After taking some time off and trying (unsuccessfully) to accomplish things the past couple weeks, I'm brought back to my blog to make some observations about an online video I watched last week. The video was ominously titled 20 False Facts That Even Professionals Believe To Be True. I should be quick to point out that the "professionals" in question were photographers, just to be clear. But overlooking the obvious oxymoron (or maybe not; John Oliver often emphasizes "true facts", so there may be more than one kind of fact, in fact) the video was a revelation. Of sorts.
The video, hosted by one Tony Northrup in Modern Lens Magazine, covered a wide range of issues, such as a lens' "sweet spot" (as related to sharpness), the Reciprocal Rule, crop factors, f-stops, infinity focus, and a lot more. All busy, arcane, complicated minutia...and I loved every minute of it. I am, of course, an unrepentant gear-head, and a bit of a math geek, albeit somewhat clumsy at it. There was a time, back in my old studio days before the ubiquity of automation, where these skills were useful, even necessary.
Speaking for myself, however, this commotion can be a problem. The mesmerizing complexity of technology, sweet siren song though it is, is often an obstacle to making a beautiful photograph. Creativity requires simplicity; photography often demands complexity. Ours is a technical field, after all; it's not canvas-and-brush. We are forced to be cognizant of -- and familiar with -- a lens' sweet-spot, and crop factors, and infinity focus. And much, much more. It's tough to wean ourselves away from it.
While my worldview has expanded to include most of the universe, my vision is honing down to a sweet-spot of its own: this moment, this place, this light.
And that's a fact.