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I’ve been thinking about a conversation I had with Chase Jarvis. He constantly refers to himself as “gear agnostic” or “platform agnostic.” Whether it’s the highest of the high end video cameras or an iPhone, Chase focuses on the image making. He’s not hung up on which tool he uses. He uses whichever tool seems to fit the job best.

I’ve been trying to do the same thing. I am not quite there on the iPhone yet :) I do use it, but not as often as I should. I’ve been using my Canon G11 more than I thought I would. And of course the video-capable DSLRs are really getting a bunch of attention from me.

I’m taking it a step further. I am working hard to be BRAND-agnostic. I am shooting Canon 7D for video and Nikon D3 for stills along with a Canon G11, Olympus EP-1 and an iPhone. Go figure.

So my pledge is to stop referring to myself as a picture taker or a photographer and start referring to myself as an image maker.

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  1. […] Ditto photography. The act of taking a photograph is a skill. The act of making a photograph is a craft. You don’t get paid to make a photo; that photo is an asset; it has to be valued and bought to generate income. (or more wonderful thoughts on making vs. taking, see Scott Bourne and Chase Jarvis) […]

  2. […] Picture Taker or Image Maker: Scott Bourne talks about an important aspect of taking your photography to the next level. One of the things I’ve been working on this last year is consciously thinking my way through what I shoot, more scouting, planning and timing a shot as well as looking at how best to take advantage of what’s given me. On my recent Morro bay trip, my rock at sunrise shot was scouted and planned in advance and turned out very much as I wanted, while the otter silhouette was a case of showing up and seeing the pre-dawn light coloration and realizing that silhouettes was the best possible use of the shooting situation, which led me to shooting in that mode the entire morning, of which this morro bay at dawn shot was one of the better ones. Ultimately it’s about who’s in control,you or the camera; the more you take control instead of deferring to the judgement of the camera (as good as they are today), the more reliably you will take high quality photographs, and more importantly, take the photo your inner eye sees. I don’t see “take control” as “shooting in manual”, by the way, unlike some photographers. Instead, I see it as knowing how to get the camera to take the image you want to take instead of the one it’s programming wants to take. Sometimes that’s manual mode, but many times, that’s simply adjusting the settings to bias the camera’s decision; it’s about knowing your gear and being active in managing it instead of standing back and mashing the shutter. […]

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