“The Splendor of it All” – Cuckolds Light, Maine
© Doug van Kampen, 2013 :: All Rights Reserved
Among the other photographers I know, there has been a great deal of conversation about social media and the effect it has on the one think that keeps us sane as creatives. We all agreed that we often internalize the question and action we have all grown to despise, “What will generate the most “likes” on Facebook or other social media outlets, followed by the action of doing just that. David DuChemin writes about shooting with your heart and shooting what you love…something that is surely lacking among this new generation of social media photographer. Granted the ability for the everyday person with an iPhone to make compelling images is there, but I believe people with the intention of shooting for the masses have completely missed the point of why we fell in love with photography in the first place. Some people draw, some paint, some write poetry, some go so far as to journal their daily lives. Me? Photography is my journal, my poetry, and my peace.
From the second I laid eyes on a white sheet of paper being transformed into a photograph, I was transfixed, with an inability to speak or adequately form the words to describe what I felt. Part of the magic was, and has always been, the act of capturing a moment in time that will, for all intents and purposes, never happen again. I am throughly convinced that when I die, God will give mew the most elaborate slideshow of the images I have made with my eyes…those that could never be captured on any paper, screen, and the like. I will become transfixed again, with my eyes somewhere entirely different, where all of this won’t matter.
The point I’m trying to make in all of this is that you, no matter what your skill level, no matter what equipment you use, no matter what your musings are, have a duty behind the lens to shoot with your heart. Don’t concern yourself with what others are doing. Be progressive. Study. Contemplate what challenges in your craft you must overcome…the challenges you must overcome. If “likes” are what you desire, then so be it. But please my friends, never sell yourself out for a show that you’ll never see again and fill your life with images that you’d never want to see in your slideshow. Stay creative, be in love with your craft, and always ask yourself, “why?” -DvK