Making Time Stand Still April 25 2016, 0 Comments
So much of our lives is spent in motion, too much… absolutely too much. We live in an era where being still, being quiet or contemplative is seen as unproductive, a waste of valuable time. The cell phone, the text messages, iPad, iPod, cable and computer are seen as musts. Many are rarely “in the moment” but preoccupied with these distractions. Time springs by while as a society we are drowning in the misbelief that we must be continually connected. The fact is these things disconnect us and I wonder how we have allowed ourselves to be lead so far off the path of reality. In my work, being still and completely unplugged is essential.
Photography is all about time. Often, I awaken long before dawn and am at a location waiting for the perfect moment in order to capture our amazing landscape. I can wait for hours, sometimes having to return to a place over a period of weeks or months. But when the timing is right I can make time stand still. When I press the shutter button for 1/60 of a second, 1/100 of a second, 1/125 of a second, time is literally stopped. The image is committed to film or a memory card. The laughter, the landscape, the celebration or rage of a storm is documented. In that minimal portion of a literal second, the truth of reality is revealed in only the way a photograph can display it. It is raw. It is unaltered.
We rely on images. Images share world events, our joy, our pain or just an incredibly beautiful landscape. The photographic journey does not alter images. It shares what the photographer sees and documents, not what it creates in a computer. True photographers take time to learn how to meter light, and understand depth of field. They engage the manual settings of their camera and learn to set the Kelvin Scale.
To quote George Eastman, "Light makes photography. Embrace it. Admire it. Love it. But above all KNOW LIGHT. Know it for all you're worth and you will know the key to photography."
Unplug and learn your art, your craft. Refrain from using someone else's intellectual property (software) to correct what you did not know to do in the field. Yes. It takes time, thought. But I can assure you no-one will ever wonder if your work is "real."