Learning from Your Photographic Mistakes
When we take photos with a digital camera it is easy to ignore your mistakes as you can simply delete them. Unlike the old days when developing film could be an expensive exercise, we tend not to pay as much attention to each individual shot. No matter what brand you are using, be it Canon, Sony or Olympus digital cameras, it is important to consider the mistakes you make when taking photos and how to avoid them.
We all want to improve with our photography and this means we only keep the ‘good’ shots that we take. Any mistakes that are made are quickly covered up by the delete button. So should you be saving some of those mistakes?
Holding Off on the Delete Button
The delete button is always tempting in digital photography as it can help you hide any mistakes you have made. However, if you keep some of your mistakes then you can also examine exactly what you were doing wrong and how often. If it is a glaringly obvious mistake on one photo you may be having the same problems – but to a lesser extent – on other photos.
A good example would be ‘flaring’ on the lens caused by having sunlight (or other sources of light) come onto the lens. This creates a ‘flare’ in your photo and looks very much out of place. While it can be used for creative effects, it is not welcome in most photos. An obvious example of this is easy to spot but that means you may have smaller flares in your photos that you are not seeing.
Understanding Photographic Mistakes
A photographic mistake in one picture can be used as a creative tool in another picture. For example, if you wanted to take a portrait shot of someone and the lighting was wrong, you may end up with a silhouette where the person is a dark outline. You will not want this for a snapshot but a mistake like this could be used to great purpose in artistic shots.
Many photographic artists use what would be called a ‘purposeful mistake’ to make outstanding images. While ‘lens flare’ was mentioned previously as a mistake it can also be used for some very cool effects if done right. This is why ‘saving’ some of your mistakes and knowing how they occurred might help you in future photographic situations.
Not all mistake are that bad considering modern digital editing. While old photos may suffer the dreaded ‘red eye’, these days you can fix it easily with even the most basic of photo editing software. Depending on the shots you are taking some mistakes may also be unavoidable. This is where learning a little bit about digital photo editing can come in handy.
You will even get to the point where you can easily fix up a stray hair and even skin blemishes. While doing digital photo editing wrong can look awful, using subtle techniques can improve most photos. So next time you make a mistake with your photos, stop and think how it happened and see if you can fix it before hitting that delete button.