Occasionally we get a little off topic on a Sunday post. While this one is no exception, there are some very interesting posts from photographers I think you should check out. You may have missed them along the way, or not even known about the blogs, but they are posts I have kept in my bookmarks and will share a few with you.

Derek Shapton’s blog, Planet Shapton, is one of my must reads. This article from a while back asks some interesting questions and will also be of great interest to the emerging shooters who visit this blog.

At the end of the day, you have to ask yourself – do you want to be a photographer, or just look like one? If you’re in it strictly to create the impression of success, and can sustain the expense required to do so, then more power to you. Enjoy your fabulousness. Otherwise, swallow your pride, buy (or rent) that second-best lens, get in your high-mileage vehicle, and start knocking on doors.

The first time I saw Rodney Smith’s iconic photographs in the pages of Vogue and Bazaar, I was hooked. His blog is one of the best around, and this piece, talking about the value of a photograph, is not to be missed.

So dear photographers, others before you fought hard and long to give you a gift. And although everyone from corporations, to magazines, to art buyers try desperately to take it away from you, I implore you not to give it away.

Most of you are young and feel the need to work, and feel powerless against larger forces. You do not realize that when you get older, having the rights to your own work will be the best gift you have as a still photographer. It will help you when you need it most.

Robert Wright is a photographer in New York. He has a heck of a blog (when he gets to it, and I wish it was more often… heh). This is a very heartfelt post on the loss of the “snapshot”.

I miss the snapshot. I realize that what I am calling the snapshot and “snapshots” are very different things. Winogrand liked to point out when asked about his “snapshot aesthetic” that the garden variety snapshot was not very haphazard or uncontrolled, what his frames seemed to be suggesting, but actually a very staged and formalized genre of picture making, a subject in front of some object, owned or mastered by the person depicted. Like the photograph above. What I mean by snapshots refers to the vernacular use of snapshots and the lack of control and innocence that film allowed. When you can’t see what you are doing instantly, you can’t be that self conscious. Or styled or controlling. The snapshot was a memento, like found beach glass, and it is made with the speed of our reaction to life, instantaneously. And permanent. I think this is why digital compact cameras have never really done it for me, they can’t focus and shoot fast enough to matter in this way.

All good posts to get you thinking on this lovely March morning.

And while you are thinking about photography, you may want to also think about listening to some music.

Up first is Samuel Barber’s Adagio. One of my favorites.

Joe Lovano tears it up in this great live recording.

And I would have traded everything to be a Pip for a while. Just to hear Gladys everynight.

My wife has been writing some short stories. Here’s one she posted on her blog last week.

Matthew May’s blog on creativity is one that I check daily. This is an interesting post on checking the ego at the door.

As business artists, we must consciously move ourselves – and those within in our sphere of influence – beyond excessive self-interest. It is the enemy of business artistry. While this may be easier for some people than for others, it is never easy.

I hope you enjoy this post. See you soon.

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