I tend to be regarded as something of a heathen by arty people. I’m not a fan of popular art. I can appreciate the talent of the artist, but I don’t derive any pleasure from looking at their drawings, paintings, sketches, etc.. When asked for my opinion, I will state, simply, “I don’t like it.” I will be asked why, and I have to explain I simply feel no emotional response. If anybody then tries to tell me the meaning of the art (or at least their own interpretation of it) I usually tell them to fuck off.
I’m also not into photography. Certainly not still life and posed pictures. For me, a photograph must capture a meaningful moment or scene; a snapshot of real life or a memory of a special time (no, not that kind of ‘special time’…).
I don’t understand why people will spend hours searching for a ‘perfect picture,’ searching for the best angle, adjusting the lighting, applying filters… if I see something I want to photograph, I take the shot. It has to be something in that instant that makes me want to immortalise it. Very much how I write; chronicling the moment as I live it and see it, not wasting time producing something meaningless.
It also has to be something that I can be certain I will not get another chance to capture. This is why so many of my ‘best’ (read favourite) photos are of animals, insects or nature in general.
I was at a Meetup for ‘creative people’ not too long ago and one person there (a very pretentious individual whom I can only bear to be around if I can seriously annoy him) was giving some spiel about how much time and effort it takes to get the ‘perfect picture.’ He was even offering to teach others how to take better photos. Naturally I showed him a few of mine, and made a point that if I’d spent any more than a matter of seconds on some of them, I wouldn’t have got the shot.
My point is (if I even have one) art is never black and white. I mean figuratively. Obviously it can literally be black and white. There is no ‘good art’ and ‘bad art.’ There are no rules that define what art is. It can be anything, everything, and in some cases even nothing at all. And it can carry a different meaning for everybody who views it.
Yet people think they know art. They think they can teach it. You can teach somebody how to draw, mix paint, manage lighting, apply filters, spell, use correct grammar and syntax, play a musical instrument… whatever. But you cannot teach somebody to create art.
Transferring your emotion and feelings on canvas, through a lens or into words or music is not a thing that can be taught. It is just something we do when we find the right inspiration.
Of course, this is just my opinion on the matter.
And here are some of my favourite photos: