Alguns mantres per a fotògrafs insegurs

Sempre va bé aque algú digui les coses pel seu nom. Consells de la gent de Magnum a la resta de la humanitat fotogràfica :

1.Alex Webb

Photograph because you love doing it, because you absolutely have to do it, because the chief reward is going to be the process of doing it. Other rewards – recognition, financial remuneration – come to so few and are so fleeting. And even if you are somewhat successful, there will almost inevitably be stretches of time when you will be ignored, have little income, or often both. Certainly there are many other easier ways to make a living in this society. Take photography on as a passion, not a career.

2.Alec Soth

Try everything. Photojournalism, fashion, portraiture, nudes, whatever. You won’t know what kind of photographer you are until you try it. During one summer vacation (in college) I worked for a born-again tabletop photographer. All day long we’d photograph socks and listen to Christian radio. That summer I learned I was neither a studio photographer nor a born-again Christian. Another year I worked for a small suburban newspaper chain and was surprised to learn that I enjoyed assignment photography. Fun is important. You should like the process and the subject. If you are bored or unhappy with your subject it will show up in the pictures. If in your heart of hearts you want to take pictures of kitties, take pictures of kitties.

3.Alex Majoli

I would advise to read a lot of literature and look as little as possible [at] other photographers. Work everyday even without assignments or money, work, work, work with discipline for yourself and not for editors or awards. And also collaborate with people – not necessary photographers, but people you admire. The key word to learn is participation!

4.Carl De Keyzer

Give it all you got for at least five years and then decide if you got what it takes. Too many great talents give up at the very beginning; the great black hole looming after the comfortable academy or university years is the number one killer of future talent.

5.Christopher Anderson

Forget about the profession of being a photographer. First be a photographer and maybe the profession will come after. Don’t be in a rush to pay your rent with your camera. Jimi Hendrix didn’t decide on the career of professional musician before he learned to play guitar. No, he loved music and created something beautiful and that THEN became a profession. Larry Towell, for instance, was not a “professional” photographer until he was already a “famous” photographer. Make the pictures you feel compelled to make and perhaps that will lead to a career. But if you try to make the career first, you will just make shitty pictures that you don’t care about.

6.Chris Steele-Perkins

  1. Never think photography is easy. It’s like poetry in that it’s easy enough to make a few rhymes, but that’s not a good poem.
  2. Study photography, see what people have achieved, but learn from it – don’t try photographically to be one of those people.
  3. Photograph things you really care about, things that really interest you, not things you feel you ought to do.
  4. Photograph them in the way you feel is right, not they way you think you ought to.
  5. Be open to criticism – it can be really helpful – but stick to your core values
  6. Study and theory is useful, but you learn most by doing. Take photographs – lots of them – be depressed by them, take more, hone your skills and get out there in the world and interact.

7.David Alan Harvey

You must have something to say. You must be brutally honest with yourself about this. Think about history, politics, science, literature, music, film, and anthropology. What effect does one discipline have over another? What makes “man” tick? Today, with everyone being able to easily make technically perfect photographs with a cell phone, you need to be an “author”. It is all about authorship, authorship and authorship.

Many young photographers come to me and tell me their motivation for being a photographer is to “travel the world” or to “make a name” for themselves. Wrong answers in my opinion. Those are collateral incidentals or perhaps even the disadvantages of being a photographer. Without having tangible ideas, thoughts, feelings, and something almost “literary” to contribute to the discussion, today’s photographer will become lost in the sea of mediocrity…

Perhaps more simply put, find a heartfelt personal project. Give yourself the assignment you might dream someone would give you. Please remember: you and only you will control your destiny. Believe it, know it, say it.

8.Constantine Manos

Try not to take pictures [that] simply show what something looks like. By the way you put the elements of an image together in a frame, [you] show us something we have never seen before and will never see again. And remember that catching a moment makes the image even more unique in the stream of time.

Also, try to do workshops with photographers whose work you admire, but first ask around to make sure they are good teachers as well as good photographers. Taking good pictures is easy. Making very good pictures is difficult. Making great pictures is almost impossible.

9.Donovan Wylie

Never stop enjoying it. Try and not “look” for pictures but keep yourself always open and allow yourself to be stimulated by whatever hits you. Work towards a goal – book, exhibition – but more importantly, work towards finding your own voice, your subject and your application.

Accept that your work is more about you than what you represent, try to bridge that balance, without resorting to photographing your feet! In other words, try and translate personal experience into a collective one; it is very possible and I think the key quest of any art form…

Study all the great photographers and love doing it, start at the beginning, look at early American, and German, then French, then take a close look at artists using photography in the sixties – Ruscha etc. Don’t get bogged down in theory, but respect it, read Robert Adams on Photography, in fact embrace Robert Adams generally and you will learn a lot.

Always try and be honest with yourself. For example, is the idea of being a photographer more exciting to you than photography itself? If this is true, think about becoming an actor. If you genuinely love photography, don’t give it up. Understand and enjoy the fact that photography is a unique medium. Respect and work within photography’s limitations; you will go much further.

10.David Hurn

Don’t become a photographer unless its what you have to do. It can’t be the easy option. If you become a photographer you will do a lot of walking, so buy good shoes.

11.Dennis Stock

Young photographers should learn their craft well and don’t expect to make a constant living at taking pictures. But they should “follow their bliss”. Find time to pursue themes that indicate their concerns, big and small. Above all when shooting, make an articulate image.



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