Each year, I try to look back at what I accomplished photographically. I do this merely to have a reference point. That way, as I move forward into the next year, I can think about what I want to do to up my game.
Some of you may know that I have been doing more pictorial style photography lately. I have studied it for many years, but never felt like I had anything to share worth mentioning. When I started thinking and teaching my “feel your way to a photograph” theory, I began to find a voice that wanted to express itself through pictorial images.
I want to share just how precious each millimeter of each frame of each photograph is to me.
When I first put my eye up to the camera, each and every time, I am reminded of what it felt like to be a little boy opening a Christmas gift. It still feels that way. I get lost in the viewfinder and many human infirmities simply seem to disappear.
What a month. I am a lucky guy. I have no idea what in the world I did to deserve the honor, thrill and privilege that I received this month. I got to do something most serious photographers only dream of. I got paid to spend ALL of my time doing exactly what I love, in a place I respect, with people I enjoy and subjects I revere.
I had more spare time this year as a result of finishing my work at Skylum, so I decided to drive to Socorro, NM from my home in the Seattle area. I drove the “work truck,” that is, my 2019 RAM Rebel which I have converted into my photo mobile.
For many years, I have studied the work of Alfred Stieglitz. He was a very important character in the development of modern photography and modern art. Among his many accomplishments he owned galleries that gave Pablo Picasso, Auguste Rodin and Henri Matisse all got their first American exposure. He also mounted one of the first exhibitions of photos by Ansel Adams. He married painter, Georgia O’Keeffe and his nudes featuring her have sold for more than $1.4 million.
Let’s face it. The world has become an ugly place. People are divided by just about everything. Tribalism has run amok. Some people seem so committed to their tribe that nothing else matters. Multiply all that by 10 if you spend any time in the online photography forums. It’s bound to make some of you unhappy. Believe it or not, this very negatively impacts your photography.
Whether you know it or not, if you’re a serious photographer, at least some part of your work has been influenced by the great photographers of yesteryear.