A couple of days ago before writing this blog post, I was watching a Youtube video of Evan 5ps about getting better color in your photographs. It was entertaining and inspiring so much so that I found myself rummaging through my old photographs I have taken probably a couple of months ago to try some new techniques I’ve learned.
The image that I pulled out for post processing was something I thought was an interesting photograph but for some reason, it didn’t connect with me entirely. I wasn’t entirely into that photograph that I decided to just keep it for later. Now that I came across with the photo again, I was surprised that I was able to bring that Image to a more interesting level. It came to life after some Lightroom tweaks. I was thrilled!
And that moment, I came up with 5 reasons why you should let your photographs wait. Let's go!
1. It reaches a certain point of maturity
Some photographs we take sometimes confuses us. It looks good but at the same time, it lacks something. You know it's beautiful but you can’t seem to think of the reasons why.
These kinds of photos are those that I think you have to keep away from your sight and let it mature.
So what does this mean?
Technically, the photo doesn’t mature but the photographer does. You might see your photograph looking good today while it wasn't a couple of weeks ago. Somehow, you as a photographer sees more reason why a photograph looks good the more it gets older.
Have a photograph that you are 50/50 about whether you think it's good or not then just keep it for about 1 to 3 months before revisiting it. Why?
Because I think 1 to 3 months is enough for our taste and judgment to change and mature (depending on how consistent and eager you are in street photography). When you revisit your old photos, suddenly some of them seemed to look a lot better. Worthy to be uploaded even. A case of the ugly duckling maybe? Just try it.
2. Accidental rediscovery
Have you ever tried opening a folder of old photographs and accidentally finding a photo so good you wonder how it end up in there? That’s exactly what I meant by accidental rediscovery. It’s that familiar photo that somehow never made it to be shared into the public. No limelight for that guy until that fateful night of you scrolling back to it.
Sometimes we misjudge some photos we take that are actually pretty good and unfortunately kept away not to be seen again. Until you decide to scroll through it again.
Another way you can rediscover your photographs is through practicing your post-processing skills. Just pick an old photo and just mess around it. I call it a double edge sword. You hone your editing skill, at the same time you bring an image back to life.
3. Avoid Social media pressure
One of the reasons you rush into posting your images is because of the pressures of social media. You have to keep up with the overwhelming volume of uploaded photographs in the already saturated web. Stop!
Because of this pressure, you make mistakes with editing. You think a photo is good enough to be posted but in reality, it’s just an OK photo. Let it sit. Don’t get pressured. Unless you have a deadline, there is no need to rush posting and just let your photos marinate a bit till it’s ready to be viewed by the world.
4. It smoothens the workflow
Having a queue of images to share is fine as long as you run a steady and consistent pace of post processing or sharing them on social media. Let the photos fall in line until eventually, the next one gets its turn to be uploaded. I also think that when you let your images queue, it creates a smoother workflow because you don’t have to think too much which one comes first in the editing or post processing room. Unless you are doing a professional work or a project that is related to the time you took it, then clearly it’s a different thing. But for just the consistency of sharing, I’d follow this.
5. Get early critics first from close friends/ mentors before uploading to social media
Let’s say you’ve shortlisted your images, already loaded and ready to be uploaded. I suggest you hold that thought for a while and instead send it to your friends, your colleague or your mentors so they can give you their thoughts and comments. It’s important to also get critics from the people that have credibility because it allows you to see your photographs in the eyes of other people, and in this case, experienced and honest people. With the comments and critics, you can make your turn your photograph a lot more meaningful and bring it to its best even before uploading it.
Try it and see how it work for you and don't forget to share this if you find this valuable!
Here are more photographs that just recently revisited in my vault and had convinced me their worth.