I recently heard Austin Kleon talking about this. Theodore Sturgeon was a science fiction author. His ‘law’ states that:
“Ninety percent of everything is crap”
I’m probably taking Sturgeon’s words out of context, but 90% of my photography is crap. And I’m Ok with that. I took 113 images on my recent photo-shoot (it sounds pretentious to write that) of Arran. Of those, 14 were usable. That’s a discard rate of 88%. This is fairly typical of how I take photos. Firstly, I tend to take three bracketed shots, so at best I could only achieve a 33% success rate.
This is fairly typical of how I take photos. I tend to take three bracketed shots, so at best I could only achieve a 33% success rate. Success isn.t the only way that I measure the enjoyment of photography. Simply being there is a large part of it. And, if I learn from some of my discards, then I don’t deem them to be failures.
There’s a risk with digital photography of taking too many snaps because they are ‘free’. Of course, they’re not free – think of the time needed to sift, edit and process.
Sturgeon’s law feels just about tight for me – I may even adopt it as a benchmark. Here’s one final photo of Arran that ‘made the cut’.