Vision, much has been written about vision, it is the “it” in the artist world. Alain Briot points out that, painting is just as technological as photography. It is based on the technology required to create the paint, stretch the canvas, make the brushes for the proper stroke(s), correct use of the varnishes, and so on. While photography, is based on the technology required to create cameras, lenses, inks, papers, etc.
Interestingly, some of this technology is common to both mediums, for example the use of pigments in both paints and printing inks to name but one. Vision is very different being an abstract concept instead of a physical object. However, the two are more closely related than they may appear because behind every line of code and every microprocessor lies the vision of the person or the team of people who created it. Vision therefore is at the root of all things, because behind every physical object lies the vision of its inventor.
I once asked Joel Tjintjelaar, “When does vision start, is it at the scene or in the digital darkroom?” His response, “ It never stops, it’s always there.” As I reflect back on his answer he’s absolutely right. I now find myself asking why or what if I did this or did that? I see a creation done by another photographer, I ask how can I do it differently? Am I able to create an image that will also inspire? Is my creation expressing how I feel when I took the shot and now develop this image that communicates with the viewer? But my vision “must” reflect my own personal style and not just copy what someone else has inspired me to do! I recall from a previous blog I did where Cole Thompson made a profound statement regarding his style when asked by a reviewer if he was trying to do Ansel Adams? To which Cole responded, “Yes I am.” The reviewer responded, “Ansel’s already done Ansel and you’re not going to do him better, what can you create that shows your unique vision.” So there you have it, in a nutshell.
I’ve discussed at length with Joel about the digital darkroom when is enough in completing or putting final touches on an image then concerning myself with what others think of my work. It is a never ending battle! This is when I must ask myself “WHY”. As Joel would ask: why did I create that look and feel, why this image, what was that “it” factor that describes me in the photo??? I’m still asking, it’s all part of the learning curve.
Julia Anna Gospodarou, co-author with Joel “ From Basics To Fine Art…..” points out, “I need to create the image because….and do not start without an answer. No one can express what you feel better than yourself. Be confident in your processing style and be able to process anything you imagine. Learn your style and everything you can learn about it.” Julia concludes, “With a lots of work something good always results. In times of doubt there is art. You’ll always go through times like this in art, expect them to come, otherwise you are an artist. SOMETIMES YOU ARE THE ONLY ONE WHO BELIEVES IN WHAT YOU DO.