5 Reasons to go out with friends when taking photos

There seems to be this idea that if you are a serious photographer that you should go out on your own to take photos. I have never believed this or thought I was any less of a photographer because I don’t like doing that. It’s not that I don’t, I just prefer to have friends when I do. There are a few reasons for wanting to have people with you when you go out and here are 5.

It is understandable why some people prefer to go on their own. It is also important who you choose to go with.

I do understand why some people prefer to go alone and I know that who you go with is very important.  I thought I could go through why I like company, beyond just having someone to talk to. Perhaps I will do it in a list.LeanneCole-melbourne-williamstown-20140531-9916

1- Gives you Inspiration

There is something different when you go with someone else, you can inspire one another, making suggestions to each other. You may end up taking many photos that you would never have taken if it hadn’t been for the other photographer.

Maybe they see the world a little differently than you. You start to see the world through their eyes and that can inspire different images. You might find that the other person takes longer to take photos, and while you may be finished, it pushes you to take more images. Sometimes those images are among your best.

2 – Gets You Out of the House

You often hear from other photographers how they find it hard to get out of the house on their own. Before they leave to go somewhere the excuses start about why they shouldn’t go, and often the excuses win.

By organising an excursion with someone to go with, you are far more likely to go. For most people you don’t want to disappoint others. So, you just pack your gear and get ready to go. For many, including me, this is a massive advantage.

3 – It is Safer

Safety has be an issue as well. As photographers we often go to places that are not exactly safe and if something happened when you were on your own, then you may be in real trouble. In Australia many places that are remote are often without any phone service and you can’t always call for help. If you are on your own and fall, or get bitten by a snake, there is no one to help.

It just makes sense to have someone with you when you go somewhere remote. Also, it would be advisable to let people know where you are going so if you don’t come back they know where to look.LeanneCole-maldon-20130102-6203-3hpm

4 – Someone to Scout for Locations

Any time you go out looking for places to photograph, or going on a scouting trip it always good to have company as it can be dangerous to drive and look around at the same time. As one person does all the driving the other can be looking to see if they can find any good places to stop and take photos. Or they can make notes of places to come back to.

5 – More Fun

Without a doubt the best reason to go with another person is that you can have fun. You have someone to stop and have coffee with or lunch.

It can be a lot more entertaining and you have someone to have a laugh with. Unlike when you are on your own, which is solitary and maybe people like that, but there are others that prefer the company of others. Of course, the other person has to be someone you get along with.

Picking the Right People to Go With

It is so important to pick the right people to go with. Going with people who are not interested in photography can be a big mistake. If they are not really happy being there with you they may make you feel rushed and you won’t get the image you really want.

The best thing is to find people that you enjoy going out with and want to spend time with. More importantly, have the same passion as you.

It is best if they enjoy the same sort of photography as well so you will want to take photos together. There is nothing worse than going out with someone to take photos and you don’t want to photograph the same things. If you are both there to capture the same thing then you will have a lot more fun.

I have been very lucky and I have a number of people to go out and take photos with. I have built up quite a few LeanneCole-werribee-20140415--5288friendships through teaching and through this blog. It has been fantastic meeting people through WordPress and then having the opportunity to go out and take photos with them.

It doesn’t really matter whether you prefer to go on your own or with other people, the most important thing is getting out to take photos. What do you prefer to do?

All the photos in the post today are from excursions where I went with other people.

18 Responses

  1. I have a friend who told me I should never take photos on my own because I get so absorbed in the process I don’t notice what’s happening around me and someone could mug me. So there’s another reason!

  2. Yes, your last point is key: who you go out with makes all the difference in whether or not the shoot is fun and productive. For me, a big part of going out with other people is to compare and contrast the images we come up with. I can’t tell you how often I will see another photographer’s images from a location and think: “where the hell were you? I didn’t see that…”

    • I agree, I’ve been out with people, though photographers, have no interest in what I want, only themselves and that doesn’t work either. I just end up with what they wanted to get and nothing I wanted. It is good to see what people who are good to go with get, even just watching them take photos can be interesting. We all see the world differently as well. Thank you Robert. I hope is well with you.

  3. Definitely #5. We really enjoyed all our days with you. Can you believe that is already more than a year ago?

  4. Good post Leanne. Let’s do it again –

  5. There’s only one thing worse than going around to shoot with someone who is not interested in the same subjects you want to shoot; that’s going around with a gaggle of photographers carrying too much gear and all jockeying for the same shot. I have to force myself sometimes to go alone just to get out of the house though I’m not afraid to do so. But some of my best street photography experiences came from going with 1-2 other shooters.

    • I have to agree, I don’t like going out in groups. The only time you see me with one is if I am teaching, and even then I prefer to do that with small groups. When I go out I like to do it with one or two, that’s it. That’s enough. I’m not afraid to go out on my own, I just don’t like to, I spend so much time at home on my own, so I find going and taking photos my social time. Thank you Stephen.

  6. I enjoy going out with another photographer, and most of all with you, Leanne. It is more fun in company and I find it stretches what I capture and how I look at things. Less chances to do this now that I am on the boat, so when it happens it is precious!

  7. I occasionally go out with a friend to shoot with landscapes, but he has a similar preference to me so it works out for us. I prefer to take my time, wander around, think about the scene, try different angles and viewpoints. That takes a LOT of time and its very frustrating for me to have the pressure of someone else wanting to take less time or get bored with waiting. Also if there are other people around I find it difficult to get into the right headspace to do my best creating.

    So generally I prefer to go out by myself. From a safety POV I always text a couple of friends if Im going into remote areas by myself and have a checkin in with that when Im back in cellphone range.

    Lately I have been doing lots of food photography so working in the studio which can be quite intense, but I buy a lot of produce from markets, direct from the grower, so that interaction is nice.

    • I think it is really important that you go with someone who is similar in that too. I’ve been with people who aren’t and it is usually a disaster, they get what they want and you don’t or you get what you want and they don’t. I have a friend who takes a lot more time than me, and I end up taking far more photos than I would have otherwise. The other thing I did last time was take my infrared camera with me, so when I was done and she was still going and I went and got that out. It was great, it was like starting over at that place.

      Food photography is challenging, good luck with it Stacey.

  8. I would love to go out with other photographers – just need to join a group i guess. I can’t go with my partner he is too impatient! Great post thanks.

    • It is good fun, though be careful with groups, I don’t like them. They can make it very hard. I like having a friend to go with, another photographer. Yeah, my husband or daughters can be so annoyed. Thank you Lucy, shame you aren’t in Melbourne.

Talk to me, it is too quiet.