Barbara Galvács Narratives

The road to impactful photography

Hello, welcome (back) at my phlog page!

This time the process itself gets the stage of this post:

Entering the Fotoacademie the very first time, to explore my options of photographic studies was so exciting that nearly ten years later I still remember it clearly. For my entrance exam I had to bring some prints with me. I then arranged twelve photographs on a shiny A3 print at a corner print store. Bravely faced a technical test questionnaire, all in Dutch... Bear in mind that I hardly spoke the language at the time, living here in Amsterdam for just about 2 years! Wowww, what a fearful conversation that was, to discuss my latest digital shots then, oh my! Even though mostly snapshots really, some photographs and some compositions got their attention. Based on my previous autodidact activity, I somehow also managed to pass the technical test. I made it in. Oh, how super-happy and excited I was! Then I was told to choose from their repertoire of study choices. After this entre I went 'all-in', for the full four year option.

I still remember a question though, that stroke me repeatedly: what on earth will they teach me for 4 years? Yes, I had an idea how composition worked and also how complex a camera, a lens, a lamp can be. At the same time no, I had absolutely no idea how complex light behaves, how photography itself therefore is, how amazing and endless its realms are, how many ingredients need to come together perfectly well to get worthy results, not to mention the levels of the stunning works of the greatest masters out there.

How nuanced one is capable to tune into the mesmerising beauty and fascinating workflows of photography, is a whole apart topic. Currently what I'd like to emphasise here now is the importance of the process itself against that of the speed and leisure that some types of photography radiates in our overly digital world these days. Whilst quite some people undoubtedly believes that photography is just a click, the truth is that of course, it can be, and in some cases can work perfectly for the goal ahead. More cases we come across that how impactful photography works is the exact opposite. It needs both precision work and intuition, quite some pre-meditation, to come together the way imagined, in most parts. Then the unexpected plays its own role to spice it up the way that it feels as it does feel, when looking at it.

The more people taps into the world of visual narratives and the discussions they generate, the clearer the importance of the process itself becomes. In balance of all the weight of the focus on the speed and the perfectness and the final end result and its ideal effects on the lives of people and businesses; the process of a photography project is just as fascinating. Shall we rather say: equally important for the very end result and its total impact on people and businesses.

The process is from ideation, the concept, planning, finding the subject, the location, setting the light, the composition, the design, the colour management, the timing of all, the arranging, the organising, the capability, the branding, the vision, through the uniqueness of the combinations of these, the fine tuning, the editing, the having fun in between, the personal connection to the work team, the curation, the presentation, the client management, the learning and development, the keeping up to date, the marketing, the social media, the communication, the purchasing, and everything else to the storage, the fundraising and the work-life balance of the creators.

We are all familiar with the 'just a click' of a nonchalant snapshot that happens to be of our perfect table on a perfect beach on a perfect day in perfect company that might mean the world to us for personal reasons or for a sponsor company and it's potential clients. Photographs and photographic projects, with more feelings, more thoughts, more actions, more reach, more quality, more caring, more time, more planning, in a certain context, in a certain timing, at a certain location, in a certain way, can result in works of art that connect to their audience and can move the world, either in their specific field or widely acknowledged.

Pictures to follow, but texts have their own rights to get into the spotlight, even on a photographic website :)

Until next time,