Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Sharing Photo Spots: Past, Present, and Future

Guest post by Scott Wood

Scott Wood is an Olympia, WA based photographer who specializes in nature, landscape and severe weather photography, but dabbles in many other genres of photography also. Scott is an avid storm chaser and has been published both domestically and internationally. You can follow Scott from his website www.scottwoodphotography.com where there are links to his blog as well as all of his social media outlets.
The photographic world is a much different place than it was when I started shooting over 25 years ago. The closest thing we had to a "community" was a local camera club or hanging out around the counter of a local camera store. It was a completely analog world without the benefit of digital imaging technology, at least for the masses, and we certainly didn’t have the online world we now enjoy. While you might get one of the local photographers to share their “super secret” locations with you, if you were traveling out of of your general area, you were pretty much out of luck.

Now we live in the digital world, we are all connected through a multitude of social media services and we have exposure to more great photography than ever before, but more importantly we have the means to share the great locations we shoot at with more than the people in the local area.

Grand Falls, from Arizona photo guide
Grand Falls, by Scott Wood
from Arizona photo guide
I travel a far bit for my work, and while that is great for being able to shoot in a number of different areas, the downside is that I don’t always have the amount of free time that I would like to actually explore these new locations. I really need to be as efficient as possible and that means doing a good deal of online scouting before I arrive at my work destination. If I am only going to have an hour or two to shoot, I certainly don’t want to spend all of my time looking for that “iconic” location, that I know is out there, and miss getting “the shot” simply because I couldn’t find the right place to setup my tripod.

What is so appealing to be about ShutterGuides is that it lets me see an area through the eyes of a photographer who has actually experienced that location. I am not going to try and duplicate their work, but I will use their work to help me plan my photo safari when I am there.

I will continue to add to my existing guides, and blog about them in the near future, but I will also be creating new guides as I get images to share from different locations I shoot in. Since ShutterGuides is user content driven, I hope that everyone else will be motivated to setup a guide or two of their favorite shooting locations, it helps all of us in the long run.