Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Roger Lever - Beyond the photograph

Ok, so you have your photograph as good as you can get it. What now?
Who’s going to see it?
You, of course but you can be as proud or as self critical as you like, its not going to impact anywhere until someone else sees it.
How are you going to show it off?
Dare you show it off?
OR - are you just too scared in case someone criticises it or even worse, you get no response at all.

As photographers we all ask ourselves these selfy questions.
Ok, if you are actually doing a commission or a wedding for someone then you have to show them to the person involved and one invariably shows several options that they can choose from.
BUT it is all the other stuff you shoot. What about that?
The wonderful sunset you took on holiday, the amazing natural sculptures that occur on a snowy day, the lighting effects at a gig you were at or whatever.

Well, lots of people put their images online these days, especially onto Facebook and all your friends come on board and say silly things and “wow, that was a great shot Rog”  But was it?  If it creates feedback at all then “yes” it was or at least the content of the photo was interesting enough to create comment. It is the content which is arguably the most important thing and secondly how you have captured it.

If you are feeling a bit more confident you could consider entering a competition such as  Countryfile which runs every year. There are hundreds of competitions out there of course, its just choosing the right one. You usually have to impress a panel of judges. Its always a good idea to look at some winning images from previous years entries and see if you feel up to the mark.
Are you good enough? You wont know unless you try!

You could of course join your local camera club and enter the competitions there using your digital images. This costs nothing other than your time and membership fee. It is a good way for other photographers to look at your images and hopefully give you constructive criticism. It also gives you chance to see what other people are producing and it will trigger your imagination.

The next step is to print your images. That starts costing you money. Simple prints are ok but if you have what you think is a good image and you have been told so by your critics then there are a whole lot of ways of displaying it. Choosing the best way is actually quite difficult and depends at the end of the day how much you are prepared to spend on it.

Once you have something physical in whatever medium you have decided upon then you can exhibit it in galleries and with any luck someone will like it and buy it. Once that happens you can start giving yourself brownie points because an individual has come along, looked at you picture and said I like that and I want to put it on my wall.

Roger Lever

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