Is Photography a dying art?
Every two months or so, I find myself in a conversation about the state of photography. There is no doubt that technology is advancing our field faster than ever before, but is this technology really killing photography? Okay, okay, I know a ton is talked about among photographers on this subject, and most of it is like Chicken Little Chilla that the sky is falling. However, it is very difficult to ignore some of the big trends happening in the photography world. To discuss these movements in the photography industry, I sit down with my good friend and talented photographer, Pye Jirsa, to talk about some of the trends that we have both seen happening in the industry. The interview above is a lengthy format, open dialogue that I think is worth watching, but I've pulled out some of the underlying themes and written them down to open the dialogue even more. Feel free to give your opinion below and tell us if these concerns are real and war-torn, or if these changes in photography do not matter at all.
Role of photographer
Perhaps the biggest change in photography, such as whether it is or not, is the actual role of the photographer. In the past, photography used to be an artistic passion for marketing, criticism, social outreach, and little time to worry about connecting directly to its audience. Yes, photographers always had to be skilled at marketing their work to potential clients and advertising agencies, but something has changed dramatically in the wake of the social media tsunami. Gone are the days, when a photographer was just one piece of a creative team that operated the camera, while the creative director and advertising agency worked hard to nail the artistic vision of the end client. More and more often, photographers are hired for their vision, for camera operation, for their social reach and audience, and for their ability to manage a huge team such as a circus master. It is becoming harder and harder for a photographer to say, "I just want to make photos" without taking into account all the other responsibilities that were often passed on to other creative professionals. It now seems, more than ever, that to be a successful photographer, they will need their massive social media reach. This may be necessary in the commercial world, where media shoppers want to move towards a remodel channel (photographer's audience), or it may mean that wedding photographers need a huge following to see the growing number of professional photographers. Require his or her local market. Whatever field you are photography in, there is no doubt that the name of the game has changed and the stakes are higher than ever. The big question that we need to ask ourselves is: "Is this change different from what photographers had done 30 years ago?"
Technical skill set of a photographer
Are photographers becoming less technically sound in the field of photography? This is the question I am asking myself more and more often. There is no doubt that in the golden age of photography, photographers had to master the technical skills, from film loading, to understanding how aperture, shutter and film speed worked together, in film making, To master flash photography without having to look at the image, manual focusing, and knowing which film to shoot. Heaven forbid We also walk in the dark or start contemplating multiple frames of the film together with pre-Photoshop! From the earliest times, photography was always a very technical art, even for those who did not want to be very technical. Digital photography has changed everything. Yes, of course you can still be as technical as you want to be, but from my actual experiences of being deep in the industry for 15-plus years now, I feel like a photographer more than ever There are experts in real mechanics. As more and more images are created entirely in post-production, as such, photos directly from the camera do not begin at all. I am a big fan of post-production and am using all the tools that Photoshop has to offer, but it feels like we have reached a point where the gap between photographer and digital artist comes. Gone, from which we see the most imagination, is actually more digital art than actual photography.
Will technology adversely affect the gear we use? The final thing to think about all of this involves gear that many of us love and cherish. In all creative fields, as technology evolves, the tools we use to make our art change. Very few people are still building businesses around dark rooms. Sink cables have been replaced by radio waves. Warm incandescent lights are all but replaced by LED lights. The mirrors in our DSLR seem to be on the way out, and I'm sure the shutter on our camera is the next element on the way. And while all this is happening for our physical means of trade, the technology that processes our images is getting better and better.
The light at the end of the tunnel
I find these conversations super interesting, and I like talking about it with people like PA Jirsa, because there is always a silver lining to be found. For both Pye and me, we are not 100% traditionalists who think that photography should only be this technical approach to capturing light, but at the same time, we also respect the role of a photographer so that this process Camera to be completed. I love hearing how Pye's views on this topic relate to increasing efficiency as a photographer, as well as the overall customer experience for his clients. As a photographer it is easy to have heated debates about what true photography is, but at the end of the day, most of the general public, including your clients, do not care about these things at all. If we can find ways to enjoy life more by spending less time behind a computer while giving our customers a better product, then we should all be in favor of that development in photography. What do you think Do today's photographers need to do the same thing, so that we can hire the same photographer before hiring? Is the technical art of "getting it right in the camera" a fading skill set, and if so, does it even matter? Do photography companies making traditional cameras, lenses and lighting equipment face new challenges in the form of portable cameras and software, making amazing images easier and easier?
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