When I began photography, camera was at the top of my mind: it was a magical box that could capture things in the world and keep them — preserve them — for eternity, and show them across time and space.
Little did I realize then that it was not the camera nor the things it captured from out there; photography is, above all else, about the way of seeing, the art of seeing if you wish. It is not about what is out there or about the tools you use to capture them. It is about how you see things around you, about how you experience and perceive them, about how you interact, construct, conjure, and frame them in your mind. It is as much (if not more) about you inside than what the world can visually offer you.
I think it is shalow to think of photography only in terms of natural and technical aspects, for if it was so, photography is nothing more than a sort of mechanical and manufacturing practice doable by robots. Pictures made in this way would be more or less similar to one another and would be without souls; they would be mute, bland, without voices, without tastes.
Photography is about you, about us as unique individuals who have our own voices, our own tastes, minds and souls. The photograps we make should speak about our ways of seeing — who we are, what we are, what we believe in …
Our photography should speak and compel others that there is a myriad of ways of looking at things as there are us, and just like what we do living, we try to stand our grounds and rights, exert our weights and influences, so that we may wield powers for whatever purposes demanded by life, the least but most important of which is survival and the preservation of it.
So, let me say:
If photography is a way of seeing and not just a mere way of recording, it should compel you to ‘see’ things differently and accept that these different ways of seeing are equally as valid as your own, and that like your own, they are struggling to find their rightful places among others.