Premiere Bay Area Wedding Photography Blog by Trifon Anguelov Photography

1090 Clark Avenue, Mountain View, CA 94040 | (650) 930-0743 |

1 Comment

The Single Worst Mistake a Photographer Can Make

IMG_20140211_180958510_1Have you ever asked yourself the question: What is the worst thing you can do to yourself and your photographic journey? Do you know the answer?

I will offer one for you to consider: Comparing yourself to other photographers. It’s simple and you should remember never to do that to yourself.

Why you might ask. And with a good reason. After all isn’t every photographer taking images so that he can share with clients, friends or fellow photographers? Isn’t photography a visual art which is mean to be shared, reviewed and critiqued? Wouldn’t sharing and comparing to other photographers make one grow and improve its skills? Well, if you think the answer is yes, consider these arguments:

  • Although all humans are 99% genetically similar, when it comes to untangle qualities as: talent, motivation, skills, determination, willingness to spend time to improve not everyone is the same. How one can compare to other photographer who started its career much earlier and had the advantage of making and learning from much more mistakes? Why one would expect to be on the same level with someone who decided to spend 10 times more time on improving itself and has much more determination?
  • Not everyone has the same goals as a photographer. One might be happy to get certain image quality and look while other is targeting be best in the field and considers his journey as not complete until he achieve complete. If the goals and motivation are different how the results could be compared?
  • Some photographers make living from their craft and photography is their full time job while others are part-time photographers or “weekend warriors” and take images for fun. It’s impossible that the results from both would be the same considering the competition level of being a paid photographer compared to being a non-paid photographer.
  • Not everyone learns how to improve in photography at the same pace. One takes longer to grasp a concept and learns best by trying different compositions and camera settings while other might learn better by reading and internalizing before even trying to take a image. If one compares to a person who grasps the concepts faster and is more artistic person by nature, he would be always following that or similar fast paced photographers and would never be satisfied with itself. Putting itself down and constantly feeling as running from behind, can do incurable damage to ones photography passion and inspiration.
  • Plus there are so many great photographers in much more advanced phase of their photography journey that is close to impossible to catch up with all of them in the same time. Chasing someone without a clear goal and target is bound to failure. Plus is ruins one’s self esteem by constantly reminding itself that he is still behind the masters in the field and getting discouraged daily from its results.

So, stop comparing and trying to compare yourself to other photographers. Stop obsessing on trying to post every day your images and trying to prove you are better than the others. Please, do compete in print competitions or themed challenges but do it for the sake of learning and improving your own skills, not for proving you are better that so and so photographer.

There is nothing more damaging to a photographer than to constantly looking over its shoulder and trying to be someone else. Trying to copy many different styles and looks, would results to being nobody and not having any personality in the photographic work. Instead, a photographer should enjoy the journey and find its own interests, type of photography and style that satisfy the own vision. I am not saying that this vision would be crystal clean from day one neither that one should not ever look at other  photographer’s work. This would be stupid. Looking and absorbing the style, trying to draw ideas and implementing them in its own way is creative. Trying to copy someone’s else work and constantly obsessing with not being as good is just a loss of valuable time.

Instead one should invest time to find its own interests, internal drivers and create its own style. Then take the photographic journey as its own pace. And after all, have fun and enjoy. It it ends up causing you more stress and anxiety, then stop, take a break and come back to it when ready. It’s your journey and you should be in command. Don’t let others distract you or slow you down in your growth as a photographer.

Think differently, agree or disagree? Drop me a line or comment below.


By Trifon Anguelov, Photographer, Mountain View, CA 94040



Leave a comment

Your DLSR Camera Is a Passport To New Places and Souls

IMG_20140121_224853Having DLSR is like having a passport. It allows you to go to places you might never go otherwise.

Image what you can do with a tool which can capture moments of time and record human emotions, amazing landscapes and unique wild creatures. Architecture and otherwise impossible to put together in a flat surface compositions, are now possible. DLSR camera grants you an access to meet new people and explore new places. You will be surprised how much human emotions you can experience and how many human souls you will encounter.

People are natural artists and they like to the center of attention. They like others to admire and compliment them. And expressing themselves in front spectators could be an instinct of proving one’s vitality and reaffirming itself. No matter if you are shy meeting other people. Point a camera at them, smile and they will engage with you. You will also have an excuse to leave your house, get off the couch on the weekend and search for a landscape, wake up early and chase birds outdoors.

I think DLSR is just another social networking tool. You can start meeting and get to know lots of photographers with the same interest or with the same eagerness to explore places and connect with other people. And more experiences means richer foundation to stay informed and make better decisions in life. Why not learn from fellow photographers, observe the things around you and learn to see them in a way you have never seen before. Through a lens and with a camera one can frame a portion of the world around him and capture a slice of time, he chooses and decided to.

So if you have been thinking or delaying getting your first digital camera, don’t delay anymore. It doesn’t have to be the most expensive or top of the line with the latest feature. Get one. Point and shoot! Mirrorless! One smartphone with a 8Mpx camera. Start exploring the World around you. Anything is better than nothing. You will be amazed how much new things and people you will find out there…

Think differently, agree or disagree? Drop me a line or comment below.


By Trifon Anguelov, Photographer, Mountain View, CA 94040



So You Bought a Brand New DSLR camera And Lenses … And Now What?

IMG_20140124_162544It happens to many new photographers around the world. After months and months of looking at amazing pictures posted by their friends, on social networks or simply online, many decide that missing on the opportunity to buy an expensive DSLR and start impressing their friends, the friends of their friends, relatives and family members cannot be postponed anymore.

After all, who doesn’t want to get whaos and “love it” , “stunning”, ” amazing” accolades for himself. Everyone of us deep inside has the self promoting and self loving drive, which is most likely the self-preservation instinct we all carry in our DNA. This instinct helped us every day to stay alert and survive during the years of human evolution.

But the inevitable happens: A brand new camera and lens (or lenses) arrive and then the struggle begins. Settings, camera controls, downloading and cataloging images, post editing the images, uploading and sharing. Suddenly there is so much to learn and despite all the money, time and energy spend, the final images still doesn’t look near to what we see online.

So most new photographers, do what is the easiest to do in this situation: Decide that others must have better gear and they are still lacking the latest and greatest lenses which will make their images better. So they go, do more research, spend endless hours reading forums and asking questions on which is the best camera body and lens. It must be the gear they are so convinced, that the obsession soon transforms into what is known as: GAS (Gear Acquisition Syndrome).

And there they “march” to the nearest online web store, buying and buying new gear until no lens they want is out of reach anymore. But as many soon get to realize, no gear in the word can make great images alone. It is the same as buying a new stove and expecting to become a better chef overnight by simply cooking the same way and the same recipe. The gear itself is never the solution.

So the doubts start to emerge:

  • What to do next after buying brand new DSLR or mirror-less camera?
  • Why after spending lots of money one still cannot make amazing images?
  • What is the holy grail of amazing photography?

Well, there is a no single answer to these questions, but in essence new digital camera is just a tool which by itself is not enough to make stunning images. One needs to have creative ideas on how to create images which capture the attention. It also needs to know how to create interesting composition which include elements arranged in an interesting way. It’s a just too big of a discussion, so I will focus on just one point to consider when deciding what digital camera to buy as your first camera.

There are two camps:

  • Get the best you can afford and plan to use it for a long time.
  • Get the cheapest you can get and learn how to use it before you are ready to commit more time and money.

I am in the second camp. If you wonder why, here are few reasons to consider.

A single, used 50 mm lens and used mid or low range camera is a much better choice to make all the errors and do all the learning on “the cheap”. One can free its mind from worrying too much about damaging brand new expensive camera and focus on the creative part of photography instead of on the technical side first. This would allow one to find its area of interest and type of photography which best fits one’s personality and likes.

I see so many photographers in the field missing wildlife shots by simply keeping the lens cap all the time on their new $4K shiny lenses because of fear not to get their lenses dusty. Or taking and putting their new looking $3K camera in their backpacks when outside, so it doesn’t get dirty. They worry more about protecting their gear that freeing their minds and letting the creativity flows.

So why not get cheap used lens for learning and making all the mistakes you need? Why not use cheap and used camera to make all the shutter clicks you need to learn and master the photography techniques? Doing the opposite (buying and learning on a more expensive camera) would be like taking driving lessons on a brand new Ferrari. The fear of failure and damaging the expensive tools is crippling the progress of so many freshly minted photographers.


New photographers can learn much faster the foundations of photography and master the craft, if they focus on learning composition, learning to see light and expect moments, rather than wasting their energy and money on acquiring the latest and greatest camera bodies and lenses. GAS (Gear Acquisition Syndrome) is the biggest threat to new photographers and in my opinion should be avoided at any cost.

Or using the cooking analogy, I used before: A better stove (camera body and lenses) will not make one a better chef (photographer). Understanding the ingredients (light, composition, time, posing), learning different recipes (natural light, artificial light, AV, TV or manual modes, etc) and countless hours of practice is what can make a difference.

About the Author:

Trifon Anguelov Photography is a premiere wedding and events photography business  based in Mountain View, CA 94040 and serving clients in San Francisco Bay Area, CA. You can read more about the author and review his portfolio on his website. For complete list of services and to book your wedding, visit his Wedding Packages page.