YO! If you know me, you know I’m not a fan of labels. Not a fan of photographer labels… fashion, boudoir, wedding, portrait, music, celebrity and so on. I’m also not a fan of legend, legendary or master photographer either. I get it and it doesn’t ruin my day. Just annoys me sometimes. I just believe you need to earn your titles. Just cuz you say it does not make it true. Just cuz someone else says it does not make it true. Just cuz you add it to your Instagram profile doesn’t make it true.
The one label that bothers most is MASTER. Some photographers call other photographers Masters, some call themselves Masters and some sell some sort of Master Class when the are so NOT a Master! The way I look at it… If Richard Avedon, Irving Penn, David Bailey, Annie Leibovitz, Gordon Parks, Ansel Adams, Peter Lindbergh and Diane Arbus are Masters, what makes you think yer a “Master”?
I see a true Master as someone who has created a body of work that will last forever! Images that are know! Iconic images of icons. Images that resonate through generations!!! Images that were great when they were shot and great today! Images that make you feel every time you see them. A Master photographer is a photographer who has a body of work that speaks louder than most! A body of work that is that is truly masterful.
Now I know I’m going to get some flack for this post, but I want to be clear… it’s my opinion. I know what a Master is for me. I know who my Masters are. I also know you all might see it differently and that’s OK. We live in a crazy world and most of it doesn’t make sense! Everything is watered down and diluted. Even our Master Photographers are diluted. Now you can call yourself what ever the fuck you want and that’s fine. I call myself a plain old photographer. OR if I’m feeling sassy, I call myself a Starving Artist. Do what works for you! BUT I’m curious, WHO do you think is a Master Photographer?