There seems to be a common habit among photographers to take just one shot of something and then immediately move on.
Although you can definitely get good shots this way, I think it’s also beneficial to slow down a little bit and take lots of photos of your subject. Here are a few reasons why:
Increases your chances of getting a sharp photo
In nature, almost everything is constantly moving. Even on a seemingly calm day, branches will bounce in the air, and wildlife never seems to sit still for even a second. So, taking lots of shots can increase your chances of getting a shot when your subject is still.
Light is constantly changing
Although the lighting is pretty constant during the day, it changes rapidly during sunrise and sunset. So, if you’re photographing a landscape during these special “golden hours” it’s helpful to take lots of shots to ensure you capture the most colorful moment.
The lighting can also change pretty quickly on cloudy days, since clouds can diffuse the sunlight. Depending on the type of shot you’re looking for, you may want diffused light or you may NOT want that soft light. Either way, taking lots of shots can help ensure you photograph your subject under the most perfect lighting conditions.
If you’re new to photography, or still mastering the art of exposure, then taking a few different shots at different exposures can really help teach you about exposure. It’ll also help ensure you get a properly exposed shot, so you don’t have to correct the shot in post-processing (which usually creates a lot of ugly noise).
Inspires new ideas for compositions
When you start taking more shots of your subject, it forces you to slow down and be more patient, so you naturally start seeing your subject from different points of view. And, this can often inspire you to create new compositions or make small improvements to your first composition idea. Taking lots of shots is a way of forcing you to refactor your photos 🙂
What did I miss?
Do you have another reason for taking lots of photos? Or, do you have a reason for NOT taking lots of photos? If so, please share it with us by leaving a comment below. Thanks 🙂
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About the Author: Steve Berardi is a naturalist, photographer, software engineer, and founder of PhotoNaturalist. You can usually find him hiking in the beautiful mountains and deserts of southern California.