How many times have you read on someone's site that photography is their passion? I see it on alot of sites I visit. How many do I visit? Quite a few actually. I like to browse through other portfolios, either for inspiration or to see examples of what not to do. On a vast majority of them I see that they write that photography is their passion. This is a play straight out of the Fauxtographer Playbook in my opinion. If you're not sure what a Fauxtographer is click HERE to find out.
Now before you start throwing stones at me and telling me that some photographers are extremely passionate about photography....I do agree. There are some photographers who are just passionate about making art with a camera. They eat, sleep, and dream about photography. I think it would be safe to say that Ansel Adams and Andy Warhol (just a couple examples) had a passion for photography and for making art. They left a legacy by doing it for goodness sake! But when I visit someone's site and see the words "Photography is my passion", I almost gag. Honest. Is that harsh? Too bad!
I feel like it's just a play to try to convince people to hire them as their photographer. Like trying to make a client think, "Oh, photography is their passion, they must be good!" To those who say that photography is their passion I present this question; Is it really?
If photography truely is your passion you're telling me that you're willing to do whatever it takes to get "the shot". That you're willing to get up at the butt-crack of dawn and brave below freezing temperatures to get one photo of the sunrise over the lake. Someone who does that is pretty determined in my eyes, and does show your passion for the art of photography. But it can be something a lot simpler. It can be as simple as learning your camera. Yeah, that little dial on the top with a bunch of different letters and pictures like M, Tv, Av, P, AUTO....yeah, that moves. How about taking the time to learn about exposure, depth of field, and composition? I can't tell you how many times I've talked, face-to-face, with other "professional" photographers and they have no idea what I'm saying when I start talking about a fast lens, or stopping down that fast lens. I thought to myself, "And you charge people to take their photos? Worse yet...they PAY you to shoot their wedding?" Oh geez!
Listen, if photography really is your passion then good on you. I truely hope to see your photos immortalized and hung as pieces of fine art in the future.
You'll never hear me say that photography is my passion. You'll never see those words written on my site (other than in this post and maybe any follow on posts that may come up). Why? Because I like being honest. I believe that being honest about photography is a key element to making great relationships with clients and to making great photographs. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy photography. I really enjoy it! It's fun and I love capturing memories and moments for people though my camera! I love pushing the limits of my creativity. I've learned how to use my camera. I continue to learn how to manipulate the environment around me to get the image I want on my camera's sensor and then on to print. I've learned how to control the light around me. I leaned to see how light falls on a person and make that light do what I want it to do...for the most part. That sun though, that's one powerful light and it sometimes kicks my butt! I've invested many hours learning this craft, and I will continue to invest more time to learn even more. It's not my passion (gasp!)...it's something that I just wholeheartedly enjoy doing and I strive to get better at as time goes on.
"But Amado, you're a portrait photographer... If photography isn't your passion then what is?"
Well, that's a great question! Aside from my beautiful wife and kids, who support me in all my endevours (affectionately labeled as "crazy ideas" by my wife), my passion is flying. I swear, if God had given me wings instead of arms I wouldn't be mad. I eat, sleep, and dream with my eyes to the sky yearning for the next chance I get to knock on those clouds a couple thousand feet above the ground. I will brave the cold, and get up at the butt-crack of dawn to get behind the controls of an aircraft. My eyes will light up as I start talking to you about my last crosswind landing, even if you have no idea what I'm talking about. Just sit there and smile, and let me talk about it okay? I hear the sound of a plane and immediately my eyes look to the sky. Flying is my drug...it's my addiction...it's my passion...and I'm being honest when I tell you that as of writing this post I'm going through withdrawals.
So to all those individuals who say that photography is your passion. Is it really? I challenge you to show me...prove it to me.