There once was a point in time where photographers were considered artists, visual creatives, shaping light and creating not only powerful but artistic images, but in recent years it seems like the art of photography has slowly died.
Think about it, with technology and social media we are flooded with selfies, pictures of children getting ready for their first day of school and what is the next food item to enter our mouths, we have been conditioned to appreciate these images, but when we see a true work of art, it goes under appreciated, but I dont think its just on the viewers themselves.
As photographers we get in the mind state that since we are just taking pictures of pretty models that the images are perfect and dont get me wrong, some of the guys that are taking pictures of models are crushing it, but is that all photography has become? Stand there with your ass out in a sexy pose and boom it's a hit, but the guys that really put effort into their images get shunned.
Von Wong is a huge inspiration in my work, he creates visual art and mostly without the help of photoshop. He plans his shoots like films, capturing his audiences in a single frame. Now dont get me wrong here, its not all photography that has lost it's art. Photojournalism, Concert photographers, sports photographers create art with no prep, they just have the eye for the shot.
To me it seems like the art form that I love dearly has become a business of snap shots, moments that will be forgotten after a few months, I am guilty of this too, but after looking at my work and tearing it apart over and over again, there was no art to it. It was flat, bland and forgettable. So where do I go from here?
I looked back at what I learned in my art history classes in college, thought long and hard about the artists that came before me, their single frames captured some of the most human emotions, they encouraged us to feel in some capacity, they were just simply powerful in every form of the word.
So as a photographer are you a visual artist or are you a snap shotter?
The art of photography can still be saved, but it's up to the guys that call themselves Photographers to save it. Take risks, create, show people what you see in your head and for fucks sake stop photoshopping the shit out of your images, if you want something to be in the frame put it there on location. Create art, not an image that will be forgotten in a month.