Photography is a humbling experience. And I’m not talking about that masterpiece I shot yesterday that I will think of as crap 2 weeks from now.
I’m talking about the effects an image can have on someone’s life. For the subject, that photograph I just took can be a memory and a reminder of that point in time. How I execute that image will profoundly affect that memory. Will it be cherished? Or will they cringe? What about the experience? Was it pleasant? Or was I a pain in the ass?
I admire the great portrait photographers, but maybe even more so those you never heard of – the local photographer charged with a family portrait. I am humbled by the ability of someone to positively (and negatively) affect not only memories but the view a subject has of him or herself as reflected by the image just taken.
A photograph in a sense is a living and breathing thing. It has a life and an influence all its own. It has personality and presence.
That is powerful stuff.
I am humbled by the privilege of making photographs of people. I just hope that I am up to the task.