The importance of selection and patience in photography.
Instagram Feed @Nikos Economopoulos
Constant connectivity, faster everything…what’s next, a camera that uploads straight to social media? Oh wait, it already exists…
Do not think I am against social networks. On the contrary. I think that they can be essential tools for photographers and I often recommend using them, however it is necessary to have a good understanding of them in order to maximise their use. So no, I am not against social networks, just against how they are (mis)used.
In fact, for better or for worse, they are so important that if you are not careful you can fall into the habit of publishing the first thing you produce, and the result of posting ‘any old photo’ is that these photos start to overshadow your best work and create a lot of visual noise.
So, the first thing that you have to practice is patience.
Let’s do an exercise: take your phone for a moment (without closing this page!) and go to the Instagram the accounts of your favourite masters of photography; Alex Webb, Steve McCurry, Nikos Economopoulos etc. and if you have time, go a step further and check out their websites in which you’ll be able to see their photographs at a decent size.
Look closely and study the photographs. What do you notice? The likely answer is (personal tastes aside) that each and every photo that has been uploaded is a good photo. Keep in mind that even the great masters take shitty photos sometimes, however you won’t see these photos because great care has been taken in selecting and editing their work, and this, my friends, can only be achieved through patience and time.
At the end of the day, regardless of where you publish your work, social media included, you must keep in mind that these supports are a reflection of you and your talent as a photographer. Be patient, let your photos breathe, look at them a few days (or even weeks) later when you can no longer sense the cold of the moment, when the feeling of the sun tinging your skin has vanished and the memory of the smells that filled your nostrils are no more.
This is when you will be able to see your work from a more objective perspective, select your best photos more accurately and become as good as your best photo.
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