Empathy with the subject and the ability to distill the story of the subject - consistantly.
In my opinion .....
Originally Posted by John McCallum
You opinion is valid and I respect it, I just don't agree with it, I can give you all of the "Right" answers, which to me is meaningless.
So, I guess that is all I have to say.
I don't think there IS anything "better" than passion.
Originally Posted by John McCallum
Passion is probably the one most common denominator among all the photographers we consider to be ... what would be the proper label ... "Great"? "Significant"? "Highly Regarded"?
This raises an interesting question: "Do I WANT to be a `good' photographer?"
After churning that question around in my mind for some time ... I think I would have to answer, "No". It is NOT my main concern, my main direction. I want to produce really GREAT photographs, and to me that means, "Work that has a profound effect on the viewer - experiencer."
If someone else - it would have to be `someone else' - decides to hang a label of "good", or "bad" or "indifferent" on me --- Frankly, Scarlet. I don't give a damn. Those labels are not what I am striving for.
I remember one cocktail party. A GUSHING fan (stereotypical "gushing matron") approached one of the "Great Lights" in photography;
"Oh, Mr. AB (not his real name), You are the GREATEST photographer in the world!"
AB, (not his real name), was truly embarrassed. His reply: "Uh .. well ... I DO photography. I guess, once in awhile, I get a good one."
Ed Sukach, FFP.
I like this.
Originally Posted by Graeme Hird
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I agonised for years about what it meant to be a photographer, a good photographer, as opposed to a camera user who makes only exposures and has the actual photographic production process executed by others. Because I offer my photographs as art objects the idea occured to me that to be a morally good photographer I should be held to the same standards as a genuine painter or sculptor. The key principle is to actually make the work one is claiming credit for.
A while ago I abandoned the appelation "photographer" and adopted "photograph maker". In this part of the world I believe the word photographer has become so debased (any jerk with any camera using any medium resulting in any kind of picture) that I neither feel good or moral in applying the term to myself.
The following reads like a manifesto and it is my regular one but it represents to me the minimum standard of goodness/honesty one needs to project to be a fair dinkum photographer:
I make real photographs, actual surfaces bearing marks because they have been struck by light, and not other things that may resemble photographs.
Only traditional cameras, traditional materials, and traditional methods are used.
I employ no back-room people nor have shareholders to please. No assistants or laboratories touch my work.
My photographs are made one at a time, in full, start to finish, by my own hands. I guarantee no digital anything.
All finished photographs are signed and dated.
I guess that reads pretty trenchant but being a good photographer and feeling good about being called a photographer are important to me.
The really huge problem is, of course, making good photographs. That is another deeper question. Sometimes I win, mostly I lose. I hope applying honest effort to the challenge is the answer because that is all I have got.
Photography, the word itself, invented and defined by its author Sir John.F.W.Herschel, 14 March 1839 at the Royal Society, Somerset House, London. Quote "...Photography or the application of the Chemical rays of light to the purpose of pictorial representation,..". unquote.
Originally Posted by blansky
....and parents......hopefully with passion.....
I would say it is how well do they know their craft. Vision can be subjective. Technical ability is just nuts and bolts. When I'm looking at a print ( judging the photographer )the first thing I look at is quality of executition. Then balance of composition, Does it have schnitt? Then the shooters vision. As was stated before, did the image show me a new view of an otherwise mundane subject. Can the image draw me in like a fly to a bug zapper. That will be different for each of us.
What makes a good surgeon?
It's more than technical ability. Passion pretty much sums it up.
The College at which I teach has a teaching excellence award. The criteria were decided by students, and the recipient must be nominated by students. The nomination process is lengthy and students still take the time and effort to nominate exceptional teachers. The award is very highly regarded by students and faculty alike.
Think back to the really great teachers you had. What makes them great? Why do students flock to their classes? Why is attendance for their classes almost 100%? Why do students who fail the class still say they are a great teacher? Now apply that thinking to photograhers.
"I'm still developing"
Has this been stated?
How about dying?
Oh wait, the thread is for "good photographers" or artists. No, only great photographers have to die first to be deemed great.
Only the living are good.
Time & tides wait for no one, especially photographers.