At the last count, the photo sharing website Flickr had over six billion photographs. We are awash with imagery everywhere we look and the ability to take a photograph has never been easier. Photography has been democratised, it is accessible to everyone, anytime to create and share, but in doing so, have we lost sight of one of photography’s fundamental benefits; to combat stress?
It has long been acknowledged that the act of artistic creativity can mitigate the effects of stress and depression. Well, photography is not just about documenting the present; it is also an artistic creative activity.
I write from personal experience. Photography has helped keep me grounded during some dramatic life changing events. It shifts my attention from the internal mental hamster wheel of distractions that can feed stress. I find myself more centred and calm. The act of creating a photograph can be more than simply pressing a shutter. It requires forethought, observation, an appreciation of light, shade, and patience. Photography for me is also a technical challenge. Understanding the measuring units of light, (f stops, shutter speed), keeps my brain active. (Of course, if you prefer modern cameras will do this for you, so you can concentrate on the scene).
Living in Bexhill, I recommend going to the beach at low tide, to watch the clouds and sunset. It will take your mind off the stressors of the day, and you could see something glorious. If you don’t manage to capture a sunset, never mind; the good news is that there will be another one. Finally, don’t worry about whether or not your camera is good enough. To quote Ansel Adams, (whose iconic images helped to establish photography as a fine art form), “the most important component of a camera is the twelve inches behind it”.
We offer regular Workshops and a friendly, informative Photo-Group ~ just call us for more information, we’d love to see you soon.
Next sessions: Introduction to Digital Monochrome 11th September 2 – pm £14
Introduction to Photography Part 1 – 9th October 2 – 4pm £14
Introduction to Photography Part 2 – 23rd October 2 – 4pm £14
Photo-group – Monday’s 4th & 8th September. 2nd & 16th October 1.30 – 3pm £8