“Grass in a Rainstorm”
© 2007 Nawfal Nur
All Rights Reserved
Much about being a creative photographer is the ability to see things differently.
Maybe you are seeing the same thing, the same object, or the same landscape that thousands of other photographers have seen and photographed before; but are you seeing it differently through your viewfinder? Or, is it just another re-creation of what has been done a hundred, or a thousand times before?
With digital photography technology so viral and widespread, almost everyone has access to photography through one type of device or another. That doesn’t mean, however, that everyone knows how to take a photograph worth its electrons!
“Reality offers us such wealth that we must cut some of it out on the spot, simplify. The question is, do we always cut out what we should? While we’re working, we must be conscious of what we’re doing. Sometimes we have the feeling that we’ve taken a great photo, and yet we continue to unfold. We must avoid however, snapping away, shooting quickly and without thought, overloading ourselves with unnecessary images that clutter our memory and diminish the clarity of the whole.” -Henri Cartier-Bresson, on photojournalism, American Photo, September/October 1997 , page: 76
Three cheers for H. Cartier-Bresson! Avoid being a “snapper” if you want to become a great photographer.
Like any other professional pursuit, great photographs are created by Photographers who think carefully before pulling the trigger, so to speak. Forget that digital is cheap and that you are not spending cold hard cash on film and development any more. Forget that your newfangled digital camera can set everything for you so that maybe you’ll get lucky with an interesting photo once in a while. Photographic-Economizing and Luck just don’t quite cut it!
In my humble opinion, great photographs come from photographers with great eyes for a scene, purposeful compositions, good timing, fantastic sense-of-place, and superb technical know-how of their craft.
Seeing Differently is what can set you apart from the thousands of other photographers who take photographs of similar subject matter. It’s easy to blend in: It’s challenging and rewarding to set yourself apart and be different.