Who defines masters?

I was listening to the older episode of “The Grid” earlier today. The topic of this particular episode was evolving around young photographers not knowing/not caring about past great photographers. And then somebody, I think one of viewers, made a comment that young people nowadays take inspiration from current masters rather then from past masters. And I was just wondering…

I am aware and know images of some of classic photographers- Cartier-Bresson, Lange, Adams. But none of them shoots subjects I am interested in shooting. I would like to look at work similar to what I want to create, at least by subject. But how do I know where to look for them? How do I find those photographers, either past or current? Yes, I might be (and I am not) looking at pictures on Flickr or 500px, but how do I know if those pictures are any good? I might be inspired or admire some of the photographers whose blogs I follow, like David DuChemin or Moose Peterson, but how can I know if they are today’s masters or are just skilled? Who decides who bears the title of master? Does having a picture in the museum count? Does it mean that Trey Ratcliff is a master, because his image hangs in Smithsonian?

I really don’t know answers to those questions right now. If you have any thoughts, I would love to hear from you.

Todays image was one of those you discover after some time. I came across it looking for yesterday’s image and it really jumped at me. It almost looks better in thumbnail then it does large. I was trying to make sun star burst, but it was first too high, and then too low, and it just didn’t work. Afterwards, I thought this image si s useless. But now, I see shapes. The half-circle of sun. The two lines of land, none of them horizontal, meeting on the right side of the image. And the boat, also moving in the direction of those lines. It looks so graphic. I like the contrast of yellowish sun and just about everything else in blues. It makes me feel calm, enjoy the evening on the lake along with the single fisherman, yet not interrupting his solitude.

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