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Photography Redefined
This I believe
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This I believe

A digital photographer s manifesto

I believe that the beauty is in the eye of the beholder. A certain sense of beauty has been encoded in our DNAs. Regrettably and thankfully, the resulting sensation, when “beauty” is glimpsed, is the same in all of us, but stimuli are often very diverse. It should not be too shocking to accept that we enjoy different kind of beauty. What we like is beyond our control. Accordingly, it is also beyond logical discussions or arguments. We like certain things, because we do.

I believe that a photograph, alone, does not have a meaning. A lone picture is like a single note in a symphony, or a single frame in a movie. Viewers are likely to create personal contexts wrapped around pictures and attribute deep meanings to them. However good or bad this may be for a given picture, nobody should assume that these assigned attributes are universal.

Art Redefined

I believe in the "state of the art", defined as the highest level of development, as of device, technique, or scientific field, achieved at a particular time. Accordingly, the art I love is unique, aesthetic presentation of technical skills and new ideas.

A photograph may or may not be a piece of art. I believe there are billions of photographs that do not meet the stated criteria of "art". The art photographs are rare and far in between. I believe it is not the rarity of art but the triteness of majority of photographic works that makes real art so precious.

I believe I am in an everlasting competition with one thousand really good photographers with their top-of-the-line cameras, lenses and other advanced tools of the trade. They wake up earlier; know all the best spots anywhere, and have better understanding of the actors of nature. They are bigger, smarter, stronger and most importantly luckier. They see everything I see and much more. What should my work not be inferior against such a formidable competition? Isn’t this the ultimate question all photographers, and artists? If it is not, then, is personal satisfaction good enough?

I believe a photographer, however alone he or she may be, if he cannot feel the urge to compete with one thousand photographer, and does not look for the best angle, does not wait for the best light, does not force himself for the best presentation, ultimately cannot elevate his work above those who do these things.

I believe a picture can be extremely simple, yet very powerful piece of art. These are the most difficult, and the most rare pieces of all art, as they crystallize years of experience to few bits, and take geniuses to see, to create.

I believe, "idea" speaks louder than any single part of the work. Idea makes the photography personal. Idea is their invisible signature of the photographer that can make the work visible through the ages.

Enjoy life,

Mehmet Ozgur
posted on 5/1/08
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