You may or may not be aware, dear reader, that Fabula Nox also has a photography section that can be followed best on Instagram. Shameless self-promotion aside, this activity also generates a lot of debate between me and my partner in crime and most recent one I this is worth sharing. This will be a short, precise discourse of a narrow variety, but nonetheless important, I feel, to the medium of photography.
The content of the photograph has become, in essence, the most important aspect of photography. In the world where everyone can afford a decent camera in the form of a smartphone, the issue of equipment becomes mute. Even post-editing becomes easier with quickly available picture enhancement software for free on social networks or built into operating system. In other words, the entire population in developed world has access to semi professional photography equipment and can take decent pictures, which shifts the fight for highest exposure online from technical achievements to content. Content is king in advertising and so it is in pictures.
So our debate revolved around this idea, but mostly whether or not WE as Fabula Nox have content of interest to show to the world. On one hand, we live in an urban area and in contrast with nature photographers, who can show the wild world not a lot of people get to see, us in the city don’t have such luxury and potentially cannot show anything to the ogler that he/she has not seen yet. The counter argument is, of course, the internet. It’s the world we are connected to and some urban areas are places others will never visit, but CAN experience through pictures – our pictures. There’s also the WAY the picture is taken that matters: the angle, the moment in which the mundane transforms into extraordinary, the time the picture is taken or the stage the photographer sets – yet, this is still content, accessible to everyone willing to look. I guess that is what separates everyone else from photographers – the ability to look at the world and see the spot everyone should witness, but don’t…unless you show it.
This argument stems from the premise that a photographer takes pictures because they want to show something to the audience. That is a very altruistic premise, of course, as reasons for photography can vary between people. Whatever the case, the story in and around the photograph and not equipment the photograph has been taken with takes precedent.
Obviously, we did not arrive to any particular conclusion of whether our photographic stories have anything to add to the infinite compendium of pictures that is the internet, only the audience can decide and vote with their engagement, and that is true for all aspiring and established photographers.