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As photography sails pass its quartoseptcentennial, this great form of media is being revolutionized by the modern digital technology in two ways: the cost per picture has tremendously reduced and continues to reduce, making photography accessible to mass population, thus closes the gap among professionals, enthusiasts and ordinary people. Secondly, it is the first time in history that photographers all over the world, professionals and amateurs alike, can display and share their photographs on the single platform called world wide web.
In flickr, I have seen numerous works by amateurs measure up, if not surpass, those by renowned photographers. Taking good pictures, in a sense, is no longer a privilege of some prestige class. You and I can do it as well. However, precisely for this reason, the yardstick of gauging an outstanding picture must be raised. Beautiful alone is not good enough. What used to be classic pictures by great photographers may now seem ordinary, and be buried in the sea of flickr. Their greatness only owes to their originality with respect to their time.
I always believe that the true value of a photograph lies largely on its documentary nature, which makes it able to withstand the test of time. To realize that, it has to reflect an irreplaceable moment or event at a specific place in the three-dimensional space. It has to tell a story, whether it be a single shot, a set or a series; whether it portrays the highly sophisticated New York City, or the unspoiled Amazon jungle.
With this in mind, taking serious photograph isn’t as easy as I originally thought. I have attempted to work toward this end goal. Although I often failed, it does not stop my strife.
p.s. Starting 2007, all photos (except indoor) have GPS data identifying the location. Please click "map" or "properties" for details.
Note: All images have copy rights. I may give out photos without charge only in two cases: 1) the requester is in the photo; 2) the photo is used for strictly non-profit purpose. All other requests are subject to a royalty-free fee. In cases of low-profit, educational, academic publications, the fees can be substituted by a copy of finished publication
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