So, after a slew of various photos from Halloween weekend I got to looking through my primary results and decided that I liked hardly any of it. Five years ago this wouldn’t have been the case. Why? Because I had (and STILL have occasionally) this die-hard inability to give up on anything. Don’t get me wrong, this can be a great and even really important thing in some cases, but as far as photography it’s not really ideal. Over time and after having really enlightening experiences shooting with other crazy-talented photographer friends of mine, I realized that generally for an event it’s normal to take roughly 8 billion photos, which then during the editing process gets edited way WAAAAYY down to a more reasonable amount of photos to offer your client.
The last event I did was photos of a middle-school homecoming with all the adorable cheerleaders doing their thing. I took over 300 photos over a few hours. That got paired down to about 100 during editing, which I still think it high but reasonable in this case because their were so many kids to represent. A few years ago, I used to – almost desperately – try to “fix” and save every photo I took. I didn’t want to give up on a shot and possibly miss something I could make better.
You have to learn to let a lot of that stuff go. Good is bad if it keeps you from the best – so if you take pictures and want them to morph into awesomeness, develop a sharp and confident discerning eye for your photography and view it through the lens of your own personal artistic expression. You’ll have less not-so-groovy photos that make you vaguely uncomfortable, and people will start to notice your own particular style.
Call this dorky, but I have this habit now of looking at certain photos and asking myself: “Am I in love with this photo or do I like it as friend?”
Anyway, that being said, the “shot of the evening” for me personally was this one I took at a masquerade party. It was dark AND had a fog machine blasting in there and I ended up cranking the ISO up to about 650 and trying – keyword “trying” – to keep still while dancing people kept banging into me. This was the shot of the few I took that for some reason I ended up falling in love with. I post-edited it a little bit to make it the faintest bit grainy looking.
I instantly entitled it “Follow the White Rabbit”, due to my great love for both The Matrix and classic children’s literature. It feels a little innocent, a little noir, a little old-film-ish. Satisfying to me on all counts.