“Workin’ on mysteries without any clues”
That’s a lyric from a seminal Bob Seeger song. When I hear it, I’m reminded that my journey in photography has been completely unscripted.
While it is possible to study photography at a college, nothing beats apprenticeship and experimentation.
Both learning methods need to happen and the proportion is based on the individual. My commercial apprenticeship was relatively short but my photojournalism apprenticeship was years in the making. Most of what I learned was by trial and error.
Despite all that observational study, I never really learned to photograph someone at night. That is until I started experimenting.
Of course, I never stop experimenting. Even this night portrait on the periphery of Times Square is simultaneously finished work and an ongoing experiment.
There’s no textbook, no roadmap, and nothing resembling a clue for anyone to make a living with art. But it certainly can be done.
“Workin’ and practicin’ all of the night moves“ is the best way to start.
About the author: I am Stephen Kennedy, an experienced photographer with more than 2500 completed sessions in all 50 US states.