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Oct 27, 2023 by Gordy Megroz
Photograph Pete McBride

Trade Secrets: Focus on the Story as Much as the Single Image.


Home Base / Basalt, Colorado

Insider Knowledge

“A lot of people can take a picture and make it look great with editing, but they’re not telling a bigger story,” says the renowned photographer Pete McBride. “It’s not just about getting the perfect shot and overprocessing it, it’s about thinking about what story you’re trying to tell with it.” Pete says the Colorado River book started as a small story for National Geographic before he realized it was more than about just the river. 

When you start unpacking the layers, you start to see the images that tell that story.

“It had many layers: climate change, the history, the wildlife, the industry along it,” he says. “When you start unpacking that, you start to see the images that tell that story. People are much more interested in that than just a single image on Instagram which anybody can do.”

The BeadWORKS project empowers entrepreneurial Kenyan women. The phones are provided so they can charge for their artwork.

Quick Tip:

“Simplify your tools,” says McBride. “The best camera is the one in your hands, not the one you’re fumbling with and changing lenses trying to get the perfect image. Being nimble and simple can be a real advantage.”

When women earn incomes, the entire community benefits.