The Art of Photography: Masterclass Live

When I first started film photography again I had a look on iTunes for podcasts that would help me along and inspire me, and the first one I found was Ted Forbes's The Art of Photography. Ever since then I have remained a big fan of Ted's and his various podcasts including The Photography Show with Wade.

The podcasts don't have gear reviews, they don't make you think that having that other lens will make you a better photographer or that you shouldn't try something just because you don't believe you have the right gear. He presents the facts, explains them clearly and gets you thinking about what you want to get from photography.

His latest project was something called 'Masterclass Live' and it is something I started to follow in December via YouTube but have now started to watch again to set me off in the right direction in the new year. They were broadcast live from his home on a Sunday but also recorded if you couldn't make the allotted time, which I couldn't. The first four classes were about developing your own style as a photographer and started off by not even having the camera with you, writing down what you see, what you feel, and how you would capture a scene or object. The classes are fascinating and I'll be working my way through them through out January.

It's a very interesting approach to photography and one that I feel is very important - in the day of the internet we are bombarded with opinions and images that can influence how we shoot and what we shoot on a day-to-day basis. To strip all that away and just be somewhere immersed in your subject matter and thinking about how you can make something interesting is what I am keen to explore. There can be pressure to shoot something to maintain your blog or to personally have something to show for your time invested in photography and to remove that or at least not care about it is appealing. The fact I shoot film forces me to slow down anyway, considering every shot instead of "machine-gunning" a digital SLR, but I am keen to slow down even more...really think about what I'm shooting, move around, consider the absolute best angle and how I'm going to expose it. This way of shooting is what has inspired me to spend more time in the darkroom this year, simplify my camera and film choice and learn everything I can about the processes of black and white photography and myself as a photographer.

If you haven't watched/listened to any of Ted's (and Wade) podcasts then check them out. I connected with them from the beginning and has recently become the only photography podcasts I'm listening to.