When I first started photography, I declared myself a photographer, although I didn't know anything about photography. As for many people that declare themselves that today, without understanding the fundamentals of light, aperture, ISO or shutter speed, as well as angles and subject. As time went on, I found myself more as a photographer, but it wasn't until last fall when I officially told myself I'm knowledgeable enough to be a photographer. Since last fall, I've grown as a photographer more than I've progressed at other hobbies or times in my life, as I no longer was just a photographer, but an artist.
More recently as I stopped taking generic photos of Detroit or landscapes in Michigan, with over saturated colors and high contrast in hopes to make it on the feature hub page, Moody Grams, I became inspired by a lot of East Coast photographers as they bring a certain aesthetic to their images. Much like music, and how Kanye is Chicago hip-hop with that distinct sound; the guitar plucks and swingy musical progressions of Dr. Dre and West Coast hip-hop; and the New York hip-hop that brings you classic and the refined lyrics of early Biggie Smalls, followed by melodies piercing your ears in the most pleasant way possible - the same can be said for photography.
Many musical artists have a specific genre they follow, and for most of their careers in music, they sometimes never change. As of today, I've been diving more into The 1975 as I put "Somebody Else" on repeat, with this song having a deep and profound history in my life. From the earliest stages of listening to this song, I used to be unable to contain myself as it brings back many memories of love. Since I began my new image of photography, I adopted a word so close to me that I try my best to attach it to my art in a way that makes me think of that word.
For those that know me personally, I can come off as rash or blunt, but inside, I have a truly warm heart for affection. I'm obsessed with love, and everything that encompasses that word, even the bad times. I've written a book, although not finished, yet; wrote poetry, and much like the song "Somebody Else", I have a vision in my mind when I'm taking photos: When I stare into my lens, I see you.
From this perspective and thought process with love being so engraved in my creative vision, I have progressed more as a photographer and artist this summer, and more importantly, have captured moments that I love.
Many photographers attach a word to their art, like photographers calling themselves landscape, portrait, minimalism or other forms of photography. And although I'm considered to be more of a portrait photographer these days, in which I love as all my images are very different from the next, and can be sometimes hard to replicate, to me, I call my photography love, as I photograph my friends that I love so much.
Eventually I would love to express myself through music, but until then, I will express love through photography and visual art. Whether you attach words like: happy, sad, angry or candid to your photography, you will encompass those feelings through your photography.
Find that word you embody, and apply it to your work - you'll be stunned by the difference.