Not Living in the Moment? Here's How You Can Fix That
Have you ever had that feeling, either walking home from a concert, a day out in the town or a big celebration, that you didn’t really experience it?
Maybe it’s a photographer thing, but there can often be a fine line between photographing the moment and actually being in the moment. If you’re making a photo book documenting your year, for instance, you probably have it in your mind when you’re going to a big event: this will look great in that photo book.
And the thing is, it probably will, but that isn’t to say you should be thinking about it. Now, instead of just going to the gig and getting excited about it, you’re thinking about your camera. Will you get the right angles? Are you going to be close enough to the stage?
You take as many snaps as possible and then put your phone down to enjoy the show; until you start thinking about whether you took enough. Perhaps you need to snap a few more to make sure you’ve properly got it? And then, just like that, the gig is over.
Even if you think you do stay in the moment, you’re probably unaware of just how much photography distracts you. But that’s what we’re here for. In this blog, we’re going to discuss a few of the ways you can stay in the moment whilst also taking beautiful pictures.
It’s About Fine-Tuning The Process
Social media gets a lot of bad press. So too does photography, or at least amateur photographers who post their lives on platforms like Facebook or Instagram. But a lot of this negativity is unfair. Taking pictures does not necessarily take you away from the moment. In fact, recent studies show that photographs can actually enhance your enjoyment and improve your memory of a certain event.
This, then, is about fine-tuning the amount of pictures you take and how often you post on your social media pages. If you think it’s too much: simply cut it down. Limit your output and don’t do too many photo-dumps. Don’t worry, you’ll still have photographs and plenty to choose from when you come to create a Facebook and Instagram photo book.
Plan The Amount Of Pictures You Take
One good way of actually cutting it down is by planning the amount of pictures you want to take during a day. Let’s say you’re going out with your partner for a day-trip. Tell yourself before you set off: “I’m going to take fifteen photographs today.” Then make sure you do not go over this limit. This will help you to choose your moments more carefully and experience far more inbetween.
Think About The Highlight Reel
You should also think about the highlights of an event. If you’re creating a photo book – or simply updating your social media feed - you’re only going to want the very best photographs, so think about what the best moments of an event are going to be and only take photographs of those moments.
Be Confident In Your Own Abilities
As mentioned previously, you might fail to stay in the moment because you’re constantly wondering about the quality of the photographs you’ve taken. This then leads you to take out your phone and start snapping again, just in case your collection won’t be as pretty as you intended them to be. But there’s an easy way to stop doing this: trust yourself.
You’re a good photographer and your photographs are going to reflect that. Most of the time in photography, the first photo is often the best one. Trust that you’ve captured the moment the first time round and anything after that is a bonus.
Trust Your Friend’s Capabilities
As well as this, you should trust your friend’s capabilities. As a photo book maker, we take your photographs from social media and bind them into a beautiful photo book, but we’re not picky! There’s nothing stopping you asking your friends to share their own pictures with you, so you’ve always got back ups if you’re not entirely pleased with your own photos.
If you’re going to a gig, for instance, you’re safe in the knowledge that you and your friends will take photographs. So feel free to put the phone down, trust their capabilities, and enjoy yourself.
If You’re Creating A Photo Book, Think About The Story
It’s also important to think about how you create a story in your photo book, especially if you’re doing one that revolves around your year. If you’re going to a birthday celebration, for instance, then it is likely not to be the only one you go to that year.
The same goes for anything, from gigs to shows, to nights out, to walks around town. Taking photographs of just one of these events will likely be enough – you’re not going to include every gig if you want a cohesive photo book story that doesn’t repeat itself.
Don’t Be Afraid To Take A Step Back
Lastly, don’t be afraid to take a step back and leave your phone at home for a change. Understanding why it’s important to take breaks from your craft is the first step in improving it. In fact, stepping away from photography can be a great way to rejuvenate your passion and come up with some new concepts.
After all, taking photographs over and over again is a good way to get stale, so leaving the phone at home can help you to not only stay in the moment, but improve the quality of your photographs as a result.