What we see happening in the photography industry in the next 5-10 years highly depends on what steps we, as photographers, start taking now.
Due to the invention of smartphones and the online world of social media a “rat race” has formed with people vying for the highest number of likes, followers, and impressions which has shifted photography away from being an art form, a skill that people needed to work hard at to develop, into something quite ordinary and mundane.
There are two “camps” in the photography industry now; the younger group who are mostly driven by trends and filters and an older group of 35+ who treat photography as an art form and serious hobby.
Unless we bring young skilled, passionate, and future-thinking talents on board now, things may start looking quite sad in the not so distant future of photography. This is why it is crucially important to change something in the education system and grow the next generation of New Zealand photographers with the right values and skills.
Photography students at Kapiti College together with their teacher Fairlie Atkinson are showing their peers a great example.
Listen to this interview on Kapiti Beach FM radio station with Fairlie as she discusses this important topic.
At Excio, we believe that photography is about doing some good in society by communicating a message, a story, or an issue. Combined with Kapiti College's vision to “innovate, inspire, and engage” the partnership between ourselves makes for the perfect “landing pad” for young photographers.
Students we met during our recent visit to the College are taught to develop their own style, build their portfolios, and work on topics that matters to them most. In some of the works that the College publishes online via the Excio App, you can see students exploring the problems associated with drug use, social media, mental health, femininity and more. Imagine what changes these youngsters can bring to the world and for the good of their communities...
We can be confident that these students will be the innovative explorers, researchers, photojournalists and other skilled professionals entering the industry who will bring far more to the table than the average Instagrammer who is posting “feet-outside-of-tent” images just the fun of it without no real thought or meaning behind the photo.
Excio prioritises helping young photographers to develop skills such as creativity, imagination, critical thinking and communication when it comes to showcasing their work.