What Do You Like About Photography?
I wonder…what do you like about photography? Keep reading and leave your comments at the bottom of this blog post. I’d be curious to hear what you have to say!
OK…so the top photo on this page is of the biker bar called “Hogs and Heifers,” which used to be on 859 Washington St. in the Meatpacking District in Manhattan. When I took that photo a while ago, virtually no one was able to guess what and where it was. That was part of the appeal of the photo when I took it–it didn’t “look” like the neighborhood where it was located. Quite the contrary! We were staying in a hotel directly across the street which is at the base of the High Line in Manhattan. There are also a bunch of trendy clothing designers and stores in the area which made the scene even more bizarre to me. So, as Judy and I were walking northward, I stopped and “engaged” the two guys on the left and took 3 or 4 frames of them reacting to me. (You might even notice the “residual finger” on one of the guys which was actually a playful gesture toward me as the other guy laughed) I really had “fun” finding and taking this photo and felt like I caught something special.
Imagine our surprise when we went by there again a few weeks ago, while visiting the new Whitney Museum which is located about two blocks away, to take another look…and saw what had happened! Gone! They’ve moved out and the space is going to be transformed into a retail location.
It’s amazing to me how many times something like that happens. That is, we take a photo of somebody or something and it becomes a record of the moment and of the past. Even a mundane photo of a building in a neighborhood is vulnerable to change or removal! And our photos become reminders of a bygone experience or observation. Let’s call that feature #1. And I’ll list some more:
#1 — Making a record of our lives, our experiences, and the world around us, either inadvertently or on purpose.
#2 — Observation of something ironic or whimsical that we want to share.
#3 — Keepsake of someone that we want to keep and have.
#4 — A creative expression where we’re trying to make an image that demonstrates a feeling. Artsy!
#5 — The act of taking photos helps increase and improve our observation of the world around us.
#6 — Capturing a scene is challenging and exciting.
#7 — The gear is cool.
#8 — Taking photographs can be relaxing.
#9 — Photographing people helps open the door to increased personal interaction.
#10 — Photography is a fascinating and interesting topic.
So, take a look at the list and please let me know what you think about what I included, from your perspective, or may have left out. What is important to you…what do you like about photography?
I really think we are living in the Golden Age of Photography. More people are taking more and more photos than ever…and regardless of their merit or quality, And, I am assuming it’s all good because people seem to enjoy the process and their results than ever before. Don’t you agree?
Here’s a woman, above, that I HAD to photograph! How can you let someone like that walk by without taking their photos? Look at the colors in her hair, her clothes, and even the mustard on the hot dog behind her. Not to mention…her purple lips and wild glasses. I just went up to her and told her how great she looked and asked if I could take her picture. Besides, if you dress like that, you’re probably itching to get some positive attention, eh?
But, why did I take this photo? Is it a record? Is it about the gear? Etc. Probably easy to determine it’s because I think her appearance represented something whimsical I wanted to share.
But, it’s clear that not every photo of mine is motivated by the same factor or feature. That’s probably the same with almost everyone and every circumstance…right?
Here’s an arty interpretation of a local scene I photographed a while back. It’s an old service station I used to drive by that always looked so interesting to me with all the power wires surrounding it. I did get a bit creative with it, adding more gritty texture to the dark and cloudy sky. To my mind, I captured it as I saw it. Then, I went back and, it was gone. Now the photo has become a record of what once was. You never know!
So, please tell me, what do you like about photography? Leave comments below.