Sources of Learning

One of the things I’m trying to do this year is actively learn composition, framing, etc from professional sources to improve my photography. I feel like I’ve hit a wall just looking at other people’s images in terms of my creativity and the reading/watching/listening is really helping me to think more carefully about what I’ve shot to date (and why I like what I do) and what I want to try going forward.

The different challenges I’ve participated in and the technical videos I’ve watched have been helpful in teaching me about my camera and lenses, and how to do very limited post-processing, but really hasn’t been that useful for teaching me colour theory, framing theory, etc. I’m hoping to read (and take notes from) at least one book every month or so as to inspire, improve, and motivate my photography.


Amateur Hours

Nir Eyal:

… we not only build skill but we strengthen our willpower. Studies have demonstrated that rewarding your brain with small “success experiences” builds willpower over time. Once the MEA [Minimal Enjoy Action] turns into a habit, it allows for expansion into slightly more advanced behaviors, such as walking for a few minutes more or increasing the pace. Through consistent practice of the MEA, both skill and willpower are increased until doing what once seemed difficult, becomes easy.

Eyal hits it on the head on how to become an amateur at something: engage in an activity on a sufficiently regular basis, with that engagement based on some kind of pleasure in the activity, and you’ll eventually become an qualified amateur at the activity in question. The degree to which one is an amateur varies, of course, with there being gradients of expertise within amateur communities.

We can’t all be responsible for creating the mountain bike, as just one example.