Do You Suffer From the 'Curse' of the Photographer?

Do you find yourself in a seemingly never-ending cycle of being excited by your work, only to become disenchanted with and disappointed by it when you look back at it later? Maybe you suffer from the "curse of the photographer."

Coming to you from aows, this introspective video talks about the "curse of the photographer," namely the inability to ever stay satisfied with one's work. This can actually be a good thing in some ways. If you are always using your latest work as a baseline from which to improve, always striving to reach the next level of technical aptitude and creative thinking before you reach that next state of temporary satisfaction, then you will always be motivated to improve as a photographer. On the other hand, there is a fine line between using this as a positive push in the right direction and letting it make you feel disillusioned and inadequate as a creative. The truth is that there is no ultimate destination in any creative pursuit; even the best can always stand to improve somehow. Instead, enjoy the journey — your personal journey, that is, for what it is, not what you think it should be relative to others. Check out the video above for the full rundown.

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2 Comments
Rob Fry's picture

Can't work out if this is supposed to be a parody or not but if serious, maybe step back from photography for a while so you can put things into perspective? It's just pictures. If it's causing any negative ripples in your mental health then maybe you shouldn't be putting so much weight into it?

Douglas Fairbank's picture

I recognise some of what you are saying but perhaps you are over thinking it, being your own worse critic is not limited to photography. I have been taking photographs, not just snaps, for over 50 years and many a time I have viewed my own pictures and wondered why I bothered. A few years ago I was going through some negatives that were poorly exposed and possibly poorly developed but were of a subject that was of intense interest to me, a moment in time that would never be repeated. They were a huge dissapointment for the lack of detail, but putting the pictures through a professional scanner retrieved so much detail that it brought a tear to my eye. Make no mistake, this is not about the technology, it is about what was in the head and eye of the photographer and did the medium capture it.