All-star wedding photographer, Roberto Valenzuela says “Perfect Practice Makes Perfect” instead of the more common “Practice Makes Perfect.” I have thought a lot about that since I heard his talk at WPPI many years ago. As I grow older, I realize that there are times when I was “practicing” my photography but practicing the wrong things. Not everything you do with a camera in your hand will necessarily drive you to your end goal.

Today’s photo is designed to illustrate the value of using symmetry in your compositions.

It’s also a good illustration of repeating objects.

The subject is my Danelectro Longhorn bass guitar. The composition tightly frames only a small portion of the instrument. This particular guitar has a very unique shape.

An old-time, professional photographer once told me that we don’t get paid to take pictures. We get paid to see things that “normal” people do not.

I once led a photo workshop to the Green Mountains of Vermont. Our group was there to photograph fall color and we had a cornucopia of opportunity everywhere we looked.

If you look up the word Sepia, and do a little research, you may be surprised that the word is originally Greek for the common cuttlefish.

But that is indeed relevant to photography because sepia tone is NOT black and white images that were made 120 years ago and have faded, it started as a process. You are probably more familiar with gray scale (black and white) but there is also brown scale (sepia.)

It’s official. I am an “old-school” photographer. You might think because I am 100% digital I am not able to be an old-school photographer. But that’s where you’d go wrong.

You see, I am indeed old. Ask anyone. And learned photography well before many of you reading this were born. I learned how to be a photographer “back in the day.” So in my mind, I am an old-school photographer.