How to have my photography appreciated, or mean something?

Started 3 months ago | Discussions thread
Toronto Photography
Toronto Photography Senior Member • Posts: 1,052
Re: How to have my photography appreciated, or mean something?

Flowchart wrote:

If you really want appreciation - and no I am not talking about likes or upvotes on social media you could try shooting local events, companies or even local historical buildings / sites, people who are interested in these things are usually highly appreciative of the documentation.
I've told about this before on this site but here goes again, I often walk around with my camera and whenever I met someone walking their dogs I began asking if I could take a couple of photos of them. It immediately became evident how much they love their pets and I always made sure to have a chat with the owners; even the most grumpy owner lit up when talking about their dogs -

the result was somewhat overwhelming with the PMs and tagging on social media, so much that I got bored - but it also gave me local recognition and non-canine related offers. This was a couple of years ago and I am currently thinking of an exhibition or a book as many of these dogs have passed away but the still mean a lot to their owners.
People with a deep interest in cars/bikes is another passionate group, as ar store owners.

Bottom line, shoot peoples passions.

I won't hijack you thread but here are some photos to illustrate what I did.

river251 wrote:

Please don't get down on me for this, it's a bit of soul searching I'm doing as I move toward getting back into photography. I have not been doing much for a few years.

Essentially, I end up with thousands of photographs stored on my hard drives. There are a handful that I think are pretty good shots that I enjoy looking at. I'm lucky to live in a spot where, with the scenery here, I can go out and take great numbers of beautiful photos---give credit to the environment. But putting the effort into going out and shooting, or carrying my gear along as I travel, seems in part pointless. I don't exhibit at galleries, I don't sell photographs at the farmer's market---generally nobody sees my photos. And this seems to me like practicing guitar but never playing out at clubs, restaurants, etc.

I've had a decent camera for ten years, and was able to recently upgrade to something nicer. But the prospect of getting out with it has me asking, "for what?" I want people to see and appreciate my work (well not everyone would like every photo but you know what I mean). When people like it, and even better if somebody bought something---even for $10, I would feel actualized from my photography. It would feel good to work at it. I have a decent income from my day job; I'm not out to make a lot of money from my photography. But if nobody likes it, or even sees it, it all seems a bit without purpose.

I think I'm past the point of enjoying it for the pleasure in the process, and liking the occasional good shot for my own pleasure. I like it when I learn a new song on the guitar, and know that I may play it in public, by booking a gig. But how to get my photography similarly presented to and appreciated by the public? I've taken photography classes at the local college, and could probably put a photo or two in their show. But what if I did? What if I won? Then what? It seems like that would provide limited satisfaction for a few times, at best.

When I'm shooting, not only do thousands of shots accumulate on my drives, but thousands of other people are shooting and producing thousands of photos too. I feel my work is lost among the ocean of photographs out there. And there are many photographers who are breathtakingly good, at a level I am far from. Many of them are regulars here. I do spend time looking at DPReview members' work quite a bit.

I've been mulling about posting this, and finally did......


I dont like cars or dogs much as subjects, but I have taken a lot of them. I find as you said people are happy when you take a photo of there car or dog, and  I find it good practice - shooting a subject you are not passionate about but for others. They get all happy fast. I see you have taken it to the next level.

Photography provides two non photography benefits

1) if make others happy as said.

2) it makes my needed walks interesting.

However you may want to move into a related field like film. There lots to learn there as well. It might be you enjoy the challenge of learning.

 Toronto Photography's gear list:Toronto Photography's gear list
Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II Canon EF 24-105mm F3.5-5.6 IS STM
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