It Doesnt Amount to a Hill of Beans

On March 14, 2013 I received an email from a “Master of Photography” and a “Photographic Craftsman” that was doing nothing but ripping myself, my art, and those that look at my art apart.  Below is a quote from that email:

“I don't care who or how many times you get compliments from non-photopgraphers, it doesn't amount to a hill of beans.” (Yes the spelling error was in the email just like that, that is a cut and paste from the exact email)

At no point have I ever made Art for Artists, Photographers or those with a background in Art.  My art is made for my viewers and not only do I make Art but I make Fine Art, pieces that evoke or invoke emotions.  My pieces have always dealt with social and political issues, things that affect us in everyday life.  It might not always be a pretty picture but if it conveys feelings, a message and relates to the topic at hand than it is, by definition Art.

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The Cosmos and the Artist

We all would love to know how to tell the future.  We would like to know what the next set of lottery numbers would be?, who will win the super bowl? or even what will my life bring me?  Well thankfully life doesn’t make it possible to answer most of those questions, but what life will bring me is a bit easier to answer.  There are many forms of divination or fortune telling out there but the one that draws me close is Tarot Readings.

Now don’t get the wrong idea, I do not visit psychics, nor do I use divination to make life choices.  I really do not want to know what my future holds.  No I tend to use my Tarot cards from time to time to give me an insight to where I am at in my life and give me some clarity.

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Screaming, without uttering a word

In the movie dead poets society John Keating (played by Robin Williams) makes the students stand on his desk, why does he do this?  “I stand upon my desk to remind myself that we must constantly look at things in a different way”  So if we can just stand on a chair, table, stool, box or in this case a desk then why doesn’t everyone do this? 

It wasn’t until I became an artist that I began to notice my surroundings.  I noticed how different all the little details look.  Nothing was beyond scrutiny for me anymore.  I noticed shapes, color, how things interacted with one another.  I used to grab my camera and get close up (macro) photos of flowers, railings, pieces of wood, or anything really.  I would just walk and get in so close you couldn’t tell what I was photographing anymore. 

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Late Night on the East Grand

My wife Jennifer and I decided a couple of weeks ago to join my parents for their second annual trip down to Danforth, Maine for a camping trip.  They stay for a full week at this cabin on the water.  The dock is literally less than 20 meters away.  We had a pretty relaxing day… I did almost nothing but had a few drinks, smoke some great cigars and even choked down a large 1 ½” Porterhouse steak.  We even used a 4 person golf cart to get around in.  It was completely and totally work free.  Don’t worry I am going somewhere with this….

As the night drew near, and like any workaholic photographer I brought like 75% of my camera equipment (which takes one small mule or 4 trips for me to lug in), I broke out my camera with my huge 650 to 2600 mm lens (if you don’t know, that’s huge) and my 55 to 200mm zoom (fairly average but still amazing) and took some photos.  I had taken two lovely photos after the sun went into hiding for the night, and one of the moon.  It was just enough to get me to get a few good shots for the office walls in.

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"Everyone Has to Start Somewhere"

    These are words that I have heard echoed by people all over the place for as long as I can remember.  It seems to be the most blasé phrase to ever be spoken to allow people to do whatever they want, however they want and to have no regards for the right way to do anything.  People think that just because we have to start as beginners that doing things wrong and not educating ourselves is acceptable.

    I fully understand that we have to start down our road to what we do as an amatuer, that isnt what bothers me.  What bothers me the most is that someone has some disposable income and goes out to buy art supplies, in this case a camera.  They learn how to turn it to auto, change a couple of settings, then click a shutter and bang you have a picture.  I then can only guess at what goes through their head next, “HEY!!! I can take photos, I took a good photo, I am a professional!”. Read more: "Everyone Has to Start Somewhere"

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