So……..last weekend I ventured forth into the wilds and shot photographs, but it wasn’t until mid-week that I was actually able and willing (and emphasis is placed on the word “willing”) to take a look at them. The British use the term ‘rubbish’ to describe that which we Americans typically call ‘crap’. Crap or rubbish the meaning gets through and I wasn’t prepared for being critical of my own work. This is something new (well, sort of) and I must say it’s a disheartening process.
In the past almost all of my photography was simply related to the process of capturing a moment in time for prosperity. Artistry was unimportant. Technique inconsequential. Picture taking was simply a means by which to preserve a moment in time so one could look back upon it at some future point and have a nice smile. The finer points of photography were, shall we say, upon the back burner. But now I must buck up, consider all manners of issues and shoot, shoot, shoot!
Alas, I have now taken my nascent steps into self-loathing.
When one stops taking pictures for the purpose of capturing a moment, but instead attempts to consider what the picture will say, or convey, if you will, one must be prepared for the tortuous process of self examination and criticism. While I have heard and read others make statements concerning the prodigious amount of rubbish/crap they shoot before finding a few gems, I had assumed that my innate gifts and natural talents would spare me of such mundane trouble. Those other mere mortals may have to search high and low to find a pitiful few ‘keepers’, but my media card will be bountifully filled with only the stellar and spectacular.
While still operating purely on amateur inclinations and hubris, I had to wade through the excrement upon my media cards to find anything of merit or value. Maybe five of the pictures of cardinals are okay (with one being pretty nice in my opinion) and nothing of the waterfalls being of any value other than a waste of battery power, which means the power company will make a few cents from me when I recharge it. At least someone will be happy. The photos from Saturday (taken at a golf course in our community) also left me wallowing in despair.
To make matters worse I quickly realized that working with photography software is not as ‘fun and easy’ as I had led myself to believe. I do not lack for software options (minimalist to serious ametuer), but more advanced (and I’m speaking of Adobe’s PhotoShop Elements 6 and PhaseOne’s Capture One) are markedly more intimidating. Just as I believed my so-called natural ability would lead to excellent results from picture one, I assumed my natural talent to pickup on software would be more than sufficient to see me through these applications.
To quote the oft-used expression from the Star Wars movies, “I’ve got a bad feeling about this.”