Will the real Confucian author please stand up? This wonderful title has been borrowed, copied and stolen by more people than Google knows what to do with. There are two stand out books sharing the same title that are truly worthy of contemplation however.
A friend of mine showed me his copy of "Tao of Photography" years ago, and it opened my eyes to the idea that photography is not about technical stuff. The title written by Gross and Shapiro invests their intellect in connecting the pursuit of photographic excellence with the philosophies of Confucius.
Most people I've shared the book with have been reluctant to read the book in depth, because the images and quotes from master photographers that pepper the pages become a pleasant distraction. The depth of discussion about Confucian principles is thought provoking at the very least. You don't have to engage in a detailed analysis to gain something however, simply contemplating the world of photography beyond the mechanics of the camera is a valuable perspective.
Wisdom of masters and academics abound in this text. There's something for anyone, at least one treasured message for everyone. Included amongst the long list of masters quoted in the book is Elliott Erwitt, a true favourite of mine, who is credited with...
"To me, photography is an art of observation. It's about finding something interesting in an ordinary place... I've found it has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them."
Please Share Your Thoughts
JUST THE FACTS
"The Tao of Photography - Seeing Beyond Seeing"
Authors: Philippe L. Gross, Ph.D. and S.I. Shapiro, Ph.D.
Another lovely book of the same name was written by Tom Ang. His work is exceptional in the modern realm of photography, and the books he has published are worth having on the shelf. Lookout for a review of his content very soon. www.tomang.com
"Tao of Photography" is also the name of a good blog by photographer Andy Ilachinski:
Very selected features on the hardware, software and extra wares that help me get the job done.
As a bonus for my readers we have Paul Dymond as guest writer on the virtues and challenges of Cataloguing Software, also known as Digital Asset Management (DAM). I’ve put on my editing cap for this article, having asked Paul “What is DAM and why should we care about it?” Step into the world of cataloguing and keywords in order to make the most of your digital collection.
Hard Lessons with Hard Drives
This is the 2020 update to my popular article on why and how to make sure your backups are sorted. Cloud storage is not always the answer when big RAW files and big photo collections are at stake. I spend more on hard drives than cameras, so read on to find out why.
The Absolute Best Lens in Nepal
Very rarely a new lens comes along that changes how I think about photography. This is one of those lenses. My priority for glass is always quality over convenience, but this time you get enough of both to make it a hard one to walk past. The newly released "DG Vario-Summilux 10-25mm f/1.7 ASPH" by Panasonic+Leica is not only a great lens for MFT systems, but may well be good enough to tempt full frame owners to look seriously at adopting the smaller mirrorless format of the Lumix G series.
Ewen's New Book
"ReIMAGINE" is now available to order online. It's a very big and very generous book that will help you to reconnect with your creative side.