For the love of photography, learn new things


Learning to climb: Day 1. Tacking a 5.8 called Big Wuss near Whistler, BC. Photo: Rowan Thornton


I’ve always maintained that one of the things I love most about photography is that you are never truly ‘done’.  There can be no end to creation and art. Once you commit to going down this path, you’re in it for life in some way or other. There’s always new techniques to explore, and your style will change and mature over time.

A couple of years ago I’d never aimed a lens at an animal before, but Instagram opened my eyes to some incredible wildlife photography out there, and this month I’m proud to say that my work with grizzly bears can be seen in PDN magazine, and is about to be featured by Adobe on their website and one of their iPad apps.

I thrive on experimentation and learning new skills, but they aren’t always directly photographic ones. I’ve always been inspired by the climbing photography of people like Christian Pondella, Jimmy Chin and Corey Rich, and it’s exactly this kind of inspiration that usually leads be down a new rabbit hole in the photographic warren.  Too many people look at photography that inspires them, and merely say “I wish I could do that”.

It sounds so cliché to say it… but you can do that.  Or at least give it a bloody good try.  There’s no rules on how fast you have to do things!

As you’ve probably guessed by now, I’m learning to climb.  I’m not learning because I need a new hobby, I’m learning with the specific goal of using that skill to create images that would otherwise not be possible for me.  It might be a while before I get there, but I’m one step closer every time I put the harness on.  My head is already swimming with photographic ideas, but I’m in no rush because I also love the learning process.

Is there something you’ve always wanted to try?  Perhaps a skill you’ve wanted to learn, or a place you’ve wanted to visit?  Take a small step today towards achieving that goal.  I guarantee you’ll go to bed with a big smile on your face.

Shoutout to my friend Rowan Thornton for showing me the ropes, literally, and also snapping this awesome photo of me at the top of the post. Check out his website and follow him on Instagram.

Photo of author

Dan Carr

Founder of Shutter Muse, full time photographer and creative educator. Dan lives in the Canadian Yukon, but his wanderlust often sends him in search of images all around the world to meet the needs of clients and readers alike.

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