Here’s another story from the past couple months. The above image is a result of about a full two weeks of agonizing over if I liked the crop factor of my finished image. I took it on a photowalk I co-hosted for Mike’s Camera in association with Fujifilm North America. The image was shot on the Fujifilm GFX 50S Medium Format Mirrorless Camera. It’s a 50 megapixel image. It’s huge. The dynamic range is amazing and the tonal depth is off the charts. And yet. I still find problems with it.
Of course I can find ways to live with my shot. I can make excuses and say that it’s “good enough.” I wish I didn’t think so hard about my work. It makes editing a pain. Seriously. But, at least it means that I try. I want to get better, even if it means that I never reach the destination.
That is the key I believe to personal growth as a photographer. It’s the attitude of the journey being the destination. If you are always looking for improvement, have the realization that you will never achieve true perfection, and yet continue for the sake of the pursuit, you will find that your work will improve. It’s something that the great pioneers of our world knew. Once you make that key discovery, it is just the beginning of the next journey of discovery. Photography can be just like that. I remember taking a deep look a renaissance painters, particularly the dutch masters, and looking at how they painted the light in their pieces. That led me to reevaluate my own theory of studio light, and helped me immensely with my portrait work. That led to looking a completely different styles of light sources and falloffs and what do you know? I had a whole other style to explore.
Don’t get discouraged. Get out there. Love the journey. Never stop discovering!