If you analyze the photos of the greats of the past and discover what made them great in those days you will find that it was not that the photos were very good, there are much better photos today done by just anybody, the reason that they were considered great was because the photographer had the audacity to do something different, he did not follow the crowd,he was not a sheep, he was on his own. Their photos were not bad but the main reason was that they were out of the ordinary. Thye had found a way to photograph that was different and people liked what they saw, the established photographic society probably did not agree and that is a reaction that will always happen in any type of craft that humans engage in or any type of endeavor, there are people that can not accept that somebody is doing something extraordinary and they will do their best to bring that person back to the established and traditional way of doing things.
Now the question is are their photos really good or is it the fame that makes the photos good.
I think that most photographers are afraid of saying what they really think about the photos of the greats because it’s expected by the established photographic population for you to recognize greatness when you see it, if you don’t see it then you are not a very good photographer.
So to become a better photographer is ;
1.-10% knowing the better technics of photography
2.- 90% Digging inside your head to know what you really like and putting it on pictures.
That’s the only way you will be different because we all are different only problem is that we don’t want to be different or we think we are not worth it and are afraid to put in pictures what we really like or the way we really like to take the pictures. I discovered thru out the years that i like black and white pictures when i take pictures of people, and when i take pictures of landscapes or seascapes i like washed out colors, so that’s the way i will keep on making pictures. But it doesn’t end there i will keep on fine tuning my likes until i hit a standard that i will feel comfortable with, and then i will probably change it.
So in conclusion, to be a better photographer you have to get away from the crowd and do your on thing and be original.