Photography is in the eye of the beholder. Now even though the original saying is somewhat different, I will use it as a metaphor for this article.
My passion was always to be a better photographer, and, there were two ways to achieve my goal. Self-taught, or learn from the best, “New York Institution for Photography.” I signed up and the rest was history. I never did accomplish professional status but there were many things I learned from that course.
This article is not about the Institute with the 5-star rating. It’s about what they said in the very first lesson that changed my way of thinking. https://www.nyip.edu/
Now through all fairness, that was many years back, but after all these years, one thing still rings in the back of my mind. When taking those award-winning photos, it’s not necessarily the most expensive camera that’s making you a “Rembrandt in Photography.” It’s the person behind the camera.
The most important part of the whole course was that you could see beauty everywhere. It’s all around; all you have to do is “LOOK AND SEE!” That was worth the entire cost of the course.
Photography is in the eye.
We don’t have to travel to Hong Kong for those fantastic pictures, and the Chinese don’t have to come here.
It starts right here, looks around, stands in one spot, squint your eyes if you like, and slowly do a complete turnaround. Notice all the beauty that surrounds you.
All those award-winning photos, right here.
Cameras today have many functions to make your photos pop, and Photoshop corrects your imperfections and mistakes. But nothing takes the place of the beauty and the part of you that you put into every shot you take.
So, is photography in the eyes?
Take my information for free and stand in one spot, do the 180° thing and you’ll find I’m right and, the teacher before me was right. Eh!
Now that you know where to look, get your imagination and creativity flowing and start using your talent. Let’s get cracking, “I Mean Shooting.”
Here is an example of two creative photographers that went out of the ordinary realm of taking photos.
The Huck Mag describes this New York City cabby Ryan Weideman, did it this way, “He’s a street photographer that drove a cab for decades. He had one eye on the road and a camera and in his hand.”
The neat story goes this way; a cab driver buddy took unemployed Ryan Weideman on a ride one night. He was instantly hooked and quickly started working the nightshift as a cab driver. With a few paychecks under his belt, Weideman found a small apartment in Times Square when ‘The Deuce,’ was nicknamed. It was home to pushers, prostitutes, sex palaces, porn theatres, and the likes “It was the spot for me,” he remembers saying, his voice alive with excitement.
It was a “Photographer’s Paradise.” As seen in this gallery of photos, he had no trouble finding a model for his photoshoots. These famous photos portrayed the nightlife of New York City.
“Through the eyes of a talented taxi driver/photographer.”
His artwork has been view in many different countries around the world. Check out this site for a glimpse of his artistic work.
And then there was another photographer taking it to a different level.
Some of this information comes from “Anika Burgess /Atlas Obscura.”
Like Ryan Weideman photography, photographer Langdon Clay also used his talent to shoot night photos in Manhattan and Hoboken. Langdon Clay’s specialty was photos of abandoned cars. Taking pictures at night gave him the freedom to shoot without the distraction of people. The title of each image includes the name of the vehicle, which are themselves reminiscent like a 1972 Chevrolet El-Camino SS, 1970 Plymouth Duster, 1973 Ford Gran Torino Sport. All the greats classics.
Shooting night photos would be the same as doing photography in the fog. The sometimes poor and weird lighting conditions gave the images that quaint, interesting, and mystique feel.
According to the article of Anika Burgess, Photographer Langdon Clay spent two years capturing gritty, gorgeous scenes of street-parked cars in the NYC night. His new book, Cars—New York City, 1974-1976, is published by Steidl. It is an Excellent Read.
There you have it, why you don’t have to go far to see beautiful and exciting photography.
Here are a few out of the rhythm famous photographers. Cars and hookers might not be your forte, but the gist of the article is, it’s YOU, not your expensive camera. Cameras are basically a stupid piece of plastic and glass.
It’s you, and your imagination that makes the magic; remember, beauty is all around you.
My new found hobby is Drone Photography, now …that’s taking photoshoots to a different level again. Photography is “In the eyes of the beholder.”