So I held my first photography class this weekend and it went EXCEPTIONALLY well. From the weather, which was gorgeously sunny, to the students who were eager (and quick) to learn, to the random people I chased down on the street who were freaking gorgeous and willing to let us steal a few moments of their day to be photographed. It was an amazing experience all around.
There were so many really rewarding moments... like watching someone take a photo, not like it, show it to me and then through discussing the concepts they'd learned in just one hour, sort out what they needed to do to fix it. Then watching them reshoot it with the fix and seeing that BIG GRIN when they looked at the back of their camera and realized... hey... I really CAN do this.
And there was a real "ah ha!" moment for me as well. Specifically, hearing what has kept some people from pursuing photography. We all tell ourselves stories. We all make reasons why we "can't". And there are 3 major myths about photography that I think a lot of people use against themselves, and I'm here to debunk those myths right here and now. Because the truth is, if I can do this... you can do this.
Both of these photos were taken by absolute beginners who were literally shooting their camera in manual mode for the first time ever. Both of these photos were taken after only an hour of discussing the basic fundamentals of ISO, Aperture and Shutter speed. Both of these photos are rad. So you know what this means... it means I'm about to remove all the reasons you've had for not pursuing your dreams of getting better at photography...
3 Photography Myths Debunked
Photography Myth # 1 | It's Freaking Complicated
It's actually not. There are some things that feel a bit backwards at first, but if I can get it (A.D.D and Dyslexia), so can you. If you've struggled reading photography books, or didn't make much progress using online courses, chances are you're simply a visual learner and would benefit from a more practical learning process with an actual human to answer your questions as they come up. That's why I decided to teach classes in the first place. Because I'm not a techie type person and with all the f-stops and shutter speed numbers in the manuals and books, I got overwhelmed, and frustrated. And with no one to ask, the whole process became a chore to learn. But when broken down into the 3 basic parts, in a way where you can see what you're learning in context, it becomes much simpler and it becomes fun again. It SEEMS complicated. But it really isn't.
Photography Myth Number 2 | I Don't Have a Good Enough Camera
So I'm going to go ahead and save you a couple thousand dollars here (you're welcome). All cameras work the same way. Granted, some cameras have a better sensor, better low light capability... but they all use the same concepts. So if you're not getting good photos with your current camera, you're not going to get better photos with a better camera. You're just going to get more expensive, shit photos. All you really need to learn/improve is a super basic camera that allows you to shoot in manual (so it allows you to manually set your iso, shutter speed and aperture) and a 50mm f/1.8 prime lens (or something similar). With that super simple set up, you will learn to take AMAZING photos. As long as you learn the fundamentals, which as I covered a couple minutes ago, are not as complicated as they seem.
Photography Myth Number 3 | I Don't Have a Natural Eye
So you may have heard from someone else that you don't have "the eye". Or you may have convinced yourself of this on your own. And it may be true. And it may actually not be. But either way, I've got a secret for you. People who have a natural eye, just have one less thing to learn. That's all. If you love photography, but you don't have a natural eye, it CAN BE LEARNED. There are rules and concepts of composition that can be taught, ways to train yourself how to see and shape light, ways of DEVELOPING your eye. And the only difference between you and someone who has a natural eye is that you'll just have to work a little harder at that bit. And, as with all the rest of it, it isn't as hard as it may seem.
So if photography is a real passion of yours, and you've talked yourself out of learning for any of these 3 reasons... I'm here to tell you that those aren't the reasons at all.
You're getting in your own way. And the only thing you really should ask yourself is... how bad do you want it?
If you want it bad enough, I'm going to be offering more classes this year, for different skill levels "beginner, intermediate and advanced". And if you click the button below, you can be added to the list to find out about them first, and get early bird registration discounts and opportunities.
Here's to a New Year of erasing self imposed limitations and going for what we want. Whatever that may be.