In this world bursting with potential and possibilities there is a rule that we all must remember and repeat everyday. Here it is: Just because we can do something doesn’t mean we should do something. This applies to all aspects of life but especially to pursuits that have toys included. Photography is one of those pursuits. Let me explain.

            Just because you can handhold doesn’t mean you should handhold. You will always get a better shot- better composed, better thought out, better executed- if you use a tripod. Don’t argue with me. If you can, use your tripod.

            Just because you can fix it in Photoshop doesn’t me you should. Fix whatever you can before you take the picture. Clean up the background, adjust your depth of field, de-dust your sensor rather than be dumb and lazy and do it later in your computer.

            Just because you can include the moon in your picture doesn’t mean you should. Almost every shot I have seen that includes the moon is a terrible shot compositionally because there is so much space between the moon and the rest of the picture the composition falls apart. Either shoot the moon when it is close to something or let the moon go.

            Just because you can take a tight portrait doesn’t mean you should. This is especially true of wild animals and things that are obviously moving. A tight shot of a wild animal removes the wild from the picture and leaves the animal unattached. Zoom back and include some of the habitat and you will get more pleasing pictures. And a tight shot of a moving animal is too confining. It always looks like the animal is moving within a box and it is uncomfortable.

            Just because you can use a filter doesn’t mean you should. I mean, how blue do you really want the sky? Navy skies don’t happen on this planet. And neither do nuclear reds and oranges in fall foliage or neon pinks or purples in sunsets. Back off the slider in your computer when you are tweaking saturation and your pictures won’t be so obviously manipulated.

            Just because you can include the phrase ‘award winning’ in your bio doesn’t mean you should.  After all, what does ‘award winning’ really mean? The only ones you are going to impress are not the kinds you want to impress and the ones you want to impress are not going to be impressed. Let your work and reputation speak for itself. No adornment necessary if both are good. If they are not, no adornment is going to help.

            Just because you can disagree with any of the above doesn’t mean you should. Just let it go and accept the fact that I am right and you are wrong. My life will be much easier.