I’m having a bit of a conundrum with regard to my work. You see I have received feedback form a couple of people I respect: one being in the photography world and one completely removed. You see I fear that people who see my work because well perhaps they like me by default say they like my work. Yet I aim for constructive feedback. And if that is – I like this or that – great. But if it is – that is too dark or too processed looking or too this or too that – that is BETTER! You see I cannot improve if I don’t hear what works or what doesn’t work. I’m one of those “needs feedback” type of people.
Here is what one of my “critics” said:
I don’t see your concept, philosophy, angst, love, acceptance, challenge, fears, of the world around you. these seem more like pictures you’ve taken that show an evolution of your technical skills more than anything.
I’ve always told you that yours is a rare personality. I´m fascinated by the idea of seeing ordinary or extraordinary from your view. You’re very much a people person and perhaps your greatest experiences in life revolve around humanity simple, humane, troubled, surviving/settling, living, funny- maybe this could transcend into your photography? Landscapes, monuments, fauna, flora could be devices to be used against your true insight into the world but i don’t think you’re setting out to be naturalist.
Are there any images you feel need to be captured but you just don’t know yet if that’s acceptable/understood in mainstream? Perhaps, you’re getting caught up in a commercial loop and feel the need to just capture good images to print and share??
I want to see what’s really seeping in the receses of your eyes and thoughts.
You see – I totally agree. I have been really just learning the photography ropes up til now, playing and experimenting with shutter, aperture, and the like. And I haven’t even touched on using my flash yet! But now I feel the need to bite into life with my lens. And there are things I want to shoot and do. I have ideas. And how do I bring those ideas to life?
I want to shoot a series on contrast between wealth and poverty where I live; another on tattooing; another on abandoned farm houses; and some “street” photography which is challenging here in rural America (where are the “streets” in a farming community???!!!). And damnit – I’ve put some of these ideas out here and now someone’s going to steal them from me – always happens because I open my big mouth all excited and such!
So now – some of you “seasoned” photogs – what’s your trick? How do you get these kinds of projects going? Shooting people in their homes for a project (versus a portrait shoot) well that’s not easy to get buy-in on is it? I guess I just do it. Cursed over-thinking mind of mine!!!
Oh here are a few recent photos I actually like…