Photography on the brain

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Obsession is when you find something new to photograph even while sitting on the can in your own house, which you’ve done every morning for the last five years.

There are few subtle but distinct divisions in what one would classify as interests: curiosity, enthusiasm, passion, and finally, obsession. Curiosity gets you in; enthusiasm keeps you going; the line to passion is a bit harder to define, but obsession is simple: you’re thinking about it 24/7. I think for most activities, obsession is probably one step away from certifiable madness and some sort of institutionalisation. But I’d actually argue that it’s necessary to even have a sniff of success given the current state of the industry.

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Transcending the process

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The final article in this series on printing leaves behind the technique and even the images to consider a far deeper philosophical consideration: art vs. the process vs. the result. To make a successful image, there are three primary considerations: the idea, the execution, and the display medium. Most photographers struggle to manage more than one of these – there are a lot of people who are very good at shooting brick walls and test charts and can remember ever single custom function of their cameras, but cannot compose at all. Similarly, there are a lot of people who point and shoot with their phones but are quite gifted compositionally; yet they are frustrated by their inability to capture what they imagine. And both groups almost never think about how the finished work is to be presented and viewed.

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