Written whilst enjoying a single malt (Talisker, today), "With a Whisky" brings you the latest ramblings from my side of the world. I can't promise prominent prose, or impressive imagery, but I'll do my best to keep you entertained.
We're back in Vienna, again. Not literally, of course. Vicariously. I'm sat in Hertfordshire drinking Talisker and getting ready to wax lyrical about something or other, and you are sat, or stood, wherever that might be.
All photos taken in one afternoon's jaunt across Vienna's beautiful centre.
People will judge you based on what is presented to them—it's human nature. In the world of photography this is the same. Your abilities as a photographer are only measured by what you show. If you go on holiday and take 2000 photos... who wants to go through all of those? Are all 2000 even worth showing? Are they even worth the hard drive space? I spent a week in Vienna and was "snap happy", taking over 150 photos, which is quite a lot for me (hence still posting photos from Vienna some weeks later). The first thing I do is to copy all of the photos to my computer, where I then go through a therapeutic process; the cull.
If I can't remember why I took a photograph, it's compositionally weak, or there's some glaring technical (operator) error, then I will trash it. You only live once, and you won't miss it. I try to reduce the number of trashed photos (or increase my keeper rate) by only taking photos when I really think a photograph is worth taking. And this is the key—if you think it's worth taking, do you think it's worth sharing? If no-one else is going to appreciate it, that's fine, but being aware of your intensions for the image you're making at the time of capture is very useful in reducing post-processing time by an order of magnitude.
The camera and lens are really just tools used for image creation. I know that's a little clichéd, but it's actually true. You could use a $50 phone or a $10,000 Leica—neither photos may be worth sharing. In that vein, I usually use my phone to document my immediate life, and rarely share the resultant images with anyone other than close friends and family. Some do make their way onto the blog, but if I have my camera with me, then I typically use that instead.
If photos do make their way into my library, I then rank them between 0 and 5. I rarely mark images higher than 3, unless I am really pleased with them. I will then go on to process the images (I shoot RAW, so they need processing), and export them. 99% of those make it onto the blog, and the remaining 1% make their way onto my Flickr account.
So, think about the photographs you show, be your harshest critic. And be proud.