Photography Insights


I bet most photographers will not be able to find in their camera bags, what to me is a very important piece of equipment. Right now, get your camera bag and pull out your journal. I’ll wait just a minute or so while you get it. What … can’t find it? You don’t have one? Why not?

I was introduced to journaling several years ago while I was studying at the Art Institute of Atlanta. My instructor, Nicole Jacobs, wanted us to start journaling as a part of our photography class and it would be reviewed periodically throughout the quarter. Honestly, I resisted this at first, but I slowly gave into it. I went down to Sam Flax in Atlanta and bought my first journal. The first one filled up slowly and reluctantly, but it was not long before the volumes began to stack up. Today, I have filled almost 12 of these books and cannot seem to stop. Admittedly I have slowed down, but I still continue to make notes. Most of these notes are about photography, locations, location info, best times and trip journals.

When my daughter was 8 or 9 years old her mother and I had her tested for ADD. As we went through the process, I began to read up on it, ok not reading, books on tape. I found out it is usually genetic, usually through the dad, but not always, so you see where I’m going. Yep me. So, what does this have to do with journaling? Best therapy ever is to journalize your thoughts. I was making notes about everything, especially photography. As I said before, locations, sets for commercial work, When I was trying to work through an assignment, my notes in the journal were and still are very valuable. It was useful to have a reference for contact names, addresses, etc. for people I meet, places I’ve been and so much more.

So, I want to throw it out there to the one or two people actually reading this article, go out and buy a journal, give it a try, see what you think. Most office supply stores have them. Get the one with the elastic band to help keep it shut, you’ll end up put slips of paper, business cards, receipts, etc. etc. They do not cost much, $10 or so, but having this resource will be worth 1000x what you pay for it. Hope it works for you like it does me.

John H Grogan