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Don’t Delete Your Digital Photography Mistakes Too Quickly


A few years ago while on a tour in Morocco with a group of others I sat next to a fellow traveler on a tour bus. He was quickly scrolling through the shots he’d taken on his camera – deleting picture after picture.

I asked him what he was doing and he told me that he was ‘culling’ shots to make more room on his memory card. As I watched him I wondered how much he could tell about the shots he was deleting from his camera’s little 2 inch LCD.

While I understand the feeling of getting to the end of a memory cards capacity when you want to take more shots – if you do have the space on your memory card I would recommend that you don’t delete too many shots while you’re out and about and wait until you get back to your computer to do so.

The reason I suggest waiting is that quite often some of the ‘mistake’ shots can actually end up being some of your best (sometimes in quite a in an abstract sort of way).

When you look at images on your camera’s LCD the photo is obviously quite compressed and you can sometimes not see details that you would when you view it on your computer. There may actually be something quite useful tucked away in the details that you’ll never know about if you delete too quickly.

For example – the picture on this post was taken on the streets in Morocco on that same trip. It was taken on my first little point and shoot digital camera (A Canon Powershot A60). It was actually a complete accident that I took the shot (I thought I was turning the camera off when I was actually pressing the shutter). At first glance it is an out of focus and poorly framed shot (actually it’s that on a second look too) but there’s something about this shot that keeps drawing me back to it.

The shot won’t win any awards but it is one that means something quite powerful to me and one that evokes some memories that I don’t want to forget about a part of Morocco that I may not have normally photographed.

I’m glad I didn’t join my fellow travellor in his picture cull that day because I’d probably have deleted this one.

Do you delete images in camera? Have you ever discovered a ‘mistake’ shot that turned out to be one of your favorites?

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Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse

is the editor and founder of Digital Photography School and SnapnDeals.

He lives in Melbourne Australia and is also the editor of the ProBlogger Blog Tips. Follow him on Instagram, on Twitter at @digitalPS or on Google+.

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