Day: April 3, 2013

Persistence & Your Vision

Applying Makeup, by Nawfal Johnson Nur.

Applying Makeup, by Nawfal Johnson Nur.

Green, Blue and Orange Paint Dripping, by Nawfal Johnson Nur.

Green, Blue and Orange Paint Dripping, by Nawfal Johnson Nur.

Fingers, Knife, Lemon, Shadow, by Nawfal Johnson Nur.

Fingers, Knife, Lemon, Shadow, by Nawfal Johnson Nur.

Lonely Street with Cat & Shadow at Nighttime, Penang, Malaysia, Ah Quee St, by Nawfal Johnson Nur.

Lonely Street with Cat & Shadow at Nighttime, Penang, Malaysia, Ah Quee St, by Nawfal Johnson Nur.

Clouds Photography, Penang, Malaysia, by Nawfal Johnson Nur.

Clouds Photography, Penang, Malaysia, by Nawfal Johnson Nur.

Hindu Temple Priest, Penang, Malaysia by Nawfal Johnson Nur.

Hindu Temple Priest, Penang, Malaysia by Nawfal Johnson Nur.

Energy and persistence conquer all things.
Benjamin Franklin

Permanence, perseverance and persistence in spite of all obstacles, discouragements, and impossibilities: It is this, that in all things distinguishes the strong soul from the weak.
Thomas Carlyle

Film editing is now something almost everyone can do at a simple level and enjoy it, but to take it to a higher level requires the same dedication and persistence that any art form does.
Walter Murch
Paralyze resistance with persistence.
Woody Hayes

Persistence & Your Vision

No one is going to know your photographic vision better than you do.  You may have really stellar photographs, yet, you find resistance from people in the industry, or from outside the industry, or both. 

Do not believe that “they”, meaning anyone else, are the end-all Socratic experts on photography and because “they” do not APPRECIATE your Vision that it is not worthy of notice or appreciation.  Joel Meyerowitz said that when he showed Garry Winogrand his Street Photography, where everything in the frame was the subject, Garry did not like it, he DIDN’T GET IT.  When Joel showed Museum of Modern Art photography curator John Szarkowski, his new work, and told him that Garry didn’t like it and didn’t get it, thinking that the subjects were not close enough, John said, “Well, Garry doesn’t know everything there is to know about Photography.”

Just because someone, or some publication, does not respond to your photography does not mean that everyone will respond the same way.  Just because a magazine art buyer does not select your photography, does not mean that your photography does not have vision, purpose, or value.  If this happens, it means that person does not fit your photography.  It means that maybe, the other person “Does NOT get it.”  It means that they were NOT the right people to approach because of the type or style of photography they adhere to and like.  It does not mean that many other people will have the same reaction, or, non-reaction. 

Just Be Persistent!

I’m at a point in my life where I don’t give a damn anymore if someone does not like my work, or if they do not find it interesting, or if they ignore it for whatever reason.  I know that there are others who do like my work; who do find it interesting; who do want to pursue my work because they appreciate its value and the process and skill it took to achieve the results shown in my work.  

Life is short, and the older you get, it seems like there is less time for you to deal with, especially when it comes to dealing with B.S., ridiculous things! [ Said Captain Obvious!  🙂  ].  Therefore, I no longer waste my precious time on people who don’t appreciate my work – why should I, and that’s not a question, it’s what I adhere to.

As “they” say, there’s no sense in beating a dead cockroach!  If you know a certain magazine, organization, group of people, or person “Do not get your work,” then fine, move on and find those who do appreciate your work. 

  • Do not waste your precious time; however, be persistent in finding those who do appreciate it – they are out there!  You will eventually, find your audience. 

  • People who appreciate your work will be willing to give your work the time-of-day.  They will also be willing to give it praise when they see fit to do that; and, they will also be willing to give you constructive advice that is valuable to you improving your craft.  You MUST find these people, and when you do, APPRECIATE THEM because they are rare gems.

Environmental Portraiture of a Roadside Shoe Repairman in Penang Malaysia a Dying Craft on the Penang Streets

ROADSIDE SHOE REPAIRMAN in Penang Malaysia.  This is one of those traditional, Malaysian Cultural trades that are certainly dying off.  You won't find many of these talented people around.  A lot of the new shoe repair shops are in the new, fancy shopping centers, and hardly have the same Penang "cultural-style" that these people have.

ROADSIDE SHOE REPAIRMAN in Penang Malaysia. This is one of those traditional, Malaysian Cultural trades that are certainly dying off. You won’t find many of these talented people around. A lot of the new shoe repair shops are in the new, fancy shopping centers, and hardly have the same Penang “cultural-style” that these people have.

“I was interested in environmental portraiture, the mix between the environment and the person. I didn’t know any of these people, but they knew my face and felt comfortable with me. I had been there with a medium-format camera the year before. I would have little contact sheets to show what I was doing. I would ask questions about what they were doing in the community and their lives. They felt comfortable with a toy camera, they were not threatened at all.” – Carl Robert Pope, Jr.

“All I can say is that my approach to Environmental Portraiture is very similar to what Carl Robert Pope, Jr., says about his approach.  I don’t carry contact sheets, but I do my best to not appear threatening or too pushy about getting a photograph.  I do like to take my smaller cameras with me when I do photography along the streets as it takes the edge off of getting to know people better – maybe there is less of a barrier with a smaller camera.  And, there is nothing to say that you will not get great results with a good point-and-shoot camera.  You still have to know the technical side of photography no matter what camera you use; but also, you have to be human, and be at ease interacting with the community where you photograph.  If you are at ease, your subjects will more than likely also be at ease with you…not always…but most of the time.”  – Nawfal Johnson Nur.

TWO RUSTY BOLTS

"TWO RUSTY BOLTS Go into a Bar, and the Sociopathic one demands of his Minion."  Yeah, so what, strange title for an art photograph.  But, I can name it whatever I want, so there, alright!

“TWO RUSTY BOLTS”

“Most times, we look at objects for their utilitarian purpose. But as photographers, we regard them for their momentary visual appearance.” – Catherine Jo Morgan

Yes, I too see things for their momentary visual appearance and decide if it will make an interesting photograph to me.

The fact that an object attracts my eye is not surprising to me.  What surprises me is that another person will have no appreciation for such mundane objects and totally disregard them, either in real life, or as represented and interpreted in photographs.  They, the close-minded, I fear, just don’t get it.