Being a good photographer is more than just mastering the technical aspects or owning the best camera gear. Rather, it’s about the inherent qualities that allow a photographer to see beauty and authenticity in the subject. We sat down with top Lebanese photographer, Ramzi Mansour, to find out what he believes enables someone to be a world-class photographer.
1 - An Eye for Detail:
A good photographer must have a very keen eye for detail to ensure that all elements within the photo—the lighting, the composition, the subject, and everything else in between—work together harmoniously to convey the desired emotional response. Cultivating the capacity to visualise each individual frame before it happens, a great photographer is aware of their surroundings and, at the same time, becomes part of their surroundings.
2 - A true grafter’s attitude:
Most photographers do what they do because they are passionate about photography; that is why they are so good at it. The willingness to learn the craft is vital, not just in the beginning stages but throughout the entirety of one’s professional life. There is no mastery in photography; it is ever-changing and one is continuously learning and growing as a photographer.
3 - Creativity:
The ability to let go of the fears that will undoubtedly be present, such as the fear of failure or judgement, is a photographer’s gift, enabling one to wholeheartedly channel a vision. Too often we start censoring the creative mind just at the point of discomfort, wanting to play it safe. The true photographic genius embraces the potential for creativity on the other side of their learning edge.
4 - Know Your Gear:
A great photographer has excellent technical rapport with their gear. The photographer instinctively knows where everything is on their camera and lens. Time is maximised and the effortless and efficient fluidity between photographer and gear is seamless.
5 - Technical Skills:
It is important for a photographer to grasp the technical foundations of photography, not only to enable continuous learning but also to support the photographer to pinpoint their unique style. Once the basics have been acquired and integrated then the photographer can experiment with new aspects to create a unique signature style that they will ultimately be known for.
6 - People Skills:
Being a professional photographer means working with people—whether it’s a client, a model, or even a fellow photographer. A great photographer has terrific people skills and can work well with others. The ability to connect and provide a safe and trusting environment is key to any photographer’s longevity in the industry. Reputation is vitally important and having a name synonymous with honesty, integrity and authenticity is one of the most important traits any photographer can possess.
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