Photographing the Photographer

Photographers are people too, you know.

And like people are photographed, photographers should be photographed too. As an amateur photographer, I photograph people. These people are more often than not, my friends and my family. Most of them like the photos I take. (or make, as one of them likes to say.) Some times, the people are strangers. I am quite nervous of photographing strangers. Actually, I am afraid. I always think they will object, and take my camera memory card away. I value my privacy, and protect it well (even if I am very open and available on most social networks). There are levels of privacy. I care less for what you could find in any government document or snatch from the local courier. Real privacy is what what’s in your head. The day they can use that, you have lost your privacy. It has little to with credit cards and addresses. And because we have levels of privacy, respect plays a big role for a photographer.

Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

But, back to the topic.

Photographers are people too.

And the world urgently needs to see this truth. Especially those that think of people who take photographs as photographers. There’s nothing different about people who take photographs. If they have just started photography, it may be different. But for the rest, see them as people in photographs, like they see you. See, in the photographer, what the photographer saw in you. If you do that, two things will happen: one, the photographer will be grateful; two, you might end up becoming a great photographer. As an amateur photographer, however, I advise you this: to make a photograph of a photographer, make sure that he or she doesn’t have a camera or a camera strap around. Strip the photographer of the strap, try, and see them as humans for what they are. Not as photographers.

I leave you with this image.

A photograph of a great photographer (Dorothea Lange), by another great photographer (Elliott Erwitt), where you do not see an evidence of the presence of a photographer.

On either side of the lens.


Due Credit to Magnum photos. © Elliott Erwitt/Magnum Photos. USA. Berkeley, California. 1955 [Photo has been used in this post for representational purpose only]



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