Have just completed the August 21 workshop and the theme was direction direction direction. However I have felt it better to emphasize communicate communicate communicate in this piece. I believe that so few humans are open and aware in their communication. We have little trust especially in strangers. Further we have been heavily influenced by political correctness to not communicate or act in any way that may have another feel uncomfortable.
In my photographic career I believe that much of my success has been the communication I have with my subjects. I believe that when a camera is placed in someone’s face that many people disconnect from the moment and instead go to the perceived result. I think in life many of us also fall into this unconscious trap. We have such little security that we are forever connecting to results and things we need rather than relaxing into and respecting the activities and people of the moment. In this way we are living under pressure and not being fully present in our own lives. I further believe that both our physical appearances and our material achievements are greatly improved when we are present.
For this reason I think it is so important for photographers to communicate openly with their models. The model cannot see from the camera’s perspective and as such cannot be fully aware of how their body and face is appearing in the lens. Further they cannot see how the light is falling on them. If a photographer notices something that doesn’t look right and does not communicate this to the model then the resultant shot will lack visual impact. Further if the photographer senses that the model is not composed in their emotional presence the shot may look ok but have little passion and soul.
Whilst it is natural to not want to communicate negative things we notice in others as a photographer it is our job to present as perfect an image as possible. A model will not thank you if the photograph presents them with unattractive aesthetics. Further they will not be inspired by shots that lack emotional freedom and strength.
There is little magic in life and I believe that this is because we protect rather than communicate what we really feel. If we are prepared to calmly communicate awareness with each other we will create a vastly different material reality. As photographers if we communicate honestly and calmly with our subjects we will create images that can motivate people to live with an empowered sense of self and of life
I believe that open and honest communication is the key to great relationships and great photography.