Guy Tal • Evolving Intuition

With time and practice, photography will become increasingly intuitive. As Guy Tal says, this will free your mind to experiment more and to further expand your visual vocabulary

Instructional photographic texts and workshops often attempt to summarize key points into lists of rules, tips or even acronyms and clever sayings, so as to make them easier to memorize. In my own teaching I also offer such information as various perceptions associated with specific visual elements, such as colors and lines, which can be used to affect the viewer’s impression. It might seem that an experienced and effective photographer is one who meticulously and deliberately considers every rule and every bit of knowledge during the process of making an image, but such a conclusion is patently incorrect. In fact, the more experienced the artist, the more he or she will tend to work out of intuition – an innate sense for what works – rather than rely on some memorized stepwise process or other means of recalling information.

To an outsider, such intuition regarding the making of successful photographs – or any other kind of art – may seem the privilege of uniquely gifted individuals, and indeed in some ancient cultures such abilities were attributed to divine origin; but that is actually not the case. Consider such skills as driving a car or forming a proper sentence. Nobody is born knowing how to perform such activities, but in time and with experience they seem almost like second nature, requiring little-to-no deliberate thinking. The key to transitioning conscious skilled work that requires effort and concentration into seemingly effortless intuitions is ...

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About Author


I am a full-time photographer, writer, and naturalist living and working in the Colorado Plateau – a scenic and diverse desert region of the western United States spanning an area larger than most countries and states.

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