We have all done it. At some point in our photography career, we have all “invested” in our craft only to feel like we are missing something. We do this to ourselves because we want to be great. The promise of getting there the easy way is very tempting. But it is rarely the best way.
These Three Costly Mistakes Every Photographer Makes At Some Point in Their Careers.
Thinking you need an art school degree to make your photography really great. The truth is, while there is much to learn in a classroom environment, you can get all the information you need to create your dream photography portfolio by studying and tons of practice. I learned more in one year of working in a portrait studio than in the previous four years of studying it. Also, the internet is a wonderful thing. And it’s free!
Seeking the approval of other photographers or anyone else. A few years ago, I joined a photography guild of professional and amateur photographers. I paid my membership dues and eagerly brought in 3 glossy prints of my favorite photos from our recent trip to New Orleans for critique. I was fully prepared to have my work ripped to shreds, but also to learn volumes more than what I could get on my own. While I found the input helpful, much of the advice I received from the other photographers seemed mildly helpful at best. Needless to say, I did not renew. But with no refunds, the money was already wasted.
“Investing” in new gear. I’m not talking about only the expensive stuff. Those lenses, lights, and camera bodies cost about the equivalent of a whole human being. We all know that is a money pit that we should be watching very closely. Let’s not overlook how much we nickel and dime things as well. Last winter, while huddling indoors from the cold, I went on a massive pinterest binge. I found photo after photo with this really amazing tool I had never considered. It was a crystal ball refracting an inverted scene. It is also referred to as a “lensball” among photographers. All of the images were so breathtakingly beautiful, I just had to have one. I even tested out the idea by filling a wine goblet with water. I was so enamored with the whole concept, that when my friend and fellow photographer said he had one and how great it was, I rushed on to Amazon.com and ordered one.
As much as I loved the shot I got with my new lensball, I found I rarely used it. It cost me only $15, but it is delicate (I mean it’s lead crystal!), adds weight to my camera bag when I’m on the go, and I never seems to know where I want to store it for safe keeping. The last time I pulled it out was on the beach in Tybee Island and I didn’t even use it then. There is such a wide variety of subject material, I never felt an interest in using it and wound up leaving it in my bag.
What is the last cheap photography gear you got? What was your experience? Please share!
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