April 6, 2013
It can be a trap of the photographer to think that his or her best pictures were the ones that were the hardest to get. – Timothy Allen
Today I spent several hours being a mentor to a high school student who has chosen photography as her senior project. As part of the mentoring process, we spent several hours doing a photo shoot with one of her friends as the model. Because my focus was on teaching the student, rather than taking photos myself, I mainly coached from the sidelines as she practiced with her own camera. In fact, I only picked up my camera in a few instances when I wanted to do a side-by-side comparison as a teaching tool for lighting, composition, etc. I really didn’t expect to have any ‘keepers’ from the session for my own portfolio, but in the end, I was pleasantly surprised. Although I only took a fraction of the number of photos I would normally take during a portrait session, I ended up with some real gems. This was a case where the teacher became the student, and I was the one who walked away with a valuable lesson: Sometimes less effort can lead to a greater reward.