Monday, January 22, 2007

Grand Marais Lighthouse, Minnesota

A piece of advice that I offer beginning photographers is to pick a subject that will command your interest for a good long time and then shoot the heck out of it every chance you get. It provides motivation to keep on clicking over time as you learn and get better at the craft of photography. After a while, you can branch out into other subjects as they interest you.

For me, capturing lighthouses provided the impetus to get up before dawn on a chilly Minnesota morning and fumble with a tripod on a rocky ledge to compose a halfway decent scene and try to get my brain to focus on figuring out the exposure that I needed to get the shot just so. Being out alone in the predawn darkness with the Lake Superior breeze in my face and the sound of loons chuckling from somewhere was a bonus.

I don’t fumble nearly as much now as I did when I took this photo nearly two years ago. I realized this past weekend that at one time, the greatest photographers knew only as much as I do now about taking pictures. It seems to me that it is just a matter of digging to find out what those things are and working to put them into practice.

I’ve laid out a few of those practices at my photo advice blog, Ready, Aim, Click. Feel free to dig in, put some things to work and then let me know how it worked out for you.

Click on picture to enlarge. Photograph © 2007 James Jordan.

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