Why do I make photos? To change the minds, hearts, souls, and perspectives of others; while also giving me more appreciation for my own life!
Lewis Hine once said,
I make photos for two reasons: to show people what needs to be changed, and to show what needs to be appreciated.
I think we all should adopt a similar philosophy: using photography as a tool to communicate our worldview, perspective, opinion, and ideas with others.
For example, for my SUITS project, I sought to show the pain, misery, and slavery of modern day work. This is how I felt when I was employed at a 9-5 job:
Also, for my Only in Americaproject: I wanted to show social inequality, injustice, and what I consider to be unfair in American society; which I hope changes:
I think photography is a fascinating tool to inspect the world. I see photography as visual sociology: using the camera as a tool to analyze, critique, comment, and change society (hopefully for the better).
Regardless of what the cynics say, photography has the great power to change society, and the public opinion. A lot of abolitionists used the above image to get the American public to support the abolition of slavery.
Similarly, photographers like Phillip Jones Griffiths used photography as a tool to raise awareness about the atrocities of war, and did so successfully, changing the opinion of many Americans to oppose the Vietnamese war:
Everyone, regardless of what they say or believe, have an opinion, a perspective, and a certain worldview. Whenever you click the shutter, you’re presenting your own version of reality; how you see and perceive the world.
By deciding what to photograph and what not to photograph, you are showing others what you find significant or important for others to observe!
What do you wish to say with your photos?
Photography is a form of visual communication, which is universal. No matter what language you speak or don’t speak, everyone understands a photograph and image.
This is awesone: it means you can communicate your own soul, through your photos, without even talking!
I want my photographs to be a message of love, compassion, and understanding. The more we can humanize one another, the less war, injustice, and suffering there will be in the world.
Of course there isn’t a universal purpose to photography. You must dictate your own purpose as a photographer.
So friend, why do you make photos? Share your personal photography philosophy in ERIC KIM FORUM.
Shoot with your heart,