This is like the 5th year for me attending this annual photography event and I know some of you may ask, “Why do you keep coming back? Haven’t you learned enough?” and my answer is certainly "NO".
If you haven’t heard about it before, Gulf Photo Plus (GPP) organises an annual event for the past 10 years dedicated to photographers with different levels of experience in the region and from around the world, here is this year's schedule. As always, this Photography Festival takes place in Dubai Knowledge Village – UAE, from 7 to 14 March 2014 and I always make sure to attend the entire week and here is why:
- I get to shake hands some of the top photographers in the industry plus being with them under the same roof is an absolute pleasure.
- I get lucky to meet with new friends who share my passion for photography and get to learn new things not just from classes but also from each other.
- Be up to date with the latest business trends in the photography industry and hear the professionals’ opinions in a live discussion.
- Most importantly: INSPIRATION
Here is a quick video of last year's event from Fstoppers Fans:
I enjoy meeting new photographers who have insatiable appetite for knowledge as they remind me of myself when I first started following my passion for photography, they always have many questions and they are guaranteed to find the answers from best photographers standing right in front of them through this event, however, I often find many of them attracted more towards the gear rather than photography itself and I would like to dedicate this blog post to the them as I used to be one myself.
Any real photographer knows that photography is not about just knowing your fstops, lighting equipment or which Photoshop actions you use, all these stuff are merely tools to help you project how your eye sees the world to enable you to share YOUR VISION.
Camera bodies, lenses, light shapers, accessories, computers, software, etc. will change over the years. So by all means don’t feel bad if you don’t have in your bag the latest gadgets without having your own vision for the next photo, otherwise you will only make your bag heavier, you will move slower, and get frustrated very quickly (I’ve been there).
Great pictures don’t wait for the latest cameras or lights and post processing software. If you read a great novel, you don’t wonder what kind of pen did the writer use or if you are looking at a beautiful painting you don’t wonder what types of brushes did the painter use. The photographer, just like the writer and painter, use whatever tools he got to share his vision and thoughts to the world.
Need a proof? Do a quick research on the most well recognized images of all time and you will find that all of them came out from cameras with far less capabilities than in some of the cell phones cameras we use today. So, to the newcomers who ask what makes a great image? The answer is “The Photographer’s vision” (YOUR VISION), the rest are the tools available in hand that help you render your vision to the world.
I’ll end this post with a quote introduced to me by one of the most honest photographers I’ve ever met, Zack Arias, while attending one of his classes:
"The fact is that relatively few photographers ever master their medium. Instead they allow the medium to master them and go on an endless squirrel cage chase from new lens to new paper to new developer to new gadget, never staying with one piece of equipment long enough to learn its full capacities, becoming lost in a maze of technical information that is of little or no use since they don't know what to do with it.” - Edward Weston 1927