What Makes a Great Photographer?| Lisa Staff Photography

January 17, 2022

A great photographer is like a highly trained athlete or a William Shakespeare

Most of us have seen or read stories of heroic athletes pushing through an insurmountable obstacle to achieve greatness in the end. It transcends every athletic endeavor.

This doesn’t happen by accident or luck. Luck is merely the intersection of hard work and fortitude. To become a “professional” athlete, one must  train for thousands of hours, study one’s craft even longer, and have innumerable experience – some “professionals” have done nothing else but train for their discipline.

A great photographer is no different. While talent is certainly an added bonus, the real flex for a photographer is the time and dedication they have exhibited to qualify themselves a “professional” [photographer].

A photographer has to develop an eye for the extraneous detail in every moment and be able to use their mind quickly and effortlessly regardless of the situation or context to create a still of the moving moment. Only professionals can consistently do this.

We’ve all read that the eyes are the window to the soul. I’ve always thought Shakespeare would have made a great photographer. His words, like a great photograph, always tell a story, imbue soul and character, and transport the reader effortlessly into a myriad of possibilities with just a few characters on a page.

Shakespeare wrote thousands of sonnets and poems over his lifetime. It’s rumored (although not proven) that he began writing from a very early age and continued doing so over the span of his life. Like Shakespeare, a professional athlete, or a professional photographer, they honed their craft throughout their lifetime. Consistently improving, educating, and working in all kinds of environments – always with the notion of improving their craft.

In the end, it is the photographers with skill, expertise, and the ability to connect with the subject that will make the difference between a “good” performance and a masterpiece.

Lisa has been photographing and connecting with people from all walks of life for over 20 years. She heads one of the most sought-after photography studios in the Carolinas and photographs Commercial, Design, Weddings, and Fashion in Hilton Head, SC. Lisa is currently the Co-Director ad Cofounder of Sprout Connectors, a human centered digital outreach agency, with offices in Charlotte and Hilton Head and is the co-anchor of the popular podcast Mind Body Business.

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