Is imitation the sincerest form of flattery ? I recently attended the Focus 2013 awards and was enthralled by some of the images that were presented.
The entries were judged by 3 Grand Masters, one of whom was Peter Eastway. What was interesting to note was the inclusion of many 'creative' interpretations. A little blur here, a large blur there and some composites. I'm guessing these Grand masters become pretty blase about the saturated sunrises and sunsets, even though many of them are Mother Nature's work, and not due to the photographer going wild with the saturation slider. Each of us learns from our peers and I'm sure many attendees will be experimenting with techniques to try and reproduce some of the beauties we saw. The Focus Group has, in general, the most generous and collegial of members who always reference mentors and peer helpers and I think that is what makes the difference. Copying is the selfish form of imitation and that's something decent photographers should avoid.
I personally am after achieving my own 'style', for want of a better name. My level of enthusiasm is always raised by discovering a photographer with a style I love, and something new to offer. I stumbled upon Adrian Sommerling's work this morning via a link from 'SLR Lounge' but as they had 'banned' the sharing of links I sourced some of my own.
For the record, I've found SLR Lounge to be very 'precious' with respect to their site, the complete opposite of the collegiality and sharing extended by most sites, so I for one am glad I can direct friends to other locations where they will see the same images. With respect to Adrian's work, I can hear the screams of 'over processing' ricochetting in Cyber Space. I for one love it.
Aren't we lucky that Adrian isn't as precious about his work as SLR Lounge is about theirs ?