If nothing else, photography does one thing for you; it makes you look for, find, and appreciate beauty. And not always the traditional beauty of a sunset or a glorious vista, but the beauty of an emotion shown in the glint of an eye at just the right moment, or the beauty of an intricate pattern on a leaf….
At the risk of sounding overly sentimental and a touch melodramatic (too late?), I’d say that practicing photography can give you a more acute appreciation of life. After all, a photographer’s job is essentially to capture life’s moments, and this makes you notice them passing.
Thinking about this inevitably leads to the thoughts of preserving it all for real, beyond the data on a hard drive or the dots of ink on a piece of paper. So you’d think that photographers would be a Green bunch. But in my experience photographers generally don’t pay that much attention to it. Most of us are one-man bands; we assume that as we don’t operate aircraft or churn out industrial waste we are inherently Green, or put a less flattering way, that it’s someone else’s responsibility.
But is that really true? How many of us use continuous lights instead of more expensive flash? I haven’t done any kind of scientific study, but flash lights are on for less than a thousandth of a second perhaps two or three hundred times a shoot. Despite the fact that they are more powerful, that has to be more efficient than continuous lights that are on the whole time. Continuous lights also get incredibly hot which is a sure sign of wasting energy (unless you can use them to heat your studio!)
There may be other little things we can do, not least of which is sharing our pictures with others and our passions for taking them. In this way we can perhaps increase the appreciation of the world we live in and thereby increase respect for it.
I have found one local Nottingham photographer who goes a step further, and I take my hat of to him for it: