Photos that you want to take/make VS. Photos others want to see
I have often anguished over this. I know many of you will say photos that you want to take because you should do what you want to do (others be damned… well that’s the implied meaning, isn’t it?) But come on. Do you really believe that? Do you just make something for yourself? There has to be a part in every artist, regardless of the type of art, which wants to display the art to others. Unless you are the caveman/cavewoman of Altamira, and I am not sure even he or she was immune to it, you simply have to wonder what others will think of your art. It is just how it works. The musician wants others to like his music. The artist wants others to like her art. The writer wants readers to read what they’ve written. Otherwise why do it at all? It’s all there in your head already: if it’s just for yourself, why bother to bring it out. The truth is you want to show others what you got: there is a part in you that will say, this is what I want to make. Then there is another part that asks, but will anyone like it? Anyone who denies the existence of the second voice hasn’t thought it through or is lying. It’s just a question of how you mix them.
Take the example of social media: I could produce HDR sunsets/sunrises. From what I have seen, I know everyone will like/plus/fav it into a coma. Or I could make black and white street portraits of people–who are not always the most “attractive”–and no one will even click on it. These are two extreme cases: one completely disregards what I want and is a complete sell out to the populace; the other completely disregards what the public cares about and is all about what I want to do. One is very expedient and some people make thousands of dollars doing it. The other is very honest and you better have a steely mind and a separate source of income.
So what is the right mix? Have you thought about this?