Shoot More, Edit Less: A Creative Challenge for Mobile Photographers

How to improve your photography skills and enjoy the process more by focusing on capturing moments rather than processing them.

I love mobile photography. It’s amazing how we can use our smartphones to create stunning images that capture the beauty and emotion of life. I’m always amazed by the creativity and talent of the mobile photography community, and I enjoy seeing the work of others and learning from them.

But I have a confession to make. I think we are spending too much time editing our photos and not enough time shooting them. And I think this is hurting our photography skills and our enjoyment of the art form.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against editing. I think editing is a vital part of photography, and it can enhance and transform our images in wonderful ways. I also think editing is fun and rewarding, and I appreciate the tools and apps that make it easy and accessible for everyone.

But I also think editing can become a crutch, a distraction, and a trap. A crutch that makes us rely on filters, actions, apps, and presets to make our photos look good, instead of learning how to use light, composition, and storytelling to create compelling images. A distraction that makes us spend more time in front of a screen than in front of a scene, missing out on the opportunities and experiences that photography can offer. And a trap that makes us chase perfection and validation, instead of expressing ourselves and enjoying the process.

As the legendary photographer Ansel Adams once said, “You don’t make a photograph just with a camera. You bring to the act of photography all the pictures you have seen, the books you have read, the music you have heard, the people you have loved.”

Photography is not just about the technical aspects of the camera and the software. It’s about the artistic and personal aspects of the photographer and the subject. It’s about the vision and the voice, the emotion and the meaning, the story and the message.

And the best way to develop and improve these aspects is to shoot more. To shoot more often, more intentionally, more creatively, more experimentally, more authentically. To shoot more of what you love, what you care about, what you want to say. To shoot more of the moments that matter, the moments that move you, the moments that make you feel alive.

As the renowned photographer Marc Riboud said, “Taking pictures is savoring life intensely, every hundredth of a second.”

Shooting more will not only make you a better photographer but also a happier one. It will help you discover and refine your style, your voice, and your vision. It will help you connect and communicate with your audience, your peers, your yourself. It will help you explore and enjoy the world, the people, the moments.

So I challenge you, and myself, to shoot more and edit less. To spend more time in the field than behind the computer. To focus more on capturing moments than processing them. To make more photographs, not just take them.
As the influential photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson said, “To photograph is to hold one’s breath when all faculties converge to capture fleeting reality. It’s at that precise moment that mastering an image becomes a great physical and intellectual joy.”

Let’s experience that joy more often, more fully, more deeply. Let’s shoot more and

edit less.



Jack Hollingsworth