The Way It Was

The Chicago Tribune’s Alex Garcia sat down with Gerry Souter for a Q&A about his time as a Trib shooter back in the 1960s. It’s a fascinating read, though some young’uns may need a translator … this last graf really sums it up for me:

There was a mystery to photography back then. You were sort of a magician, to be able to get these beautiful shots out of these 4×5 boxes. You’d learn how to make architecture lines straight and turn night into day. The mystery was what elevated your position. The photographer was more valuable, but way less mysterious. It was amazing.

So much of that mystery, that magic, that craftsmanship is missing from today’s work. There’s more work, and it’s easier than ever to produce technically excellent work, but I wonder if the craft is ahead of the technology curve now.

(Thanks to Mark Hertzberg of the Racine Journal Times for the link.)

Mark E. Johnson

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