IT GETS WORSE… Chapter 2 from the book.

You know what sucks?

You’ll never be as successful as you were on your first day taking pictures. The first time you pick up a camera you have no clue. You look at the bright colorful pictures on the shiny little teevee on your phone-cam and think: Nailed It! Every photo is better than the last. Enjoy that feeling because it’s not gonna last long. It goes away as soon as you begin to have standards.

Fulkerson Hardware, Somis, CA.

“As Edgar Degas said about painting, photography is easy when you don’t know how, but very difficult when you do.”     — Bill Jay

For a professional photographer a good day means a few solid, well exposed, in-focus images that don’t need much Photoshop. The client and I are both happy, but that doesn’t mean they were Weston’s Pepper #30 or even brilliant photographs. I feel lucky to get one photo per project that is good enough to put on my website. A year later I notice half my website blows, because the photos could be better.

Outside of the occasional luck moment, it will probably take you about ten years dedicated to your craft before you can start to collect worthy images. If I remain committed I might get ten to twenty images in my lifetime that are really stellar. Maybe if I’m lucky I’ll get one Moonrise. You are constantly working for the day when 99% of your photos suck. That means 1% have some merit … you’re then ready to raise your standards and get even worse.


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