Observations and Reflections

Below are two definitions from Bob Thall’s introduction to On City Streets: Chicago, 1964-2004.  Both have influenced my approach to photography and helped to develop my style.

  1. Modernist Formalism is interested in the reality of the photograph.  The photograph is independent of the real world.  The photograph makes the viewer conscious of how he/she sees or ignores the visual world.
  2. Personal Documentary makes highly descriptive and objective looking images, but the real point is to collect evidence to support the photographer’s view.

These are three questions I ask when evaluating my photographs:

  1. Will it inform the viewer?
  2. Will it move the viewer?
  3. Will it make the viewer think about how he/she sees the world?

Guidelines I follow:

  1. Prior preparation prevents poor pictures.
  2. Simplify my kit.
  3. Know what is in the frame.
  4. Develop a personal style.
  5. When I’m not taking photographs I’m thinking about what I could be photographing.






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