Point of View

Rob here, if you’ve kept up with our blog, you know we were in the Canadian Rockies last week with a workshop group. That is one part of this planet that needs to be on your bucket list. It is absolutely gorgeous. 

One photographer in our group summed it up best when he said he had one problem with the workshop. He said, “I just don’t know which way to point the camera.” It seems that everywhere you turn there is a stunning scene.

Sunrise on Lake Louise in Banff National Park, Canada. The morning was quite cold and a heavy overcast. The morning light was able to peek in for just a couple minutes before the clouds covered it once again. 

Now, I’ve taught workshops for almost 15 years and there is something that, to this day, still amazes me. Let's call it Point of View.

If you move from one place to another, things will look different. Two people standing at different places and looking at the same thing will also see things differently. This is perfectly understandable. What’s amazing to me is that two people standing in the same spot can see things so differently.

Your perception is colored by your experiences in life. Mark Twain was adamant that if you want to change your perception of the world you needed to get out and travel. This is no different for a photographer. If you want to change your perspective - on anything - you need to change your experiences. 

I shot side by side with photographer Kip Cothran from San Diego, and the images that popped up on the back of our cameras couldn’t be more different. He’s a black and white guy that shoots tight and I love vibrant colors and tend to shoot looser compositions. His images were stunning. I loved his work. You can say I experienced the “Kip-effect” because, with this experience, I’m sure I’ll think more about black and white options next time I set up on a shot. 

Photograph by Kip Cothran - shot B&W in camera. This is from Morant's Curve in Banff National Park.

I’m so lucky to be leading workshops throughout the world. I’ve gained so much perspective because of this travel but even more important, I’ve learned so much from all the people I’ve had the opportunity to shoot with. I almost feel like I should be paying them for the privilege of shooting with them. But let’s not get carried away. 

Your point of view is not firmly set. It changes over time. You should become proactive in developing your point of view, or perspective, or whatever you want to call it. Make time to shoot with other photographers - share your experiences. And travel! Saint Augustine once said that “the world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.”