Friday, November 10, 2006

Response to Diary of a Wedding Photographer

Eadwine from Plushphotography has put down his short history of a Wedding photographer. Well I think that he is vision and I hope that he succeeds both as a photographer and as a businessman.

I met a young wedding photographer recently who asked me if there is a market for Black and White photography. I was a bit taken aback because I do not like the idea of following the market. I told him to find his own vision and create a market for it. When I started taking black and white wedding photographs I did not do it because there was a market for it. I did it because I thought that Black and white images helped me capture the personal interactions at a wedding. I created my own market because clients saw my personal investment in the photography. Now I see Eadwine, Ron and Wan Sheng shooting digitally, sometimes converting their images into black and white, sometimes making de-sautrated images or even keeping the colour and doing something else. They are finding their own visions and I applaud them. They are individuals who are committed to making the best images they can. And for that reason, they can and should command a higher fee. They are not mere technicians, they are professional image makers. Their clients are paying for their talent as well as their photographic skill.

And this is my journey too, to keep pushing the boundaries of my image making. I was once told to learn all the different lighting tecniques so that I would be able to recreate lighting from any International advertisement. I went totally against that idea. I have kept myself interested in visual ideas and been inspired to shoot different things. Nowadays my lighting armoury is sizeable. But this knowledge did not develop in limbo, out of the need to know all lighting styles. It came from visual ideas that demanded that I learn how to light them. I guess that I probably have a smaller lighting armoury than some commercial photographers, but I have a clear idea of how my lighting techniques work and where I can use them.

In short, it is the art that dictates the technique, and not the technique that dicttates the art.

I am glad that there are younger photographers who are committed to their visions.

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