People enjoy photography I think because it is a challenge. If it was easy to produce an exceptional photograph every time you pressed the shutter, no one would be interested in it.
There are mysteries. There are problems to solve. There are unknowns. There is luck and there is error.
But what separates good photographers from poor ones is effort. Good photographers are the ones who are always working. They are the ones who are possessed. They are the ones who go to bed at night thinking about the next image, and thinking about how they need to change themselves to get to where they want to be.
And there is this zen in photography where you just see. You notice things that others don’t. You are often overwhelmed with imagery…with light…with shadows and contrast and colour and form. You are consumed with geometry and finding a poetic order to something without it being any where near perfect.
Yet even with all these things that are enough to drive you mad, a camera in the hand can set you free. It can release you from self awareness. It can unburden you from rule and restraint.
And the mind of an artist is a very strange thing. We think we’re starting to grasp something until we come to terms with knowing nothing. For every question, there is another question. And just like for every thing we think is true, the opposite is often also true.
The ultimate zen though is being free – free from too much thought…free from technology…free from constraint…free from worry about what others may think…and free from needing any acknowledgement that what you’re doing is valid. That’s when art happens.
Be free. And and enjoy the art of the image. That’s all that matters.