I'm not here to argue
Personal philosophy often dictates the way we think, act and react to most things in our daily lives. Where does that "philosophy" come from? I think it is derived from the way our parents thought and taught us growing up, what our friends and even acquaintances say and think. How we view the world spiritually or not, no matter where it comes from it tends to define what and who we are. So the philosophy of whether or not photography is or should be "art" can be a hot topic in the right crowds. I don't want to argue or talk about that, everyone is entitled to there opinions and I can respect each one of them. I do think no matter what you're stance is your "art" be enjoyable and fun!
What is Art?
The inspiration for my thoughts on this liken back to an article written by my friend Aaron Cowan titled "Photo Art with Topaz Simplify". In his write up he refers to an article from the Luminous Landscape which is really what got me thinking. I just want to have fun and create photographs based around what I see in my minds eye. If it happens that you want to take an image to the extreme in Photoshop or Topaz or Corel then so be it. This is the joy we should all experience, expressing our innermost ideas, feelings, fears and delights without the worry of repercussion and ridicule.
Always Make it You
I spent the first 2 1/2 years with my camera being totally afraid of producing what I saw through my own eyes. That fear derived from doing things the "right" way, is completely irrational but it was (and sometimes is) there for me. So I can't help but think that it might be there for others as well. I was inspired by what Aaron did and what Michael Reichmann wrote that I decided to work on an image I have been reluctant to finish and post. It's been an uplifting and freeing experience that I want to pass along to someone else out there.
Use the work of others for inspiration, remember the fundamentals that are there to help you get off the ground. However, don't be afraid to spread your wings, make it you and fly out of the building of rules and into the land of being an artist!