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The Self-Taught Humble Brag

CJ Chilvers
CJ Chilvers
1 min read

This post was prompted by a question from a reader. I love these questions and would like to post more. Just email alesserphotographer (at) gmail (dot) com.

Hi C.J., In regards to your Phasionistas post, I was wondering why you lumped the “self-taught” photographers into that list? Is a proper education in photography required to be a lesser photographer? That entry and your approach seem to contradict each other.

Andrew is referring to the post Photographers and Phashionistas, in which I listed the “self-taught” with those who approach photography as less of an art and more of a fashion statement. While the post was meant to be funny, it was rooted in a truth evidenced on the web every day.

Bragging that you’re self-taught is kind of like bragging that you don’t keep up with the news. It may be admirable in certain circles, but it also probably means you’re less informed.

No one arrives in photography. It’s a constant learning process and if you’re not open to learning from others, you’re at a huge disadvantage. Money spent on a new lens is likely better spent at a workshop or community college learning something new.

Lots of photographers have come before you. They’ve made a lifetime of trivial mistakes. There’s nothing noble in repeating them yourself.