Thursday, November 29, 2012

Art and technology - dual sides of photography


Scientists are technical by nature. After all, they have to deal with data that must be carefully recorded in order to be replicated. Science is objective, structured and methodology paves the road for results.

Artists tend to be the antithesis to that rigorous type of thinking, often relying on feeling and flow with plenty of room for interpretation. Results are subjective and different people will interpret artistic work differently.

Both disciplines have their set of rules and, once understood, can be manipulated according to the desired results. Regardless of all that, we can definitely state that science and art are polar opposites in the way our brain deals with them. We can also state that photography definitely has a foot in the realms of both science and art.

The reason I bring this up is because I had an interesting conversation with JD, a group member I had the good fortune of going to the American Model Photo Shoot in NYC.

As we shared the cab ride to the event space we made some small talk. JD, as it turns out, is a scientist. He uses photography as a means of exercising the artistic side of his brain. It is a way of getting away from formulas and tables and that whole structured atmosphere of the scientific work environment.

I found his comment interesting because I have the complete opposite approach to photography. I am, and have always been, an artist. While I love and appreciate the artistic elements of photography I have to admit that I am a bit of a techno-geek when it comes to photography. I love learning the technical aspects of lenses, digital sensors and how a camera interprets light. I am not satisfied with just the point and click part of it.

Our desire to get away from our daily routine to do something different led us both to pick up a camera. JD was looking to stretch his artistic muscles while what draws me in is the technical side of it. What is more interesting is that photography requires an understanding of both disciplines, the free spirit of artistry and the structure of technology.

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