harnessing the power of photography for good

tourists welcome

san diego is a great place to live.  its dec 15th, and im outside a coffee shop wearing pants and short-sleeve shirt, and totally comfy.  the sunset is looking pretty sweet, too bad im in mission valley, too far from the beach.  the sunset is all red and glowing, probably from the fire sunday nite at the porn joint offices on rosecrans.anyway, someone recently mentioned not wanting to take touristy pics…. which made me think. hmmm

what is a tourist and what kind of pics does he or she take?    i guess the bigger picture, pun intended, is what is a “professional” photographer? 

last time i went to the philippines to visit my peeps, i would frequently wander around town taking pics, much like a tourist.  technically i was a toursit, according to my passport, in the philippines.  and i was taking pics for my own personal enjoyment… traditional definitions for a “professional” shooter meant you got paid for what you do or take pics of.  so i guess i technically was an amateur.

others have written about the subject of what is a professional and what is not, and im not adding anything new to the discussion.  but my momma says “stupid is what stupid shoots,” or shomething like that.  there are plenty of tourist who create great,  powerful pictures that any professional would love to take credit for.  and there a “pro” shooters who havnt a creative bone in their body, but know how to take pics that sell and make money. 

this is a touristy pic i took at the coffe shop

the most important thing to me is am i taking pics that say something?  am i being challenged creatively, and am i growing as a photographer.  theres so much to learn and folks to learn from, both “professionals” and non “professionals.” 

as a person of faith, sold out for Jesus…am i taking pics that show Him off, that bring Glory to Him, that point to the creator and His Spirit at work in this world today?!!  thats what matters to me.  so id rather be a tourist than an unimaginitive “professional” photographer.  as david duchemin says, “gear is good. vision is better.”


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