Lately, I have been intrigued by analog things.
a little experiment
Have you seen the MTF charts on this sucker. It looked great, and I was super excited to get my hands on it. But alas, my copy had some very strange focus-shifting issues. It seemed like things were either front focused on back-focused depending on different apertures; I couldn’t put my finger on it until stumbled across this post at diglloyd.com. It’s a real bummer too, I was hoping for something to scratch my wide-angle itch.
Oh well. Amazon FTW!
My latest experiment is Notational Velocity, and I am really liking it. NV isn’t a todo list manager per se, but its fast filtering and brain-dead ease of use makes this a wonderful, powerful free-form notetaker. One tip, if you name your daily notes with a standard naming convention, it makes getting to these daily logs an utter breeze.
Check it out!
Event: Patrons Of The Hearts 2011
There is a lot of talk about having some sort of “vision” in photography. For example, David duChemin of Pixelated writes, “Vision matters because it determines our path and the choice of tools we use to get there.” — Vision Driven Workflow.
I have to confess, I am a bit suspicious of what that all means.
When I photograph people, I tend to gravitate towards a documentary or photojournalist style; usually with available light or with one light, a prime lens and emphasis on mobility. I almost never ask my subjects to face the camera. But, people’s instincts are to pose. You come up with a camera and they stop whatever they are doing, turn to face you with their collective, practiced smiles.
This is particularly horrible in high-end events. We’ve been training generations of people to wear masks; the more conscious we are about our public image, the more instinctive our put-on-the-mask reactions appear to be.
I suppose this is a question of “vision.” If there is one thing at the heart of my photography it is about trying to capture something “real” about life; some sliver or Truth in enshrined in a moment in time. But beyond that initial premise, much of what happens is purely instinctive, unconscious.
It’s hard to disagree with duChemin’s basic premise, but I wonder whether beyond the rudimentary first-order decisions one makes on the outset, whether we can we really be that deterministic about how and what we photograph.
For me, photography is, at the core, a manifestation of one’s life experiences, intellectually and spiritually. We shoot what we are. Which is to say, we shoot first, and rationalize its meaning from what has already been captured, not the other way around.
I do think we can get ‘technically’ better, but not spiritually so. We can’t change how we see the world, at least not through our lens. Is it hopeless then? How does one become a better photographer?
I suppose, for me, it comes down to leading a fuller life.
I hate to break it to you, but
Santa Claus doesn’t exist
Professional Wrestling is not real
Stephen Colbert is a political satirist
Ann Coulter is a performance artist