When I was eighteen, I began enjoying photography with a Palmtop that came with a VGA camera bundled. My days and nights slowly began to be recorded, as I could not stop firing “that thing” at every unusual thing I saw. Sometime later a Sony Cybershot and shortly after a Canon Powershot made my days. I was really enjoying that new hobby and started experiencing things, like long exposures at night and macro photography. None of the cameras gave me the ability to manually adjust exposure or any other technical aspect in a meaningful way. That left me only with creativity as a tool to create my pictures.
As a recent graduate, I was not earning a lot, and took me a long time until I could buy my first DSLR. It was worth it. The shiny new Canon Xsi with twelve megapixels sensor and a full manual control would finally give me the possibility to create some background blur and make “professional” pictures. Without knowing, I was unleashing a monster that I was not aware existed. I was entering the Technical Chasm. My pictures muted and I tried to correct it reading reviews of gear that would solve my problem. That new lens would probably make my pictures better. That new flash is just what I need to get that exposure right. My lenses are bad. The color rendition is not right and they`re too soft wide open. Graphs showing the resolution of each of my lens were thoroughly studied so I could limit myself to the “sweet spot” when taking pictures. ISO charts, contrast analysis, color rendition. New equipment, new study. My knowledge of photography limited itself into “the required knowledge to maximize quality when photographing”.
It was my hiatus as a photographer. It`s probably similar to the hiatus I`m living as a enthusiast writer. That huge wave of “something is missing” that takes your inspiration and torn it apart, leaving you with nothing but an empty page or an empty memory card. The story, however, is definitely not about my writing hiatus and, as one can see, work is being done in ending it, as I bought a new laptop and even changed the language! Back to the photography.
Six years passed. Not some small amount of time. Six entire years of muted pictures and a race buying more gear and getting frustrated after seeing the results. It’s really sad not being able to define your own style as the only thing left is to chase people`s shadows without ever matching them. After buying some good amount of equipment, even the foolest begin to question if the pictures shouldn`t be better. I clearly remember the anxiety every time I posted an image online and waited to collect some “spare change” of appreciation. The taste failure leaves in the mouth is somewhat repulsive to me. Something had to change or I would stop taking pictures. Until now, nothing changed.
The way events happen in life, the chains that connect each and every fact in an invisible web, pulsed in a way to change my story. In an already explored way, I came across a piece of glass that made me look to photography beyond the chasm. I could finally get back into trying expressing trough pictures, no matter the color, contrast, and sharpness whatsoever. Luckily, I was able to retain the knowledge I got passing through the chasm, and that makes photographing easier, as most of the process of configuring the camera is now totally automatic to me.
Proudly I posted an image that marks a milestone for me, focusing on expression rather than technique, and went to bed, just to be waken up by the notification that it went to the popular images on 500px.com. No more begging for “likes”. This is my art and I have to go to bed.