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  #61  
Old November 9th, 2012, 11:09 AM
Zeeshan Ali Zeeshan Ali is offline
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Hi Tom,

Interesting discussion. I think the underline question of whether one creates art for oneself or to appeal to a larger audience has been there in one form or the other for centuries and pops up every now and then whenever "fine art" as a subject is under discussion.

I think the intent of an artist during the process of creation of art and how he/she manages the feedback afterwards are two different things. I haven't met a single artist, from any medium, who doesn't care about what other people think about his/her art. In other words they seek appreciation despite knowing not everyone would like their creation. Anyone who says they are least bothered about what others think about their art is either fooling themselves or being a snob. It is not to say that the intent of the artist during the process of creation of art is to create something that should appeal to others but rather when the artwork is out in the open for public display is when the need to be appreciated is heightened. I think most artists don't pay much attention to the purpose of appealing to masses when they are creating their art and most art which has stood the test of time came from very personal circumstances. I don't believe there exists a breed of artists who only care about appealing to themselves. If they do exist, no one but themselves knows about their creation and even then what good is that art which is hidden someplace for no one else to find and appreciate. Is it then even art or just a tool to entertain oneself?

I am only starting out in photography and don't have teaching or life experience as much as yours. I'm learning and would like your opinions on my thoughts.

Zeeshan

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom dinning View Post
That's a statement, Jerome, not a question. I'm not pretending, I'm just not sure. I've not had the need to appeal for some time. As I say to the barber when she shows me the back of my head after a haircut: I don't have an image problem because I don't have an image. Those I wish to appeal to died years ago.

As for my students, I usually ask them what they want out of their photos. Generally the answers revolve around some sort of appeal to some individual or group. These include editors, publishers, tourists, art critics, shoppers, family and friends - and me, of course. In my experience, each appealee has a short list of requirements which are easily identified and can be used to increase the chances of a budding photographers ego being stroked and purse being fed. The purists among us might consider this a bit crass and unethical but when your income depends on it you need to find out what works pretty quick or starve in the process (or continue living with your parents).
My choice 50 years ago was to teach what I could to those who wanted to make a career from photography. Along the way I discovered there were some who had no intentions of earn a living in this way but to appeal to a different group; themselves. Strangely enough I found myself being drawn to these people and their purpose, aspirations and needs, so much so, I have since spent most of my career assisting them in their quest, along with my own. I would say that it's only been in the last 10 years or less that I have come to grips with why, not what, and that is the difference. It's not about what we do but why we do it. When that is clear, the process is also clear. But this is such a personal thing, identifying some magical formula that will achieve general appeal has never been possible. Occasionally it can be fluked, even with some consistency by a few. But the answer lies not with the image. The answer lies within the person. People who have this need to appeal to themselves alone must firstly find detachment. That ain't easy to achieve let alone maintain. Sometimes detachment can slip through our fingers like warm butter and we fall into the trap of relying on the appeal of others to maintain our own self respect. That's when it gets ugly.

There! That should give you a headache for the rest of the day.
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  #62  
Old November 9th, 2012, 12:15 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeeshan Ali View Post
Interesting discussion. I think the underline question of whether one creates art for oneself or to appeal to a larger audience has been there in one form or the other for centuries and pops up every now and then whenever "fine art" as a subject is under discussion.
Zeeshan,

It's not necessary to evoke the category of "fine" art, as just dealing with "art", which has only to please the creator is a simpler first step.

When Tom takes a picture, I believe he does it for himself. What I guess happens is that he sees something impressive and intriguing, and catches it, based on his acquired and developed preferences, from a specific position and angle. In most cases, there's no other motivation than to collect that vision and bring it home to enjoy for himself, like finding driftwood. It's really an experiment each time. when I get home, will that image be as exciting as I imagined and hoed it might be.

It's a huge step to getting this into the public arena. First the artist, in this case a photographer, has to be moved by what he finds looking at the captured image in different ways. most often, it doesn't meet expectations. Occasionally, a picture stands out and then there's a question as to other people also enjoying it. but this is secondary to the work a lot of us do, outside of client/other purpose driven photography.

And as far artists, I doubt that, for the most part, vincent Van Gogh made his pictures for anyone but himself and then his brother, Theo.

Think of "doodles", they are surely made for oneself, to pass the time or just play with shapes and possibilities. That's to please oneself and at the root of much art, I believe.

Asher
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  #63  
Old November 9th, 2012, 01:55 PM
Jerome Marot Jerome Marot is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom dinning View Post
As for my students, I usually ask them what they want out of their photos. Generally the answers revolve around some sort of appeal to some individual or group. These include editors, publishers, tourists, art critics, shoppers, family and friends - and me, of course. In my experience, each appealee has a short list of requirements which are easily identified and can be used to increase the chances of a budding photographers ego being stroked and purse being fed. The purists among us might consider this a bit crass and unethical but when your income depends on it you need to find out what works pretty quick or starve in the process (or continue living with your parents).
My choice 50 years ago was to teach what I could to those who wanted to make a career from photography. Along the way I discovered there were some who had no intentions of earn a living in this way but to appeal to a different group; themselves. Strangely enough I found myself being drawn to these people and their purpose, aspirations and needs, so much so, I have since spent most of my career assisting them in their quest, along with my own. I would say that it's only been in the last 10 years or less that I have come to grips with why, not what, and that is the difference. It's not about what we do but why we do it. When that is clear, the process is also clear. But this is such a personal thing, identifying some magical formula that will achieve general appeal has never been possible. Occasionally it can be fluked, even with some consistency by a few. But the answer lies not with the image. The answer lies within the person. People who have this need to appeal to themselves alone must firstly find detachment. That ain't easy to achieve let alone maintain. Sometimes detachment can slip through our fingers like warm butter and we fall into the trap of relying on the appeal of others to maintain our own self respect. That's when it gets ugly.

So why do you do it?

I mean: I understand your point. If one just wants to "appeal", the solution is very easy: just shoot some scantily clad women. There are lots of people for whom this kind of pictures will appeal, even if poorly done. If you want to make sure of the appeal, do it with celebrities and make it so that one can peek at their genitals or mammalia. You can even sell the pictures for lots of money, then. We all know how it works, it's in the press.

Obviously that solution will work for the "appeal" part, but it won't be your pictures (or mine). The question was not "what can I produce that will appeal to other people" but rather "how can I get other people to be appealed by the pictures I want to produce". Quite a different undertaking.

You wrote "It's not about what we do but why we do it". I am not sure that you thought about what is behind that "do it". Some time ago, I started a thread asking a very similar question: "why do you publish pictures?". Because we all know why we take pictures: we like the process. The real question is why we publish them. It makes no sense to publish them if they do not appeal to anyone, does it?

A photographer can take pictures without seeking publications. In that context, I usually think about Vivian Maier. She went through a roll of film a week in her Rolleiflex for the best part of her life and died in misery, unknown. She had not even bothered to have the films developed. Labelled, yes. We only know about her because an estate agent found the films in crates that were going to be thrown away, developed a few and looked at the pictures. The rest is history, she is exhibited around the world now.

So is that what it is about? Taking pictures just for yourself? Why do you even bother saving them? My recent ones are on a hard disk, do you think that someone might find it and look? Think again, hard disks die a lot faster than undeveloped film when they don't spin regularly.

Come to think of it, I think it was very dishonest of Vivian Maier to entrust other people with the responsibility of her pictures after her death (even if she did not do it voluntarily). Do you plan to pass the bucket to your heirs, entrusting them with the responsibility to publish your pictures and make you famous? Is that fair? What will happen to your hard disk then?

Sometimes, when I think about the hard disk holding my pictures, I think I should just take a big hammer and smash it to pieces.

Can you do that? Can you smash your hard disk, burn your negatives and your prints?

What is the point of having pictures if they don't appeal to anyone?

Why do you do it, Tom? (Why do you do it, Asher, Michael, Zeeshan and all the readers of this thread?)

Pictures do not exist when nobody looks at them.
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  #64  
Old November 9th, 2012, 03:06 PM
Maggie Terlecki Maggie Terlecki is offline
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Very interesting post.

Jerome,

For myself, taking the actual photos, is all about the process, and the pleasure and the zone I get into when doing it. I do not think of anyone else when doing it. I don't take pictures that I think will sell or that I think people will like. It's just about me.

Then I post-process. Here again, it's about my guilty pleasure of tweaking them, making them mine, trying to give them a voice. I can take a good photo. That's just technique. To make my photo mine, that is another thing.

Once done, I like to show them. I put them on my website to share and put my very best and favorites in my portfolio to sell.

I enjoy it when someone can find what I found. Get what I got. See what I saw. I wish I could simply detach myself, but as yet, I cannot and although Tom thinks it is the goal, I'm not sure I want to be detached from them. Perhaps I can detach from the piffles along the way, but not the ones that I know reflect who I am as a person. I become attached. They become like children. You can see my joys and my sadnesses in them.

If you can appreciate them, then maybe you can appreciate me. They are a reflection of who I am and they explain me better than I can with words. That does not mean that people actually see me when they look at them, surely, probably, instead, they see something they recognize in themselves. Perhaps it is a kind of symbiotic relationship. One where I get to express myself through the images and they get to express who they are also, by what they buy and put on their walls. We both feel good because of it.

I do think people can tell a lot about you by what you take pictures of and how you present them. I remember the first time I saw paintings in a museum by Renoir and knew automatically that he was kind, sensitive and a romantic. As for Picasso, I thought he was genius but surely not someone I thought I'd like to live with.

As for selling my images, it is never a question of money for me. For some, it may be. I never put anything in my portfolio because I think it will sell. Never.

When you look at the full circle of the process, from the taking of the photo to displaying it etc., and showing it, I think it all starts and ends with the person creating, doing it because it feels good and showing them to others to feel good about themselves. We can't know about Vivian's reasons for not developing her film and for not sharing them. Perhaps she was shy and was timid to show someone what she did or couldn't afford to get them developed. We can only speculate.

As for doodling? I don't think that is the same. To me, it is more mindless. We look at them, and hardly realize when we did them and looking at them later, probably couldn't remember when or where we drew them. I am not really enjoying the process, because I may be on the phone while doing it and not really aware I'm actually doing it. Possibly, doodles are simply and energy release for creative people. Different from sketching, which I think is more about finding shapes and possibilities and actually done for ourselves as part of a learning process.
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  #65  
Old November 9th, 2012, 03:19 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerome Marot View Post
So why do you do it?

I mean: I understand your point. If one just wants to "appeal", the solution is very easy: just shoot some scantily clad women.
Jerome,

If one is shooting for appeal, then there are specifics for each market. for the bride and her mother, it's one thing, the blacks in the grooms suit and the fine detail in the veil don't matter, but the magic of the moment and required inventory of shots does! Shoot a commercial for a car, and then one has to satisfy a huge list of creative and lighting demands of the art director, all worked out well before the event. Shoot for Hustler™, then "lady parts" and seductive poses are needed, for Playboy™, good curves, warmth and smiles are the key.

Here, however, we have none of these appeals in mind. Rather we are dealing with a subsection of photography wherein folk a compelled to use their camera to capture particular views that intrigue them and they can hold in store the hope of further satisfaction down the road. There's often no thought of getting these pictures to others, at that time, just bringing home the vision, like a hunter brings home the captured prey, they stalk, hunt down, come across or ambush! This is a very simple and wired in behavior of man, that we photographers seem to have an ability to exploit for getting pictures we might value.

So, merely in the collecting of images, there's already a sense of accomplishment! For the archer, sometimes, just in releasing the arrow to go from the stretched bow, means the deer will be caught. In such a hunt one finds out pretty soon whether or not one got what one had aimed for. With photography, however, we can be far more certain, as the aim of the camera and the speed of the shutter, likely the image is caught in some latent form. There's also less to schlepp home. Nothing will go bad by not examining the "kill" immediately, and there's so much more "game" out there to hunt! This "laissez faire", freedom, with a hunting drive, resulted in Myers, (Robert Capa, and also many other war cameramen), to expose thousands more rolls than they shot, as it's the latter that already is thrilling and there's so much more out there to catch!

Now we process the pictures, film or digital and look at the results. Any that thrill us are selected and maybe we'll process them for presentation just for ourselves. At that stage, Art has been made. Some ideas has actually been exported to a physical form that could, potentially be shared.

Now comes a major barrier to get past; the showing of the images to others. It means that one exposed the images one likes to ridicule or disinterest. After all, we already like them, so why risk that? I don't think it's realized enough to what extent folk make art for themselves. I don't think it's necessary to circulate work in order for it to be "Art". As with Vivian Maier, her work earned a life of its own without her help! It was already in a far enough advanced state to live with just the work she had invested.

So I do not worry about whether or not art with no appeal to others is made. I make my most of my work for my own interest and fascination. I'm delighted if others can enjoy some of my work, but am confidant enough, that I still will take pictures, even if everyone turned away from them. This fits in with my belief that art starts with an idea exported to a new or existing material form and then appreciated by the artist. If others don't like it, that has no effect on it's validity as art.

So why do I take pictures:

1. To service needs of clients, major charities that require pictures for campaigns, branding, newsletters and more

2. Portfolios for classical musicians so they can obtain employment and positions in orchestras and venues.

3. Portfolios for actors, models and others who collaborate with my art projects and so get pictures in return.

4. Family and friends, as mementos

5. Artwork especially with ideas relating to human interactions, beauty, choice,lover and fate

6. Elemental images: shapes and textures to be used in constructing images with ideas made from inanimate objects or scenes.

7. Images of things that intrigue me and seem to demand to be recorded from a specific position and time of day or condition. These are the pictures that will be modified the least inn post processing, and in the best of cases, just the jpg would likely be "good enough" for showing, but likely as not, the image would be prepared from the RAW files.

This last category, where I think that Tom dinning is working for the past 5 years or more, is the output resulting from the special relationship people have with their outside world, their own esthetics, imagination, agility, patience and openness. This is where it's both easiest and hardest for a photographer to work: there's the least chance of commercial success, as one is not shooting to a client or markets needs, (except by coincidence).

Asher
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  #66  
Old November 9th, 2012, 04:05 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Post 55-57 and then 59-65 constitute a new and very interesting topic that could be called:

"Artistic Photography: Appeal to just "ourselves"? [...........in the making of pictures outside of client work or projects.]

So if there are no major objections, I'll be moving this daughter topic shortly to it's appropriate new location, here, so we can continue with the o.p. intent of this present thread.

Continue, for now, to add to this new exciting topic here. Also any new "Shadows on the ground" pictures are invited too!

Asher
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  #67  
Old November 9th, 2012, 04:08 PM
Zeeshan Ali Zeeshan Ali is offline
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I think for the most part Jerome and Maggie have said what I couldn't say better. I take photographs because I love the process...lugging a camera on my neck, roaming around strange and new places, finding things that are otherwise unnoticeable to many others and then coming back with the photographs, processing them to my liking and then posting them on my Facebook page and letting people know what I photographed. The motivation for me I think is to find a deeper understanding of my place in this world and it has everything to do with my circumstances, cultural upbringing and social interactions. If people appreciate the photographs, it certainly makes me happy but in no way my creative process is dependent on solely what they will like or not.

During my thesis project and by far it has been the most personal project I have done so far, it became pretty evident what I was looking for when I was out in the open photographing tall industrial structures, abandoned houses, graffiti, cracked walls and etc. I was trying to relate to my surroundings and how they reflected back on my state of being. In my artist statement I even mentioned that I don't like taking photographs of people as people don't excite me much. After this realization I couldn't look at the world the same way I used to. I started questioning everything in my life.....my work, family and friends, my country and everything else I am surrounded by and it was all reflected in my work that followed.

I want to keep photography purely as a personal pursuit to finding a meaningful purpose in life because nothing else makes sense at least not at this point in time. It gives me satisfaction to look at what I have achieved and I wouldn't be able to detach myself from my work no matter how hard I tried.

Zeeshan
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  #68  
Old November 9th, 2012, 05:31 PM
Tom dinning Tom dinning is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Asher Kelman View Post
Post 55-57 and then 59-65 constitute a new and very interesting topic that could be called:

"Artistic Photography: Appeal to just "ourselves"? [...........in the making of pictures outside of client work or projects.]

So if there are no major objections, I'll be moving this daughter topic shortly to it's appropriate new location, here, so we can continue with the o.p. intent of this present thread.

Continue, for now, to add to this new exciting topic here. Also any new "Shadows on the ground" pictures are invited too!

Asher
Don't shift a thing. We are all quite comfy here and you come along and move the bloody furniture.
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  #69  
Old November 9th, 2012, 05:35 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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That's fine by me, Tom,

Just for down the road, we want a copy, in the place where folk would expect it to be. No removals to contemplate as long as this is active ........ and then some!

Thanks for the feedback!

Asher
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  #70  
Old November 9th, 2012, 06:03 PM
Tom dinning Tom dinning is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerome Marot View Post
So why do you do it?

I mean: I understand your point. If one just wants to "appeal", the solution is very easy: just shoot some scantily clad women. There are lots of people for whom this kind of pictures will appeal, even if poorly done. If you want to make sure of the appeal, do it with celebrities and make it so that one can peek at their genitals or mammalia. You can even sell the pictures for lots of money, then. We all know how it works, it's in the press.

Obviously that solution will work for the "appeal" part, but it won't be your pictures (or mine). The question was not "what can I produce that will appeal to other people" but rather "how can I get other people to be appealed by the pictures I want to produce". Quite a different undertaking.

You wrote "It's not about what we do but why we do it". I am not sure that you thought about what is behind that "do it". Some time ago, I started a thread asking a very similar question: "why do you publish pictures?". Because we all know why we take pictures: we like the process. The real question is why we publish them. It makes no sense to publish them if they do not appeal to anyone, does it?

A photographer can take pictures without seeking publications. In that context, I usually think about Vivian Maier. She went through a roll of film a week in her Rolleiflex for the best part of her life and died in misery, unknown. She had not even bothered to have the films developed. Labelled, yes. We only know about her because an estate agent found the films in crates that were going to be thrown away, developed a few and looked at the pictures. The rest is history, she is exhibited around the world now.

So is that what it is about? Taking pictures just for yourself? Why do you even bother saving them? My recent ones are on a hard disk, do you think that someone might find it and look? Think again, hard disks die a lot faster than undeveloped film when they don't spin regularly.

Come to think of it, I think it was very dishonest of Vivian Maier to entrust other people with the responsibility of her pictures after her death (even if she did not do it voluntarily). Do you plan to pass the bucket to your heirs, entrusting them with the responsibility to publish your pictures and make you famous? Is that fair? What will happen to your hard disk then?

Sometimes, when I think about the hard disk holding my pictures, I think I should just take a big hammer and smash it to pieces.

Can you do that? Can you smash your hard disk, burn your negatives and your prints?

What is the point of having pictures if they don't appeal to anyone?

Why do you do it, Tom? (Why do you do it, Asher, Michael, Zeeshan and all the readers of this thread?)

Pictures do not exist when nobody looks at them.
Steady, Jerome, its not all bad. Who was it that said 'angst is a part of the human psych'? Apparently it's good for you. I should have paid more attention during those boring philosophy lectures.

In 1993 I walked away from 35 years of photographs, knowing full well that every single negative would be contributing to the Greenhouse gases before I reached the front door. It was easy not to look back. Being alive and capable allowed me to start again. It easier than you think.

If I have no control over other people and what they do and think then how the **** am I going to survive if I rely on their approval or appealage. What if it never comes? That makes me worthless. Now there may be a few out there who think I am worthless but I'll live with that.
You see, this art/photography bullshit is just another rouse to camouflage the real purpose; what we are as individuals. Artists are such conceited pricks. They think they have all the answers, like religious zeolites. It's as if nothing else matters. Did you know artists and photographers piss and fart and eat bad food and shop in Tesco's and catch a bus and get fat and die like the rest of us? Disappointed? Did you also know that most of the stuff we shoot is crap and meaningless to others and will have no value outside the photographs own value system? How depressing. And did you know that of all the so called photographers that exist at the moment only a handful or two will be remembered for doing anything significant after they are dead? Hang on, Jerome, here comes the worst bit. I would predict that people will have forgotten who you are pretty soon after you are dead, barring family and close friends, and they probably won't remember you for you photographic skills but more for who you are now.
Enjoy what you do, make a living from it if you want, share it with the world, seek praise, but with that comes the possibility of remaining a pauper, rejection, criticism and disappointment. Be prepared for both or keep your photos to yourself. Find your rewards from within or without. Your choice.
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  #71  
Old November 9th, 2012, 06:19 PM
Tom dinning Tom dinning is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeeshan Ali View Post
I think for the most part Jerome and Maggie have said what I couldn't say better. I take photographs because I love the process...lugging a camera on my neck, roaming around strange and new places, finding things that are otherwise unnoticeable to many others and then coming back with the photographs, processing them to my liking and then posting them on my Facebook page and letting people know what I photographed. The motivation for me I think is to find a deeper understanding of my place in this world and it has everything to do with my circumstances, cultural upbringing and social interactions. If people appreciate the photographs, it certainly makes me happy but in no way my creative process is dependent on solely what they will like or not.

During my thesis project and by far it has been the most personal project I have done so far, it became pretty evident what I was looking for when I was out in the open photographing tall industrial structures, abandoned houses, graffiti, cracked walls and etc. I was trying to relate to my surroundings and how they reflected back on my state of being. In my artist statement I even mentioned that I don't like taking photographs of people as people don't excite me much. After this realization I couldn't look at the world the same way I used to. I started questioning everything in my life.....my work, family and friends, my country and everything else I am surrounded by and it was all reflected in my work that followed.

I want to keep photography purely as a personal pursuit to finding a meaningful purpose in life because nothing else makes sense at least not at this point in time. It gives me satisfaction to look at what I have achieved and I wouldn't be able to detach myself from my work no matter how hard I tried.

Zeeshan
How I love the the questioning youth. Full of doubt. Full of self reflection and searching. Full of jumping to conclusions.
Zeeshan, I didn't say I was detached from my photos or my work. Far from it. It's just not a physical attachment. I love looking at my own stuff as much as anyone else's. I'm like a kid in a sweet shop when it comes to looking at anyone's photos, including mine. I love sharing stuff with people and them sharing their photos with me. It's probably a good thing, since I have been doing it for a long time now. My house is full of my own images and those of others. I am an habitual blogger. My classes get photos shoved down their throats constantly. I can't walk down the street without stopping to look, shoot, admire photos. My wife tells me I'm a sick man. I know I am. I love it.
What I am suggesting is that if I relied on others for my gratification I'd be locked away in a loony bin by now. So it's easier to become detached from that aspect of life that to rely on it. I did say EASIER, not easy. It's still hard work and takes a lot of practice but its better that the alternative for which I have absolutely no control over.
As for being the fool or snob, I'm working on that as well. Better to know I am a fool than to be called one and deny it. As for the artist stuff; I'm out of here. They are snobs!
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  #72  
Old November 9th, 2012, 06:25 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Dinning

In 1993 I walked away from 35 years of photographs, knowing full well that every single negative would be contributing to the Greenhouse gases before I reached the front door. It was easy not to look back. Being alive and capable allowed me to start again.
Wow! I'm sadenned to learn that! I can't believe that of all those years you didn't save at least several dozen favorites! What a loss to the rest of us! It's almost immoral when you have the talents and gifts you have!

Asher
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  #73  
Old November 9th, 2012, 06:39 PM
Zeeshan Ali Zeeshan Ali is offline
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Glad you cleared that up Tom. I agree with you and wouldn't want to be stuck in that downward spiral myself.

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What I am suggesting is that if I relied on others for my gratification I'd be locked away in a loony bin by now. So it's easier to become detached from that aspect of life that to rely on it. I did say EASIER, not easy. It's still hard work and takes a lot of practice but its better that the alternative for which I have absolutely no control over.
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  #74  
Old November 9th, 2012, 06:56 PM
Tom dinning Tom dinning is offline
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Who started this? There's stuff going everywhere and I can't keep up.
As well, I can't do that quote thing everyone does where they quote then say something then quote again etc. the Amish are looking more and more like my kind of people.

The best part of all this is the diversity of opinions. Not all of them have any rational basis, mind you, but that's part of the fun. What was that movie made years ago where the bloke went to sleep for a couple hundred years and woke up to find everything that was considered true in the 20th C was found to be bullshit. Everyone smoked, drank to excess, ate fatty food, hated everyone and sponged off the government. Love that!
I'll tell you what. I'll shut up here for a while and post some photos elsewhere just for the fun of it. I'll even find some photos I have never shared with anyone. There are a stack of them so it shouldn't be too hard.
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  #75  
Old November 9th, 2012, 09:54 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Tom,

I told my wife about your destructive nature with your 35 years of pictures. She can't believe it either. I cannot join to any conclusion you had that of all those thousands of images, none deserved reprieve!

To some extent, I believe that destroying many beloved "children", the entire work for 35 years of an accomplished photographer, an artist, is quite normal and necessary. However, destroying everything seems, on the face of it, quite pathological! I'd love to know more of the thinking and how it was that none were reprieved?

Asher
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  #76  
Old November 10th, 2012, 01:03 AM
Jerome Marot Jerome Marot is offline
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If I have no control over other people and what they do and think then how the **** am I going to survive if I rely on their approval or appealage. What if it never comes? That makes me worthless. Now there may be a few out there who think I am worthless but I'll live with that.
I think that many of the people who are here know deep in themselves that they will never get this kind of "approval", that is the real meaning behind a signature like "I am not an artist". In any case, if we want to get this kind of "approval", participating in a public internet forum is going to be a hindrance. The model of modern artists are people like Salvator Dali or Pablo Picasso. Would you imagine Dali or Picasso participating in a public internet forum? Of course not, that would negate the very kind of image of themselves that they managed to create.

And indeed, people seeking a career as an artist leave the internet. Look at my thread about Laetitia Eskens. This is also the reason why Mark had to leave.

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In 1993 I walked away from 35 years of photographs, knowing full well that every single negative would be contributing to the Greenhouse gases before I reached the front door. It was easy not to look back. Being alive and capable allowed me to start again. It easier than you think.
Burning a lifetime of negatives without looking back is a perfectly valid answer to my question. Maybe even the only answer. I have nothing to add.
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  #77  
Old November 10th, 2012, 02:27 AM
Tom dinning Tom dinning is offline
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Tom,

I told my wife about your destructive nature with your 35 years of pictures. She can't believe it either. I cannot join to any conclusion you had that of all those thousands of images, none deserved reprieve!

To some extent, I believe that destroying many beloved "children", the entire work for 35 years of an accomplished photographer, an artist, is quite normal and necessary. However, destroying everything seems, on the face of it, quite pathological! I'd love to know more of the thinking and how it was that none were reprieved?

Asher
I bet you would.
Put away your white coat and stethascope or your DSM -IV. I'm not having you diagnose me as well as tell me what words to use in this forum.
Now what is your lovely wife going to think of me know? Destructive indeed. Who said anything about me destroying them? You go right back and tell her you have been jumping to conclusions, telling stories behind my back, not checking your facts, assuming the worst of a simple man who was willing to let go of one life for the sake of a new one.
When you are as practiced as I am at walking away, things are just that; things. There is no intrinsic value in things.
Maybe you're the one who needs a shrink. Doen't it seem a bit weird that you place so much value on bits of plastic? Old bits at that.
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  #78  
Old November 10th, 2012, 02:34 AM
Tom dinning Tom dinning is offline
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Originally Posted by Asher Kelman View Post
Tom,

I told my wife about your destructive nature with your 35 years of pictures. She can't believe it either. I cannot join to any conclusion you had that of all those thousands of images, none deserved reprieve!

To some extent, I believe that destroying many beloved "children", the entire work for 35 years of an accomplished photographer, an artist, is quite normal and necessary. However, destroying everything seems, on the face of it, quite pathological! I'd love to know more of the thinking and how it was that none were reprieved?

Asher
I bet you would.
Put away your white coat and stethascope or your DSM -IV. I'm not having you diagnose me as well as tell me what words to use in this forum.
Now what is your lovely wife going to think of me know? Destructive indeed. You go right back and tell her you have been jumping to conclusions, telling stories behind my back, not checking your facts, assuming the worst of a simple man who was willing to let go of one life for the sake of a new one.
When you are as practiced as I am at walking away, things are just that; things. There is no intrinsic value in things.
Maybe you're the one who needs a shrink. Doen't it seem a bit weird that you place so much value on bits of plastic? Old bits at that.
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  #79  
Old November 10th, 2012, 07:58 AM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Your quite right, objecting to "pathological"! I won't use that word.

The "plastic"? Agreed, no intrinsic value!

However, given your gifts and skills, the loss of all this body of work to the rest of us is tragic! That's for sure!

Your friend,

Asher
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  #80  
Old November 10th, 2012, 03:54 PM
Tom dinning Tom dinning is offline
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I'd prefer to keep this body than that one.
All thinks are meaningless in a chosen context.
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  #81  
Old November 11th, 2012, 12:33 PM
Michael Nagel Michael Nagel is offline
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Maybe I am a bit too simple on this, but for me photography has two aspects:
1. Documenting things, moments before they disappear.
2. Documenting the way I see things.

1 and 2 cannot be seen apart, 1 is always influenced by 2.

Yes, I have to like the result.

I do not sell my work except somebody asks nicely.
I do offer my photos as gift.
I offer was gift what I like myself.
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  #82  
Old November 11th, 2012, 03:55 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Default A Gift to Tom!

Just a simple assembly of 3 adjacent discrete images I like:



Asher Kelman: Steps


I am also using layer combinations to build a series of tiptychs here.


Cheers,

Asher
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  #83  
Old November 11th, 2012, 04:05 PM
Michael Nagel Michael Nagel is offline
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Default Also on the wall

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  #84  
Old November 13th, 2012, 11:45 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeeshan Ali View Post
Glad you cleared that up Tom. I agree with you and wouldn't want to be stuck in that downward spiral myself.
Zeeshan,

I don't think one is going to go into a downward spiral by exposing one's work to the outside world. Yes there's a risk but art to be community art needs to take risks. We want to test and move boundaries, our own and the public's. So we need to put our work out there. That's just the way it is.

Being an artist is, in the end, something like being a whore. Ultimately, one has to reveal oneself and risk rejection and dismissal. OTOH, without that, there can be no public art!

Asher
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  #85  
Old November 13th, 2012, 11:47 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Nigel,

This work surprises me but seems so familiar butt I never knew why! Now I realize the flat form of the human figure bears resemblance to the many stencil figures graffiti that you have brought to us in your photography. I wish I could read the text! What's interesting here is the added parameter of the cast shadow, and that the wall graffiti doesn't have.

Asher
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  #86  
Old November 14th, 2012, 03:36 AM
Zeeshan Ali Zeeshan Ali is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Asher Kelman View Post
Zeeshan,

I don't think one is going to go into a downward spiral by exposing one's work to the outside world. Yes there's a risk but art to be community art needs to take risks. We want to test and move boundaries, our own and the public's. So we need to put our work out there. That's just the way it is.

Being an artist is, in the end, something like being a whore. Ultimately, one has to reveal oneself and risk rejection and dismissal. OTOH, without that, there can be no public art!

Asher
Asher,

Well what I actually meant by downward spiral was to be constantly relying on approval of others to appreciate my own art. I hope thats what Tom was suggesting. I agree that there is no other way to receive feedback unless we put our work out there. I have seen people who take criticism very personally even I used to a few years back but accepting criticism and moving on is probably the best strategy. Even when people appreciate your work, I say its best to be humble, thank them and move on.
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  #87  
Old November 14th, 2012, 09:33 AM
Wolfgang Plattner Wolfgang Plattner is offline
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Hi,

this picture is mounted on a wall in our home (DIN A0), it is a stopper for nearly everyone of our guests, it makes them thinking, discussing, grumbling, scratching the head, ...



"What?" by Wolfgang Plattner
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  #88  
Old November 14th, 2012, 10:12 AM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Hi,

this picture is mounted on a wall in our home (DIN A0), it is a stopper for nearly everyone of our guests, it makes them thinking, discussing, grumbling, scratching the head, ...


"What?" by Wolfgang Plattner

So Wolfgang,

How did that happen? Is the flower reflected?

Asher
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  #89  
Old November 14th, 2012, 10:57 AM
Wolfgang Plattner Wolfgang Plattner is offline
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Hi Asher

It is a flower in a white vase on a white sheet of heavy paper in full sunlight with so much overexposing, that only the small area among the hole(?) of the vase is properly exposed and sharp. This is one reason for why the flower is partly blown out.
It is a somewhat final result of about 10 or 12 shots I made to get there.
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  #90  
Old November 17th, 2012, 02:49 PM
Michael Nagel Michael Nagel is offline
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Wolfgang - clever idea and flawless execution - the result is excellent.

A grab shot from today.




Best regards,
Michael
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