What photo would you say is the one you’re least prepared to take? For me, it’s the very first photo on any given day. Have you ever gone out for a day of nature photography, regardless of your subject preference, and find that when you go to shoot that very first photo something is “off?” I’m not referring to an equipment checklist, I’m talking about a preparedness checklist.
Although an equipment checklist is a good idea and you should always make sure you are bringing everything you think you will possibly need on any given day. But here’s what happens to me. And, if it happens to you then read on. When I’m done photographing for the day I usually just download my images and put my batteries on a charger. I might check a few things and rearrange my pack to the order I had but that’s pretty much it. I rarely go and look at anything else as far as where I left my camera settings at.
So, to help with the potential mistake of not being 100% ready the next day, what I’ve begun to do as part of my routine is to go through the motions of taking that first photo as soon as I step out of my vehicle. That’s when you’ll notice you had your ISO set for the last time you were out and it may not be what you want to use right now. Maybe it was near dark and you pushed your ISO to 800 but today is bright and sunny. You might prefer something in the low 100’s. You may have forgotten to re-format your card. Or, perhaps you left your lens on manual focus because you were photographing wildflowers the day before, but today you’re shooting something where you’d want autofocus. Each of us I’m sure will have different circumstances and issues. [Read more…] about The Warmup