Theres two paths people take to develop themselves, education is one, learning the theory and the history of our trades along with sometimes dated strategies and models. The other path is genuine hands on experience, learning things first hand on the job and finding ourselves in situations where its sink or swim. What I will go on to talk about below is why I personally believe hands on experience is the best way forward for photographers.
Now don’t get me wrong, I have an education, I have a degree in Events Management with Tourism which I attained at Sheffield Hallam. I had a great time, but I found that the best things I learnt whilst studying were understood when I was actually out in the field delivering the goods for some great companies. The classroom is a boring place, sometimes necessary, but I always thought to myself, sometimes there doesn’t need to be a theory to explain why we do things, sometimes trial and error has lead us to a decision, or sometimes its an unexplainable action but obvious choice.
For photography, I believe this to be the same. You start at the bottom of the ladder and find the best way to catalyse yourself into a profession, understanding the raw essentials of your trade. I cant help but feel that DC Comics ‘Bane’ (as seen in The Dark Knight Rises) has a very similar message portrayed which actually makes sense!
The best photographers will have to learn their cameras ability, learn to read a venues potential and in the case of music and event photography, the venue can be poorly lit, the access can be tight and conditions usually terrible. But if you can learn in the worst conditions you will surely be able to adapt to any situation you may be faced with.
Photographers who haven’t had to learn in these conditions merely adopt the dark when they need too, great photographer were ‘born in it, moulded by it’.. Because they learn their trade in the worst conditions and benefit from it.
Putting this into context with my personal development
‘I didn’t see the light until I was already a man, and by then it was nothing to me but blinding’.. Exactly this, I didn’t truly start to flourish until I built up my skills enough to shoot in well lit venues, it took time and some of my photos in the beginning were terrible, but you look at them now and I know how to read conditions very very well.
Truth being told, at start I was intimidated by using a flash, I didn’t want it to ruin the colours in my shots. By now I knew how to measure the lighting conditions, I knew the next step was flash. This is where our good friend Mr Bane failed (he found it blinding), using a flash could of potentially be a ruining factor to my images, but because I took the time to learn how to use my flash with my knowledge of shooting in the dark, I could use it to its full potential. Then have the perfect balance between the colours of the visual systems and lighting along with lighting guests and artists so they stand out in the foreground.
So effectively what I am saying is, use a photographer who has started from the bottom, put themselves in a position where it was sink or swim, their photos will be so much better for it once they get the chance. Effectively hire a professional who has risen from the darkness but isn’t blinded by the light.
This was exactly my journey, as it was for a lot of my peers, I know I can put them in any situation and they will deliver the services desired as can I. They have all taken the time to learn about their kit and maximise its full potential as well as ours.
If you have a special event for yourself or your company this summer, and you want a photographer who is effectively better than Bane then this is your chance. Bookings are open for winters themed party season, festive celebrations or any style of event around the UK.
You can find me via www.andytatt.com
or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
or Phone: 07540788443
Why not check out my social media too: @andytattphoto
Check out some of my recent shots below and see what hard work, understanding my equipment and timing shots to perfection looks like.