Never share in the moment
Whenever I travel or have a walk in my neighbourhood, I will take pictures. However I will never share them straight away, that’s because I mostly shoot with my camera and not my phone. When you shoot with you phone, you probably have a data plan on it, allowing you to share your photos on social networks or even via messengers with your peers. That’s bad because you start to develop a tendency to take picture in order to share them and your photography becomes less personal and more oriented towards others, you take pictures so others can understand what you see and you forget to see and observe by yourself.
Observing is the most important aspect of photography. Leave your phone in your pocket, your camera turned off and walk, look around you and observe. Find patterns in the things that surround you and wonder at the beauty of these patterns. Have a look at how some random item placed on the pavement will totally change the path people take. Wonder at how a harsh light in the corner of a street will make people close their eyes whenever they get hit by the sunlight, some people even sneeze as a reflex to light exposure. Just observe. If you go to have a walk in the nature, have a look at how the wind blows tress leaves, how they fall in autumn and how sun spokes hit the trunk of the trees. Have a look against the light and turn around, just observe.
Once you have observed and enjoyed the scene, feel if you need to photograph it or just remember it. Don’t take your gear out until you know have a precise idea of the final result you want to achieve. Think about the frame, the composition. Once you have figured out what you are going to leave in your frame and what is taken out, then and only then you can grab your camera and capture it. Only if you need to capture it. Take care about your exposure and then just shut off you camera and put it back in your pocket. Don’t watch your photos, don’t look at the photos on the screen, observe new things.
Let it marinate
Focus on the feeling you had when taking the picture, never share it straight away. If you share it you let go of the feeling and start focusing on the social feedback. Just go back home, take the photos out of your SD card into your computer, remove the photo from your camera. Focus on the event once again and then edit your photo to match your feelings while respecting simple rules of composition and exposures. Reframe if you find elements in your frame that were not in your souvenir, or just leave them and rework your souvenir to make them closer to reality, sometimes details show in your final images that were not in your first intention but in your subconscious. Let your photos marinate.
Once you have selected and edited your photos, then share them, if you still need to. Share them on your own website, share them on private messages or even on social networks. Don’t look at the results, forget followers, forget likes, forget. Do things for yourself, if you want to share the photos with your peers only, just don’t post them to social networks. If you feel a photo made you happy when looking back at it, then share it with the persons that may feel the same about the photo. Share photos to share your feelings.