Photography – Beyond Hobby

I don’t have the expertise and knowledge to say I am a photographer. I am still a student who is in his learning curve to be a photographer. But lately I am seeing a lot of people coming into photography and uploading pictures on facebook. The stress filled environment, lonliness and lack of creative oppurtunitites is pushing more number of people into making short films , photography and lot more. It all becomes possible after the birth of the digital age. Everything from making a movie to creating your own photo documentary completely lies within the reach of our hand.

For many people who have just entered photography have you ever thought what is photography all about, apart from just a hobby. I am not talking commercial aspects here. Photography gives each and every one of you to document your era for the future generations.

Let me explain it with a small example.

In 2011, when I started taking photography seriously I came to know about a American photographer named Vivian Maier through my friend. He was talking so much about her works which really made me read about her works in the internet. When I read her complete story I understood the complete potential of photography.

Vivian Maier , who was born in US in 1926 worked as a nanny for a couple , taking care of their kids and doing household chores etc. Apart from that she always carried a camera with her and she used to take pictures whenever she was back from work. But most people never knew about her work.

Time passed by

In 2007, John Maloof a person who was doing a research on the lifestyle of Chicago in late 1950’s and 1970’s stumbled across vivian’s work during an auction sale. He bought undeveloped and developed photographs. When he came across each and every image, he found that he had just dig up the cultural treasure of Chicago. There were more than 100000 undeveloped negatives and 3000 vintage prints all depicting the culture and lifestyle of Chicago from 1950 to 1970’s.

Toward the end of her life, Maier may have been homeless for some time. She lived on Social Security and may have had another source of income, but the children she had taken care of in the early 1950s bought her an apartment in the Rogers Park area of Chicago and paid her bills. In 2008, she slipped on ice and hit her head. She did not fully recover and died in 2009, at 83

What do we infer from this story?

Your photograph may be seen or liked by people now. Your photograph might not be receiving enough likes on Facebook or Flickr. But every photograph you take records the lifestyle, culture, habits, environment prevailing today. This may be just another image in a large pool of socially shared images. But when future generations come across this every photo will be a lesson to their past, educating them about the place they live and the difference in culture that they are facing at their time.

Most of the photographers at some point of time will face a stage wherer he/she will think why no one is looking or liking their photos. The answer is you are evolving and don stop that evolution in you at any cost. Learn and keep learning and someday some blogger in 22nd century will write about you as an example when he talks about photography.

I always believe in the saying “Do your Best , God will take care of the Rest”

For those who don’t believe in God!

“Do your best , The universe and developing computer technology will take care of the rest”

Sources :

4 thoughts on “Photography – Beyond Hobby

  1. Karthik Ji,
    Wonderful post. I recently started my Photolife and joined the CWC team. It has been a long time passion for me to start clicking. First of all, I thought photography as just a hobby and as my passion bloomed I found it as a third eye, a real different eye that helps us see today’w world so beautifully.

    Never even thought of this angle of photography. A very helping and informative post.

    1. Thank you shankar..keep clicking …suddenly one day when you look back you will see how much you have evolved and learned during all this time 🙂

  2. Nice read. Too bad that her wok came to fruition only during her end of days. There were no such things as social networks back then. Don’t know if it was fortunate or unfortunate for her. If I lock up every thing that I shoot now without sharing them for the next 30 years, it might yield such a result for me in future 😉

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