Picture Methods Podcast 2020 Episode 2

Picture Methods Podcast Art Featuring Scott Bourne

Picture Methods Podcast 2020 Episode 2

Thanks for joining me on the flagship podcast of the PictureMethods blog where we deliver free insights and inspiration for photographers. The show drops on the first Friday of each month.

Today we have an extended Q&A section and a special guest in Mr. Rick Sammon. More on Rick in a moment.


First I want to mention that I really appreciate all the kind comments I’ve received on the pictures I posted from my recent trip to the Rio Grande Valley in Texas. I am going back in April in search of Painted Bunting, a nemesis bird for me. I have some other travel and workshop news.

I am going to Alaska in March. I am going back in June. I am taking names for a waiting list for my 2020 Bosque tour which is already sold out. I do have some time in April for those of you interested in one-on-one shooting from a blind in Texas. If you want to see what my shooting workflow is really like and would like a chance to work side-by-side with me, this is your shot. I have space on the 19th and 20th of April. Email me scott@scottbourne.com. I am also available for private sessions anywhere in the USA so if there’s a place you want to go and want my help, send me an email. If my schedule permits I’d love to lend a hand. Email me at scott@picturemethods.com.

On another topic I would like to mention the passing of PDN Magazine. Ever since Emerald Expeditions bought WPPI, all the publications associated with the organization as well as the trade show have been in decline. WPPI is rumored to be smaller than ever and with the shutdown of PDN you have to ask yourself what is the future of that show and other shows Emerald manages like Photo Plus Expo. I sincerely hope these shows survive because the photo industry is contracting and if they go away, it’s not a good sign for any of us.

Next Up…

Now on to my segment with Rick Sammon. Rick is a Canon Explorer of Light and he is the author of 40 books. I helped with a foreword on a couple of those. He’s a great teacher and loves photography so this month, instead of just an interview, I wanted to get Rick more involved in the show. Accordingly, he’s going to help me do an EXTENDED Q&A session. Let’s cut to it.


1. Should image stabilization with long lenses be turned off or on when the camera is mounted on a tripod? I’ve seen bird photographers on youtube talking about laying their left arm over a 600mm lens to dampen vibrations – seems like using the dual IS in my Olympus setup would accomplish the same thing.

Matt from Dayton, Ohio

2. I have heard Scott talk about his saying – “When in doubt, leave it out.” Can you elaborate a bit on that?

Dale from Muncie, Indiana

3. If Rick Sammon is back on the show this is for him. I’d like to know how he generally feels about using the Canon mirrorless camera. Was the switch hard for him? What did he gain? What does he miss?

Alan from Montreal, Canada

4. Do you use a skylight or other protective filter on your lenses?

Beth from Dover, Delaware

5. I know this is a rookie question but I am a rookie so I hope it is okay. Do any of the people on the show shoot in JPG? Is RAW really necessary?

Elizabeth from St. George, Utah

6. Everyone that you have on the show, Scott is like you, very creative. My pictures seem boring by comparison. Where do you get your creative photographic ideas?

Ralph in Miami, Florida

7. Is it really worth the money to attend a photo workshop or tour? I see several that are advertised and conducted by famous photographers, but that cost thousands of dollars plus travel. Do people really get their money’s worth out of such trips?

Dave from Lewiston, Idaho

8. Some time ago, you mentioned that there’s a story behind how you got into bird photography. I’d like to hear that story if you’re inclined to share it.

John from Euless, Texas

9. I’d like to know what pro photographers like Rick Sammon had to do to become a Canon Explorer of Light. I shoot Canon and know I am not ready now, but want to work towards that. Any tips?

Amy from Vancouver, Washington

10. I keep hearing people talk about perspective in photography and then I hear that term applied to everything from lens choice to composition. Could you please talk a little bit about perspective and what I need to think about as a new photographer?

Clyde from Minot, South Dakota

Remember, without the Q – there can be no Q&A so send me your photography related questions via email please, Scott@picturemethods.com – be sure to include your name and town or I cannot put your question on the show.


This month I want to speak to those of you who feel that you are losing your passion for photography. I’d encourage you to look up the old Kodak Gallery Commercial on YouTube. I’ve seen it hundreds of times, but it still brings a tear to my eye. Keep me, Protect me, Share me – and I will live forever is the message of the spot. It is at the core of everything I value in photography. The ability to protect memories, both mine and those of my subjects and to preserve them by protecting and sharing them. If you stop to think about the critical role photography plays in our daily lives, that alone should help motivate you to keep on keeping on.

There are a couple of exercises I give people when they tell me they are burning out. If the Kodak commercial wasn’t enough, try shooting a different genre or try a new lens or camera body. Give yourself some assignments that are meaningful. Go look at other art forms and try to find inspiration. There are many ways to re-kindle your passion for photography and chief among them is to get off the couch and go shoot. I am rooting for you.

Wrapping up…

Next month, I’ll have another special guest join me on the show. I’ll also have the rest of the new format. I hope you’ll listen in.

Also, please do me a favor if you like the show. Please subscribe (for free) to the iTunes version of the show – even if you listen somewhere else. It helps us gain traction. Please consider subscribing (for free) to the blog – you can use the little black box that appears in the sidebar of every post to do that. It will give you updates every time there’s ANYTHING new at Picture Methods. And lastly, please consider signing up for my free quarterly newsletter – you can do so at http://bit.ly/picturemethodsnewsletter

If you do sign up for either blog updates or the newsletter you are automatically eligible to win cool prizes during the regular giveaways I do for the show and the blog. You must be 18 years old to participate. Open worldwide except where prohibited by law.

I really hope you enjoyed this episode of the Picture Methods podcast – see you next month.

SPECIAL GUEST THIS MONTH – Rick Sammon – https://ricksammon.com/

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Picture Methods has partnered with Hunt’s Photo & Video to bring you the best gear at a competitive price and backed by personal service. Call Alan Samiljan at 781-462-2383 or Noah Buchanan at 781.462.2356. If you cannot reach either one try Gary Farber at 781-462-2332. You will ALWAYS get the best prices if you call the store v. Using the web site. You can also email Noah at: nbuchanan@huntsphoto.com or Gary at: gfarber@huntsphoto.com. Hunt’s has been around a long time and you can trust them. Make sure to mention that Scott Bourne sent you. That will get you the best deal.