We are lost in a sea of opportunities.
He who loves practice without theory is like the sailor who boards ship without a rudder and compass and never knows where he may cast.
—Leonardo da Vinci
Many individual photographers are doing technically wonderful work. Their works are lovely and exciting to view, but much of the beauty comes not from their intended conceptions but from the amazing technical equipment that is now available to them and the luck of the moment. The equipment is driving the artist and not the artist driving the equipment. The challenge is for the artist to take charge of their equipment and use it to explore the soul of the modern world, our local world and our inner world.
We must face our personal limitations.
Individuals may go far with explorations of their personal conceptions, but we as communicative humans may go much further when helped, guided, challenged by our contemporaries. Those people whom we can argue with in an immediate way, and debate the virtues and faults of what we perceive, can help us most to find our individual way to our best work. It takes a community of well informed and well intentioned people who understand what we are seeking to help us find what we are seeking.
When man first spoke to man, how great the stride,
For what was learned by one was help to all;
And one in need could beckon to his side
Another hand to help this first man’s fall.
Then we did learn to write and bind our thoughts
Through time and space, on parchment, stone and clay,
Thus we may recall what was once forgot,
And long dead men live with us here today.
But these dead men are soon to die for good,
And live no more in future thoughts of man;
For past thoughts can not be understood,
When there is no more man to understand.
Although the helping hand seemed quite kind,
In the end it brought the end of mankind.
The last one hundred thousand years of human communication has brought us to the total domination of the Earth’s surface. We are now like universal husbandmen caring for the other animals, plants and resources, and we must use our powers of forethought to maximize the health of all Earth’s beings. We can never fully know what the end uses of our works will be, and when we have finished we must stand back and view them and use them as an outsider. All of our creations must now have some forethought and consideration for the well-being of the whole world.
A camera is a tool for looking into our soul.