The photos that you never see… or why I have lots of space on my hard drive
Well, yeah, I shot a bunch but most of those shots have been deleted from my camera and even less made it onto the hard drive of my computer.
The above photo was on the bubble. Keep it or delete it? I had hopes for it. In the end it’s getting deleted.
I’ve written a few times about how I edit and re-edit an outing. With each successive edit I cull out the weakest shots. One of the best things about doing that is that you are able to become more removed from the photo. We all become attached to what we do and often lose the ability to see our photos objectively.
Every time I opened this image I had hopes for it. No matter how I processed it or looked at similars from the same shoot it didn’t quite make it.
Simply put, you take what nature gives you and work with it. You can never force your look onto the landscape. I waited on the ice for over an hour for the “right” light to appear. It never did. The sky never took the colors that I had hoped for. It stayed more over cast than sunny and the far mountains didn’t get hit by the rays of the sun until it was already too far above the horizon.
A fellow from Calgary replied to one of my blogs a few weeks ago lamenting the fact that I only shoot at certain times of the day. Because I usually only post what I like, that is how it looks. I’ve probably shot hundreds or thousands of frames an our after sunrise up until an hour before sunset. They get deleted and never get seen by anyone except me.
A great landscape isn’t where you are, it’s when you are. Confused? Let me explain. I have many, many more photos that are better than this one that were taken from a ditch on the flat prairie with only a barbed wire fence and hay field as my subject matter. When the light and the weather are right, ANY PLACE ON EARTH CAN LOOK SPECIAL. Sorry for the caps but bolding doesn’t work well with white type on black.
Photos are like food. Everyone has their own unique tastes. Because I like my coffee a certain way doesn’t mean that it’s the right way. I would no more tell you how you should drink your coffee than tell you how and when to shoot landscapes. What I will do is tell you what works for me. In doing that, my hope is that you will adapt what I write to your own unique way of seeing. The last thing in this world that you want is to shoot like me. Seriously.
Experiment. Shoot at all times of the day and then be your own harshest critic. Try and be as detached and unemotional as you possibly can when you look at your edits. By doing this you’ll start to develop your own workflow for shooting and editing.