image by Emiliano Granado
I go back and forth a lot about the whole idea of what kind of photographer I want to be. And with the name switchover (you noticed, right?) it has been the subject of many conversations between Heather & I. Ideally every picture I took I would be proud to hang on my wall, every job I completed would contain heart and soul. But that's just not the way it is, and that fact is something I think most photographers wrestle with. Don't get me wrong, I'm grateful for any and all jobs that come my way, and try my best with each one of them, but there is always a voice in the back of my head asking where are you going with this?
So when I came across Emiliano Granado's blog post this morning it made my day. I love when you have this unspoken struggle going on, and then something finds you that lets you know you're not alone in it. I think he put it amazingly well. This really shouldn't surprise me, though. The dude's a damn fine photographer, you would be wise to check out his site. So without further ado, let me quote him-
It’s no secret that as working commercial/editorial photographers we have to take jobs that we’re not necessarily proud of. Headshots, product photography, white seamless with studio lighting, etc etc. These shoots aren’t going to make my portfolio because it’s not the kind of work I want to be known for. It’s not what’s going to differentiate me from others. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t have a problem doing them. In fact, I actually like shoots that are different from what I do on most days – a new challenge and a change of pace. Diversity, dudes!
I’ve done my fair share of these for sure. I was setting up a corporate headshot recently and there was some nice daylight streaking in from the window. I was testing the light with Nathanael (a fabulous photographer in his own right) and really like the result. I think it’s a really nice portrait of him.
We turned on the studio strobes after that and did the job, but the whole time I kept thinking about this portrait.
The morale of the story here is that every time you have a camera in your hands, you have an opportunity to make something significant and lasting. Something with gravitas. My success won’t be based on whether or not I’m rich and famous and book a million commercial jobs. That would be nice, for sure, but my ultimate goal is to create photographs that matter.
Put me in a wagon and cart me 'round,