eTHEORY OF PHOTOGRAPHY (I Love It When It Is What Ought To Be)
When questions arise as to what is a photograph or what is photography, almost every theoretician transposes them into a necessary nucleus- what is the medium- for its theorization. One cannot just resolve it by describing it as a “transparent envelope”. Roland Barthes describes it as a thing that we often see through in order to get information about the world. So how do we theorize photography? How do we incorporate the range of objects and practices that includes daguerreotypes, calotypes, 35-millimeter prints, Polaroids, digital photographs into a convincing theoretical model? Here’s how I will base my conjecture.
We can speak of a particular photography as an index of Marxist thought, contiguous with the object it represents: the working class. We can also speak of mass reproduction as the ‘toiler’s propaganda material’ as well as through the single daguerreotype or Talbot’s nearly contemporaneous calotype. As long as the ‘snap’ perseveres to impart the lumpen’s message, it can be hampered by its dependence on technological change. Just imagine of what you can see of my father in the picture as a courier for the Communist Party of the Philippines and in another picture as a soldier for China in a re-enactment exercise sponsored by the Hukbalahaps, the former’s military arm.
We can speak of the photograph as we speak of its multiplicity and malleability. It might be multiple and unchangeable but in the present era of the digital age they can empower it in its altered form using Photoshop. But such should be conditioned by ‘long, dirty nails’, swelling callouses, disheveled hair and shabby or ragged clothings.
Questions also arise whether it is the photograph that we theorize or the photographic practice. The answer lies in how ideologically informed is the photographer. Is he or she material historically conditioned? Should he immune the bourgoisie from discourse on Marxist discursive trends? Does the picture’s public utterances create a culture-shock like the one where Stalin is photographed making love to one of his volunteer maids? Stalin, our Saviour.
Marxist photography should be a response to sets of particular conditions-political and cultural. It should be hailed as the most important and perhaps the most extraordinary means to lead us to the triumph of socialism. Exploration of enigmatic, subjective states should only be fit for socialist actresses like Nicole Kidman.
I have been working in the creative arts industry for over 10 years and often times, I don't have flexibility with the ideas mainly because they are different from what the clients have on their minds. But with photography, I'm my own boss and I get to enjoy the artistic freedom I rarely find in my profession.
that's just beautiful, actually sums up my point of view here.
But still, why do I love photography ?
1. At first I used to play music (I still do) and create music. I needed to create something out of whatever's on my mind. Then I got the wife/kid combo and couldn't find the time or space to properly create music. So photography provides me with both, since I usually go outside to take pictures.
2. I love cars and I hate it when they're not shot like they should be
3. I get to meet new people everytime, and I get to see great cars
4. Sometimes it can be a decent buck (way better than music) so I get to see cars, I get special access to special places, I get payed and after all that, people still say "thank you"
5. I like to go out and look for nice spots for future photo sessions
There's also a few things that I hate in photography
1. I can't get decent actions shots of me on track or driving !!!
2. People just don't get that it takes time and work to take a good picture so they sometimes want me to hurry and then I screw the shot.
3. It's ALOT about how much $$$ you're ready to spend, not at first but overtime it all gets down to that
-If its 2:23 am and I'm bored I'll pull out my camera. If I haven't been outside my house in a few days I'll go grab the camera and go somewhere, familiar, unfamiliar, doesn't matter.
Its an excuse.
-When people want group photos I can say no, I have to push the button!
Its something to learn.
-I feel I'm pretty bad at photography right now. Which means I can keep doing it and get better. Gives me something to strive for.
Its something to read.
-If I'm bored and don't feel like pulling out the camera I can always go online and read about new techniques to make me a better photographer. Or read about different ways to post process an image.
Its something to play with.
-Who cares if the lens cap is still on. Burst mode is fun!!
Its something to buy.
-I like stuff, so new gear is just something else I can get!
Its something I can share.
-When I get a good photo I love showing it to people and bring them happiness even for a moment. If I get a good shot of someone I love giving it to them so they can have it. My family loves getting photos from me, and I enjoy sharing it with them.
Its Free. sort of..
-Taking 1000 digital photos doesn't cost me an arm and a leg in developing costs. :mrgreen: