Photography – Behind the Lens and in the Moment

On April 30, 2012 by James Watson

I am currently using three tools for most of my photography – a digital SLR (Nikon D3000), my iPhone 4S, and Photoshop. The rest is just a matter of time and exploration.

Photography is my way of capturing and sharing the experiences I have and the things that I see. I’ve heard people say that by taking pictures you often miss what’s happening in front of you. It’s been a battle trying to find a balance between being in the moment and capturing it. A shift takes place, no matter how hard you try, when you place a camera between you and what’s going on. The human lens replaced by the camera lens, the narrowed peripheral presence, the “waiting (and often hoping) for the moment” that replaces the “being in the moment.” I’ve found that it takes me longer to get from one place to the next, so it takes me a lot less time to get ready to do so.

There are also many who view photography as a pure art, and I agree with them that it very much can be. For me pictures are as much a second chance as they are memories or art. They allow me to revisit the moment, and try to emphasize my individual presence within that moment. They are my commentary. They are my further exploration.

I carry my camera with me everywhere I go. And Photoshop or some other digital image editing tool (Instagram, Picnik, iPhoto) is waiting for me to continue experiencing through. A lot of my work tends to be seasonal street photography, where I capture my world and the things around the places I live as they change throughout the year. I have captured the monuments, streets, communities, and culture of Washington DC over the years, through winter and spring; through Presidential Inaugurations and #Occupy Movements.

My camera is with me throughout my travels, where I have captured moments in England, Sweden, Italy, France, Egypt, Jordan, Dubai, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos.

I have taken on a more serious role of photographer for events, but do this on request as favors and not as a profession. I’m always seeking new experiences, and always open to collaborations and commissions.

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