One thing we often hear in various photography forums on the net, is that Photography is dead, or at least dying.
Disillusioned Purists claim that Digital Photography already soiled the purity of Film Photography. Later, the emergence of photography techniques like HDR further corrupted a critically wounded art.
And now, the executioner is ready to deliver the fatal blow with his sharpened axe: Phone Photography.
Like almost everything on this planet, photography is constantly evolving. Old styles fade away and new techniques take over. We never lived in a static world.
Is Photography dying? Heck no it’s not. It’s alive and never been healthier. As a matter of fact, more and more people are becoming photographers.
DSLRs are affordable and everyone with a smartphone can take photos. The combination of accessibility, ease and sharing capabilities of smartphones are already causing a major change in the world of photography, forever. Remember Time Magazine’s cover a few weeks ago?
So, while it’s not dying, Photography is changing rapidly from an art, practiced by people who had the patience and money to invest in, to a more ‘personal and social’ craft. Photos no longer need a purpose, whether it’s artistic, educational, scientific or journalistic. It has become a kind of a personal visual diary, with snappers documenting their daily life and sharing it to social media platforms. And the fact that others can interact and “like” each other’s photos enhances the illusion that anyone can become an instant celebrity. I’ve got 500+ likes on my coffee shot, thus I’m famous.
But this proliferation of happy snappers is not killing photography either. Look at Youtube and how it democratized video. Anyone can create a video and make it go viral with over a million views. But video is still doing well and nobody’s worried about it.
We can also sit down and debate about ‘good’ and ‘bad’ photography. But that’s a whole other topic and I’ll write about it later.
But for now, let’s just stop labeling things and Nostradamusing (making up new words is fun) or predicting the death of every new/old technology. It’s just called evolution (apologies if you’re a creationist) and the sad reality is: You either hop in and go with the flow, or be left out.
Here’s an interesting infographic about this topic I found on the net. Feel free to share (and credit the original author).
Infographic courtesy of Overgram