7 Photo Myths, Disproved
Good artists learn the rules. Great artists break them.* Well, break them with intention that is. “Do NOT tilt the horizon line” or “Stay away from selective colour” are words from lecturers I’ll never stop hearing. Until however, I’d stumbled upon another artist breaking those rules. In front of God and everybody. And the shot was brilliant. Not because the rules were wrong, but because those artists broke the rules cleverly, with intention.
The real dilemma is, how do we know when to follow the tried and tested rules and when to break them? But whilst looking over some of these rules I discovered a few that aren’t even true to begin with. You might be familiar with some of them already - In case you aren’t, browse the headlines for the 7 myths we’re about to axe:
1. “ If I Had A More Expensive Camera, I Would Take Better Shots. ”
I was taught the basics as a kid by my uncle, who is also a photographer. He told me once that a great photographer can take a great shot on a cellphone. At the time he had an entry-level phone camera so this was really saying something. But the moral of the story is that a photographer has an innate desire to document or create with imagery - And they will do this any way possible. It’s the vision and dedication you need to be equipped with to produce results, and being driven to learn and develop your skills constantly to take better shots. Expensive equipment might give you that extra bit of sharpness and image quality, but the real value of an image goes far beyond megapixels. Having said that, when you’ve reached a stage where clients are paying you well for images they might print on a large scale or for shooting moments in various lighting scenarios, ensuring you have the equipment for the job is essential - Not to make your shots better, but to better serve their intended purpose
2. “ The Sun Must Always Be Behind The Photographer. ”
It’s a common misconception that I’ve heard clients mention. That if the photographer is shooting into the sun they obviously don’t know what they’re doing. As it turns out - They do! When your subject is facing into the sun, you are more likely to get squinting eyes and scrunched faces. But more importantly, having the sun behind the subject creates a gorgeous hair-light and a far softer, diffused light on their faces. All you need to do is push your exposure up a few stops. You can control your lighting even more by using a reflector or flash to add a bit of extra fill-light to their faces and transform average shots into crackers. There are times when I’m shooting a dramatic shot where I do have my subject face into the sun - but I’ll probably have them lift their chin and cast their eyes way down to avoid squinting.
3. " Wedding Photographers Only Work On The Wedding Day. ”
Oh how I wish this were true. For wedding photographers, their week days are generally spent doing any manner of tasks from attending meetings, doing admin work, designing albums, delivering flash drives, managing social media and of course - editing! Just editing alone takes longer than the actual wedding. I know, right? But we’ll talk more on this in a bit. Weekends are spent shooting weddings, and other shoots are scheduled for any gaps during the week #alwaystired - This gives us some insight into their pricing formula - Not only do they need to charge for time on your wedding day, but they also have to take into consideration the overheads from those behind-the-scenes tasks.
4. " If My Work Is Good, I Will Book Up. ”
Word-of-mouth is a powerful tool, but it requires more than just great work to happen for you. You have to make a really strong impression on someone for them to talk to others about your business. So every interaction you have with them matters, and the more the better. Okay, let’s explain ourselves properly here: Your work is the product you’re selling - It’s important that the quality is good. But if people aren’t aware that your product exists or don’t trust your brand, it will be difficult for them to give you their hard-earned money for it, or promote you to others. From experience with our own business, the single-most successful marketing tip I can give you is this - Establish a real connection with the person you’re selling to. In the past, clients have picked us over equally-matched photographers because they said they felt mo