Photographers should not put pictures in a box under their beds and be the only ones that see them. If they put film in their cameras it presupposes that they want to record what they see and show somebody else. Photography is about communication. – David Hurn On Being a Photographer : A Practical Guide, ISBN: 1888803061 , Page: 57
The role of the photographer changes often. All the more reason for some of the more established photographic Institutions like Magnum Photos to at least attempt to keep up with new conversations around technological processes and practices.
These last 10 years though have changed at an incredible rate. Not just around photographic practices but around how the photographer can network and collaborate.
Ever since I fell in love with photography I have admired a number of the image makers attached to agencies like Magnum. My shelves weigh heavy with oversized books with names down the spine like Capa, Henri Cartier Bresson, and Erwitt.
So last weekend It was both an honour and a pleasure to have been asked to present at @IdeasTap for Magnum Photos on Social Technology for photographers, sharing some of the tools and methods I use and some of the directions I have diversified as a photographer.
One of the highlights was meeting with Magnum Photographer David Hurn. Immensely respected with an incredible body of work behind him, we talked in depth about what we thought shaped the present day photographer.
David commented how he felt he was from “..an age of concentration on specific things..” where as we now “..seem in an age where speed and ‘the next’ is everything.”
I have to agree with him. Yet I don’t feel the skills and practices of this new age are difficult at all to grasp for the photographers that have always managed to morph and evolved as their world quickly changes around them.
I am inspired to get inside the mindset of some of these amazing image makers and work on bridging some of the more recent leaps in social technology.
I know for sure myself and David Hurn will be spending some time sharing our separate skills and I also look forward to learning more about his recent works. In particular, a small exhibition in Cardiff entitled ‘Passing Time‘.
David told me “I devised the ploy of dividing my life into two sections – before 1980 and after 1980 to show the amount of time I have been photographing and to show I am not dead. I made pairs of pictures one from the start section from the final. I made twenty two connections. As a game the young organisers of the gallery suggested that we set up a competition to find three more pairs.”
I don’t think David quite expected the response he received through Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/groups/onthestreet/discuss/72157625197759394/
I am inspired into formulating more ways to assist professional photographers in navigating this fast paced, new world of social technology. I’m also looking forward to exploring and learning more about ‘the old ways’ of considered specific forms of photography with David Hurn.