Thursday, August 1, 2013

Do artists think alike?

Someone commented recently about my photography habit, "dakayo nga talaga photographers, agpapada panunot yo" (you photographers really think alike). 

It made me think and I remembered one time I was with some photographers looking at world war two ruins. One of them commented that it would be nice to have a photo shoot with models near the ruins. A distinctive effect with a stunning beauty as the subject and frenzied ruins in the background.

But what I have in mind was completely different. I was hoping some very old war veteran will pass by with wrinkled expression of a distraught face to match the ruinous background showing the chaotic past of the place. I prefer to have the very person who witnessed the transformation of the ruins from its old glory to be part of my image.

Both ideas would show art but with different impact. Artists may agree to so many things but they don’t necessarily think alike. In a hyperbolic comparison, some think vertically and some horizontally.

But one thing is for sure, each artist will always see an art from every scenery. Some would focus on a single shape or image while others consider the whole scenery. Some would focus on a single mountain concentrating on its shape with the sun setting in the background. Another would shoot the wide skyline showing its glorious transformation from blue to reddish orange with the group of mountains in the horizon. Another would attempt to combine them all in a single frame, a unique mountain shape as the foreground, and a background of a thousand mountains in the horizon and the changing hue of the skyline above them.

What artists do have in common is their way to communicate to the people in a non-linear way. Their images would grab attention and merit hours of discussion by critics and fans alike. For me, art is not just self expression but more on how you show the viewers your way of seeing things. If you can do that in your works, your art will be more appreciated. 

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