How Different Are You?
This article was originally published in June 202.
The time is not right. The skies are overcast. No photographer shoots in harsh sunlight. It is sweltering hot. The rains were relentless. There was no subject worth photographing. The place was boring. I needed more zoom. I need more pixels. My lens is slow. I only have a compact. I forgot to carry a memory card. My battery was not charged… Over the past few months of interaction with students and hobbyists, I must have heard almost every excuse for not being able to make a good picture. But once in a while, some students catch me off-guard with a completely original excuse.
In fact, those who makes excuses to not shoot at all are better off than those who decide to blame their errors on the forces of circumstance. Then there are those who almost redeem themselves by getting a great frame once in a long while even as they explain how the shooting situation was just perfect. This sort of complaining is normal. We all do it. I think it is quite important to get our balance back. If you think about it, most of us shoot when all these factors are just right. It gives us a reason to believe that success in photography was not within us but was because everything else was right. But, if you decide to do all the wrong things and yet come with excellent photographs, you must be different.
Photography, by its very nature, allows you to learn by observation. The most mundane or common space or place can present you with brilliant photographic opportunities if you decide to spend some time studying it. Searching for a more interesting way to capture your subject is one way to go about it. But then, this method tends to get very clinical and can be impersonal. I believe that if you truly enjoy what you see, and make pictures based on your fascination with the subject, it can yield more meaningful results for the viewer.