©2013 Tony Sweet Photography, Inc.
Being in the arts since winning my first “talent contest” at the age of 12 as a harmonica player, (believe it or not, I think I still have the plaque somewhere!), the struggle has always been to set ones self apart from the crowd by having a unique creative voice. Musician’s, writers, painters, actors, dancers, photographers, etal, all have the same dilemma. Only a few true originals come to mind: Miles Davis ( I can tell if it’s Miles in about one note), Picasso, Mozart, Bill Evans, there’s more. Photography-wise, there are many great photographers out there producing mind blowing work, but very few are true originals. Ansel Adams, Galen Rowell, Freeman Patterson, David Muench, Pat O’Hara, and JP Caponigro are in the “true original” realm. The work of the great many of us can be traced to being derivative, from one of the aforementioned photographers (or someone of their ilk).
Now, there is absolutely nothing wrong with being derivative, and there is always room to grow and eventually evolve into one’s unique voice. It’s actually a good practice to imitate artists’ styes on the way to finding one’s own voice, but not a good idea to continue imitating if you want to break away.
Developing the confidence to let go of the past and move into your own way of doing things is not unlike falling off of a cliff. to read more...