Message from the President
I’m going to take an opportunity to brag a bit — just because I can. My birthday was last Thursday. I never really make a big deal out of it and would rather it just be another day. However, this year was a little different.
This year, I was given a new grandson for my birthday. It’s going to be hard to top that in the future. Baby boy William Logan tops out at a healthy 6lbs 7oz, 18.5”. He had to spend an extra day in the hospital under the lights for jaundice, but other than being a few weeks early, he’s perfectly fine. He’s home, he’s happy, and my daughter can see her feet again.
Getting to hang out in a hospital gave me some time to catch up on my reading. It seems there’s a new rash of “woe is me” from some people in the photography industry.
From art buyers complaining about getting emails from photographers to photographers saying that the business is the fastest way to die a pauper. I read this kind of stuff and I look at my grandson.
His world changed so he cries and shakes and makes a fuss because life isn’t the same and he doesn’t know what else to do. Never mind that he’s perfectly healthy and just has to grow a bit before it all gets easier. It won’t always be easy, but he will adapt a grow faster than his parents will be ready for. It’s happened that way for as long as history has bothered to write about it.
Nothing really. We’re in the worst economy that most people alive can remember. After the initial scare and panic a couple years ago people realized to just adapt and get on with it. The world didn’t stop turning.
Well, some people realized it anyway. Some people are crying and shaking because it changed and they don’t want to change and adapt.
The rest of us will grow up and get on with it — just like my grandson will grow up and adapt to his world.
Within just a few years he will be so far removed from being a squalling helpless baby that he won’t even bother to remember those times.
This same thing applies to us as photographers as much as the industry itself.
The elevated amateurs complaining that anyone could buy a camera now and make a photograph (like it hadn’t been that way since the Kodak box cameras) and people could manipulate those photos (like it hadn’t been that way since, well the beginning of photography).
The professional complaining that the amateurs could take photographs as good as them (which has always been the case whenever someone wanted to try), and that the technology they had been using for a decade got cheaper and available to the masses
Do you people ever read history? Really?
Everyone who loved what they did and was willing to adapt to keep doing it survived just fine. Some of them even went from mediocre careers to stardom because they were willing to adapt faster than everyone else.
Will my grandson’s generation care what medium you shoot on? Probably not.
Will they care if it’s good? I bet they do.
Will those who are passionate about what they do and are willing to work towards those passions still succeed at them? I can all but guarantee it.
After all this I came across this commencement speech for Julliard. The people who have been there and done that get it.
I’ll leave you to read through these a couple times and draw your own conclusions.
As for me, I’m going to go show my grandson there’s nothing to cry about.
~ John Kleb, 2011 HPS President