February 9


Don’t Fall Into This Trap With Your Photography

By Dan

February 9, 2018

Today’s photography tip isn’t so much a photography tip, as it is a life tip. Consider it a Public Service Announcement. I feel compelled to share it with you today, because I want to make sure that you’re starting your year off on the right foot and not getting too wrapped up in things that ultimately don’t make your photography any better.

During workshops, on forums and via email correspondence, I see some photographers who focus so hard on the extremely technical aspects of this craft, and they often end up confusing themselves and making it harder for them to open their minds and find their creative vision.

Magazines, camera forums and many blogs (certainly not mine, though!), are full of articles which lead you to believe that certain technical aspects of your digital sensor will determine whether your camera is capable of making great photos.

Naturally, some people read these articles and fall into the endless pit of speculation and worry that their camera might not produce the same high quality imagery as some other camera. It becomes an endless, and sometimes hopeless cycle, and sadly it does noone any good, except the magazines and blogs who get the clicks.

You know what I’m going to say next, don’t you?

It isn’t the camera that makes the pictures great, it’s you.

The truth is that when we’re talking modern DSLRs and mirrorless cameras, EVERY SINGLE CAMERA ON THE MARKET has a great sensor and EVERY SINGLE CAMERA ON THE MARKET has the tools that will let you take wonderful, beautiful, visually captivating imagery that will wow you and your viewers.

And, I GUARANTEE, with near 100% certainty, that if your capture an amazing moment in gorgeous light with compelling compositional techniques, NO ONE ON EARTH will care if it has a little bit of noise, and NO ONE ON EARTH will speculate how it might be improved ever so slightly if you had shot it on a camera with a bigger sensor. And if they do, then they aren’t the right people with whom you should be sharing your awesome, heartfelt imagery.

Sure, some cameras will show a remarkably slight variance in noise when shooting in low light, and some cameras will render detail with slightly more resolution and edge sharpness when you zoom in and view all the pixels at 100%.

But your viewers won’t do that. And they won’t care. And neither should you. 

The bottom line is that if you love using your camera, if it makes you WANT to go take pictures, if you have fun when you shoot and you like your imagery, then that’s all that really matters. Worrying about the extremely technical stuff that doesn’t really matter in the end only takes away from your enjoyment of the process. It certainly won’t make you a “better” or more creatively fulfilled photographer.

Don’t fall into that trap. Don’t become a statistic on some overly technical camera forum, and for pete’s sake, don’t worry about the stuff that doesn’t matter. In fact, don’t worry at all.

Just go outside with your camera, enjoy the fresh air, look at stuff, take pictures of things you like and let the process fill you with unending joy. 

That’s what matters. 

If you need another reminder, then read this post. It might even make you laugh.

About the author

Hi, I'm Dan Bailey, a 25+ year pro outdoor and adventure photographer, and official FUJIFILM X-Photographer based in Anchorage, Alaska.

As a top rated blogger and author my goal is to help you become a better, more confident and competent photographer, so that you can have as much fun and creative enjoyment as I do.

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