Force Yourself to Learn

I’ve never been tagged by anyone as a “brain”, and that’s a good thing. I can get away with more that way. What I do think I am is an exceptional grinder. I love learning new things, especially now that I’m retired from the real world, and have the time to do it…yes I realize I’m incredibly lucky. 

One technique I’ve used a few times this past year is to schedule a workshop and send out invitations a month or so out, on a topic I know little about, but have wanted to learn. I find nothing focused the mind like having to present and teach a topic which is unfamiliar. 

My latest topic is on Workflow Automation in Lightroom and Photoshop. What I think I’ve found out, after a few days of research is that this isn’t something for a single two -hour workshop. Great topic, and I’ve learned a ton, but it’s huge!

The learning continues. 

Case in Point

I’m trying to become more discriminating about my own work. I’ve written recently about the process of winnowing down after a photo shoot. There are numerous phases to that process. I’m now in the “what to edit first” phase (I shoot raw, so I edit everything). I’ve already discarded hundreds of photos. Some immediately the day they were taken, others when I first imported and reviewed the shoot, and still more when I made my first pass at keywording. At this stage I’m still deleting photos, but it’s getting tougher…and I still have too many. The editing phase is further complicated by the fact that once you’ve invested some of yourself in the editing process, you fall in love with your stuff and loose objectivity.

When I return from a trip like my last one to New England I try to get down to one “best” image from each set that I’ve kept to this point. Case in point…these three shots. I chose to edit all three. I had about ten series from this location and got down to these three, which I liked for different reasons. I will end up with only one for my trip book, but which one? The first one shows more water, which was my point with these slow shutter speed shots. The second shows more rocks and some Fall color. Love the rocks. The last one show a nice long perspective of the Acadian shore. All were taken from approximately the same location with different zoom.
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I believe the last stage of the winnowing process will come after the cooling off stage. I’ll have to finish editing, let it sit for a bit, then select. Watch, I’ll decide I don’t like any of them! Oh well.