Yesterday I just happened to hear a few minutes radio.

The phone in subject was about the cost of having portraits for the House Of Commons painted and paid for from the public purse.

I am sure you have your own thoughts one way or the other on that

But the thing that struck me was when one irate lady rang to say…”£50 quid for a photo fine, not thousands for a painting”. It was that bit that did get me slightly annoyed.

Sadly photography is today considered by so many to be cheap, easy, and not thought of as so much of an art as say painting or sculpture.

If you are a professional photographer, that can be really frustrating when you such comments have spent decades learning skills that are surely equal to that of any other ‘artist’?

As an enthusiast, you will also in order to reach your potential, will have to put in some time step-by-step.

I think we can of course blame general technology that has made the process so immediate and cheap in a cost sense with mobile phones and other devices. But also the camera makers themselves?

Because although we have never had more capable cameras than we have today, what is lost has been what many know I call the ‘craft’ skills. The actual ways to conceive, implement and produce an image.

Knowing what you have done, so you can do it again today, tomorrow or next year.

And camera makers (understandable from their point of view), want to sell the technology so you buy on a regular basis as each new step comes out, rather than the craft skills which mean people do not as often.

Marry the two, good technology and an understanding of what you are doing and you have the best combination.

But the next time someone tells you or suggests this ‘photography’ thing is easy, if you have the time and mind set to do so, just remind them of the time it takes to truly become a photographer and not just a button pusher.

So please, let us not forget, consistently good high quality photography is an art in itself and should be thought spoken and promoted as such.

The more you do, the more you realise that to be the case, and the greater pleasure you can take from it.

End.