At opening receptions, the conversation often includes “How do I take better pictures?” How can I get my work into galleries?” Here are some suggestions:

Always wear your camera.

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Always wearing my camera allowed me to capture this moment.

What’s the best camera? The one you have with you. How you use whatever you already have - and how you see - is more important than what camera you use.

Buy books instead of another piece of gear. Start with these: The Eye of Eisenstaedt; Elliott Erwitt’s Snaps, and Personal Exposures; Kent Reno’s Ground Time; David Kennerly’s Photo Op, Dan Winters’ Road to Seeing, Jim Marshall’s Proof, Stanley Greene’s Black Passport, and Jon Lewis: Photographs of the California Grape Strike, by Richard Steven Street.

Use travel time to listen to podcasts like Hit the Streets, The Candid Frame, and LensWork.

When you’re out making pictures, put your phone in airplane mode and keep it in your pocket. To paraphrase Belgian photographer Gabriel Delobbe’s wisdom: “Every moment you spend looking down at your phone is a moment you’re denying yourself the gifts of life that are waiting to be observed.”

We make pictures. Describing what we do as “making” pictures gives credit to our creativity and seeing, and is more peaceful than saying “shoot” pictures, or that we go out “shooting.”

Print your work. Because looking at physical prints is essential to growing as a photographer, print your pictures on paper, even if you use a digital camera.

Want to sell your pictures to galleries and news media? Show your work at a portfolio review.. Be sure to prepare before you go. How? To listen to some tips, click here.

Bon chance, et bonne lumiè