Glen Goffin Photography

Friday, May 22, 2009

46 Photography with a Conscience

I was going to title this: Conscious of Conscience. Say that 5 times fast and I'll buy you a seashell from that girl at the seashore or maybe a peck of pickled peppers from Peter ... well you know what I mean.

I was moved by the collection of short, 5+ minute interviews with leading photojournalists hosted by the Canon Professional Network (go here). From elephants to silver-back gorillas to Iranian refugees and Bangladesh social plights, these interviews are passionate and sobering. Don't expect to look at your pictures of flowers or streetlights or park benches the same way again.

These are photographers with a message and the message itself is more important to them than the photograph. I tend to focus on the photograph and forget what I was trying to say. Or actually, more often I never had anything to say to begin with.

Photojournalism isn't fine art photography which isn't commercial photography which isn't sports photography which isn't ...zzzz ... what? oh, yeah ... I mean these are great photojournalists and their whole gig is to go where we can't go and show us real situations, real people, real emotions, real joys and sorrows. That probably isn't our gig and I'm not saying the same shoe fits us all. But I do believe that even fine art photography is benefited when we at least ask ourselves, 'what am I trying to say?'

Coincidentally, I also layed my ears on an interview with Bob Krist by Matt Brandon (here) and was caught by his lament that the new 'ethic' sacrifices truth for aesthetics. Bob was a National Geographic photog and considers himself a storyteller ... a communicator. Hmmm ... I tend to think in terms of 'vibe' more than story. I try to express a feeling or a mood that maybe doesn't even have words to express it. That may also be why my stuff stinks!

Anyway ... as brainfood goes ... this post was bologna on a week-old pita so I hope you have some mustard ...

Peace and joy,


angeljosue said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Glen Goffin said...

angeljosue, thanks for visiting my blog :)

Debra Trean said...

I think every piece of art be it fine art or documentary it all speaks if one feels it when they shoot it vs just pointing the camera at something. I hate to see you say your stuff sucks because it does not. I feel you have a very strong eye and you use color to an advantage. You know when you have a good capture regardless.... sooooo at him.

Glen Goffin said...

Yeah, I agree, Deb. If you are connected to what you see when you create the image, it becomes an expression of the artist. Maybe it's just a matter of thoughtfulness ... something to chew on. BTW - you're too sweet!

Andreas said...

Yup! And that's another wonderful image. The patterns of the water, the curve leading into the image, the colors, that's good, real good.