERE THEY DON’T MISS SO MANY OF THOSE AGAIN.
LET’S LOOK AT WHAT WE NEED TO DO SO WE DON’T MISS THOSE, AND ALSO LOOK AT THE REASONS WHY WE MISS THOSE.
1- IF YOU ARE GOING TO HAVE YOUR CAMERA IN A CAMERA BAG, MAKE SURE YOU HAVE YOUR BAG READY FOR EASY AND QUICK ACCESS. WAIT, YOU SAY! I DON’T WANT PEOPLE STEALING FROM ME. WELL, GET OUT OF THAT CROWD, AND GET WHERE YOU CAN GRAB YOUR CAMERA QUICKLY IF YOU NEED TO TAKE A QUICK PHOTO. HAVE IT UNSNAPPED, UNZIPPED, UNCLICKED, OR WHATEVER, BUT, HAVE IT READY TO OPEN AND READY TO GRAB.
2- MAKE SURE YOU HAVE AN EXTRA BATTERY ON HAND. HAVE IT FULLY CHARGED AND READY TO GO IN CASE YOUR
OTHER BATTERY IN YOUR CAMERA NOW GOESOUT ON YOU. A GOOD PHOTOGRAPHER ALWAYSHAS MORE THAN ONE BATTERY ON HAND.
3- DIRT ON LENSES DOES NOT MAKE FOR A PRETTY PICTURE
SO YOU HAVE THE CHANCE TO GET THE PERFECT PHOTO, AND YOU GRAB YOUR CAMERA AND TAKE THE PHOTO, ONLY TO FIND OUT YOUR LENS WAS DIRTY. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE YOUR LENS CLEAN ALWAYS. CHECK IT REGULARLY. AND YOU KNOW WHICH CAMERA IS THE WORSE FOR THIS PROBLEM? YOUR CELLPHONE. WHY, BECAUSE YOU ARE ALWAYS GRABBING IT, FOR MANY REASONS OTHER THAN A CAMERA. SO, YOU GRAB IT FOR TEXTING, FOR MAKING A PHONE CALL, FOR READING YOUR EMAIL, THEN SOMETHING COMES ALONG THAT WOULD MAKE AN INCREDIBLE PHOTO, AND YOU DON’T LOOK THROUGH THE LENS, SO YOU DON’T SEE IT UNTIL THAT AMAZING PHOTO OPPORTUNITY IS GONE, ONLY TO FIND OUT THAT YOU HAVE THIS BIG SLIMY FINGERPRINT ON YOUR CELL PHONE CAMERA LENS. RUINED PHOTO.
4- HERE IS ANOTHER ONE THAT MOST PEOPLE JUST DONT THINK OF: MEMORY CARDS
OH THIS COMES UP ON YOU OUT OF NOWHERE. NO WARNING, AND IT HITS YOU ONLY WHEN IT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT PHOTO OF YOUR LIFE. HOW MANY PHOTOS CAN YOUR CELL PHONE HANDLE? HOW MANY PHOTOS DOES THE CARD HOLD IN YOUR CAMERA? DO YOU EVEN KNOW? HOW ABOUT YOU BUT SOME EXTRAS AND BRING THEM ALONG TOO? THESE ARE ABOUT AS IMORTANT AS BRINGING AN EXTRA BATTERY. REALLY !
5- Where are your camera settings at?
THIS ONE IS A KILLER TOO, ESPECIALLY IF YOU HAVE A CAMERA THAT HAS SETTINGS. IF YOU HAD TO GRAB YOUR CAMERA, IS IT ALREADY PRESET FOR WHAT YOU ARE ABOUT TO TAKE A PHOTO OF? OR ARE YOU GOING TO GET:
A TERRIBLE OVEREXPOSED PHOTO OR UNDEREXPOSED PHOTO. HAVE YOUR CAMERA SETTING READY FOR YOUR SHOT, JUST IN CASE. THE PROGRAM MODE, THE AUTOMATIC MODE, MAY BE THE BEST ALL AROUND ONE FOR IMMEDIATE LUCK. AND MAYBE YOU CAN MAKE ADJUSTMENTS AS YOU TAKE THE PHOTO, IF YOU HAVE THE TIME.
6- Lens cap on, or lens filter on:
I WILL ADMIT MORE THAN ONCE, AS I GO TO GET THAT PERFECT SHOT, THAT I HAVE HAD MY LENS CAP ON OR
Or even a filter than you used last time. Make sure you check the front of your lens for something that could block or alter the image.
So, hopefully those are the things to be aware of as you practice and prepare for the most amazing photos that you could take.
One last thing: I have a photographer friend who is a professional wildlife photographer. Wildlife photography is truly an art. And you have to be ready at the spur of the moment to be able to grab the right camera, with the right lens at the right time to get the right photo. I have a photo of him as he goes out to take photos in the wild. Look at him and his equipment, and notice how he has several cameras equipped with a different lens and how he has them all ready to grab at any time he wants to get the shot he wants. You want to become a professional wildlife photographer? Yeah, this is what you need to become:
So, the moral of this blog is, if you want to be a good photographer, you have to be ready to take a photo, immediately. Have your camera ready in some mode, probably automatic mode, so that you can capture the thing that you want, without having to miss it. Good luck.