Sunday, October 13, 2013

All those pics

I have taken literally tens of thousands of photographs.  I last year had the shutter replaced on my camera.  It was guaranteed to 200,000 clicks.  I'm sure I had taken at least that many with the camera.  This year I have eclipsed 10,000.   The question is what to do with all these photographs?  Delete.  I have been dumping photographs at an ever accelerating rate.   I have 4 terabytes of external hard drives sitting here on my desk filled with photographs and my camera is only 8 megapixel.   But, I do own 3 other cameras.  Anyway I take a lot of pics.  I had a 2 terabyte drive fail last week.  I did not gasp and grab my chest.  I just disconnected and put it in a drawer.  One of these days I will get it recovered.  It is no big deal.  After all since it happened I have taken about 1000 pics.  I am on my way to replacing it with different photographs.

All this leads me to the question: Why?  If I was taking them to because I thought they were all great I would rush off and get that hard drive recovered. I would quit deleting.  Photography in the beginning was to document travels, family, things of beauty.   Now it has just become a thing.  I just do it.  I keep looking for a new challenge.  I want it to be difficult.  I want to have to think about it.  How will the lighting effect the mood, the pose,  the setting.  I want to go places where few people have been or none.  I do not like standing in the same place as legions of others, unless I can do something unique.  Sure I do it, but the thrill is making it different.

Wait!....I just remembered some of the pics on that hard drive.  I gotta get those pics.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

I Can't Wait

Things have changed in photography. It has only been about 12 years since film.  Back then we waited for the film to be shipped back to us and next time we adjusted.  Today we look at the histogram on the back of the camera and make an adjustment here and there. Histogram and photography, who woulda thought.  It seems like yesterday it was 24 exposures and that was it.  Today it is 100, 1000 exposures.  We had to remember to take our cameras, not our phones. Back then professional photographers were few and far between.  Today, well, everyone is a pro or thinks they are.  Back then we sent off a slide or a negative and waited for the 8x10, and if the results were good we showed a few of our closest friends.  Today people we don't know take a peak.  We even seek out the pics of others.  Remember the jokes about going over to someones house and looking at the vacation pics.  The jokes always alluded to the boredom.  Today we don't wait until the end of the vacation.  We are transported there via smart phone.   I have to admit I like seeing people's travel photos.  Sometimes it is with great envy.  I recently read it took Ansel Adams years to perfect his Moonrise photograph.  (I never was exposed to the darkroom, but wish I had been.  I suspect some of you miss those days.)  Today in minutes we can fix a pic.  Want your ex out of a group pic?  Sure why not.  I want blue eyes?  OK.  There use to be an argument about Kodachrome and Velvia.  The former had more natural colors and the latter more saturated.  Today saturation has been taken to a whole new level.   In fact with post processing the viewer is often seeing an altered reality.  I like the many of the changes but there is one thing I miss the most.

There is something about anticipation.  Waiting, hoping that things will be as you want them to be.  As a child waiting for Christmas hoping for just the right things to be under the tree.  It was that way when I shot with film.  I sent off what I was sure were world class pics to be processed and waited in anticipation.  Today I look on the back of the camera and a short time later they are on the computer. Then I post them on FB or some other internet circus.  There is just no anticipation.  I miss the anticipation.