MAKE PHOTOGRAPHS, DON’T TAKE THEM

I worked for a summer at the Maine Photographic Workshops as a Teaching Assistant. Every week the new workshop schedule would start and David Lyman, the Director, welcomed everyone to Rockport and gave a brief presentation.

The most memorable thing I took away from his sessions was the approach that photographers should take, especially as we descended on a small fishing village in Maine. He always reminded us to make pictures; taking pictures implied that we were removing something from our subject.

The jargon in photography is very aggressive and it shouldn’t be. We take photographs and we go on a shoot, for example. I prefer to make photographs. It’s a technicality and I may be making something of nothing but it’s the way I approach what I do.

Puerto Vallarta Usually, if I point my camera at someone I like to talk to them. I rarely use long lenses and typically use a 24 to 50 mm zoom lens. If I photograph people I want to be up close and communicating with them. The stolen, long lens shot just never made sense to me. I also don’t like the way long lenses compress space.

The mentality, mindset or approach you take makes a big difference in the output. If I remind myself that I’m making photographs…creating something new…I pay attention to each step (exposure, printing) and make a conscious effort to be thoughtful about the process and realize that I’m making something. I’m also more gentle with the subject, whether I’m photographing people, objects or the land.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: