The blog of photographer Kim Ayres

The Emotional Connection - and Episode 39 of Understanding Photography with Kim Ayres

When I asked everyone last week to send me their favourite photo of 2020, I had no real idea what to expect.

I guess I was thinking it would be a bit more like the entries you might expect in a camera club – where people were digging out their greatest sunset image, or that moment a bird caught a fish, or a shot of a celebrity in a slightly compromising situation...

And yet it was far more glorious than that – they were nearly all about the emotional attachment the photographer had with the subject or the situation. It wasn't their best, it was their favourite.

While there were a handful where there was a certain pride that they had nailed the photo they set out to take, far more came with a comment that while they knew the shot could have been technically better, what they really loved about the photo was...

From grandchildren to pets to memories spent of an evening in good company – each of these photos were meaningful to the takers in ways that far outweighed any technical considerations.

And this delighted me.

The vast majority of people who tune in to the podcast each week are, of course, looking to improve their photographic skills. They want to know how to adjust the camera settings for particular situations, or which compositional techniques will make a photo more compelling, or what style of editing will improve the reaction to their image from other people.

And every week, these things do get discussed.

But it's more than that.

The group that is forming around the podcasts are not ego-driven photographers looking solely how to get an edge over the competition. Instead it's real people looking for ways to express their stories, emotions and experiences in a supportive environment – one where no one is going to humiliate them for asking the wrong question, or showing a photo that isn't perfect.

There were a record-breaking 260 comments during last night's podcast – nearly all of them were involved, supportive and warm towards everyone else who had put in their favourite photo of the year.

In what's been a more difficult year emotionally for most - with so much fear, anxiety and division - to have a wee corner of the Internet which seems to be encouraging the better sides of our natures, is proving to be very satisfying.


0:00 - Welcome, what's coming up, greetings and comments
7:45 - My favourite photo of 2020, and why
13:45 - 20 people submitted their favourite photos of 2020 to the Facebook Group, "Understanding Photography with Kim Ayres"
2:07:33 - Coming up over the next couple of weeks 2:11:30 - End

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And, or course, if you would like to submit a photo for feedback, or just ask a photography related question, then do join my Understanding Photography with Kim Ayres  Facebook group and I will put it into the following podcast:

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