Friday, November 16, 2012

Thoughts on Photography

At the end of a photo shoot I used to pick the photos that were the most clear and concise, that gave away their emotional story at the drop of a hat.  
As I've gotten older and more familiar with my camera and the stories of my subjects, it seems that the photographs that I don't have to reach as far for, have made their way to the forefront of my work.  
When looking through digital images like stock piles of unnamed contact sheets, I am reminded of the moment when my mother was simply flipping her hair.  The shutter clicks and a small human moment is forever captured.  I think maybe that's the secret of a good photographer - it's not only about connecting with the subject  but allowing the subject to connect back.  
My shutter collects these memories: the lull, the calm of two men conversing at the local diner and remembering their wives, palm trees and the satisfaction of a hardy omelet   A dear friend laughing after a good cry, her makeup displaced and chaotic - unrehearsed... these are the moments that my camera lives for.
The less I work to control my photographs the more I have come to connect with them.  This is not to say that you cannot be a master of your craft but sometimes it helps to take a step back and let go.  Great painters know when to stop painting, great fathers know when to let their children take the first few steps on their own.  Similarly, great photographers know how to find an honest moment and allow it to be.

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