One of my days off a little while back was blustery and the summer temps hadn’t quite set in yet, but the sun was bright, Lake Michigan was the bluest of blues and there was hardly a cloud in the sky. I thought to myself, “What the heck, let’s go on an adventure today!” And adventure I did.
I’ve lived outside of Milwaukee my whole life. I’ve experienced a lot of the great things MKE has to offer (it really is such an underrated city), but I know there is a lot more I’m missing. One thing, for instance, is the the Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum. I’ve driven past the wrought iron gates on Lincoln Memorial Drive countless times. I’ve lusted after the gorgeous back of Villa Terrace for YEARS. And only now did I get myself over to this stunning manor. It was worth the wait, however, and I enjoyed my time spent exploring the museum and grounds.
I mentioned the light was killer, right? Oh, I didn’t? Well, it was. Stunning. And it gave me plenty of opportunities to nab photos of striking shadows. During one point, I had squatted down to take a picture and as I tapped the screen on my iPhone 6 to focus in on the subject and adjust the exposure by sliding down (iPhone hack, in case you didn’t know!), an older man also exploring and photographing inside the museum sneered at me and asked, “Are you seriously using your phone to take photos in here?!” Normally, I tend to shrug off strangers’ questions and comments because I love avoiding conflict and confrontation at all cost. But this, for whatever reason, got under my skin. So I stood up, straightened my shoulders, and proudly said, “Yes! I am.” and proceeded to the next room.
I love photography. Capturing moments, people, culture, life.. Could you imagine life without it? Sure, it has it’s pros and cons. As with all things! But ultimately, what an incredible medium. And of course, some photographic technology is better than others. However, with cell phone cameras getting better and editing apps becoming more advanced, who’s to say whipping my phone out to capture a moment is wrong? Is there skill there? Do they have an eye? Does it make you feel something? Is there passion? Then it’s art. And that’s all that matters.
“Inherently, we all know that an image isn’t measured by its resolution, dynamic range, or anything technical. It’s measured by the simple—sometimes profound, other times absurd or humorous or whimsical—effect that it can have upon us. If you can see it, it can move you.”
(Chase Jarvis, The Best Camera Is The One That’s With You)