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7 Things Pro Photographers Do that Beginners Don’t

Experience teaches you some good lessons
Photo of a pro photographer

There’s a big difference between a professional photographer and a beginner. For one, a pro has tons more photographic experience than someone who is just starting out with their camera. And with that experience comes knowledge and skill.

But have you ever stopped to think about all the things that separate a pro photographer from a beginner? Landscape pro Mark Denney has and in the below video he shares with you seven things pro photographer do that beginners don’t.

“Anyone that has watched my channel for any amount of time knows that I always create videos that speak to a former version of myself, and this week’s episode is no different,” Denney says.

“The seven things covered in this video are things that I not only didn’t do when I was a beginner, but these are things I never even heard of eight years ago. Over time however, I’ve picked up these things that have greatly helped me over the years and I want to pass these things along to you today.”

#1 Edit Planning

“Edit planning is when you’re on location and you’re going through your composition and you’re going through your standard workflow and you’re refining everything,” Denney says. “But while you’re making all your adjustments and searching for compositions, you’re also thinking about the way you’re going to post-process that photograph.”

#2 Storytelling

“You could ask ten photographers what they feel about storytelling or how they go about it, and you might get ten different answers. One of the most beneficial ways for me to focus on storytelling is by creating sets of images.”

#3 Observe the Light

“Observe the light seems very generic, it seems very obvious, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been on location, and I get a composition all framed up but I’m not paying attention to the light. I’m paying attention to the subject and only the subject.”

#4 Small Details that Make a Big Difference

“Basically, what this is is focusing on the smaller scenes. For instance, waves interacting with a sea stack. I find it absolutely mesmerizing in an image and it’s such a tiny portion of a massive scene.”

#5 Work the Scene

“Working the scene is moving to different angles and using different objects you see. For instance, I saw this log here pointing up to the waterfall, so I wanted to try and play around with different leading lines with that.”

#6 Revisit Locations

“Revisiting locations is something that I never ever used to do. I know it’s kind of hard to do sometimes but revisiting a location is something full-time photographers, professional photographers do all the time. It’s something I have been doing much more often in the last few years and it has paid dividends in my photography.”

#7 Patience & Persistence

“When I first started to get into landscape photography, I would find a composition and I would rush it a little bit. I didn’t have the patience. Now I’m way more patient than ever.”

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