A few things I wish I knew about photography when we had our first baby.



I've learned a lot about photography in 6 years of photographing my family. There are a lot of things that I just could not have known without a few years of experience. Learning is part of the joy of parenthood and photography.

But there are a few things I wish I had known right away.

1. I wish I knew how to buy the right camera and lenses.

I spent months researching cameras.

I interrogated every photographer I met. Why did you go with Canon? Why didn't you go with Nikon?

I read countless camera reviews.

I finally bought the perfect camera.

And it kinda sucked.

My pictures didn't get any better.

Mostly, because nobody told me that the lenses are more important than the camera itself. Well, one person did. But I didn't listen.

I could have bought any camera. Canon, Nikon. It didn't matter. But there was one, and only one lens, that I should have bought. It would have made my photos so much better.

I wish I knew that then.

2. I wish I knew where to go for help learning everything.

Cameras come with buttons. Lots of them. I had no idea what they did. The camera manual was just so boring. I wish somebody could have shown me around my camera. What buttons do I need to know? Which ones can I forget about?

I wasted way too long not knowing how to work my camera.

3. I wish I had known that creativity isn't something you're just born with. I wish somebody could have shown me how to become creative.

I'm not naturally creative. I don't write well, I can't play any instrument particularly well, my 4 year old has excelled me in doodling.

I always thought that my photos lacked any overall creativity.

Then one day I got to watch a photographer work for the day. He photographed politicians. That was his job. Follow around these politicians and photograph them. All day. Every day. Watching him completely changed me. I finally saw how to make creative photos.

But I wish somebody could have shown me much sooner.

But in the end, learning some lessons the long and hard way isn't so bad. Now I know how to guide other parents through the process a lot more quickly than I went through it.

What do you struggle with, and what lessons have been your most important lessons learned?

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