My earliest memories with a camera are poolside in the South of France - a disposable camera in one hand and a virgin creme de menthe in the other. It was the summer of 2000, I was 6 years old, and I travelled with my family to visit relatives in France. My grandfather had bought my siblings, my cousins and myself a disposable camera each. He would later buy me my first digital camera. I started taking pictures that summer for the same reason as most people. I was preserving a memory; capturing the details that were so important to me at the time. Of course as a child, untrained in the art of photography and naive to the power it has, the was all intuitable to me. What other purpose could a photograph hold? I remember we would argue over the significance of a particular photograph and whether or not it should be taken. Tears were shed over a wasted exposure. After all, we were limited to the 24 images that our disposable cameras could capture.
It was not until I studied commercial photography at The Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology University that I came to realise the real power that photography has. The thing about photography is that anyone can take a picture. So what makes someone a photographer? Photography is about observation. The photographer can watch and record, but cannot interact. This is how a photography can shock, because the photographer, while watching, sees a situation from a perspective that non one else can. It is an entirely individual view. Which, through the act of photography, can be shared with those not watching. There is a unique kind of addictive power that comes from this.
So there you have it, I am an addict. Addicted to the nature of photography and the power it entails. Photography is about sharing your own individual view. Much like how a critic may write their opinion and share it with the world, as a photographer, I am constantly sharing my opinion. Through my visual medium, I am telling the world what is important to me. All my photographs are my own point of view and I am in complete control over how I choose to share it. I make all the decisions on lighting, exposure, composition, and the precise timing I release the shutter. O still takes photographs as an act of preservation - to freeze a memory, a moment, an object in time and space. I believe the two go hand in hand; and that perhaps the need for the invention of photography was in fact the need for preservation - the need to immortalise.