A fun idea: as a modern photographer, you are no longer a ‘photographer’, but an ‘imager’— someone who makes images.
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Photograph vs picture vs image
Photograph: Must be taken with a camera.
Picture: Can be made with a camera, paintbrush, pencil, or any other visual tool.
Image: A picture you perceive in your mind, and interpret it for yourself.
Photographs vs pictures
A photograph is a picture.
Not all pictures are photographs.
What is a picture?
A picture is a two-dimensional image you can perceive. You can see a picture on your phone, laptop, or as a print in the real world.
What is an image?
When your brain imagines a visual representation of something, inside your mind.
For example, what image do you have of ‘success’ in your mind?
1. Do you see pictures of fancy luxury cars, fancy watches, bags of money?
2. Or more abstract notions like ‘power’, ‘influence’, or ‘wealth’?
An image can be a concrete picture in your mind, or an abstract notion.
You are an ‘imager’!
Therefore my point is that you’re not just a photographer. A photographer just makes photographs.
You are an ‘imager’—you embed meaning into your photographs and pictures. You create VISUAL REPRESENTATIONS of concepts and ideas in your photographs/pictures.
For example, you create an image of ‘love’ with your camera. What images do you have of love? Concrete pictures like hearts, angels, and kisses? Or abstract images and concepts like warmth, closeness, and sacrifice?
What is the duty of an imager?
As an ‘imager’— your duty isn’t to make pretty pictures. Your duty is to create MEANING in your pictures.
You are trying to use a camera to document, analyze, and understand the world around you.
As an ‘imager’, your camera is just your visual research tool. The camera as your stethoscope.
Assignments for imagers
If you want to build your ‘imaging’ skills, try to make photographs or pictures which show how you depict reality, how you interpret reality, and what kind of personal meaning you embed into your pictures/photographs.
Try to document the following:
- Love (CINDYPROJECT)
- Suffering (SUITS project)
- Death (self-portraiture, Memento Mori photography)
Questions to ask yourself
I’m still working through this concept of ‘imager’ — I know the ideas are half-baked.
But things for you to research on your own and question for yourself:
- What is the difference between a photograph, a picture, and an image?
- What is an ‘imaging’ company?
- How would you define ‘image’?
Why do you make photos? Reflect in PHOTO JOURNAL:
- Why You Must Photograph
- How to See as a Photographer
- How to Delete Your Pictures
- Your Camera is a Blessing
- Reality vs. Perception in Photography
- What’s Your Final Aim in Photography?
- If We Delete Our Pictures, Do We Delete Ourselves?
- There is No Truth in Photography; All is Allowed
- MEMENTO MORI PHOTOGRAPHY
- YOU ARE A PHOTO GOD.
- How to Gain More Control, Freedom, and Happiness in Your Photography
- The Will to Shoot
- The Art of Constantly BECOMING
- The Frame
- How to Increase Your Visual Perception
- Could an AI Shoot the Same Photo as You?
- A Photographer’s Guide to Seeing
- THE LESS REAL YOUR PHOTOS, THE BETTER.
- Photography as Experience
- SHOOT YOU.
- MAKE PICTURES, NOT PHOTOGRAPHS
- Why You Should Ignore Photography and Art Critics
- Do You Live to Photograph, or Photograph to Live?
- Living a Good Life is More Important Than Photography
- How to Start Fresh in Your Photography