I had the “Blessing” to grow up in a pastor’s home. There are running jokes about just how bad PK can really be. Fellow PKs, you got my back here right? PK = preacher’s kid.
Growing up in that home, I was always taught that it was wrong to brag or boast. I find that even today, I do not do a lot of that. I was taught to let your work speak for you. It is a slow process, but effective.
I look at our world today, and that is one of the biggest problems we have. We are so fixated on the number of likes, shares, or views. as if that equated to success. It does not equal success.
I take a lot of pictures, many more than I really could ever use or sell. Most would be those that someone looks at and turns the page. Great picture, but unremarkable. Before a picture is ever put on display for the public, it has to pass the toughest of critics, me.
I recently took pictures at a dance recital. I ran two cameras and had them set on maximum frames per second. I ended u with over 11,000 pictures. 90% of them did not pass my inspection. Technically good pictures, but lacking in some fashion. I found about 1400 pictures that I was okay with. I would have loved to have less noise and better sharpness, but they were acceptable.
I did not post but one to Facebook. I did not need a high like count to know their worth, or my worth as the photographer. I was content with what I did. (There is a share feature in the gallery for others to share the pictures if they like.)
Photography is a participatory activity, as is writing. I create something, but I can not create your reaction to it. I might think a picture is the deepest expression of love one could capture, and you might get caught on the extra dark freckle on the side of her nose. You have to add yourself into the experience. Hence, I really don’t know if the picture is great or not, because you may not have seen it yet.
Maybe it is my age, or just that I am getting ornery in my time here on earth, but I have stopped worrying about what other’s think of me. I love unsolicited compliments like anyone else. I feel if I have to let you know to praise me, than, it is not really genuine.
That brings me to the fellow who is tweeting up a storm these days. On Memorial day I saw his first tweet that said something to the effect that all the men and women who had died in service to our country would be overjoyed with all the good he is doing. I about puked. I have not been supportive of all the self serving tweeting. It rubs my PK raising the wrong way. It reminds me of some facebookers who post all of the great things they have done and all the great pictures they have taken. A few weeks later, they are absent from the feed. Why, I think they starved out of existence when the requested praise stops.
Chelsea Coates made my day recently. I was taking pictures at the Red Rose Pageant, and she beamed when she saw me, and when I stopped by to see her, she said “You are my favorite photographer!” That meant more that 10K likes or shares.
Ice cream, to a person who does not have it regularly, is heaven, but to the person who eats it daily, it is just a dessert.
It may have been my Wisconsin Methodist upbringing, or Grandpa Kellin’s way with few words, “Yep”, or the example my father set. But I never heard them boast about their accomplishments. Where ever it came from, I am grateful for the trait. Now, I am not perfect, and if you meet me face to face I will tell you of the projects I am working on, till you walk away. I am working hard to trim that back and listen more.
What you will not see me do it tweet how great I am, or how great a picture was. Not my style, I Tweet You Not.