I’ve spent a great deal of time over the last 15 years writing. I’ve written five books and thousands of blog posts, as well as hundreds of magazine articles. I didn’t have any special training as a writer and still have no idea whether or not I am any good at it, but I study it – because I believe it makes me a better photographer.
There are similarities between writing and photography. When both are practiced at their highest form, they involve storytelling. Great photographers tend to be great storytellers. Take Zack Arias for instance. He’s a very well-known photographer. His style and art are appreciated by many. His storytelling skills are evident. If you go back several years to this movie that Zack did for ScottKelby.com, you’ll see that Zack is a natural born storyteller. This little movie helped to make Zack famous in the photo community. It was the story – not the pictures (in my opinion) that propelled him to fame. Story is everything – in both writing and photography.
The nuance between being able to describe something for someone who can’t see what you are talking about, and finding that thing in your subject that is hidden from plain view as a photographer may be too thin for some people. Not for me. I see the connection clearly.
I find that the more I read, the better I get at writing. I find that the more I look at other photographers’ work, the better I get at photography. Either way, it’s always the story that propels me and my interest.
If photographers can spend time learning how to write, even if it’s just for personal use, then I believe they can find a way to improve their photography based on their improved inner vision learned from writing.
I highly recommend you find some writers or blogs about writing that you enjoy and regularly follow them. See what you can learn from them and then see if you can apply it to your photography.
Here are some places to get you started…
http://writing.alltop.com/ a list of writing blogs
http://onewildword.com/ a blog by two professional writers with credentials, experience and good ideas
http://grammar.quickanddirtytips.com/ I knew Mignon Fogarty before she was famous and have always thought she was the Grammar teacher I WISHED I had in school
http://www.writingforums.org/ Creative writing forums
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