“It is not what I see outside that makes my images, it is what I feel on the inside that comes out.”
Think about what you want to say in an image It’s what you feel that is important.
Before you take a photograph have in mind the mood you want to give your photograph. For example if you are photographing a child you may want to create a light mood of fun and play. Camera angles, the available light, the environment you are photographing in may all have an impact on the mood created in the photograph. Or think about a really wet miserable day and how you might want to capture the mood of that scenario. There are a myriad of other factors that could also come into play as well.
It is very easy to get caught up with technique. Technique is the means to help you achieve your own particular style. The subject matter you concentrate on will dictate the techniques you will need to master until they are second nature to you. At that point your imagination will take over as the camera will be a real creative tool that you use instinctively.
It may be that you will only need to learn the techniques that are applicable to the style that you want to create. This is important, it is a creative and imaginative mind that will allow you to produce outstanding images not an encyclopaedic knowledge of photographic technique. All the truly great photographers specialise in one area of photography and through experience get to know how to get the best results in their own specialist areas. They do not need to know every technical aspect of say high speed sports photography if they are a still life food photographer for example.
Technique comes with experience
So technique is very important too, but in my opinion secondary to imagination and creativity. We refine our technique all the time. You will need to know how to get the best results in every situation. This will come with experience and should become “second nature” to you. There are always new techniques to learn and as the technology progresses new methods of working will become available.
It pays to keep up to date with the technical areas that effect your own specialism and to continually learn and explore. Important though a good knowledge of all the technical aspects are, in my view imagination and creativity are the innate skills that separate the extraordinary from the mundane. Once you have learnt to use your camera without having to think too much about what you are doing, then you are free to create!p