Thursday, May 08, 2008

Stop Sign #4

#4 of 10 stop signs to creativity

Stop sign #4 - I am not educated in art and photography.
Answer: Praise the Lord God Almighty you aren't! Get over it and take some photos.
There are many highly educated 'artists' who are picking their noses watching TV and
eating too much instead of using their talents. They aren't worth doodoo compared to
one person with passion and vision even without a formal education. What matters is
the doing. If you do the work you will learn.

That doesn't mean there aren't things to learn in a formal setting, there are. I
have 2 degrees in art because I wanted to learn. I learned about printmaking,
drawing, art history, certain artmaking techniques, and a bit about the art world.

But I had no formal training as a photographer at all. My sole educational work in
photography was about 3-4 sessions in a dark room during grad school with another
student who taught me the basics in exchange for me teaching him the basics of
lithography. The truth is the vast majority of my creativity and my end results as an
artist are not a function of my formal education, they are a function of my desire
and my passion.

There is a woman on Flickr, Rebekka Guðleifsdóttir, probably the most visited of all
the millions on flickr. She was doing pencil portraits when she found flickr and
decided to try photography. Within 2 years she had 3 million views and a contract
with Toyota to photograph their cars. She is a single mother of 2 sons. She lives
in....ICELAND! She is as far from the center of the photography and art world as you
can imagine. But she didn't use that as an excuse. She didn't use her children as an
excuse. She didn't use her lack of photography education as an excuse. What she did
was go out into the middle of the dark Icelandic winter and take photos of 100-200
second exposures in FREEZING cold. She is now getting an art education, but the
point is she didn't wait. She went and ACTED.

if mars had beaches..., originally uploaded by _rebekka.


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