risking failure

Most of us amateurs get our real opportunity to indulge in photography when we’re on holiday, and maybe at the weekends. That’s one of the frustrations of having to earn a living by doing something other than photography: although we’re not a slave to the customer’s wishes or to “The Market” as a professional would be, we don’t get that chance to continuously train our photographic eye. It’s also harder for us to push ourselves beyond the comfort zone of the aesthetic we know and love. Why use our precious photography time by breaking the rules? after all, the rules are there to help us succeed aren’t they? So why risk failure? Most of us are taught from an early age that to succeed is good, to fail is bad, right?pinhole photograph of lake with rocks and trees But we learn most by making mistakes, so let’s try to learn something by risking failure! A while ago I’d been out taking large format photographs, with all the deliberate intent that goes into this process. At the end of the trip I was heading home with some film left unexposed. The light was appalling and the rain was bucketing down. We’d stopped the car by a lake to take a break so I thought I’d play with the left-over film and a pinhole. Maybe it was because I had no expectation of success and I thought “who’s going to know anyway?”, but for me this photo was the best of the trip.

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