The best photos are the ones which bring us joy.
How do we make these types of photos? Simple: shoot photos as if nobody else could see your photos. This will be the ultimate judge of whether you shoot photos for yourself or for others.
Making photos to augment your past happy memories
I’ve been looking through some past photos, and one of the greatest benefits of looking at your past photos is that they re-spark joyful moments from the past– moments you might have forgot (if you didn’t shoot photos of them!)
These photos I consider my ‘personal favorite’ photos. Photos that I genuinely enjoy looking at for myself. Photos that spark joyful moments from my own past; photos that make me appreciate how far I’ve come, and helps me re-live my past epic journeys!
I think this is why shooting snapshots of your life is so essential — if you don’t have memory of your past, how can you appreciate your life?
This is why I love to photograph my simple day-to-day life with Cindy, for example:
- Snapshots while we are moving
- Snapshots of our meals
- Snapshots of places we have been to
- Snapshots of lovely moments with friends and family
You know a snapshot is good if you look at a past memory and it makes you smile.
Photographs that impress yourself
The nice thing with marinating your old photos is this:
You look at your past photos like they were shot by a stranger. It is almost like enjoying the photos shot by someone else!
For example a lot of these past photos I shot in Vietnam — I totally forgot about shooting them! Thus when I look at the photos, it is almost like someone else shot them. And this helps me be more ‘objective’ with my photos: I believe they are strong photos, because I assume like they were shot by someone else.
Artwork for your own pleasure
A lot of people purchase and collect artworks made by others to bring them delight and joy.
What if you could collect your own artwork, simply to bring yourself delight and joy?
I think in many ways, collecting the artwork of others is a bit overrated. It might be more effective for you to “collect” your own artwork, for you to spend more time curating your work and portfolio, and to select photos that bring YOU joy when viewing your photos by yourself.
An audience of one.
Become your own audience. A spectator of one. A spectator and critic of your own work.
For you to make photographs that bring (only you) delight! For you to edit and select your photos according to your own personal standards. For you to only keep photos which you would enjoy for your own private purposes.
Shoot for yourself, to please yourself, to delight yourself, to motivate yourself, and to inspire yourself.
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