photography of women using mobile phones
Photo by Brett Sayles on

I hope, with this subject, that I can present to all of you some of the pitfalls people are falling in to, even in photography. If you want to see how volatile social media can get, just take a look at the political scene with social media. I am not even going there. But, I wanted to take a moment and talk about how to handle social media negativity when it comes to showing your photos.

There are 2 different ideas in photography that can get your feelings hurt.

I don’t see it too much of a problem in photography as politics, but, it is still there. And I think the people that create the problems are ignorant about the facts. Let’s look at each subject that has cause to beware:

1- My camera is better than yours! How can you call yourself a photographer with that camera.
There are many different brands of cameras out there. Why would anyone own some of those? They are terrible!

The reason there are so many different camera manufactures is because they all have different ideas on how a camera should work!

Am I an expert in this? YES! I used to sell cameras for over 20 years. And one thing I found out is that every camera manufacture is great, and has some amazing products and thoughts going in to every camera. In fact, before I left the camera retail business, I had owned almost every brand of camera. And I liked them all equally. I had Nikon, Olympus, Rollei, Minolta, Canon, Pentax. And I absolutely enjoyed every camera I own. Every one of these camera manufactures make great cameras. The bad manufactures are gone. All that is left are the good ones. All are built well, and all have some amazing qualities unique to them. So, when someone says: “You should buy a Nikon, because your Canon Camera really isn’t that well built, or has as good of optics as Nikon”. DON’T YOU BELIEVE THEM. I am constantly amazed at the different cameras the professionals use.

No brand seems to personify this tribalism more than Sony. If Sony were a football team (or soccer, depending on where you’re from), it would be Manchester United – a team with incredibly adoring fans, but that is also despised by many others.

I have wasted too much of my life reading comment sections of Sony releases (and every brand!) that erupt into arguments about how much Sony rules or Sony sucks. Each time fans attack, then defend their side until the final whistle”.

That above quote is from a recent article published on DIGITAL PHOTOGRAPHY SCHOOL, article authored by: Carl Spring. He also said:

However, unlike sports, these arguments always end in a draw. Nobody wins, nobody loses. It just creates a deeper rivalry between those on either side of the argument and increases tensions for the next meeting. 

Also, when you’ve invested thousands into a system, you don’t want to feel like you’ve made the wrong decision. You need to be secure in the knowledge that you have made the right choice.

Photo from:

When I sold cameras in a camera store, I would tell people that the camera they buy has to feel the best in their hands, and the layout has to work best for them. Once they have discovered that, they had the perfect camera that made them happy. Knowing up front that the camera they bought was also as good as the other one their friend may own.

So, don’t ever feel weird about the camera you own. When I look at what is out there right now, I can give you qualities of every brand, and you would be amazed at how great these cameras are. And then you may be really confused as to what to buy, because they are all so good.

2- Why would you take a picture like that? Your photos do not compare with professionals, so, you shouldn’t pretend you are a good photographer.
crooked horizon boat image
The horizon is crooked. What a joke! Idiot!

Have you ever seen someone from an arts background make conversation with someone from an academic background?

It’s usually very awkward, and both individuals will struggle to find some common ground.

Because while artists tend to deal with unquantifiable factors such as feeling and emotion, academics prefer to work with facts and theory.

Photography, however, is the point at which science and art meet. This brings in two distinct schools of thought – which tend to be polar opposites of each other.

Those who prefer the academic side of photography enjoy technical perfection. The fact that engineers made sensors with the ability to capture so much detail and lenses that are so amazingly sharp is fascinating to them. They look at composition based on mathematical formulae, and past this, they may struggle to make sense of their art.

On the other hand, there are artistic photographers. Those who like lenses that have character, those who do not mind blur in photographs. Those for whom the feeling and the moment are the keys to the perfect photograph, not how sharp it is or whether it follows the golden ratio.

These photographers feel the confines of technology should not stop them from capturing the perfect moment.

Who is right in this argument depends on where you sit on the scale. Without getting too psychological about it, people generally fall into one of two character types: academic or creative. This is due to the makeup of each person’s brain and goes some way toward explaining these differing schools of thought and why people don’t see eye to eye.

In other words:

People are approaching the same problem from different angles.

Once again: Don’t get caught in any type of argument over whether a picture is better or not.

If you have been told that your photos are really very artistic, then someone comes along and says, your photos are not following the “rules of composition”, then ignore them, because they don’t understand art. Every once in a while I see a photo that has the subject right square in the middle of the photo, and then I put my “artist” hat on, and realize that this is a great photo.

Subject right in the middle of the photo, but, it’s a perfect photo. Because it’s artistic. Photo by Max Wough


Don’t let anyone tell you that your photo is lousy. They don’t really know. But, you know what I do? I look at the “real professional” photographers, and try to learn from them, when I am still learning. You must keep trying to learn why their photo looks so amazing, and then, YOU MUST LEARN FURTHER FROM STUDYING THE REAL PRO’S.

This photo for sale at


  1. Recent follower of your blog — absolutely spot on w/ this one. 1: The best piece of equipment is the one you have: the best application of that equipment, of creativity, is in the eye behind the camera. 2: Those who denigrate others are usually on an ego trip: constructive criticism is welcomed and helpful if the source is knowledgeable. Prelude:
    I believe all photographers are artists, expressionists – some are simply further along their path. Michelangelo started Somewhere!!! If everyone in the world was an artist, in whatever medium, the world would be a more peaceful, energetic and spiritual place; while in the energies applied in construct of the arts, design/ application/, there would be a whole lot less negative/ destructive force spent.
    When nailing a board, what matters the color? Paint can come later.
    Impassioned Photographer of 35 yrs. And yes, old equipment. It’s what I have.
    And still learning – because I want to.

    1. Thank you Cal for the comment. It’s an interesting world we live in now, where social media plays such a big part in people’s lives. I am hoping that by putting this forward to people, that many people may get the idea to not support the ideas and bad feelings associated with this, and not being “in the mainstream”. Thanks for your interest and hope you keep enjoying these blogs.

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