The following caught my eye in Monday's newspaper here in the UK:
The Paul Arden column, the “Independent”, 8th August 2005:
JUST A THOUGHT
LOOK AT IT THIS WAY
I used to commission a lot of photography.
Consequently people were keen to show me their work.
99% of the portfolios I saw were of a very high standard.
98% of these cases contained pictures I had seen before.
Obviously not the same subject or composition, but I had a general impression that I was not seeing anything new.
I was bored, they didn't have a point of view. If they did it was that the viewer of their pictures (me) should like their work
Very occasionally, I saw the work of someone who did have a point of view,
whose work was like no one else's. These were often difficult people, almost unemployable because you couldn't tell them what to do.
Sometimes it went wrong. Sometimes it didn't
When it didn't go wrong it more than made up for the times it did.
Gilbert Garcin is eighty years old. He started taking pictures when he was 65. He has a point of view.
Last edited by David H. Bebbington; 07-23-2007 at 03:17 AM. Click to view previous post history.
a very interesting post. thank you for posting it
What are your opinions of those that have "no point of view"?? Does it seem they produce more work than those with a "point of view"?? I tell myself that I don't get as much done as some, because I put so much thought into it. That I am trying to tell people something, not just make a pretty pic..... Peers have gone on to have show after show but I'm still trying to finish a series...
Maybe I am kidding myself.. Chances are, my point of view, if in fact I have one, doesn't make my images any more interesting at all.... And instead of having a hard time producing, I'm just slow and lazy....
But, I always feel good about my work.
Firstly, I would just emphasize that the whole posting is a quote from another writer, not me! However, it is undoubtedly true that it is easier to produce large quantities of work if you are totally un(self)critical. Conversely, if you are excessively self-critical, it may be difficult or impossible to decide that something is finished and good enough to show people. The advice of a friend whom you trust can of course be valuable here. As a general principle, I would say in cases of doubt, decide that your work IS finished and good enough to show. At the least, by showing it, you may gain some reactions which may encourage you and also suggest a way to take the work forward. If you feel good about your work, chances are very good that someone else will too!
Originally Posted by Bighead