I ran across these two short bits of thought that totally made sense to me about our job as a photographer in capturing visual moments. Unless you are doing still lives in the studio there is always some variable element. If the subject is a person then even if they are the most trained actor/athlete there are a whole range of different ways that they can perform the same action. It's our job as photographer to direct, and in camera via our decision to make the exposure and then which one of our exposures to use, edit to deliver the moments that we want. Which brings me to this though on directing from Steven Spielberg:
Then on the other hand you have the freewheeling journalist/documentary approach where you have no real control over what is going to happen and you are improvising along with the elements around you. Most of my work is like this and the jazz great Sonny Rollins puts it perfectly here:
But there there is a world where you need to combine both and be able to turn the director and improviser on and off in a moments notice. I find that this is really hard and when I do it my brain gets tired from using the clutch all the time with all the gear changing. Stay too long or too shot in one mind frame and things go wrong. It's all about balancing the knowing of what you want and letting the rest flow. Ooooooooommmmmmmmmm!