I've just returned home from work and I've checked Uchujin's tweet of the making of a Daguerreotype. Started watching it and was really impressed by the amount of work, preparation and tools needed to create one. And I thought regular development was a challenge.
I watched a video the other day about a man who came up with his own set of rules to live by. One of them was "always try to do your best" and another was "don't try to be better than anyone else". I like these. I think they would not be bad to adopt. And so, when I apply this to photography it appears that I've been encountering a few issues.One is, I genuinely believe my immediate friends take better pictures than me. So, this should be a good thing. I'm in the company of people with great skill and eye's that can see what I'll never be able to. This also inspires me to try to take "good" pictures. Unfortunately, out of the insane number of photo's I've taken within the last two and a half years I'd say that I'm happy with maybe 2 or 3 of them. I've poured a lot of time and energy and money into this and what is interesting is that, in the process I've managed to make more good friends than good pictures (I don't quite know why given the quality of my shots). Now I'm sure a few of my friends would argue that I've managed to make more than a handful of great shots and that would be nice of them to say but I don't think I have. And if the reason for doing this for me is, just that, to make me happy and for me to make pictures that I am happy with then is there a point in continuing when I have clearly failed? Have I really tried my best or could I do more? And what is ones best anyway? Where do we draw the line? What and how much do I need to sacrifice in order to really, genuinely do my best (the job, the wife, the friends?) Photography can be a bit on the evil side. You can try all you like and not make a good picture. But because of the nature of photography we're lulled into this idea that "maybe the next shot" will be the one. And so you continue in the hope that the next one will be better or be good. At what point do you stop and admit defeat?
What's also interesting about photography for me is the idea that pictures that are unique to an individuals perspective. This and the idea that no one moment in time is ever the same makes every picture (almost) unique. This is suppose to be one of the main attractors of photography. But what if no one finds your viewpoint interesting? What if, as you look around you discover many people have a more interesting view of the world than you do? Is there a point to continue when everyone passes you by, uninterested in your view of the world?