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Is Process or Product More Important in Photography?

Across the pond

I have just arrived home from a morning walk in my local park/woodland on a crisp, dry November morning.

I brought my camera with me and took a few photographs.

I didn’t do any chimping, so I don’t know if the images are any good.

But that doesn’t really matter as I was involved in the process of photography and I had a great time on my photography shoot.

The title of this blog, Is Process or Product More Important in Photography? asks a question which might have a different answer depending on the type of photographer you ask.

A professional photographer who depends on good results to make a living will undoubtedly say product is most important, but for those of us who are amateur photographers the answer might not be as simple.

Sure, we will want to see success in our photography in terms of good images, otherwise we may become disheartened and believe that we are not good enough.

But do we need good images every time we go out with our camera?

Could we measure success in another way?

On my morning outing I stopped in a part of the woods that I had scouted on a previous occasion with my phone camera.

Silver birch pixel

Google Pixel 7 Pro

Silver birch Nikon

Nikon D5600

I enjoyed looking for a strong subject, finding the best position from which to shoot based on light and composition, adjusting my camera settings, and capturing multiple images in a small area.

While there, I got to listen to bird song, see the early morning sun stream through the trees, admire the vibrant autumn colours and feel the chilly air of an early November morning.

I had an opportunity to get some exercise, to find solitude surrounded by the beauty of nature and to clear my head before the busy day began.

I felt grateful to be alive and privileged to be able to enjoy the abundance of nature.

morning glow

On my walk home I thought about the hour I had just spent and I had no doubts that for me process is what is most important in photography as it involves so much more than just coming home with a good image.

Next time you go out with your camera ask yourself whether process or product is more important in your photography.

And if the final product is what is most important you might try prioritising the process to see if that brings more enjoyment.

Autumn trees in the wood

Trees chatting

Pigeons pecking

Misty morning B'more

Marlay in light and shade

Tree against the sky

People walking

When I finally looked at my images I was pleased with some of them.

And the others?

As always, they provided me with new learning experiences!

Is process or product more important in photography?

What do you think?

You might like to check out this video Why Process Beats Results in Street Photography by street photographer Tim Jamieson in which he discusses a similar theme.



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