Screenshot taken from Luke Garmon‘s video
In this parody video from creator Luke Garmon that’s been making its rounds amongst the photography community, Garmon portrays a caricature of someone we’ve all undoubtedly crossed paths with; that one friend who’s in love with photography, but can’t stop chasing one trend after another.
We’ve come across people like this in our lives, be it someone on social media, photography forums, at social gatherings, or even overhearing them at trade shows and photography conventions. While they may enjoy taking photos, they tend to be more focused on industry trends and hopping onto the latest bandwagon rather than the craft of photography itself. Anytime some new hotness comes along in the photography industry, they are inevitably the first to fawn over how everything that’s come before is obsolete and should be discarded. It’s important to remember that while the equipment allows us to realize our creative vision, we should never place so much focus on what’s in front of our eyes that we forget about what’s behind it.
Whenever a new trend occurs, you can be sure to see these same people rushing to partake in it. Remember when everyone and their mother started photographing models inside home improvement and arts and crafts stores after a few photographers shared their works shot within those locations? Chances are, we’ve all been guilty of doing some of this at some point during our own photographic journeys. It’s perfectly ok to be inspired by something when we create, but don’t let that overshadow the importance of having our own voice. At the end of the day, don’t forget why we picked up a camera in the first place. Photography is a means to document as well as a form of creative expression, and while the proverb does state that “imitation is the sincerest form of flattery,” there’s a fine line between being inspired by something and being derivative.