Be Open But Be Yourself

17 Jun

Dreamy Flower-1(This posting is applicable to all creatives even though I’m writing from a photographer’s viewpoint)

Photography can be a little intimidating if you put your images out there. Everyone has an opinion. Heck, I have opinions. And let me tell you, my opinions can sometimes hurt….myself that is.

“We are are own worst critics”.

“We have met the enemy and the enemy is us” (Taken a bit of out context from Walt Kelly’s classic Pogo comic strip. Walt himself took it and slightly rephrased it from a quote by Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry)

To share your image is to bare your soul in some ways. I can only speak for myself but when I share images, I’m sharing my vision. I’m sharing the final output of a personal creative journey. It has cost me time and effort, working and reworking the compostion to the best I can in-camera. It has cost me more time and effort in the post-processing as needed on a computer (This is the due to using RAW as opposed to JPEG. RAW requires processing. JPEG is still a processed image; it is just done by the camera/smartphone instead of the photographer. Not a subject for this posting).

It has cost me sweat (literally in these recent days of heat and humidty though sweating is effortless in all types of weather for me – LOL).

It has cost me scrapes and cuts as I trek through varying terrains to capture that vision. Even the occasional spilling of blood has transpired in some of my photographic journeys. And not even from dramatic events such as leaping from a building over a precarious drop to another building as Tom Cruise and others so aptly pull off movie after movie. No….these are the results of missteps, slippery rocks, loose dirt, etc. And I love it. Yeah, my legs now look like permanent varicose veins from the scars. But I’ve earned them!

All this to say, again, it’s risky sharing my photos. But I welcome the thoughts and opinions. I welcome different perspectives, such as “have you thought about doing this” or “I would try it that way”. Photography is an evolving skill. It should never be static but dynamic…fluid…in motion. One of the best ways this happens is when we open ourselves to input from others.

But in the end, make it your vision. Have a thick skin. Don’t be afraid to say “this is who I am” no matter what the critics say. Own your work. Stand by it.  Create and share out of your passion.  I’d rather have people be “meh” about an image that is borne out of my passion and creativity than to share an image that elicits high praise but leaves me feeling less than satisfied.

The image above is one that has people divided. I won’t get into details here over what that is. But the point is I was open and even experimented with making a change to the image based on suggestions. Ultimately, it didn’t work for me. I kept the image the way it was because it feels right to me; it stays true to the creative vision I had for it.

Because people will inevitably make the wrong assumption if I don’t clarify, I’m inserting a sort of disclaimer here. I want to say there is nothing wrong with creating for clients who desire a specific sort of content, a look, whatever it is they want or need. I’d love to parlay photography into an income generator of some sort. Hopefully that day might come for me as well!

Comments/thoughts are always welcome. Feel free to post below in the comments section. Thanks for allowing me to share with you  “images from a quiet world”.

Interested in this image for your home/professional environment? Clicking the link below will take you directly to a gallery page where you can order it.

Dreamy Flower

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