Funny that you mention W. Eugene Smith - as complex a man as there ever was. He reportedly had a huge ego and often ignored editors' instructions when taking an assignment, taking a year or more on some projects that were to take only a month.
Originally Posted by lxdude
I thought that I read that the Minamata image was taken with either borrowed equipment or gear that was donated to him by Minolta. I'll need to look it up again.
He also was known to drop in on people, asking for money, argued relentlessly with his editors and took some of the greatest photos that I've ever seen. I've always found his work to be inspirational.
He was a tremendous artist but reportedly a very difficult person at times.
Edward Weston also was a complex person, more or less abandoning his family for long periods in pursuit of his art. Enormous talent, but probably should have stayed single. He met up with Tina Mondotti, a photographer who developed a following, perhaps because of her relationship with Weston more than her own talent.
I think we all have stories to tell, and I hope that I've become a better photographer (and better person) through the years, although maybe that's debatable. When you're young, you do need to be brash and bold, because that's how you take risks and strive to be better.
But you need to temper that always. Want to read about an ego that's slipped off of the edge? Read about noted author Buzz Bissinger's shopping addiction.