Sometimes I think imagers (photographers, videographers, designers) spend too much time working on things, analyzing others’ work, learning, etc. While all those things are vitally important, I think sometimes we forget to slow down and just be consumers of our craft for a little while.
I think the parallel can be drawn that a chef, despite making food all the time, has to eat too, and his craft will be broadened and honed when he eats from other places. That being said, if he is constantly being a food critic when he eats elsewhere, he’ll never be able to just enjoy it.
I think the same thing applies for photography in particular. Sometimes as photographers, we’ll forget to just stop and “enjoy a meal” without overanalyzing its components and quality. That can rob it of much of its joy, and that is not okay.
Don’t forget to slow down and just enjoy someone else’s work for a while. Don’t overanalyze it. Don’t think “I could have done that better!” or other nonsense like that. Just take a moment and enjoy it.
I find that just finding a group I’m interested in on Flickr and perusing the group pool does the trick. Don’t forget to appreciate classic work too.