“The world doesn’t need another photographer!”
I have heard this more than once throughout my career, and I might even have said it myself in secret during some more frustrated moments. Of course this isn’t even close to the truth, because the world needs every photographer we can find, but why do we need them exactly?
Perspective, that’s why.
This planet is vast, diverse, and impossible to document completely. There are so many places, so many faces, and so many undiscovered moments that we must try to capture in this lifetime. Every photo is a story, a window to the intention of the artist, and a reflection of what they want us to see in their world. For some, this is a beautifully inspired moment that brings joy to the viewer, while others it can be a light shone in the darkness. An image can be the freezing of a once-in-a-lifetime moment somewhere in this world, an image taken in a place where most fear to tread, and sometimes it can be the only way to stop Time The Thief from taking our memories completely.
There is an ocean of photographs, and not one is exactly the same.
Every photograph is history in the making, or rather, history in the taking. It is a moment that will never happen again, and where similarities exist, they are always slightly skewed just enough to be forever unique.
Every artist captures not only what is outside themselves but also what is inside as well, and for some, the stories found within an image can almost fill a book.
A camera will force a person to pay attention to the world around them. It will stop them for a moment, it will quiet their busy mind for even a second more, and that camera will eventually become even a trusted friend.
Choosing to be a photographer is choosing to be a historian, to walk this beautifully chaotic planet as a journalist in search of something incredible, and then sharing that moment, or moments, with a world that doesn’t always acknowledge your efforts.
This is exactly why we need another photographer, because today we missed a moment that we will never get to see, and with another travelling time stopper among us, we might just capture that fleeting incredible moment that ever threatens to elude us all.
Written By: Ryan Donnelly, 2017