How long before you felt you "understood" photography

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by Flatland2D, Jun 15, 2007.

  1. Flatland2D

    Flatland2D TPF Noob!

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    Hello everyone. I first got into photography 4 years ago with a point and shoot that had A/S/M controls. I recently bought a Sony Alpha 100 and I'm trying to learn more about photography as an art.

    Looking at my photos over the past 4 years, I could probably count on one hand the number of pictures which I would consider "artsy" or worth framing. I really enjoy taking pictures and I'm understanding more of the technical aspects, but when I look at pictures other people post (or in magazines) I just think, "wow, my pictures don't look anything like that." Part of me is still trying to figure out what makes those pictures better than mine. I can't describe it, it's just a feeling. This is what I've dedicated myself to learning - what makes pictures great. My goal is to take pictures that can portray the exact emotion or idea I want. That is when I think I'll consider myself a real photographer.

    So, how long did it take you guys to feel satisfied with your work? Or is it one of those things where you never really get there, because you always know you can do better? I know there's already many threads on advice for newbies (though anything would be appreciated), I was just wanting to discuss the progression of eveyone's skills.

    Thanks in advance for any replies! I'm looking forward to being more a part of this community.
     
  2. ann

    ann No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    i am not a guy, but it took me years to feel that i understood.

    It will probably take me the rest of my life to be satisfied, and i already have 59 years of experince and figure about 30 more to go.
     
  3. Flatland2D

    Flatland2D TPF Noob!

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    So I guess the progression never stops!

    I also wanted to add this. What little milestones did you hit along that way which showed you were heading in the right direction?
     
  4. The_Traveler

    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent Supporting Member

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    Excellent question.
    For me, two milestones:

    1) when I stopped wanting to take pictures of everything I saw and started wanting to take specific kinds of pictures
    2) when I was interested in what other people thought about my pictures (the ones that I liked) but I didn't care if they didn't like them.
     
  5. sabbath999

    sabbath999 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I will let you know when it happens.
     
  6. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I am never satisfied with my photos and I've been going for years. I am my own worst critic. Lots of other people love them though.

    Photography is a hobby of mine and I think there will always be room for improvement. As soon as I stop thinking that my pictures stop improving.
     
  7. Remi M.

    Remi M. TPF Noob!

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    I feel like I understand the technical side of photography. Using my equipment is more like driving a car now. I don't think much about what dial to turn or what button to press, I just do it without thinking.

    I don't think I will ever fully understand the artisitc/creative side of photography. I feel like I'm not even close. Like garbz said, I'm my own worst critic.

    I do feel like I'm getting closer to identifing my "style", and figuring out what I want to shoot and what I don't.
     
  8. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    I'm still working on understanding Photography because there is still a lot we don't actually know about it. But milestones? Realising that one of the main keys is getting the light right because then I could pre-visualise. Or grasping the fact that different types of photograph require different approaches.
    When anyone asks me which of my pictures I consider my 'best' I always reply: the next one.
     
  9. I dunno, there's the basics, and then there's the rest of your life.

    If you figure out what various shutter speeds, apertures, and ASAs (or ISOs now) do for you, you're pretty much there.

    The rest is developing a personal style, which is based on ever-changing influences, styles, and the underlying techniques.
     
  10. Bear

    Bear TPF Noob!

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    As an artist, I have my practice and style I am more than happy with, but I this comes from past works before my venture into this medium. As a photographer I am having too much fun taking pictures of everything I can find with my new camera right now. I see a lot of my style in my current random photos, but I suspect the more I do this and more I demand of myself the more meaningful and "artistic" my photos will become.
     
  11. jeroen

    jeroen No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I've been doing illustration and graphic design for the past 16 years for a living. With 4 years of art school, that makes 20 years of learning.

    I still am my own worse crittic and I am never ever satisfied. Stuff can be "acceptable" or "good" but they'll never 100% perfect. Once I will be satisfied I will stop learning and that would probably be the end of my career. It will also take the fun out of it. How can you make a next thing if you have already done the perfect thing?

    Photography is just a hobby to me, but the same rules counts IMO.
    I am far from professional, if I ever get there at all. I see some of the traps I'm falling in, but I know I have to take them to get any further. I can also see that I am learning and that my photos get better every 12 months or so. And I'm having a hell of a lot of fun while doing just so.

    Like some wise man (or woman) once said: "[SIZE=-1]It's not the destination, it's the journey[/SIZE]."
     
  12. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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