Creativity and Understanding

I really have a tech job with the government, I work in law enforcement; not as a sworn officer, or a scientist, but a pure and simple technical photographer.

Most of my co-workers will say, when asked, they are simply, a forensic photographer. But, most people think being a forensic photographer, is you, photographing dead people all the time. Well, I've done my share back in the nineties, but that duty did not covered the scope of my employment . Now, there are people that think Forensic Photography is only about photographing fingerprints, and to be honest, in my whole career, I can count on my right hand how many fingerprints or palm prints that I have done. If you go with my official job title of, "Scientific and Technical Photographer," most people won't realize that I've was also required to photograph portraits. Anyway you slice it, or view my career with the Federal Government, I have worked in many different photographic disciplines.

Working in law enforcement as a photographer is slightly different from say, a photojournalist. In such that we both photograph objectively, and try not to put our subjective opinion on our subjects. Ok, photojournalist do tell stories, and they do put their personal spin on that story, but they do not alter the image, using Photoshop, and other digital techniques. It's a big no, no, to say, add or remove certain items from those images, like move a person closer together for a tighter design.

Most photography jobs, the main reason you go with one photographer over another, is how they approach the process, the design elements, he final image. That's why some photographers get the big bucks. With being a scientific and technical photographer, that personal opinion doesn't come into play, except maybe the technique used to capture that image. That's the creative side of forensic photography, choosing the technique to enhance or just basically record what you are seeing. I guess you can say, that's what is common, across the photography industry, the creativity of the work. Be it: in choosing the type of background, the lighting used, he photographic technique used to capture the object or event. It's the creativity nature of the business.

I've just finished a great book about recharging your creative thinking, called the "Accidental Creative," by Todd Henry. The tag line for the book states, "How to be brilliant at a moment's notice." The book covers the problems with, why you might get stuck with an answer, and ways to continue to recharge the source material used by you to think creatively. Some people seem to be able to pull ideas out of nothing, but in reality, that answer came from preparation over a life time of research.