The one thing that it takes to be a successful photographer is to constantly be shooting. It’s the best advice that I could give anyone looking to pursue photography as more than a hobby. In fact, even if it is just a hobby I say keep shooting. The more you shoot, the more you learn and the more you grow as a photographer. I shoot for a lot of different outlets these days ranging from print to online and although I try my best to get most of my work used, there are times when some photos never find a home. I keep a folder on my laptop labeled “photos to be sold” and I try to constantly make sure that every one finds somewhere to go. For the most part, they get used for print, ads, or online features. Once in a while a few will slip through the cracks and as I said, I always try to find a place for every photo to go so that’s exactly what this feature is for.
Above is a photo of Kelly Bolton on a DC road trip a few years ago. We spent some time in Salt Lake City and got the chance to cruise the streets for a while. I remembered being stoked on this sequence and for whatever reason it never saw the light of day until now. This 180 to backward smith to 180 to switch smith to 180 is pretty crazy if you think about it. Kelly has always been known to think a little differently on his bike and I’m stoked to share this photo with everyone simply because it deserves to be seen for Kelly’s sake if anything. Sometimes photos just sit around long enough to the point of becoming old and unusable and that was the case with this one specifically.
This photo of Miles Rogoish was shot while he was on a trip to Los Angeles to help film some stuff with some of the Deadline crew. He had the 180 backward grind to Indian out in his head and wanted to get it done. I like this photo a lot simply because I don’t normally shoot at night very often so for me it’s always a welcomed change. For whatever reason it just never ended up going anywhere. The situation is a little different for this one in the fact that I actually tried to send this one out. I sent it to a magazine and to one of Mile’s sponsors. Neither one of them wanted it and sometimes that happens. I don’t take it personally at all, it’s just all a part of the photo game. I also don’t like to send photos out to too many places either so once my top choices for places for photos to go don’t work out, I pretty much leave them alone until they end up in an archives folder somewhere.
This one is a little bit of a different scenario where I asked the rider, in this case, the new Primo dude Aaron Brenner if he had any interest in using the photo. He said he didn’t really have anywhere for the photo to go so right away I knew it was going to end up in a random folder to be found at a later date. Well, there is no better time than now to bring it out and let people see it. Not too mention that a luc-e to over isn’t necessarily the easiest trick in the world. I love shooting seamless sequences like this that tell just enough of the story to get the point across. Either way I wanted to get this photo some shine-time and if anything simply because Aaron is a rad dude and deserves some coverage.
The point of this week’s column is to show you that regardless of the outcome, you should constantly be out there shooting. You don’t always have to shoot only to try and sell a photo. The main motivation to shoot should be for the love of it and that’s the mindset that I try to keep even to this day. I know that I get paid for almost everything I work on these days but still, it’s important to remember the value of spending time with your camera. You can constantly be learning, working on new set ups, working on new shooting styles and new anything really. And, also no matter what you never know where a photo is going to end up so keep your options open and don’t get discouraged if someone turns down a photo. Just simply use it as motivation to shoot the next shot that you submit so well that they have no choice but buy it from you.
On that note, be sure to check back next Wednesday for the seventy first edition of Through the Lens and as always feel free to leave any questions in the comments section or email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will hit you back as soon as I can. Feel free to follow me on Twitter and Instagram as well @jeremypavia.
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