I N THIS DAY AND AGE, EVERY AMATEUR WITH A SMARTPHONE CONSIDERS himself an artiste. Hundreds of shots of breathtaking panoramas, mouthwatering meals and precious portraits of our fluffy four-legged friends are uploaded to social media every minute, disseminated to the masses with one click to be shared and drooled over and adored by strangers in far-flung locales. And filters and photo editing apps are ubiquitous — any technology minded individual can create a masterpiece out of a master piece of (insert expletive here). As a result, it’s become more and more difficult for the true artists to distinguish themselves from the Photoshop-savvy phonies. And that means it’s more important now than ever to extol the masters who have devoted themselves to studying and perfecting the true art of photography.
So in honor of National Photography Day, which falls on Aug. 19, we dedicate this issue of the Florida Weekly Key West Edition to the real professionals — the ones who invest themselves financially, physically and psychologically in capturing the beauty that exists all around us. The ones whose arresting images evoke an innumerable mess of feelings, from nostalgia to awe to inspiration. And the ones whose body of work will remain with us long after we’ve finished gazing upon it. ¦