Home Forums Am I a Fauxtog? So, am I doing Ok for a beginner? Reply To: So, am I doing Ok for a beginner?


Here is a bit of friendly advice from someone who has worked in the creative arts for many years that you can take or leave. Be careful not to form your own opinions too early about what is artistically good and what is bad in your own work. This takes years to develop and if you set your mind too early you can impede your own personal growth. To clarify, you should always look at your work and say, “that’s good,” or, “that’s bad.”  Be self critical; however, do not trust yourself implicitly. Those opinions are being informed by a lack of experience. Seek out guidance from those with more experience. If they say there are deficiencies in your work and you need to improve in certain areas, trust them. Even if those criticisms conflict with your idea of whats good. After nearly two decades, I still question my own instincts and seek guidance about my art. Growth never stops.

Second, beware of the simple “that’s good” or “that’s bad” critique. A quality critique always includes “because.” That’s good because… or that’s bad because… Complements should be appreciated but listened to sparingly. I post several of my photos to facebook and get many many complements. If I listened to those, I feel really good, but there is little opportunity there for growth.

Lastly, my impressions of your photos. You seem to fall into the same trap as myself. I prefer colors to really pop so I tend to push the limits of saturation and vibrance. My photo looks really good to me, but then I show a more experienced photographer and they grimace and suggest that I pull back on the post processing. They tell me that a photo should stand on its own with the composition, subject matter, exposure, use of light, etc. Once that is good, I can gently add enhancements that don’t distract from the photo. I walk away sulking and hurt that this experienced photographer did not recognize all of the work that I put into the photos. I think that they didn’t get what the photo was about. After a while, I begin to realize that there is merit in their assessment. The fundamentals of good photography need to be addressed before i try to be an artist and worry about making the colors pop.

Study, learn, practice, practice, practice, seek guidance from a seasoned professional, and be open to not only the good but also the harsh advise.