My photographer friend Jim, who did me the honor to host a conference on street photography at the 4th edition of the festival Pose picture sharing, delivered on this occasion a phrase that heckled me.
Speaking in a rather funny anecdote where one of his readers had wrongly interpreted one of his photos (believing to see a couple in love while he was in fact the photographer himself and his mother in shadow), Jim basically said “sometimes you do not interpret a picture, and just love it because it is beautiful.”
Of course, and is it also not true for all “artistic” disciplines? Can we not love a song or piece of music because the melody or the arrangements are beautiful and raise de facto certain emotions? We may not appreciate a painting that represents nothing specific agency but just a few colors and shapes in subtle ways? I think so, in fact. Besides that, all art is for meaning, first, more than the mind, in the words of Francis Carco.
In the case of photography, this purely aesthetic vision returns to capture a picture to “visual” beauty of what it represents, and that’s all.
But is not it a reducing hair, nonetheless, a more macro perspective on all areas of the photo, beyond street photography?
Leave aside the art and fantasy for a few moments, to be interested in our perception of “beauty”.
All that is rare and expensive, economists know that. But what about the aesthetics? The abundance kills the beauty? Gold is valuable because it is rare. Diamond is considered “beautiful”, probably for the same reason: what would it be if we all have diamonds in our gardens? I bet we would not consider them much better than the bad scree gardeners evacuated from their gardens …
Diamond pictorial not knowing what to do …
Only few things changed. Today, the sumptuous landscapes abound on the Internet, are found by thousands every day browsing Facebook, Flickr, 500px, Pose sharing … This beauty leaves us all fed, even at the limit of indigestion.
Add to that the “facilities” granted to everyone since 2009 to create a “professional” structure in the USA, and you end up with hordes of professional photography and self-entrepreuneurs well decided to add themselves to the building of the photographic aesthetic uninhibited. Not necessarily bad, some will say … not necessarily good, say others.