If I hear a certain horrible photographer from Florida mention one more time how he wins all kinds of competitions and juried exhibitions with his work, I'm going to laugh myself senseless. Just saying.
Bullshit eventually walks. Sometime in the life of a model or photographer, you have to check your motivation. I’ll confine myself specifically to the models here. Maybe you’re a Muse, a hetaira as it were, and live to create. Maybe you’re a shrewd professional and have developed the acumen to market your looks. Maybe you just want to play dress up and want to be viewed as pretty. There is nothing wrong about any of these forms of motivation. You do have to be honest about them though. If it is just an escape for you from a life less ordinary, you’re going to find things difficult if you expect the same kind of reinforcement someone might get if they’re in it for the art or the paycheck. Keep it real. Yes it’s hard. But if you have unrealistic expectations, your disappointment will resonate. Then, eventually, no one will want to work with you.
Here’s the thing. When that lil’ old site MM was less than six months old, I had industry professionals telling me that the forums on the site were going to be the unmaking of many a photographer’s and model’s reputations. I believed these people then. I believe them now. I opened my own personal Pandora’s Box with posts I’d make after returning from the bar on my only night out of the week. This kind of posting started for me about a year ago. It started when I began to notice a new trend on MM: relatively new members whose only claim to fame was thousands of posts in a relatively short amount of time were operating in packs, ganging up on new members who might post something stupid or even dismissing site founders who didn’t kiss their asses. It inflamed me to the point where I decided to fight them. Fighting a mob is a zero sum game. You end up as a casualty. There’s no winning. Some things in this world are inwardly given: treating others with respect, fair play, paying your dues, knowing when to shut up and listen. There are photographers out there who command my respect. When they talk, I listen. They might be cold and brutal, but my silence is worth it. There are folks on MM who have been on the site for less than a year and have part of the industry not much longer. They show a lot of talent, creativity and potential. As human beings in general, though, they are more than lacking. Maybe it’s the artists’ curse, but they’re already legends in their own minds. I feel like telling them to see me in 4 or 5 years when they’ve paid their dues and know what they’re talking about. Funny thing is, model or photographer, most won’t be part of the industry anymore. Sooo, the next time they kindly feel like explaining the world according to them to me, I need to remember this.
Women are funny. The whole being enigmatic thing is probably why I like them so much. It drives my photography. WG is right, photography is my mistress. Then I watch a woman (a model to be precise) go from being an ingénue who I can shoot wonderful ideas with into a legend in her own mind – a self-righteous and spiteful one at that. Who knew? I am the sum total of confusion when it comes to women. Bahhh. I take pictures. Being single might not be so bad after all.
“At the violet hour, when the eyes and back
Turn upward from the desk, when the human engine waits
Like a taxi throbbing waiting,
I Tiresias, though blind, throbbing between two lives,
Old man with wrinkled female breasts, can see
At the violet hour, the evening hour that strives
Homeward, and brings the sailor home from sea,”