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How to Become a More Aspirational Photographer


Life is all about aspiration. The more you aspire, the better.

What is aspiration?

To aspire, ‘aspirare‘ (Latin) which means: ‘breathe on, approach, desire’.

Aspiro — to breathe or blow upon.

Consider, we never think about breathing, we do it without thinking. And you cannot force yourself to NOT breathe.

To desire more

As photographers, our aspiration is our life-blood. To keep breathing and moving forward.


To inspire, means to ‘breathe in’. In some ways, getting fresh air (outdoors) is the best way to become ‘inspired’.

To explore more, to walk more, to travel more, to see and witness more.

1. Allow yourself to become a renaissance photographer

Renaissance comes from the notion of ‘rebirth’. To rekindle your passion for photography (like when you started).

Consider Leonardo da Vinci. Photographers can learn much from Leonardo da Vinci. He wasn’t just an artist, he was a mathematician, a scientist, a physiologist (he loved to dissect human beings and cadavers to figure out human anatomy, which he cross-pollinated into his paintings), he created war machines, and even set designs (thanks to my friend Jeffrey who told me about this when I was in Seattle).

Consider that we as visual artists, the camera is a ‘god-tool’. We can capture light, and transfigure it into our visual art work.

Don’t limit yourself to just photography. Use all technology. I am very interested now in LIDAR [on the iPhone Pro and iPad Pro] to do 3d scans of the world. A new way to perceive depth.

Use the iPhone, use your RICOH GR III, or whatever camera you are shooting with.

2. Bridge into video

Don’t just shoot still photos, shoot videos. RICOH GR III High Contrast monochrome video function at 24fps is hugely fun! And start your own YouTube channel as a way to host your videos. Look at artsy things in real life, and just shoot 30-second or 1-minute clips of what you find beautiful.

Also study cinema as an effective way to level-up your photography composition game.

3. Seek to become greater than your masters

Learn from the masters then learn to kill your master. Up until this point, Henri Cartier Bresson was the GOAT [greatest of all time], but our goal:

To jump over Henri.

Learn from the masters mobile version 1, extract their knowledge, and harness that information for you to become an even greater master.

4. Just blog it.

My friend Richard Reed just started his own blog (Blogspot) and find it to be great. Also starting your own self hosted blog (wordpress.org) is the way to gain true ‘artistic freedom’.

5. Longevity

To continue aspiring for more in your photography is all about longevity. Longevity is more important than ‘success’ in photography.

6. Never run out of inspiration

Write books, and share the books. Create your own products [luxury and free].

This seems to be the best way to stay connected to reality [selling products] and also providing services to other photographers [in praise of photography business].

7. Give feedback and get feedback

arsbeta.com to give and get feedback on your photos.

The more you critique, the more self-critical you can become of your own work [in a good way].

8. Why do you photograph?

Why App? to ask yourself at least 5 times:

Why do I photograph?

When you figure out why you photograph, you will no longer need ‘inspiration’ to photograph.



  1. Books
  2. Products
  3. Workshops
  4. Podcast
  5. YouTube
  6. Amazon


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