How to Not Think When Photographing

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Have you ever had the experience photographing a great place or event and thinking constantly, I hope this will turn out right, I hope they will like it, I hope this is what they want, I can’t get it right, I don’t know what to do … and many thoughts of the same disturbing kind. It’s horrible, isn’t it? And of course the images are not what you wanted, they are exactly what you were afraid of. How to switch of these thoughts or direct them in a positive way?

First thing, don’t get frantic when experiencing such a situation. By pushing yourself with force through these thoughts you make it worse and it will show in your photography. Instead make a “step back”, put down your camera, make literally a few steps back, find a bench to sit on and look at the situation. Even five minutes sitting there will feel like eternity, but they are necessary. Only when you let go, the pressure will flow away and you will start seeing again instead of being occupied by anxious thoughts. Reset yourself on what you see and what you want. Wait and focus on the light. It will show you what you need to see and do for the right approach to your desired photo. As a result you will be tuned in on photography and in conversation with the object through your camera. This “photographic trance” will take all your mind space and let no room for “alien” thoughts. Now shoot away.

Ute Sonnenberg,