I got a few complements on some pictures I posted online and it went to my head.
Now I think I'm Gods gift, and go up to complete strangers taking pictures of themselves and say "Let me do it for you, Im really good!"
The truth is more like, "I'm not that good, but I see light and framing in a whole new way since I bough this app for my phone, and now am seeing the world in an entirely new way, and it has given me the courage to take a picture of you, a complete stranger"
Someday I'll have the courage to post all the portraits I have taken, in the mean time, I just keep posting snapshots here on this blog, and on panoramio or facebook.
It's easy to say that my earliest recognizable influence in photography was Mirella Ricciardi. She made images so powerful and identifiably her own that one time I recognized her style in a photo I had never seen before across the visual chaos of a Kinokuniya bookstore in Tokyo, perhaps at a distance of 30 yards. (I had come to know her style as a teenager, as she was also the mother of my second crush). other influences include photojournalist Dan Eldon and ...
These days, everybody has a camera. I often go on scientific field projects where an important event occurs and the expedition photographer is forced to take a photo of a group of scientists all holding out their pocket cameras or phones, all taking a picture of the same thing.
When everyone is a photographer, and every event and moment of time is recorded with digital data, why pursue photography at all? My answer is that there are 2 elements of photography: the recording of facts, and capturing evidence of beauty. And a hundred people can stand in the same place pointing their tools at the same church or tribesman, but the difference is made when they, the photographer, distinguish between the capturing of facts verses witnessing a moment in time made of humanity, emotion, light, or beauty, and capturing it by clicking the shutter in.