Motivation is a photography blog that discusses the creative aspects of photography. The posts will include thoughts about images and their interpretation, photographers and their work, technique, workflow, my ongoing projects, and perhaps even the occasional off topic rant.

Digital Indecision

Generally speaking, the advantages of digital capture are now obvious to most people. Once you have memory cards you can shoot all day, every day, for free (well, lets not count the camera upgrades, computer upgrades, storage drives, software etc.). You can check your exposure via histogram and your composition via LCD and gain immediate feedback. You can work on images, molding them into your vision, without the wet darkroom 'mess'. Once the image has been processed it is easy to output as many identical copies as you want.

But what about the downside? There is one downside that seems to always haunt me, and that is that there can be too many possibilities!

What do I mean by that? Because it is easy to make so many digital photographs, I think I actually make too many of them. When I am out shooting, I now tend to take many more frames of an image than I did when using film. I find myself altering the composition ever so slightly and reshooting, making images where the point of focus is a bit different, shooting with different apertures, and refocusing manually just to make sure I get the sharpest focus possible. At the end of the day I might have so many frames of essentially the same composition that it makes picking the 'best' one to process frustratingly difficult. And the 'fear' of not picking the 'best' frame may well lead to not picking a frame at all, leaving the endeavor to 'later'.

This isn't to say that I don't have a specific vision when making a photograph.....I do. It is just that with digital it can sometimes be too easy to doubt whether that vision might be 'optimal' and to try to examine every possibility. In speaking to some of my photography friends, it turns out that I am not alone with this issue. Maybe I need to trust myself to the original vision I had when first approaching the shot or, alternatively, being happy when I find a frame I took that expresses that vision, as opposed to feeling obligated to examine each and every frame and comparing them to each other in order to find the perfect one to use.