The Power of Failure

Not What I Had Planned

In this blog post, I was originally going to tell you about a new video I was making for my YouTube channel and how I got on when I visited my first location for the video.  However, not only did the photography not go exactly how I hoped, but I also made some mistakes with shooting the video. 

With my planned blog post not looking worthwhile, I was going to bring forward next week's planned blog post to this week.  Then this morning I accidentally deleted a folder full of video and it got me thinking about mistakes and failures.  We all make them but what is important is that we learn from them.  So in this blog post, I'm going to tell you about my mistakes and what I've learnt this week.

Check Your Camera Settings

So this week I was going to tell you about a new exciting video project I was working on.  It involved visiting a number of great locations where I would shoot some video, take some photographs and hopefully inspire you to visit these locations.  As you'll read though, the shoot at my first location, The Cobb in Lyme Regis didn't exactly go to plan.  

Let's start with the photography.  The forecast and tide had looked promising, but as most landscape photographers will tell you, that doesn't necessarily mean that's what you'll get or that you'll get a good image.

At The Cobb I generally prefer the morning sun to come from the side,  but on this morning it was rising directly in front of me.  However, the forecast said there would be a bit of cloud about and I hoped the rising sun and clouds would mix to give me a beautiful sky.

Unfortunately, it didn't quite happen that way as you can see from the image below, which was probably the best of the morning.

So while the image itself isn't one for the portfolio, together with the video I was shooting it still would have told the story that I needed it to.

As I started to edit the video from The Cobb, something quickly became apparent.  It's wasn't the shots from the DSLR, or the video from the Sony RX100M4, or even the audio from Zoom H1.  What I had failed to do was to check the settings on my DJI Mavic Pro.  All the video I had shot with the drone was low resolution and at the wrong frame rate.  The drone footage was very important in showing the viewer more about the location.  Unfortunately, the drone footage would not work well with the other video I had captured.

I'm not entirely sure why the drone camera was configured incorrectly, but that isn't really the point.  I should have checked the settings before I started shooting.  I always check the camera settings on my DSLR and Sony RX100M4 so why on earth wouldn't I do the same for my other cameras!

I like to put out quality work, and while the still image I captured was suitable, when I had realised I had made a mistake with the video I decided I would rather go back and shoot the whole thing again.  I've been working hard to increase the overall production quality of my videos so I wasn't willing to let this pass quality control.  

So what have I learnt?  I need to check each and every camera I use, each and every time I use it!  I put a lot effort in my content, and the time I have to do it is very limited, so I need to make sure I don't waste time by not checking all my cameras on each shoot.

I will of course not let this little setback deter me from making the planned video!

I Just Deleted All My Video Content

This morning, while cotemplating this particular blog post, I decided I would "tidy up" some of my unused, but still potentially useful, video clips I have.  Trouble was that I deleted all my current video content, including some highly valued footage!

Here I have some good news though.  I run a rigorous and regular backup process so while the deletion of the data was a drag I knew I could restore it quickly enough.  Sure enough, I just inserted the hard disk with my last backup and restored the data with one click.  My backup routine is far more extensive than a single hard disk so if you are interested in hearing more about it let me know in the comments below.

So do you check your settings before each shot?  Have you taken a bunch of photos with camera incorrectly setup?  Let me know in the comments.