I have learnt that in terms of photography, to never ever EVER underestimate the importance of your friends. The main reason for me is that they can prove a massive source of inspiration. Things they say, things they do, experiences you have shared together all contribute to the swirling mess of memory and emotion that fuels creativity. A good example of this is in the image below. It was getting into late evening and I was stuck for an idea for my 365 project. I had been wasting time chatting to my friend Gary Chapman on twitter, and we spent several minutes taking the piss out of each other, then BANG, out of nowhere I knew what I was going to do.
Another important (in my opinion) reason to recognise the importance of friends to your photography is that they offer support, and often feedback. Now some friends will without a doubt be “ yeah that’s a pretty photograph!” , which is fine for ones ego, but that’s about it. Sometimes however you get “that’s really good because……” or more importantly for me “that’s shite because……”.
These comments and opinions are without doubt the best feedback you can get, and this is why I value Flickr so much as a tool. It not only allows me to come across new people and make new friends who are also passionate about photography, but many of them are more than willing to stick the boot in and offer advice, constructive criticism or just plane old Banter.
I’ve never (apart from one sill racist individual) had anything said to me which I haven’t found useful or that hasn’t helped me develop my photography in some way.
So Id like to thank all of you who have taken the time to look, and especially those who take the time to comment, I’m rapidly approaching 40,000 views of my images, which is small fry stuff in the world of Flickr, but it means a lot to me :-)