I was recently asked how I got so many good photos from Te Mata Peak here in Hawke's Bay, as the person who was asking the question said they could never get anything interesting from this well shot location.
My answer was quite simple: I shoot a lot of bad photos from Te Mata Peak, as well as some good ones, but you never see those bad ones.
As a photographer we are always trying to show off the best photos from a location or shoot, and it can often be intimidating / confusing for someone starting out in photography why they can't seem to get those shots that they see other photographers getting.
There is no secret. There is no magic button. There is no mystical formula.
There is only persistence, patience, persistence, learning, persistence, and the topic of this blog post, curation.
Curation is the process of selecting images with potential for publishing / displaying. This ensures that only the works that a photographer believes have merit are seen, and is often the difference, in my opinion, between a good photographer and a great one; the great one will only show the images that they are proud of, and they are prepared to hide / delete the shots that don't stand up as good images. Even if those images took a lot of time and effort to create; if the final image doesn't work it won't make the cut.
So I thought I would show all the photos that I took on the morning I shot the image at the top of this post (or images in this case as it is a panorama made up from 4 separate shots), to give an idea of the misses as well as the hits. I have lots of misses; but every miss I make I look at to try to improve the next shot and get something that works. As they say you have to learn from your mistakes.
You might be able to identify the shots I consider to be 'hits' amongst the 'misses' because, as part of my workflow when curating images, I tend to do basic edits to them during the selection process. So I guess I am just making an excuse for why most of my photos below don't look very good...
To summarise the shots below; I arrived up at Te Mata Peak at 6:30am, shot for just over 1 hour, took 106 frames, had 28 hits. The ratio of hits to misses was pretty good on this morning. Often the images that were misses were similar to other images that were hits, and as such I didn't need 2 of that shot in my portfolio so one had to go.
Hopefully this blog gives some encouragement to get out and shoot, and not worry about the misses, but keep shooting for the hits.