My name is Mark Holland. I am an amateur photographer from Birmingham, UK. Welcome to my first blog. In this first entry I want to introduce myself, my photography, and what I intend to use this blog for. To do this I am going to answer some basic questions.
Who or what am I?
I would like to think I am lots of things. Most relevant here is that I am a doctor of sport psychology and an amateur photography. I am interested in why and how people engage in meaningful activities in order to achieve positive outcomes, both behavioural and psychological. If you ask my friends I was always going to work in sport (either because it was the only thing I was interested in or the only thing I was good at). At school I was definitely not considered arty or creative by my friends or myself. I always liked the idea of being creative but felt useless at it. Now it doesn’t matter if I am artistic, I just enjoy being out with my camera.
Why do I like photography?
I like photography because it is geeky, creative, challenging, and not what I do professionally. So first, I love the geek! I loved learning about exposure and how the camera works. Now I like learning new techniques and using new equipment. Second, I like trying to be creative. Precisely because I never considered myself artistic, I want to develop that part of me. Third, I find it hard. Combining the geek and the creative to make a pre-conceived image is a challenge. I therefore have to engage and commit to the process without worrying about the end product. Finally and most importantly, it is a escape. When I play with my camera I don’t think or worry about anything else.
What do I photograph?
I will photograph anything. While I am particularly interested in taking pictures of landscapes or people, I just like being out with my camera. As an amateur I do not see the benefit in restricting my shooting to specific subject matter. Limiting what I shoot can only limit my enjoyment.
What will my blogs will be about?
If I am honest, I am bored of blogs in which people teach you a technique that has been taught ten times before or review gear that has been reviewed a hundred times before. By the way, what is the point in an unboxing video?! Instead I want to discuss the psychology of photography as I see it.
If you search for the psychology of photography online you find quite a few articles and books. Some discuss the viewer’s relationship with an image, some describe the use of photography as a therapy, and some are guides to a better photography business. What about maximising your productivity and enjoyment of photography using what we know about psychology?!
I like sport because it is an achievement domain through which we can grow. Photography is the same but we rarely discuss why and how we engage in the process so that we can get the most out of it. That is what I aim to do. I want to transfer what we know about sport into photography. My writing will be based upon established psychological theory and scientific evidence. To illustrate points I will draw upon my own photographic process and experiences.
Please note that I am not selling anything through these blogs. I love photography and I am writing this because it interests me. I hope you find them interesting and perhaps enhance your own experience of photography.
Some examples of the blogs I intend to write include,
Satisfying my innate psychological needs through photography
Why I don’t ask other people if they like my pictures
My process-oriented workflow (non-technical)
Setting my photographic goals to promote enjoyment and achievement