Former film-maker George Lucas used to be a sort of hero of mine.
Unfortunately, he ceased to be a real film-maker about half way through the filming of Return of the Jedi. (Why Ewoks? Why?)
He may have realized he was out of ideas, and for a time he did everyone a favor by not coming up with any new content, a rule he broke when he produced the train wreck colloquially known as the Star Wars Prequels.
Indeed, prior to the aforementioned prequels, rather than have original ideas or do anything creative, George made money by re-releasing his movies both in the theatre and for home viewing.
He sold the original Star Wars Trilogy on VHS, the THX Trilogy on VHS, the Special Edition on VHS, the DVDs, the Star Wars Trilogy Theatrical Edition, the Original Trilogy on bluray, the Prequel Trilogy on bluray, the complete saga on bluray, etc. He also released the movies in the theatre when they went to the special edition, and most recently, in 3D.
If I had to guess, I’d say he’ll be releasing a 3D bluray complete Star Wars trilogy for $100+ in the near future.
He is a master of getting people (like me, until the prequels) to buy the same thing over and over again, without adding any real value.
Now stay with me, this relates back to photography!
I remember before one of the Star Wars VHS releases, probably the Special Edition, there were some interviews in which George, in an attempt to justify going back and monkeying with the original trilogy, states, “A movie is never finished, only abandoned.”
When I was in Jr. High I thought, this is a pretty cool quote, George is so deep and awesome.
I recently learned that George actually stole this (without attribution) from someone who did have creativity and origional thoughts.
It was actually Leonardo da Vinci, who shared this wisdom some 500 years earlier: “Art is never finished, only abandoned.”
And now we come full circle. I find myself going back to my earlier photos, and seeing how I could have processed them differently, or composed them differently. Now I can’t always go back and retake a photo, I can go back to the raw images and reprocess them.
Part of me rails against it, but part of my perfectionist side demands that I go back and “fix” them.
But don’t worry, I’m still taking new photos! In fact, I have a photo from Washington, DC that I’ll be sharing this Tuesday (email subscribers will hear about it first). But in the meantime, here is a photo that I recently “remastered.”