09 November 2011

Is photography an exercise in Buddhist thinking?

Roughly ten years ago in the old days (I know, since when is a mere ten years ago the "old days"?) when film was the standard in photography, the notion of presenting your final image as envisioned when you shot it was a matter of developing the negative through skill, trial and error, and often a bit of luck. Literally and figuratively this meant taking the negative and turning it into a positive, turning it into an image that was as you imagined it when you shot it and thus give it the look you want all who see it to remember and associate with you.

Much like Buddhist philosophy which believes that we are not to change the world but the way we experience it, all of us who use digital capture devices, be it a camera or camera phone to capture the world around us have what I would say is the same responsibility. As photographers at any level we have the opportunity now more than ever to creatively turn the digital negative into a positive, much like life. After all, when you think about it life is one unprocessed negative as we take in the information before us with our senses unconsciously aware in that very moment of "capture". And then, like processing the digital negative from our camera, we wisely decide what to do with the information our senses have introduced into our consciousness so as to produce the desired effect.

So I challenge you to now think of the negative in any situation, photographic as in life, as an opportunity to turn it into something positive. Whatever you do it's your life to live as it is your photo to make. Just enjoy the process. . .

No comments:

Post a Comment