Passion is Personal - Bill McCarroll
Cruising Grand

Like many others on a road to discovery I’ve meandered many times over the years. But one consistent theme on that road has been a never ending passion for photography. I think I’ve discovered a few things that I’ll share that can drag us off away from being satisified with our craft. First, for me was always focused on being something or someone big in photography. It’s a never ending road to nowhere when you focus on the masters and think of what’s needed to be like them. Is it gear, is it location, is it technique, is it atmospheric conditions? Just what has to be done to be like him or her? That thinking leads to all sorts of cross roads to oblivion. While studying the masters can be a source of inspiration, trying to copy their work will be an endless source of frustration. You can certainly be inspired by their work and even perhaps informed by their images. But their images will never be yours. That road has been well trodden.

Gear, the never ending drain on our wallets. I have been a victim of gear fixation. I started my photography many years ago with film. Back in the day, the type of film camera really didn’t matter to me. I was out to capture photographs of the family and personal events. I was never into photography as an artistic pursuit. In fact I think that’s the angle that drops many of us into this black hole. When you just want to capture a photo, gear takes a back seat. Just look at phone cameras, the vast majority of photos today are taken on phones. These people aren’t chasing gear, they just want the immediacy of a tool that allows them to capture people and events in their lives.

So, those who know my know that I’ve been heavy into film these past few years. It’s practically been the only medium I’ve used for my photography. Before then, I was into digital. The past week or so, I’ve been looking through my catalog of almost 200k images. I tag all of my images in Lightroom with keywords and star ratings. As I was going through my five star images I was a bit surprised to see that the majority of my favorites were digital images. Don’t get me wrong, there were many film favorites as well. I just thought that film images would be my overwhelming favorites. That’s not the case.

So, I will continue to shoot with the medium that suits me personally at the time. I recognize I’m a photographer first. I will shoot with the gear I want to whether film or digital. If I don’t feel like using film or don’t want to develop and scan film then I’ll shoot with my digital cameras. So on this site, you’ll see what I think is my best work. It will change over time because my hope is that my images will get better and better. They may reflect a style over time but that style won’t be dictated by the medium I use. That may put images that look different in color and tone but so be it. Let’s see where it goes.

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