Not long ago, I had a bad attitude about mobile phone photography. Then two things happened.
1. I attended a photography conference in NYC in October. One of my favorite American Photographers, Dan Winters, was speaking to a couple hundred photographers when he launched into talking about his iPhone photography. He was all about it. He still loved his conventional photography, but this was a new twist for him. In the blink of an eye, I felt as though I was out-to-lunch, which I *was*.
2. On a recent trip to Costa Rica, a friend of mine challenged me to only use my iPhone and to leave my "pro" camera behind. He challenged me to make ten iPhone photos in one day. If fact, I far exceeded ten, by 4x. I had a blast. It was the most fun I'd had with a camera in as long as I can remember.
I had to work hard to come up with good compositions. In retrospect, I'm wondering why I have not worked quite so hard to come up with great compositions with my pro cameras. Lesson learned.
As Dorothea Lange once said, "The camera is an instrument that teaches one to see without a camera."
I pass by these little shacks during my daily commute. Last week I saw the farmer milling around, so I stopped and asked him if could take some photos on his land. He was an older fellow...say 80-years-old. A big smile took over his face. He tried to tame his smile, but he couldn't. Then he said, "You can take photos any time you like." It was almost as if my wish to take photos confirmed that he had something beautiful. Intuitively, he *knew* he had something beautiful, but my question was confirmation and he couldn't contain his smile. I instantly adored him. The whole experience made my day.
I spent 45 minutes clicking away, being careful not to damage his soybeans. I'll drop some prints off the next time I see him outside. And when I do, it will be the best thing that happens to me that day.
A couple years ago, a colleague of mine asked if I would capture a sunflower photo that she could display in her home. I tried once or twice, but was never entirely happy with my efforts. I had this "assignment" rolling around in my noggin for a year or more. Then one day I discovered a beautiful sunflower garden owned and lovingly cared for by this beautiful lady.
Thank you, Mrs. Biver, for the gift of your garden. I hope you know that you brighten the lives of hundreds of people every single day as they drive by your treasure.