Magic Monday: Shoot Less

I’m still marveling over a comment made to me over the weekend.

A lovely friend of mine was casually turning the pages of a Fine Art Coffee Table book I recently finished for a family Day in the Life session and kindly admiring the images… when she made this bewildered comment,

How many pictures did you have to take to get these shots?”

At first I really didn’t understand the question.  At all.  Then it finally dawned on me.

An interesting paradigm has emerged with the influx of digital photography.  With limitless images and no film costs there seems to exist a school of thought that, “If I shoot hundreds of pictures, I’m bound to get at least a few good ones!”

Thoughtless shooting depending 100% on luck.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t have much “luck”.  My luck ran out after the first photo session I ever did on an SLR 4 years ago (which instilled in me a load of false confidence and a good dose of passion for this new way of doing photography.–a truly great story for another day.)

I have tried in the last few years to shoot more intentionally–instead of accidentally–and to slow down.  I remember purchasing 16 gigs worth of cards, knowing that would insure I’d have enough space for all the images at a shoot.  I’d easily average 350-400 images/per hour of shooting.

Today I average between 100-150 images/per hour of shooting and I still feel like I could cut back more.  I’ve noticed the more I slow down, and refuse to take a shot until I have studied the frame and compose/expose perfectly,… the more I nail the shot the first time, have less editing, and can quickly move on to my next idea.

Shooting less, and slowing down has helped me to make drastic improvement in my work and save me time.

What should the real answer to my friends question be?

ONE.

Shoot less.  Get More.

Happy Monday!

Oh yes… this image is a perfect example of when you should actually SHOOT MORE.  Sad to say that Buzzy is 10 months old now and this is the first picture in existence with all three of us in the image.  This is definitely a case for shooting MORE :)  Thanks to my mom for grabbing this shot after Sunday dinner last night at my insistence that we have something of a family picture before Buzzy graduates High School.

Brooke Snow is a Lifestyle photographer in Cache Valley, Utah. She recently learned how to yodel so she could perform upbeat polka songs in the kitchen for the baby boy she is smitten with. Her delightful husband sings bass and does a great oom pah line to accompany the yodel chorus. She wrote an opera once, and dabbles in cowboy poetry.

Brooke teaches private photography lessons as well as monthly photography classes in Logan, Utah.

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