Improving photography and looking for new ways to build upon your photography skills and staying inspired at the same time can be a challenge. That’s why today we are going to talk about some ways to stay inspired and improve your photography at the same time!
Photography Critique & Portfolio Building
As photographers, critiquing our own work is one of the most challenging parts of putting together your portfolio. But if we are unable to differentiate a good photo from a great one, our photography websites and subsequently bookings will ultimately suffer.
Attending a live judging of a print competition is an incredible way to learn photography critique, and become a better portfolio- builder!
Here are three steps you can take right now to improve the quality of your portfolio:
1. Let Go Of Your Darlings
If you are serious about improving your photography portfolio, then you must delete, delete, delete. There will always be photos that you love that simply aren’t your strongest images. You may feel attached to them because you:
· Know the back story
· Had a deep connection with the clients
· Worked really hard to make that particular photo
But if the image is weakening your overall portfolio, it’s time to let it go, so go ahead, hit that delete!
2. Invite Feedback
If you are entering your photos into a competition, or requesting a review from a trusted friend, it’s important that you are receiving honest, detailed feedback from other professionals. This is crucial to fine tuning your body of work.
When you start to seek feedback, prioritize feedback from artist whose aesthetic and values are similar to yours. If the viewer’s goals are vastly different from your own, their critique may lack relevance.
3. Focus on What Matters Most
Ask yourself these questions:
· What am I trying to accomplish with this image?
· Who am I trying to reach?
· What am I trying to say?
· Am I accomplishing these goals?
Your body of work should have purpose and focus. Define what you are trying to tell and make sure that your photos contribute to that.
Learn Photography Lighting & Storytelling
Your images should really be memorable and recognizable as yours. When you develop your focus, your one-of-a-kind voice will be evident in every image you make.
1. Photograph Beyond the Moment
You know that feeling… you are photographing an amazing, intimate moment, a carefully-composed portrait, or a powerful scene, and you NAIL the shot. You just know it. The photo you just took is perfect. Next time you experience that moment, don’t stop shooting!!
Photography beyond the moment. See what happens next. There is always more to the story.
2. Seek a New Perspective
In your own work, seeking a new perspective can be as simple as changing lenses, exploring new angles and playing with unusual light.
It’s also helpful to follow certain artists whose work motivates and inspires you. Especially artists who are different from you. If you only surround yourself with work that looks like your own, you won’t find much inspiration. Unfamiliar images challenge us, and can push us to create in new and powerful ways.
3. Fill the Whole Frame
Filling the frame means being aware of every single element you see through your lens, and intentionally, purposefully filling the frame from corner to corner. The goal is to make each and every image with full awareness. If you struggle with this, all you can do is practice!