22 Dec The Bastard Art

Source: Joel Wolfson Photo Ops

Photography is the bastard art. There are many reasons for this, not the least of which is that everyone owns a smartphone or camera and most people consider themselves capable of taking “excellent” pictures (this notion was even verified in a study.) We’ve also been brainwashed by decades of advertising from Canon, Nikon, Sony and many others with the message that all you have to do is use their camera, lens or printing paper and your images will “look” professional. This is akin to saying “if you buy a Stradivarius violin you will play like Itzhak Perlman.” Owning a top-notch camera doesn’t make you a great photographic artist any more than owning the best brushes, paints and canvas makes you a fine painter.

When I first started shooting photographs with serious intent in the 1970s people would marvel at the fact that my images were razor sharp, well exposed, and possessed a wide range of tones. They may not have known these terms but would say things like “your pictures are so clear.” These are all merely technical aspects of photography and were more difficult to master with the manual-everything film cameras of several decades ago versus now. Today, using their smartphones, virtually anyone can capture a properly exposed, in-focus image with the press of a button […]

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