Yes, but I think it's part of the process of becoming a better photographer. Like loading sheet film backwards, pouring the fix before the developer, etc. Realizing that great photo opportunities are rare takes time (along with a lot of poor images, along the way). The key is to remember the ones that got away, so you don't make the mistake again.
In my case, there's a specific image I think of when I consider skipping a shot. I came very close to not taking it. It was August, on Cape Cod, about 25 years ago. Brutally hot, and I had already lugged my metal monorail 4x5 around for hours. The shin bruising wooden camera case had already taken it's toll, as had the heavy tripod on my shoulder, and my eyes were stinging with sweat. I had just finished (what I thought) was my last shot, and all I could think of was getting home, and an ice cold beer. After I packed up, I saw something else...
My instinct was to say, "screw it", but I set up again, got the shot, and have since sold it dozens of times. At the time, I remembered shots I didn't take. It was those that made me get this one... It's now the photograph I think of when I want to say "screw it".
all the time, but that's live, no ?
One of the reasons I'm flailing around attempting to find a 35mm camera again is because, yes, I've regretted not taking a picture.
I was coming home from Fort Dodge one night in the early fall. Sun was setting behind me as I drove, so it was casting light in this AMAZING way over the cornfield on my left. It looked like the field was covered in gold. I wished for a camera with Velvia then. Heh.
When I had the Nikon FE with the 50mm lens, it went with me everywhere. I very rarely missed a shot I wanted to take. I'm hoping that I get the same results when I start doing it again.
Every photographer does.
The time we didn't bother to stop the car. The time we didn't feel like changing lenses and nailing the shot. The time we knew we should take our camera with us and didn't want to bother with it.
Actually though, some of our best work is still on the negs or computer, that we haven't spent enough time with to make a great print of. Or somehow passed it by completely when we were editing.
Those ones are the real tragedies because we actually have the shot, we just don't know it.
Yes...all the "historic" shots I could have taken, all the steam locos, street scenes, long-gone buildings, etc., etc., .....all seen everyday as a young child, before I was interested in photography.
And all the scenes I could have shot on Kodachrome!
This happens all the time. Usually it is because I just hesitate. Photographing on the street and being scared someone is going to punch me in the face.
I do think though that our minds make the pictures much better than they really would be, and only one self can see them. Not that bad either.
YES, a lot!