I have always been irritated by photographers who are illiterate in their medium; and not in a know-it-all Professor of Photography kind of way, either. I don’t mean that everybody has to know what an ambrotype is or the date of birth of James Jarché. I mean something much less dry than that. In other art forms, creators gauge the level of knowledge of the audience and build upon it. Put another way, creators know that their audiences work hard to extract meaning and emotion from their stuff, and they pitch it where that effort can be rewarded. Thelonious Monk most assuredly knew the simple cadences of the Protestant hymns which underlay the classical chord-sequences of the piano blues that came before him. He didn’t want to play like that, but he knew that his audience knew it, and he could quote and refer and paraphrase and make fun of that stuff confident that his hearers would ‘get’ it. That is literacy.

Francis Hodgson

Thank you, Francis!

(via conscientious)