Don’t Be a Photo Sniper

A “photo sniper” isn’t what you think it is; I will need to explain it. And…I wish I had been cute enough to come up with that title but I’m not. Credit belongs to one Mitchell Kanashkevich, whom I just recently discovered on YouTube with a video with the title I am using. (A link to the video is below.)

What Mitchell calls a “photo sniper” is what you and I have often been. This is a photographer who, like someone with a high-powered rifle and a scope finds a target, takes aim and shoots. Then the rifle is lifted from the shoulder and the shooter moves to another, entirely different target.

The only alternative to being a photo sniper is patience. “Work” the subject. Shoot horizontal and vertical. Shoot high and shoot low. Move your feet. Try a different lens or focal length. Plan. “Pre-visualize.” What do you want your picture to look like? Try different compositions. Take more than one shot, and don’t imitate a photo sniper.

I’m ill-equipped to muse about patience. After all, I’m the guy who wants to leave if a restaurant wait is more than 15 minutes. I am irritated at a red light when a car in front of me does not close the gap in front of it so that when the green arrow hits we can all get through before the red! 

But I, nevertheless, need to think about patience because the lack of it is hurting my ability to come up with a photo that matters. Look at my photo above that was taken a few days ago. Why didn’t I police the frame? I was in a Kentucky bed and breakfast, built years ago, with room after room filled with antiques like this; why was this the only picture I came away with? I blogged earlier about not being obsessed with gear. At its heart, this blog is about the need to become obsessed with patience and planning. 

Say a little prayer for me.


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