Usually the amateur is defined as an immature state of the artist: someone who cannot — or will not — achieve the mastery of a profession. But in the field of photographic practice, it is the amateur, on the contrary, who is the assumption of the professional: for it is he who stands closer to the noeme of Photography.
My grandmother used to say she learned something new every day. This is the way I live my life—always striving to learning something. My photography is no different. I am eager to learn from different photographers and other creative people. Physicians call it continuing education. No matter your profession, staying current and learning new things is what makes whatever you do more enjoyable.
To put this into practice, Tammy and I have been taking hands on workshops with www.photoscoopstayintheloop.com and KelbyOne working on everything from shooting in manual mode to playing with lighting. There is something to be said for hands-on shooting with another photographer right there to answer a question or help you set up the shot you have in your mind.
I love taking hands on workshops probably even more than some of the classes I have taken over the years. It is so much more useful to actually do what you are learning right at the moment you are learning it. These type of workshops allow you to be pushed out of your comfort zone, and they also allow you to mingle with fellow photographers and observe other styles. No matter where you are on your photographers journey I encourage you to find a local workshop, class or seminar.
How do you stay current and keep your ideas fresh?