Break Through Moments in Your Photography
Today while driving into work and approaching the Holland Tunnel I just happened to notice the shot below with whatever tower that is in Jersey City/Hoboken and the Empire State building. Fortunately I had trusty phone cam with me and was at least able to get a shot off to record it. Digital I know - lol - but the point stands.
It was not a lucky nor fleeting moment, those two buildings have been there over 50 years - I have no idea how many times I have made that exact same drive and never, until this day, seen the connection between the two, nor will I ever not notice it again when I drive by. As somebody that really enjoys photography, I know I spend a lot of time trying to "see," or even notice, things in unique way. But in the following moments, as I sat stuck in the traffic I had that break through moment of realizing just how important it is to be present in our surroundings. New things and new perspectives are everywhere - developmentally this might have been the most important picture I have taken in a very long time.
My question to you all is this. Can you share a moment in your photographic life when you made a major revelation in your thinking about the art or process?
Last edited by nhemann; 02-22-2012 at 10:47 AM. Click to view previous post history.
"There is no such thing as objective reality in a photograph"
and (gasp!) dpug photos
- take a look if you like.
The most profound moment I had was realizing that I am in the driver's seat of the process.
I realized that I only need one film, one developer, two papers, and one print developer. I change the results more than any product can, and by sticking to the same materials I learn a lot more about them, which enables me to push my boundaries a lot farther than I could have ever dreamed of. That's where I am today, and I feel a lot more confident in my ability, knowledge, and proficiency than I ever have.
This has led me to finally be able to shake, as a good friend calls it, "the photographer's disease" - the problem of constantly swapping materials looking for the next big thing to happen. Magic in photography does not come from materials. It comes from practice, hard work, emotion, and the brain. I don't exactly feel like a rock star with my photography, but I do feel free to just DO. And that is a major milestone for me.
"Make good art!"
- Neil Gaiman
"...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera".
- Yousuf Karsh
"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit".
Amen, my dear friend!
Originally Posted by Thomas Bertilsson
An important place in my photography was when I began to feel that I was finding my own voice, that I was making the pictures that I was meant to make. It was not a "moment" as the OP suggested, or some kind of sudden epiphany. For me, it was more of an understanding that occurred over a period of time. In fact, I don't think it is over yet. I think that my way of seeing the world is still developing and being refined within me.
I would second this statement. Keep it simple and practice, practice, practice and practice again. Also you will see much more when you walk than you will in a car.
Originally Posted by Thomas Bertilsson
“The contemplation of things as they are, without error or confusion, without substitution or imposture, is in itself a nobler thing than a whole harvest of invention”
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i don't know if it was a breakthrough, or an a-ha moment or anything like that,
but when i realized that when i am using a camera i am outside myself.
I think it's when I realised that 'break-through' moments only come if you keep going forward making small steps consistently rather than giant leaps now and again.
I had a dawning within the last year or so related to how I "see" photographically. I stopped trying to show what I saw, and instead I shifted dramatically to showing my impression of what I saw. That includes how I felt, the general energy of the place, etc. In essence, I don't feel chained to a faithful reproduction of a scene. There's a good deal more of "me" in the photos. It's exciting to have a whole new world of possibilities open up all of the sudden!
"Technology is a big destroyer of emotion and truth. Opportunity doesn't do anything for creativity. Yeah, it makes it easier and you can get home sooner, but it doesn't make you a more creative person. That's the disease you have to fight in any creative field.. ease of use." - Jack White
+1. I could not possibly have stated it more accurately or more succinctly. My journey, too, continues onward...
Originally Posted by Dan Henderson
Mine is rather basic compared to many of you longtimers, but mine was just going back to film, was digi for a bit, then came back in 2011. What I have learned is to slow down and think end to end more, like I photograph more with the end result (print) in mind than just holding down the shutter button to fill my mem card then "edit"....
Which at the end of the day is kind of what you (OP) are saying, be present! I am more "present" of my actions or shd I say actuations....
I try and live that way too by being present, personally, professionally....