I recently was reading a blog post by another quilt artist, Elizabeth Barton, in which she suggests practicing the part of your artistic process you like the least– in order to become better at it.
This led me to wondering which part of my “work process” I like the least. Certainly it is not the photography part. I love taking photos of even the most ordinary things.
–and then I become obsessed with my own photos and love looking at them over and over. The random display of the last year’s photographs as a screen saver is a frequent background to my thinking and other studio work.
–and yet I do not consider myself a wonderful photographer–a professional photographer–or certainly not a technically proficient photographer. I have always had trouble remembering the concepts of Fstop, aperture, and many other technical principles. However I have developed over the years an excellent sense of composition. Recently we’ve been sorting out old photographs and I can really see how much I have improved.
Partly it has to do with lots and lots of practice–since the development of the digital camera. Eliminating not only the cost of film and film development, but having instant feedback and the ability to do a photographic study of a subject are the gifts of digital photography to the artistic photographer. –and of course the high quality of today’s digital cameras (and even phone cameras) goes a long way to contributing to the experience of a non-technical photographer. A person doesn’t need a fancy, technically complicated, and expensive camera to have good photographs to work with in their artwork. You can see my favorite little camera in the self-portrait of me in the Art Statement part of this website–my Panasonic Lumix with lots of “intelligent” automatic settings.
I will continue this analysis, but I certainly know that the photography is a major joy and obsession in the pursuing of my artwork and not one of the steps I need to practice, but I will practice it alot more in the future anyway.