I don't really post on here very much any more as my wordpress site has become the main focus for news updates etc. However, a thought occurred to me today that I thought may hold some interest for those on here.
When I first started getting into Photography in a serious way I made it my personal mission to learn as much about it as possible. This way I could further my two main goals; to take better photographs, and to get a higher proportion of images that I was happy with. Two years or so later, and I have succeeded at one of my goals, but achieved the total opposite of the other. While I undeniably take better photographs than I used to (a browse through some of my old images has confirmed this) I achieve a far lower 'pass rate' than I used to (or indeed ever imagined possible). It would seem that in the process of becoming a better photographer I have also become a better critic (or rather, a more critical one). Nowadays I get a far bigger 'kick' when I manage to create an image that meets my personal standards and is aesthetically pleasing; however, this seems to happen far less frequently and as a whole I am not as happy with my images as I used to be.
My current pass rate for photographs is around 2-3%, a figure I would have not believed a year or two ago. I am not alone in this I feel. Joel Sartore the National Geographic photographer says that his acceptance rate from NG is less than 1%. It would seem that a natural part of progression in any artistic field is an increasingly critical attitude to your own work. While this undoubtedly leads to improvement with your own technique, I can't help feeling that it can impact on the enjoyment of your work. That is not to say that I don't enjoy photography any more, far from it; I'm more passionate about it now than I ever was, but I can't help feeling that there might be wisdom in the old adage 'Ignorance is Bliss'.
On that note I shall leave you. If anyone has their own personal experiences in the matter to add feel free to post in the comments. I'm off to take some photos.