Photography

My first camera

Photography has been a passion of mine since I bought my first camera on a school trip to Scandanavia in 1961. For a time, I hoped to make a career out of it and worked in a commercial studio in Sydney for 3.5 years before heading overseas to the USA and Europe.  But dreams don’t always come true and photography remains just a hobby for me.

What photography means to me.

Photography is a language and like any conventional language it can be used, among other things, to: convey information; pose questions; express opinions; create a mood; amuse; excite; incite; shock; provoke; sadden; gladden; illuminate; awaken and cause us to reflect. The still photograph forces us to look at things we otherwise might have dismissed with a mere glance. Like people using conventional language, photographs can shout, whisper, talk animatedly or talk monotonously. Some are garrulous; some are taciturn. Some are lyrical; others, incisive. Some are frivolous; others are profound. Some, you wonder why they were born; others will live with you forever. Like conventional language, photography has many dialects, not all of which are mutually intelligible. The macro photography of insects talks a different dialect to the sweeping panoramas of landscapes; the calm image of a beautiful flower speaks a different dialect to the powerful capture of a moment in sport; a gritty scene from urban life speaks a different dialect to an abstract image which uses colours and lines to convey its message. What makes perfect sense to the photographer may be incomprehensible to the viewer. This, in itself, does not make it a bad photograph – any more than a language that is only understood by a small number of speakers can be judged inadequate as a language for the purposes of communicating between those speakers.

Photographs speak on multiple levels. The image speaks for itself, telling its own story. But it also speaks about the photographer, suggesting answers to the questions: why was it taken and why was it exhibited. And the ensemble of photographs found on any individual’s Photostream adds another dimension to the narrative, betraying the photographer’s predilections and passions. Some photographers confine themselves to a single subject whilst others explore a variety. And all these stories that we can deduce from viewing the photographs of strangers are merely conjecture anyway, although being conjecture makes them no less beguiling.

3 thoughts on “Photography

  1. The result is much much better after the “photoshop”, and it is amazing how you did that, or how technology is so advanced so as to make the image look so perfect.

    However,

    I feel that an image should reflect a certain degree of reality and honesty. I also feel that it can become to easy to delete or remove objects or people altogether from a photo. The spontaneous intelligence of the photographer risks to be alienated. By that I mean that every time you see an interesting shot, but with something that you dont really like, you will still go ahead and shoot rather than wait for another occasion. Wouldnt that have a negative impact on the creativity and “work” involved when taking photos ? I feel it is worth it to be patient, and to to “let” go the couple. For me, it is often when I “finish” my shooting and when I am heading home, when I let go of the idea of trying to capture the perfect photograph that the best opportunities arise.

    • “Elox”, thank you so much for taking the time to read my blog and the trouble to comment on it. I always felt that image manipulation would be a contentious issue and I welcome your point of view. While, it is reassuring to have people agree with me, I sometimes feel that constructive criticism is more valueable because it forces me to stop and think about what I am doing.

      Your comments have made me stop and think; so much so that I am working on a more detailed response which I hope to publish in the coming week. And whether that re-examination of the subject causes me to change my stance, or results in a reaffirmation of my current thinking, I feel that I will be stronger for it. So, when I thank you for your comments, I really mean it.

  2. Lovely read! will be visiting regularly from now on.

    Just thought i’d drop a line and check in on you.Hope you are feeling better.Your absence on flickr hasn’t gone unnoticed.

    Awaiting your comeback with great anticipation.

    Warm Regards

    Hameed

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s