About

Your host for My Photo Skills is LawrenceWelcome to MyPhotoSkills.com where you will get straight up answers to your most pressing questions on where, what and how about photography based on my experience and knowledge (which is continually growing – so check back here regularly to see what I have learnt since your last visit).

If you’re interested (and I don’t think it makes much difference) my current camera is a Nikon D7100

Lawrence’s Background

I was born and raised in what was then Rhodesia (today known as Zimbabwe and a sorry story it is too) and now live in New Zealand – a land with wonderful photographic opportunities.

I have had an interest in photography going as far back as I can remember.

Photos are meant to evoke memories – some can be painful but most are happy.
To this day one of my favourite photos is a print I have of when I was thirteen.  It is an out-of-focus shot of cows and a whole lot of dust. I must have been about 13 when the photo was taken and it reminds me of the wonderful childhood I had growing up in Rhodesia.

I can’t exactly remember when I got my first camera but I do remember I loved creating photos. This of course led to me having my own darkroom which consisted of a bunch of black curtains, a whole lot of materila to push ap against the door to block light seeping through the bottom and rolls and rolls of tape to similarly block light around the door frame. And of course the inevitable red-light.

Those were exciting days producing negatives – some over exposed (mostly) others under exposed and then the odd ones that had the correct exposure but …

  • Were they in focus?
  • Were they of interest?
  • Were they worth printing (the only way to display photos in those early days – until slides came along)?

The principles haven’t changed much; we still want interesting, well composed, in focus photographs that are worth keeping.
But there have been, and continue to be, huge changes in the technolody and methods we use to produce photos.

The digital age has been a blessing and a curse to photography in my opinion.
Firstly it has been a blessing because virtually every person who has a phone (and most of us do) can now take some amazing photographs.  On the camera side of things there is a huge selection of equipment that one can buy to take some incredible photos.  So the digital age has brought photography to everyone – not just the crazy few like me.  Also images are instantly and very cheaply available with instant playback and view.  If the photo isn’t acceptabel you simply delete it and it hasn’t cost you anything.
On the flip side of the coin we (earthlings) have taken more photos since the introduction of digittal photography than we have since photography was first born (back in the 1830s) but we have no memories!  We take a photo stick it on Facebook, Snapchat or Instagram and it is there for a fleeting moment.  After a few “likes” and comments it slips down and disappears into history – literally within days.

I try and take photographs with the end in mind and for me the end is a print – either for the wall as a framed print or canvas or an album that someone, one day, will look back on and say “Remember when …”

I Want to Help You With Your Photography – I also want to learn from you.

The advent of digital photography, whilst making photography more accessible, has made photography much easier and much more complex.

  • The easy part is virtually any camera set on “auto” will take an incredibly good photograph.
  • The hard part is deciding which camera, what lens, what settings to use, how to process your photographs and a million other things you need to know if you want to take photos with that “WOW” factor.

I was, and still am, absolutely astounded at how much there is to learn in digital photography and it has taken me about 10 years of digital photography, hundreds (no thousands) of hours watching endless training videos, hundreds of thousand of images to get to where I am today – a place where I can more or less automatically know what setting I want to use to produce the image I have in mind.

I am also at that stage where I know that I don’t need every new bit of equipment that comes out.  What I have is ample and until I have mastered everything my camera has to offer I don’t need to look any further than my own development.

I worked in a high-end brick and mortar camera shop in 2015 and 2016 and it astounded me how some folks thought that the latest and greatest gimmick would elevat their photography to the next level while we had real prosfesional photographers producing truly wonderful images with a 12 megapixel camera that they had not yet fully mastered.

Photography is like an onion; each layer you uncover reveals a new and interesting layer beneath it.  You never stop learning and growing.  And yes, like an onion it can make you cry sometimes too.

The Aim of MyPhotoSkills.com

I hope this website will cut through much of the confusion that one faces with the hundreds of questions you will have about photography, the intention being to help you make decisions that will get you to your desired goals in photography.

No BS no hype just good honest advice based on my experience.  I continue to grow and my personal goal is always to help you become a better photographer than you were yesterday.

I’m here to help and answer questions so please, if you think I can help you achieve whatever it is you want photographically, leave me a comment or a question below.  I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.

All the best,

Lawrence
MyPhotoSkills.com

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