Friday, February 27, 2015

Take Your Time - Don't Spray And Pray

I recently had a conversation with someone about frames-per-second shooting. The person said that they required a camera capable of quickly exposing multiple frames.

You see, this person photographs their kids sports and dance events. Kids are quick. The photographer's solution is to spray and pray. That is, to speedily expose as many frames as possible and hope that a few good ones are made in the process.
Jackson Wedding - Tehachapi, Calidornia
The person told me that they typically capture over 1,000 images of an event. The person will end up with 10-25 photographs that they are happy with. That's crazy! I didn't expose nearly that many frames at the last wedding that I photographed and I delivered well over 100 images to the bride and groom.

The problem with the spray and pray method is that it relies on luck and not skill. Instead of using photographic vision to capture the decisive moment, this method uses volume and odds.

The other problem with spraying and praying is logistics. You have to consider battery life and storage. You have to go through all of those exposures! It requires plenty of waste.

Instead, I suggest slowing down and being more purposefully with each exposure. Pretend that each frame has a real cost. Try to cut back on rapid fire and take a little more care ensuring that everything is as you want it to be prior to opening the shutter.

Less is more in photography, and in this case it means fewer frames exposed. Don't spray and pray.

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