When I learned the craft of photography is was truly a labor of love. Being a photographer required mastering certain and specific technical skills in order to even create an acceptable output. Photography was the perfect meld between art and science that offered both right and left brain challenges. Without waxing nostalgic about the good old days of film photography, there was something to be said for learning one’s craft. There were rules to learn in order for you to achieve results. It was time-consuming and costly to take photos so there was more of an emphasis on study. I remember reading textbooks, leafing through books of famous photographers like Irving Penn, Richard Avedon, and Henri Cartier-Bresson. Asking questions and hitting roadblocks. All of which fueled my desire to become a photographer. The harder it was the more I wanted to succeed.
Many, many poor attempts gave way to minor successes. I kept learning until I knew all the rules of photography. The rules that governed composition, lighting and exposure. The rules that would translate into amazing photographs.
Don’t get me wrong in no way to I pine for the Darkroom ages. I love digital photography and it’s instant gratification. I love that you can take amazing photos with a phone, I love having it with me whenever I want to shoot. I have a camera available all the time and can see the results as they happen. One has to question, how relevant are professional food photographer’s in an age of Instagram I -phone world? Are the new generation of photographers better off because of technology or are they missing a valuable component of the photographic process?