4 things that helped me become a better photographer

It doesn't seem all that long ago when I was fresh out of commercial photography school.

With a camera in my arsenal and a degree in my pocket, I thought I knew just about everything there was to know about being a photographer.

Boy was I wrong!

It wasn't until I started taking more and more photos of my children that I discovered I didn't know as much as I thought I did.

Photographing still subjects and busy bodies are two very different concepts, and I was in over my head.

That's when I turned to the internet to learn as much as I could so I would be able to capture and document my kid's lives better than ever.

Now that I feel I have come leaps and bounds in my photography skills, I want to share with you the 4 things that have helped me become a better photographer over the years.

 

Pinterest

As silly as it may seem, I can attribute Pinterest for my discovery of portrait photography and editing.

I would spend hours looking at images of portraits and kids only to be amazed by the skills and professionalism they took on.

That's when it hit me: "I could take photos like this."

I pinned to my heart's content and dove in straight into online tutorials and blog posts with information that helped me have a better understanding of this craft that was so foreign to me.

This landmine of information sparked a desire in me that I haven't let die - it remains bright & burning and a HUGE reason why I started this website to begin with!

If you aren't looking on Pinterest to find the photography information you're looking for, then you could be missing out!

Come follow me there & take a gander of the boards I have created and collected over the years to help spread the love of this vast sea of learning!

 become a better photographer

Following others

A HUGE aspect of learning photography and growing in your skills is by observation of others.

I can attribute a renowned sense of creativity a direct result from following and studying other photographers.

I started doing this when I dove in with Pinterest; slowly I became more attuned to the industry and came across many amazing artists that inspired me.

I was looking at dozens of photos every day. Photos that were perfect in creation and execution & how I wanted my work to expand.

Over time, my interests and stye evolved, but that is part of the process.

If I had closed myself in a box and never peered into the outside world of talent, I don't believe I would be the same photographer I am now.

I turn to Instagram daily to discover new talent and allow others to inspire me so I can always grow in my creativity and skills.

Want to do the same? Come follow me on Instagram & see who I follow to infuse fresh creativity into my work!

P.S. I share weekly Lightroom & Photography tips on my feed & stories to give back and help others in their photography journey - there's no reason you shouldn't come hang out with me there now!

 self portraits

Facebook groups

 Blog posts and online tutorials are great in and of itself, but group forums are an AMAZING resource to utilize when you are itching to learn something new.

This is why I LOVE Facebook groups!

You can take a silent seat and simply observe and learn from others in the group, or you can play a more active role and ask questions to get a head start on your learning.

Facebook groups are great to ask questions, meet other photographers, discover new techniques, and put yourself out there.

But, be wary. Not all groups are created equal.

I've been in my fair share of negative groups where photographers act harsh, judgemental, and downright rude.

And while I firmly believe that constructive criticism will only help you grow and become better at your craft, there is a distinct line between constructive and downright nasty.

Which is why I have created my own Facebook groups to avoid this behavior & make learning fun and supportive!

If you're looking for a safe group to join & learn more about everyday photography, The Blooming Photographer welcomes you!

Want to improve your editing skills? The Lightroom Lounge is where you'll find helpful tips and tricks to speed up your editing workflow AND create beautiful images simultaneously.

Can't wait to see you there!

 moody indoor portraits

Practice your heart out

Everyone knows that practice makes perfect, and this is no different if you want to improve your photography skills.

I cannot tell you how many hours, frames, and photos I have taken to get to where I am today, but it has been A LOT.

Every time that I get my camera out to take photos, it's an opportunity to learn something new & try something that you haven't tried before.

Testing, experimenting, and toying with your camera can be fun and educational.

Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

The one thing that I play around with a lot is natural light. Forcing myself to see light outside the box and experiment more in various lighting conditions has drastically molded my work for the better.

I share my BEST natural lighting tips in my downloadable guide, The Perfect Shot.

If you're wanting to get better at seeing and shooting in natural light, then this guide might just be for you!

The more that you practice, the closer you will get to your photography goals, so whip out that camera more often and get to work. You'll be glad that you did!

backlight sunrise photo

Make sure you check out more of our blog here to catch up on photography tips & tricks, as well as editing tutorials.

And if you're looking for fresh inspiration, education, and content, then don't hesitate to sign up for our emails!

Sign up now to get weekly updates & get a sample pack of FREE Lightroom presets when you do!

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What's been the biggest source of growth for your photography journey or are you still figuring that out?

Start the discussion & let's chat in the comments below!

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