VSN Series Part 4 : On “The Process”

Washington, D.C. b&w film. Minolta x-570.
Los Angeles, California. Shot on a Minolta X-570. 35mm color film.
Las Vegas Arts District. Minolta X-570. 35mm color film.


My journey into photography, and now more specifically film photography, has lead me to know what to expect from certain photography related things. I know certain inputs give me specific outputs. I note particular ones and repeat the good patterns when needed. This has lead me to develop a process. This is nothing overtly complicated nor scientific. But each step must be followed by the next. It as follows:

  1. Grab a camera. Does not matter what kind. Film, digital, even a camera phone.
  2. Start taking pictures.
  3. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.

Step One: Grab a Camera.

Some people look at step one as a daunting task. They want to start taking pictures but they quickly realize they need a camera. Most people already have one in their pocket or hand at all times. Film photography is not difficult either to explore. A quick Google session to research some basic models is all you need to have enough information to purchase your first film camera. Digital photography is only slightly more difficult because there are so many options to choose from to fit a variety of needs. The search and discovery of these needs, for all photo disciplines, mold you into the photographer you will become.


Step Two: Take Pictures.

Photography knowledge will reveal itself more and more over time. Lighting, depth of field, shutter speeds, ISO’s are all topics that once physically handling a camera will be sought out. At this point, the main obstacle of a photographer is being cognizant of the fact that there are other photographers in the photographic worldview. Once a person starts taking photos they might realize that they are not the only person taking picutures. Photography is a very popular and highly shared hobby/profession with trends, styles and specialities. This should not discourage you. Your pictures and your style are what matters. Push forward.

El Rey. U Street. Washington, D.C. Minolta X-570. b&w 35mm film.
Washington, D.C. Minolta X-570.

Step Three: Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.

This may be the hardest step of them all. Once you have a camera, gained some basic knowledge and experienced what it is like to be a photographer, you more than likely will run into the photographer’s wall. Motivation to pick up your camera will wane and inspiration will be hard sought. But this is where you have officially begun. Your next steps as a photographer now come from an informed perspective. Though you may not be the wide eyed beginner any longer, the reasons why you entered photography will slowly reveal themselves once again. Be ready to capture them.

Related Material.

Watch the Netflix documentary on photographer Platon.

“Worldview through a viewfinder.”

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