The end of the year is coming, as i am writing this lines it’s 11;50 am so in 12 hours or so it will be 2018, and for many years due to my introverted type that i am i tend to meditate a lot on a lot of things, i don’t know if it’s good or bad beneficial or prejudicial but can’t avoid it so tonight while our guests (family and friends) are celebrating the end of a year and the strart of another i will likely go outside in the very cold weather of California (about 60 degrees at night) and while i gaze at the stars try to gather my thougths and analyze what i have learned this year, and hope it was not a waste of time, which would be a waste of life, because to me time is life, and trying to remember some of the past years life lessons i remembered one, and that was “Honesty” i learned maybe a bit late in life that honesty is a prescious quality that is maybe undervalued in this world, and maybe it didn’t use to be this way because maybe 500 or 300 years a go businesses and deals were sealed just by saying “You have my word” and that was because a mans word was very important because if for some reason his word was not good anymore he would probably lose business. But in this day and age the norm is the opposite, to lie and be deceitful is common not only by people but from companies and it’s increasing as time goes by. So what happens in a world that is based in dishonesty well what happens is that when you find honesty it is like finding gold, it’s so rare that it’s very valuable, and that is because even dishonest people and companies want honest people, but if you work for a dishonest company you will be pressured into doing dishonest things in order to sell and make money for the company or for a person and you will have to decide to become dishonest or quit and stay loyal to your principals.
SO that is what i learned many years ago, Honesty is like gold in this world of dishonest driven people and businesses.
So what does this have to do with photography?
I think it’s the main ingredient for better photos, honesty, being honest with yourself, telling yourself the truth and not succumbing to influences from others, if you see that a photo of one of the gods of photography stinks well don’t kid yourself it stinks, that is being honest with yourself, and don’t be afraid to say it out loud, “Some of Ansel Adams photos stink” or “Some of Cartier Bresson’s photos stink”
and so on and so forth.
Once you have stopped being afraid and not depending on what other photographers think of you-you will be on your way to the road of freedom, freedom that is necessary to build your visual identity, or your photographic identity.