My Serendipitous Approach to Photography

I want my work to carry meaning and beauty, but it hasn’t lately.

This photo (header image) from late last year that I shot with my iPhone reminded me that my favorite photos are about the serendipity of the moment. Sometimes I get too caught up in the lens I’m using or perfect posing, but really I find the candid moments beautiful. I like to see the sun shine through the windows on the metro on an older gentleman quietly reading the paper. I like to see people crossing the street and the light hits them just right through the buildings. I like the beautifully mundane.

@ioegreer on Instagram

I am heavily inspired by the work of another photographer named Joe Greer, @ioegreer and @ioestreet on Instagram. His work is mostly shot on film, and he is a master of finding beautifully mundane moments and catching them before they pass.

@ioegreer on Instagram

@ioegreer on Instagram

Even in vast, beautiful landscapes I really admire how each of his photos feels personal. This one in particular brings me into the moment where his wife picked a flower from the field and he saw this, and saved it on a roll of film. It’s the serendipity of time, place, and a keen eye that makes a photo like this come to life.

@ioegreer on Instagram

@ioegreer on Instagram

This photo carries all of those same qualities I love in his work. It’s the culmination of the right light, at a specific time of day, in a specific place in the world, and his wife is placed at the exact point in the image that I aspire to be when I see it. I want to be the person in the water in a beautiful hotel. Now once you find out this was a paid partnership with Marriott Hotels, it’s even more astounding.

This is the magic of Joe Greer’s work. He just shoots what he sees. He’s developed a photographer’s eye that finds every bit of beauty imaginable in every situation, and when he shares his photos it touches people. It doesn’t make me think he’s a great photo editor, he didn’t add planes and sparks and stormy skies. It brings me into a beautiful moment that I can truly appreciate.

I’d love to hear from you. Please leave a comment here if you want to share what you see in these photos.

If you have any questions for me, or topics for future blog posts you’d like me to cover… email me.

connect@masonlee.me

Thanks for reading, Mason.