Category Archives Photography

It’s #TravelTuesday and I, Dave Williams, am here as always! I’ll get onto today’s subject very shortly, but first, I have big news!

Instagram has restored the chronological feed it lost when it was acquired by Facebook, but the algorithm-driven feed remains by default. To get your chronological feed, click here.

Now, let’s get back to the main event: “When it clicks.” I want to explain that persevering in photography can bring great rewards.

At some point in our journey as a photographer, things start to click. The idea and the dream of taking on photography as a hobby can all come crashing down fairly quickly when we switch the dial to M and realise that the exposure triad is a whole puzzle we need to wrap our heads around. Just like the exposure triad, light is something we need to learn to see and read, as well as understanding composition, depth, and a whole plethora of other things.

Each of us learns these things in our own way and at our own pace. Understanding what our pace is, along with our individual methods of learning, will help us, but eventually, it will click. There will be times when you will feel like throwing in the towel, and that’s fine. But, please don’t. Please stick with it.

My dream was to have an image featured in National Geographic, and I see myself as being halfway there. National Geographic bought one of my images for their magazine, but my goal has shifted sideways, and now I want to write a feature. It’s a big dream, I know, but life would be fairly boring if we didn’t aim high. Having these kinds of dreams is often the reason people pick up a camera for the first time.

There’s often an overwhelming element of seriousness to photography, and it can honestly feel like all the pros we aspire to shoot like are so serious and professional when shooting. Well, let me show you what it really looks like at times: –

If you’ve ventured out on the path to becoming a photographer (rather than a camera owner) and you feel like it’s all a bit complicated, just stick at it and remember this one little piece of advice: –

Take what you do seriously, but don’t take yourself too seriously.

Photography can become a heavy subject and there are a lot of things we need to wrap our heads around when we first start out, but there isn’t a photographer out there who just picked up a camera and naturally knew what to do with it. Persevere, learn the theory, get out and practice, and eventually, it will all click into place. I promise.

Much love
Dave

This week I got to share a bunch of travel photography tips on a wonderful podcast from photographers Jeff Carlson and Mason Marsh, and if you want to hear some of my favorite tips (including some real insider stuff), we cover all that in more in this podcast. Let it run in the background while you’re editing your travel images.

You can check it out right here (below):

Hope you found that helpful. A big thank you to Jeff and Mason (two very awesome, and fun guys) for having me on your show – it was an honor, and hope we can do it again some time. :)

Here’s wishing you all a glorious weekend, filled with sunshine and moonshine! ;-)

-Scott

P.S. We talked a little about my latest book, “The Travel Photography” book, which is now, finally, available in print (it’s been a while coming), and I humbly invite you to pick up a copy from Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

It’s #TravelTuesday and I, Dave Williams, am here once again! I write today from the valleys of North Wales where I intend to spend a couple of days geeking out and taking photos of low flying military aircraft (because I’m an “avgeek,” if you didn’t know) and that’s all part of my plan to reinvigorate myself by undertaking a personal project. Anyway, that’s not what I’m going to write about today. Let’s get into it.

I want to make one solid point today. As photographers, we cannot underestimate the value of constantly learning. Take a look at your favourite “all-star” photographers and you’ll find they are all constantly learning. The quest to better yourself as a photographer falls down to learning, learning, and learning. There are so many fantastic resources out there. Take a look at KelbyOne for instance and you’ll see what I can only describe as an absolute plethora of content that’s geared to providing the maximum learning opportunity to us all.

Reading books, watching YouTube videos, listening to podcasts, reading tutorials in magazines, attending workshops and conferences, whatever method works best for you, I implore you to please do it. I mentioned that our favourite photographers are constantly striving to improve, and this is absolutely true. You’ll find Scott at workshops, and you’ll find me studying books, you’ll find Kaylee Greer diving into webcasts and literally, every KelbyOne instructor will be doing something similar because we cannot possibly teach you if we aren’t up to speed ourselves. Here are some of my favourite resources: –

I mentioned KelbyOne already, so here’s the official lowdown: KelbyOne is a collective of absolute legends in photography and retouching, and with no holds barred, they share their skills and knowledge with one aim – to help you.

YouTube channels including PixImperfect, Photoshop Training Channel, and PhotoshopCAFE are all great places to learn about how to retouch images in Adobe Photoshop and other Adobe apps. Knowing how to do this stuff after we’ve taken our photos is really valuable.

I could spend a long time telling you about books, but I’ll simply say that reading any of Scott’s many books will help with learning if old-fashioned paper is your method.

Honestly, learning is critical. Learning can be the difference between us being booked or not, or between us selling images or not. It’s the difference that’s going to help us succeed in photography, whether that’s personally or professionally, and we must never underestimate the power of learning.

Much love
Dave

Happy Monday, everybody! Here are a couple of events coming up very soon that I’m a part of, and I hope you’ll be able to attend.

1. The B&H Photo Depth of Field Conference

I am honored to be teaching again at the 5th Annual B&H Photo Video Pro Audio Depth of Field Conference (the online portrait, wedding, and event photography conference) kicking off this Wednesday. A fantastic roster of instructors (including Joe McNally), and of course, B&H Photo runs a first-class conference from beginning to end.

This year I’m doing a keynote presentation and can’t wait to share some really cool Photoshop and Lightroom magic to enhance your outdoor portraits. RSVP now at this link: https://bhpho.to/3qhEABqt

2. The Landscape Photography Conference

It’s just a week or so away (March 29th and 30th, 2022). It’s two full days, two simultaneous training tracks, all online with an all-star instructor team, and, everyone’s invited. Not only that, you get full access to all the classes to stream on-demand for an entire year after the conference, so you rewatch any classes or catch any classes you missed. It’s an incredible value!

You will learn so much, you’ll glean insights, come away with new ideas, inspiration, and real education, and if you sign up right now, you’ll save a bundle. Tickets and more info are right here. Hope to see you there. :) 

3. Picture Perfect Prague Photography Workshop

I have one spot open for my Prague Travel Photography Workshop in May. You could grab that spot and come with me to Prague in May. It’s a small group of just 12, and we’ll be shooting on location in one of the most photogenic cities in the world (it’s a photographer’s paradise), and we’ll be learning in the classroom, and eating lots of yummy food, drinking lots of wine, and making new friends. Details are right here – hope you can grab that last spot – it will be an epic experience and you’ll come back with some incredible shots, fun stories, and a few extra pounds. ;-)

Hope you have a great Spring Break kinda Monday (and don’t forget to stop back by tomorrow for Travel Tuesdays with Dave. :)

-Scott

About every three years or so, I upgrade to the latest Mac model, and while my iMac is a few years old now, I recently got the new M1 Apple MacBook Pro. It’s nice, but there’s something I’ve learned throughout these many upgrades that’s especially important to consider now, as I know many photographers are thinking of upgrading to these Mac Studios machines. The specs are really good, and the cost isn’t as nearly high as the “Mac Pros,” but they have similar if not better performance.

I’m not getting one, and I’m not recommending them.

Not for photographers anyway, because I think it would be a waste of money. Here’s why: Think about the programs we use and what we do on our computers for photography. I primarily use Lightroom, Photoshop, Photo Mechanic, and a handful of plug-ins. When I used them on my 3-year old MacBook Pro, I would move a slider (say in Lightroom), and it did whatever I wanted it to instantly. For example, if I wanted to make my photo brighter and dragged the Exposure slider to the right, my photo got immediately brighter. I didn’t move the slider and then sit and wait. It was instantaneous. Same on my iMac. In Photoshop, when I open an image, add a Gaussian Blur, an Unsharp Mask, Use Camera Raw, Duplicate a layer, etc., it all happens instantly. On my old MacBook Pro, on my now getting old iMac, and it works exactly the same way on my new M1 Macbook Pro that cost thousands of dollars.

Is it faster? I guess.

Really, as a photographer, how would I even know? The applications I use day in/day out are already so responsive there’s almost no way to tell it’s faster for the work I do every day. Maybe when I use a plug-in, instead of taking 6-seconds to process it, maybe now it only takes 4-seconds (A 33% speed increase), but I don’t really even notice it. It’s 2-seconds. I spent thousands of dollars on the upgrade, and I hate to admit it, but besides the battery life (which is far better than my old MacBook Pro), I really can’t say it’s noticeably faster.

If I were a video professional, rendering video files every day, I would probably notice a big difference.

But I’m not. I’m a photographer and a writer, and I check email, and I use my Web Browser, and I make Zoom calls and run Keynote slideshows and all kinds of regular stuff where I don’t notice any real speed difference at all. If I was a full-time pro video editor, I am sure I would see a difference, but since I’m not, I don’t. I couldn’t recommend the upgrade to a friend who is a photographer telling them they should spend the money because I don’t think they’d notice the difference either. What’s worse is I hate to admit this to myself (or even worse, to my company).

I don’t want you to be disappointed. Like me.

I had heard so much about the M1-powered MacBook Pros; I guess I expected to really feel the speed, but with what I do…how could I? Is that Apple’s fault? Is it their fault I don’t do processor-intensive tasks, and so I don’t see the benefits? I don’t think, but I guess the M1 chip upgrade isn’t really necessary what I do.

The reason I’m telling you all this is if you’re considering buying one of these new Apple Mac Studio machines, take a look at what you do, and if getting one would really make a significant speed difference for you in your day-to-day work. Do sliders in Lightroom and Photoshop, and other photography programs produce immediate results, or are you waiting for progress bars to complete before something happens? Heck, ask yourself, when was the last time you saw a progress bar? If you’re not seeing progress bars (or seeing them infrequently), and you’re not waiting around for stuff to happen a whole bunch, what exactly would you be gaining?

Something to chew on this weekend. Have a good one. :)

Scott

P.S. Please note I did not mention PCs, nor did I compare the Mac to PCs in any way. There’s no reason for you to in the comments either. If you’re not interested in a Mac, there’s a lot of other stuff on the Internet to see today. Don’t be “That Guy” – just keep scrolling.

OK, it has taken a minute, but it’s finally in stock at Amazon and Barnes & Noble, and direct from the publisher, I am so excited to share this new book with you about a topic I’m so passionate about.

First, please take a minute to watch the official book trailer below where I explain what it’s all about (it’s short).

OK, it’s in stock, ready to ship, let’s go order one, two, heck maybe three copies right now. Here are the links:

From Amazon

From Barnes & Noble

Direct From The Publisher (Rocky Nook)

Thanks so much to everybody who pre-ordered the book, and showed amazing patience throughout. You all rock! :)

Now let’s go have a kick-butt week!!! :)

-Scott

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