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| p.1 #10 · The door and window problem |
I understand that you approach photography as a "recorder" rather than as an "artist", but it is still "your voice" that you are putting on display through the visual communication medium. My point ... is ... that unless YOU know what the point is that YOU are trying to make, it usually doesn't convey ANY point to anyone.
If your point is to show the decay, so be it. If your point is to show the texture, or symmetry or lighting or some other component, that's fine too. But even as a "recorder" without a point / message, your (i.e. anyone's) ability to guide/steer/present your voice to your audience is rendered ... well, flat. It's kinda like reading a monotone speech without voice inflection.
Even when I talk to people about the most clinical, boring, technical, factual, non-creative subject known to man ... I will still use voice inflection to drive my point. But, if I don't know what the point is, then I simply read the script and deliver a flat / lackluster communication.
Now, I'm not saying your work is lackluster ... but I am saying that without knowing what the point is that you want to deliver to your audience (in the case of the door/window/mundane), it will come across "pointless" because you in fact (literally) don't have a point.
For those who shoot the door/window/mundane and present it well, it is because they do have a point ... whatever it may be ... and present the image in a way that conveys that point. I think that part of the reason we see so many "doors & windows" is because they are so much more available to the masses than Mesa Arch, etc. is.
Combine that with the fact that probably 99.9% of photographers go through periods of emulation long before they grasp and develop their own sense of creation. They've seen a "fine art" image of mundane articles and thus try to emulate them as part of their learning process.
Your "doors & windows" theory of being popular and therefore you should learn to do likewise ... to me, is not following the leader, but following the followers. If your gig is "large slabs of rock" ... you are in a position to lead with your voice, your point, your message. Forget following the followers because the followers are following. The masses will take you straight to a "sea of mediocrity" that will bury your voice into obscurity and eternal oblivion.
Sure, it is cool to try something to stretch yourself, we all should do that ... but it is still your voice and your point that is important. Without having your own purpose/point, you are just a myna bird with a camera. Emulation has its place, it makes for a great learning tool ... kinda like training wheels on a bicycle. I use emulation with regularity as an exercise for those times when I don't have a voice / point. BUT, it is important that you know the difference between when you are speaking to others with YOUR voice, or merely parroting the voice of others.
You presented your case for being a recorder, which once I came to understand why you present in that voice ... it made sense to me. It isn't everyone's voice, it is your voice and you do have a point that you are astutely aware of and convicted to. So, when you look at what the masses do for popularity ... if it doesn't speak to you, "don't sweat it". If it does ... "go for it" ... with YOUR voice and YOUR point.
Edited on Oct 17, 2012 at 05:52 PM · View previous versions