“ You must have something to ‘say’. You must be
brutally honest with yourself about this. Think
about history, politics, science, literature, music,
film and anthropology. What affect does one
discipline have over another? What makes humans
tick? Today, with everyone being able to easily
make technically perfect photographs with
a cell phone, you need to be an author. It is all
about authorship, authorship and authorship.
Many young photographers come to me and
tell me their motivation for being a photographer
is to ‘travel the world’ or to ‘make a name’
for themselves. Wrong answers in my opinion.
Those are collateral incidentals or perhaps
even the disadvantages of being a photographer.
Without having tangible ideas, thoughts, feelings
and something almost literary to contribute
to the discussion, today’s photographer will
become lost in the sea of mediocrity.
Photography is now clearly a language. As with
any language, knowing how to spell and write
a grammatically correct sentence is, of course,
necessary. But, more importantly, today’s emerging
photographers now must be visual wordsmiths
with either a clear didactic or an esoteric imperative.
Be a poet, not a technical writer. Perhaps more
simply put, find a heartfelt personal project. Give
yourself the assignment you dream someone would
give you. Please remember, you and only you will
control your destiny. Believe it, know it, say it.”
— David Alan Harvey