Wednesday, October 26, 2005


I just found this article by Thomas D. Hill Jr at Digital Outback Photo. Some of the concepts in the article have been milling around in my head for years - it's just fantastic to see them put so eloquently in this article, a much better attempt than I could ever achieve.

For those that haven't read "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance" - you must! A great book to read on a roadtrip. The concept of Qualiity is central to the book and thinking about it can really make your head spin. If you like the book, then the sequel "Lila" expands on some of the ideas.

Mr Hill jr links in the idea of Quality with the art and mechanics of photography. You can make a technically perfect photo that is crap. An artistic compostion with beautiful light without technical merits is also unsatisfying. Even when artistic and technical are present, the image can still be found to be lacking. Quality is the crucial third element essential for a great image. So how does one find Quality? Does it reside in the subject itself? I can't explain it really - go and read "Zen" and you will know what I'm going on about.

Quality is elusive, if you look too hard, you won't see it - that's where the Zen part comes in. Where Quality, art and skill intersect, the rewards are amazing ... that's what's got me hooked on photography.