4 Reasons Why Women May Very Well Make Better Photographers
By ilovegraphics on January 09, 2009
For the longest time, we have gotten used to the idea that a male figure would pop up in our heads when we think of a photographer. Even at this time, most of us probably do.
But have you ever tried working with a female photographer? How did you find it? I have interviewed quite a number of female and male models and whenever I would ask them, "If we take a male and female photographer of the same expertise and the same amount of experience, who would you prefer?" Roughly 70% preferred a female photographer, 15% preferred a male photographer and the remaining 15% said it didn't matter.
When asked for a quick run down of the reasons why they preferred a female photographer, most of them replied that 1. they were more comfortable, 2. the female photographer communicated better with them and 3. has a very keen eye on details as well as the overall picture and 4. they always found the end result a strong photograph of themselves.
Others would argue that men are better because men are ‘generally’ more willing than women to dwell on the technical aspects of photography. This is s fact. I've spent hours in the middle of discussions among male photographers about aperture, shutter speed, strobes and etc. But does this knowledge really make men better photographers? Not necessarily. Women know these information just as well but they don't discuss it as much since they're after something else; something deeper and more unique to every photographer.
It is a fact that women can produce good photographs. In fact, women ARE as good as most men photographers, if not better. How? Women, in general, have some specific attributes that give them relative advantage over the opposite sex. Here are top three reasons why women may very well make better photographers.
1. Women are more passionate.
Women in general are more emotional or can see the more dramatic angle in a certain situation than men. They are easily moved, excited, or agitated and they exhibit these emotions quite intensely in the pictures they take. Hence, they can transform or capture a moment that does not only induce a strong feeling from them but which also has the power to stimulate emotions from the audience.
2. Women can empathize with the subject.
This is not to suggest that men do not have compassion. It just means that a woman has this as an intrinsic trait. Being maternally wired, women’s photographs exhibit this distinct female characteristic. Just look at the subject of some well-known women photographers and you will be able to see that their subjects usually revolve around meaningful portraits of people portraying emotions that clearly communicate with the viewer. Now look at what men has artistically captured as featured in magazines such as FHM, Playboy or Gadgets.
3. Women do not have humongous egos.
This is definitely true. Men have bigger egos than their female counterparts. They cannot accept criticism in the same way that a woman could. Women in general are more open and less antagonistic about negative feedback when it comes to their works. Men take offense while women use the opportunity to run by their work again and scrutinize it for further improvements. They take each comment, negative or positive, as a reason to celebrate or to further improve their works.
4. Women focus more on the subject than the technicalities
I have been around enough male photographers to know this to be true. I also read a thread recently about men admitting that they can get too technical about their pictures; that they tend to lose focus on how their subject communicates with the lens and instead focus on how the lens is taking the light in, if it’s focused enough, if it has the right frame, etc. Although these technical points are valid criteria for a good photograph, they still won’t do that much if the subject doesn’t communicate well with the viewers.
Women, first and foremost, go after capturing the drama and the “moment” first, technicalities come in second. On the other hand, men look at things in reverse. They are perfectionists when it comes to the technicalities of a photograph that they tend to overlook making the same amount of effort in capturing the subject in its best possible form, emotion and moment.
This debate on who is better between the sexes has been raging since women have become more empowered. Women are starting to be known in fields that usually has been the domain of the male species. This encroachment to once exclusively male-dominated fields is probably what is causing all this debates. Men are too scared and insecure to share the limelight with the opposite sex. However, there are a select few male photographers who beg to differ. But by looking at the works of the vast number of photographers that have sprung out from nowhere for the past 3 years, there is no denying that this theory goes to the general population.
Women are now more active in getting out and going after their passion in photography. With this movement, women are proving that they are not mere objects of photography but rather soulful artists who can communicate a strong message from behind the lens rather than in front of it.
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