In my experience, there are basically two kinds of photographers. The first group is interested in the science of photography. They care mostly about the gear, the technical stuff and are less interested in art. They like photographs that are technically superior – regardless of subject. If a photo is pinpoint sharp, well exposed and printed, this group gives it a thumps up.
Then there is the artist. This person may intentionally under or over-expose an image. They may allow a slightly out-of-focus image into their portfolio. They prefer telling a story to working out technical details.
The first group wouldn’t think of shooting with a camera set to automatic. Many of them might even detest autofocus or image stabilization. The science group tends to think of itself as purists.
The art group doesn’t necessarily care what camera mode they shoot in. They value the aesthetics of a scene – the balance – the ethereal qualities of the picture.
While this short post contains a great many generalizations – it’s pretty close to relating my experience over 30 years of shooting serious photographs.
The point of this post is to ask two questions…
1) Which group do feel closest to? The science or the art group?
2) No matter which group you belong to, would you be willing to try to learn from the experience of the other? Do you see value there?
This is JUST a conversation starter – have at it.