In 1984 Ansel Adams passed away and his work must have been widely celebrated because I can’t remember a time when I didn’t know him or his work but this was long before I had an interest in photography. When I did eventually take up photography being a landscape photographer was of no interest. The landscape where I grew up was beautiful and I appreciated it but the idea of photographing it seemed about as cool as safari vests and Birkenstock sandals.
Most photographic instructional books tend towards landscape or portraiture as the majority of photos fall into one of those categories. You can then further divide that into indoor studio and outdoor photography and divide more ad nauseam. I’ve read quite a few of books and articles over the years and gleaned what I could apply to what I was doing but a lot of the techniques weren’t relevant to me.
I’ve mostly worked with black and white film and never attempted to master the process in the “fine art” sense. Mostly I find it tedious but every part of the process is an art unto itself. Taking the photo is just the first link in a long chain of events to get to the final image in print. Now, with digital interpolation we’ve added a few more steps to digitize the film and for the majority of our work the virtual world is where it hangs and the hard drive or cloud is here it’s archived digitally.
As I get older I realize the days of photography having a social impact are long behind us. That’s not to say photography isn’t important or relevant as a document for posterity but of the millions of photos shared daily few of any can change the world. This is from the viewpoint of a jaded middle aged man so take that for what it’s worth. I’m enjoying creating the illusion of the peace and quiet of nature at the moment and finally applying some solid photographic discipline that’s been honed over the 150 or so years of the practice.