I'm just home from Iceland, and I just got word today that an interview that was conducted with me many months ago has finally appeared in the UK magazine 'Black+White Photography'.
Interviews are funny things and in particular, the written word can be so 'final' at times - what I may say in passing, becomes a more fixed and immutable statement in print. Whereas, I find real conversations have more fluidity to them - they are always unfinished and there's more give and take as a result.
Mark Bentley, who conducted the interview, has decided to focus on my thoughts and feelings on doing photography for oneself. I would just like to cover with you why I feel it's important that we create our work for ourselves.
I believe there comes a point in our development that we go beyond seeking others approval of what we do. We reach a place where we realise that no amount of praise or criticism from others will make any difference to how we feel about our own work. I'm not entirely sure if it's a confidence thing, or just that over time we develop a sense of trust in our own abilities. Regardless, after a while of hearing other people's opinions, you realise that the only opinion that really matters is your own. The whole exercise becomes a form of meditation. There is no drive to impress, no hunger for affirmation from others. Just your own need to meditate and do the work as a form of therapy.
I might have touched upon this in previous posts with the aim of describing one's own style. But I think that in order to get to a place where you feel you have found your voice, you need to be able to let go of others opinions and just trust yourself to feel what you feel and do what you do. I can't say it any simpler than that.