Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Why I Like Writing

One of the things I like about writing over photography is that no one asks, or cares, what equipment you used to author your little opus.  PC or Mac?  Dell or HP?  Scrivner or Word?  Electric or manual?  Fountain pen or pencil?  Practically nobody thinks that this matters.  All that matters is the writing - the end result.  I've been reading a lot about the art and craft of writing in the last few months, and most of it has to do with the actual skills involved - correct spelling, good grammar, active voice, appropriate plotting, how to bring characters to life, carefully avoiding adverbs.  Hmm.

Crack a magazine, or sneak a peak on any photography website or blog these days though, and you will see what people want - equipment reviews.  I tell you it doesn't matter what score the latest Nikon full frame received on DxOptics, or dpreview, or in Popular Photography, if you don't have the skill to maximize the potential.  I am sick, sick I say, of equipment reviews for the sake of equipment reviews.

I think that every photo enthusiast should also do something where skill and technique are universally recognized as more important than the brand of instrument used.  Write.  Paint,  Draw.  Compose music.  Play music.  Make beer.  Do calligraphy.  Or do photography but focus on craft and art and not GAS (Gear Acquisition Syndrome).  Let go of your equipment envy.


  1. YES!!

    I couldn't agree more.. and I know I'm a little guilty of reviewing cameras (Film Cameras mind you) but there isn't enough discussion on the the art of seeing, the art of creating.

    I like to write also, I haven't done much lately though. Especially poetry, although I'm painfully shy of sharing it so none exists online.

    I also use a fountain pen, brew my own spirits, roast my own coffee at home and quite like cooking. but thats outside of photography and darkroom which is my primary passion in life.

    1. Yes, been there and done that on the camera reviews myself. :) My camera reviews of the most read posts I have. And they are important when one is considering spending money on a purchase. And I understand - cameras are sexy and it is easy to think that one's photography will get better with just the right one - which is probably true to some degree. But it seems to be the only thing anyone is interested in these days. The craft and art side requires work, and no one wants to but in actual effort these days.

      Love my fountain pen. And have a kit now to brew some beer - just haven't made the time commitment to actually brew it. :)

      Good to hear from you, Neal.

    2. Yes it reminds me of the quote from Roosevelt, "nothing worth having was ever achieved without effort"
      It would pay for society to heed that advice.

      Best of luck with your brewing, I gave up brewing beer some time back as most of my mates brew and keg their beer so I thought I'd be different and do spirits. Makes for a good system of trade :)