A while back I did a podcast with Mary Ellen Mark. She’s one of the most recognized photographers in the world and if you’re not familiar with her work, you’ve been in solitary confinement for too long.
One of the things she talked about was a technique she’s found that has disappeared in our “see-it-now” instant fulfillment world. Whenever she teaches a class she makes her students cover the LCD of their cameras with tape.
When you’re shooting digitally you look to see if you got the image and then you move on, but when shooting analog you tend to stay on the subject longer, looking for the ideal expression which may yet appear. She essentially works hard to teach her students to stay with the subject, because the best image might not be the one you thought you already captured.
We’ve all become victims of digital imaging. We look at the shot and move on, hungry for the next priceless moment, when we’re often turning our back on the best image prematurely.
I’ve been shooting a lot with Panasonic’s GH3 and the 12-35mm lens. I had a blast with our grandson, Ryan, on the swing in the kid's park at the zoo. Thinking about Mary Ellen’s comments I shut off the display and just stuck with it. The images aren’t award winners for anybody but me and Sheila and there’s plenty to critique, but I captured the expressions I wanted most. Nothing beats a great swing set and an almost two year old!
So, the next time you've got an event to shoot and you think you've nailed the shot, hang in there just a little longer. Don't move on just because you're sure you got it. Too often the best shot might be yet to come!
Note: Mary Ellen still has a few spaces left in her Halloween Workshop. It should definitely be on your bucket list!
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