Upon reflection, I owe much of my re-found passion for photography to Twitter.
When I started seriously using Twitter (perhaps a year after I first created my account) I happened through chance to follow a very talented Cedar Rapids photographer, Bryce Moore. I watched his photographs come through my stream on a daily basis, and only later learned he was about mid-way through a personal pledge to post one picture every day. And my goodness…what pictures!
Watching his pictures float across my screen over the days recalled my own early years with a camera. I was never very good with the technical aspects of a camera. The f-stops and depths-of-field confounded me. But I remembered having a good eye, seeing things from a perspective many others did not. So I picked up a camera and off I went, a first no further than my back yard.
I’ve grown a lot in the months since then (has it been 10 months already?) I follow many other photographers on Twitter now, of varying skill levels. Some I aspire to, some I objectively think I am on par with, some I am frankly significantly better than. All of them I learn from.
Every post at the site Cherokee By Design makes me gasp with the incredible beauty, color, and perspective. His photos are all the more impressive because he does no post-processing at all. Every picture posted is straight from the camera. I don’t know how he does it, but I envy his work desperately.
Sunsetseasoul at Art Is My Sanity offers photographs that tend to be deeply dark, almost to the point of masking details. Yet als0 filled bright, vibrant color at stark contrast with the general tone. It’s a style that is intriguing and striking.
A photographer known as Watching Seasons offers stunning images of nature at Watching Seasons. Flora and fauna is captured with clarity and brilliance, accompanied by excellently-phrased paragraphs explaining the history and general information about her rich subjects.
In the face of such experience and beauty, what do I have to offer? Awhile back I made a private pact with myself to follow in Bryce’s footsteps and post a picture every day. I figured this would accomplish two goals:
- Make sure I kept active with my camera. I don’t want to lose my skills – or stop growing them – simply because I’ve stopped doing anything with them.
- Grow readership by keeping my site active on a daily basis.
But lately I’ve been thinking I’m doing myself and my followers a disservice with this approach. More than once I’ve caught myself posting a picture I’m not happy with simply because I needed something. I’ve even caught myself posting previously rejected photos just so I wouldn’t miss a day.
There’s another side to that coin though. There have also been a handful of photos that I had previously rejected that, by tweaking the post-processing a bit differently, actually turned out pretty good. I was able to approach them with a fresh mind. And it is certainly true that I have had readers rave about photos that in my opinion are some of my greatest failures – at least, among those photos that I have actually allowed others to see.