So, lemme ask you . . .

Posted by on Tuesday, June 19th, 2012

How the hell to get out of a photography slump.

I got a nice DSLR in 2009 and took literally thousands of pictures in Yellowstone, the Grand Tetons, and Utah. I kept chugging along taking pictures, but the better the camera, the more I felt I needed to improve the pictures I took and the more it seemed like I needed to do a little color correction or other processing before posting them. And on and on.

And, here it is, almost three years later, and I’m terrible about taking and posting photos! I’ve done hundreds of hours of work in my garden this spring and planted thousands of plants and bulbs–and you’ve seen none of it. I’ve been sewing and knitting and camping and playing with our pets–and you’ve seen none of it. I took photos at a friend’s hand-fasting in late April–LATE APRIL–and those images are still in my camera. Ugh!

So, what’s a good jump-start, folks?  I want to really improve my photography and photo processing skills, but I also just want to keep a decent document of this here life I’m living.  Any tips?  Have any photography challenges kept you clicking away?  How do I get over the hump between taking the picture and getting the image out of the camera and up on the web, already?! (interrobang!)

Updated to add a photo!  Look, proof of knitting.  These are a gift for my friend Dami–I let her pick, and she opted for hedgerow mitts.  I’ve elongated the arm portion at her request.  These are flying, but they should, shouldn’t they?  Also, it is difficult to use an ipad to take a picture of one’s own hand.  Very difficult.

Dami's mitts

Filed in blather,knitting | 6 responses so far

6 Responses to “So, lemme ask you . . .”

  1. anjon 20 Jun 2012 at 2:36 pm 1

    digital darkroom. it takes time, but is the final ingredient you need. Taking good pictures is fine, but making them look right on the screen is different than prints.

    Good luck!

  2. bullwinkleon 21 Jun 2012 at 6:17 am 2

    gimp. It’s relatively easy, free and quick. It only takes a moment to crop and light balance your pix.

    The problem – afaik – is that (with digital) we take too many pix and have a hard time figuring out which one to post. I have to compare bunches to find the one that caught the moment and then crop that. It is the culling of pix that takes time. Also – the comparing part needs to be done on a large-ish monitor. It’s not something I can usually decide on a small screen.

    I have no solution – it’s one of the reasons it takes me so long to post travel pix. The learning that goes with taking so many pix at different settings/framings is awesome. But the time to review each and pick on for posting – well that just is a black hole.

  3. Charlieon 21 Jun 2012 at 12:18 pm 3

    If you find the answer, let me know.

  4. kon 23 Jun 2012 at 8:28 pm 4

    Which do you want? Amazing absolutely stunning photos that will look like shit on somebody else’s monitor, or a record of your life?

    Anyway. The best thing is to go out and take pictures. Commit to going out and taking one picture. You’ll be surprised at how often you’ll take two hundred.

    Then commit to coming home and going through them, and putting the best 50 on a slide show, and looking at them.

    I’m terrible at documenting what I’m working on, because that isn’t the focus at all of my photography. I have very few pictures of people, because that isn’t what I do. But I take pictures that I like, and if I am paying enough attention, I don’t have to fiddle with them at all. I mess with a lot of what I put on my blog, because those shots have to serve a different purpose.

    Maybe pretend it’s film, and you only have twelve exposures. Then you will get the highlights, at least.

    I worked in advertising, so I can go either way; storytelling or pretty. My blog is like that too; it’s either a story or a picture, rarely both.

    Totally incoherent answer. Sorry.

  5. Elizabethon 26 Jun 2012 at 9:09 am 5

    Repeat whenever you freeze up: “A photo posted is worth ten in the camera waiting to be edited.” It’s the modern equivalent of “A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.” 🙂 Just put them out there! Keep working on improving, but don’t let it prevent you from sharing what you’ve got. Good luck!

  6. Erinaon 05 Jul 2012 at 6:39 pm 6

    I agree w/ Elizabeth — just post! 🙂 For really fast corrections I love Google Picasa. Free, fast, easy but does some surprisingly good things with basic exposure, tone and color corrections. A few preset special effects too. If there’s a photo you want to do more sophisticated and may want to more with (ie large print vs posting on web) I recommend Photoshop Light room.

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