Tuesday, September 24, 2013

You Need Photographic Vision

Abandoned Homestead - Tehachapi, California
"The world is waiting for men with vision - it is not interested in mere pictures." --Charles Hawthorne
More than a year ago I published a post called Photographic Vision - What It Is And How To Get It. I created that piece because there is so little information out there on what is (in my opinion) the most essential thing one needs to have in order to be a successful photographer. Without vision, there are no great photographs.
Flower Star - Stallion Springs, California
You hear people say that you need vision, but you rarely hear anyone define that or explain how to get it. So I set out to explain it in the simplest way that I could. In the months since I have pushed that post as much as possible, yet it is still not nearly as read as it should be. People want to read about cameras and other equipment, and they completely miss what is truly important.

I define vision as a vivid and imaginative conception. It is a clear and creative idea. It is having a notion and then making it a reality.
On A Brighter Day - Tehachapi, California
In order to have vision you must clearly see in your mind what you want the image to look like, even before opening the shutter. If you don't know where you are going you will never arrive. So you must plan ahead and pre-visualize as much as possible. Try to imagine what the photograph will look like before you actually capture it. If you are satisfied, open the shutter. If you are not satisfied, refine your composition until you are satisfied.

But that is not enough. You must also be creative. You must be an artist. You must use your imagination to its fullest. You must put a piece of yourself into the image somehow. You have a point-of-view that is unique to you, and in some way that needs to end up in your photographs.
Machine Sunset - Stallion Springs, California
Photography is a form of non-verbal communication, so speak clearly and strongly through your images. You'll never achieve that with careless snapshots. You must start with a vivid and imaginative conception. That's where successful photographs begin.

If you have not viewed my post on photographic vision, please do so (click here). Also, check out my post on the decisive moment (click here).
Curves - Stallion Springs, California

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