This week I have spent two days looking at technology in the classroom. During this time there was a significant focus on Ipad use in schools. Many creatives, such as Trey Ratcliff are leaving Apple for PC alternatives. However, while Apple may be losing numbers in the creative industry, it would appear that they are securing a future in education. One of the ‘big ideas’ coming from these workshops is the way technology is positioning users as consumers, producers, and collaborators. As with so many situations where I find myself in a teaching and learning situation, I draw parallels with how my professional life links with photography.
If you are reading this then congratulations, you are a consumer of photography. While I love my photobooks and magazines, like most of us, the majority of my consumption revolves around online content. One YouTube channel I have recently added to my viewing list is The Candid Frame, although, I do not always agree with what is said about different photos. However, it is a channel that definitely provides food for thought.
We all produce photographs, and possibly blogs, vlogs or podcasts. These posts are placed on G+, Facebook, Twitter and all the other platforms that are out there. On top of this, there is YouTube, Squarespace, WordPress and other blogs and photo sharing sites. At times it appears that there are more producers than consumers. Everyone is trying to attract followers and likes. As creatives, we produce a vast amount of work, but where is this going? The net sucks up work like a black hole. To succeed as artists we cannot continue to work alone. This observation brings me to the last point, which is a focus on collaboration.
Collaboration is a vital aspect of learning. The photography community floods with contributors. Standing out is a struggle, as there are a vast number of skilled Street Photographers out there. Unfortunately, there are also a large number of photographers who regularly post the banalest of images. The bar will rise for all of us if we act, not only as producers and consumers, but also as collaborators. My argument here is that discussion, communication and sharing ideas should be just as important as taking and sharing photos. Do not expect your photography to improve if you do not listen to others, and equally, if you do not show an interest in other people’s work, then you can expect your own work to go unnoticed. Twitter, Facebook, G+ and Instagram appear to be the most popular channels at the moment. One goal of mine is to increase my presence on Twitter, both for photography and educational connections. Arguably, there has never been a better time for collaboration, technology is helping us connect with fellow photographers and providing access to some talented professionals, many of whom enjoy having their brains picked for ideas and inspiration.
Well, that is this week’s rambling over. I would like to challenge you all to explore the web, find a community and make some comments. Even better, leave a comment here and let’s create a discussion. Feel free to disagree with me! Look out for my next YouTube vlog, I’m quite excited by this, even though it is more a ‘producer’ than ‘collaborator’ role at the moment.
Take Care and Keep Clicking, Chris
P.s – for those that have been following my weight loss – I’ve been sick. Managed to get back to the gym today though.
pps. If you are new to Street Photography, don’t forget to check out my beginners’ corner! https://pagespics.com/different-cameras-for-street-photography/