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  #1  
Old October 29th, 2013, 02:16 PM
Paul Abbott Paul Abbott is offline
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Default 'I Love London' & 'The Colour Purple'...Colour Street Photography

In the first image I was engaged by this fellow walking around in Chinatown with two umbrellas and a whole load of bags. The umbrellas which are synonymous with London and it's rain, and his 'I love London' bag got my attention the most here...Is the fellow a vagabond, you tell me?

In regard to the second image I think it's obvious about my motive for photographing them. As with the bananas in my last street photograph, things tend to come in threes sometimes...:)






Chinatown, London '13 - Paul Abbott
RICOH GR






Leicester Square, London '13 - Paul Abbott
RICOH GR
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  #2  
Old November 1st, 2013, 05:13 AM
Wolfgang Plattner Wolfgang Plattner is offline
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Hi,

two fine pictures, I especially like the dynamics in the second one ...
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Old November 1st, 2013, 08:34 AM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Originally Posted by Paul Abbott View Post
In the first image I was engaged by this fellow walking around in Chinatown with two umbrellas and a whole load of bags. The umbrellas which are synonymous with London and it's rain, and his 'I love London' bag got my attention the most here...Is the fellow a vagabond, you tell me?











Chinatown, London '13 - Paul Abbott
RICOH GR







Paul, we classify people, a natural defense. Friend, foe, tribe, what resources, threat level, defenses etc. Here, the man seems to have excess umbrellas and likely as not, it's to give whole body coverage at his nesting place. I think he looks best surrounded by a lot of white space, as it increases the experience of his isolation from much of society.

Asher
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Old November 1st, 2013, 04:07 PM
Paul Abbott Paul Abbott is offline
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Thanks, Wolfgang. Thanks, Asher...I think it is important and another good reason then that I keep to photographing street life in colour and keeping that contemporary feel.
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Old November 1st, 2013, 04:40 PM
James Lemon James Lemon is offline
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Red has a tendency to distract the eye and is apparent in both images. Sorry !
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Old November 1st, 2013, 04:50 PM
Tom dinning Tom dinning is offline
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Characters like this are intriguing both visually and socially. I learnt from my Old Man how to talk to such people, much to the disappointment and aggravation of Christine.
There are many ways to photograph them. This seems to be one way. It appears, on the surface, as a snapshot, hastily shot as the conversation has finished. A parting gesture so to speak. As with snapshots, we often find irrelevant subject matter dominating our thoughts when viewing them, the context is a little gray and the storyline somewhat confusing, that is, if we endeavor to search for that as we might a more purposeful composition.
There might appear to be some attempt at making connections here, such as the Chinatown sign in the distance but it isn't strong enough to be conclusive. It seems more incidental than purposeful. Other objects such as the truck, a very dominant visual feature, and the red poles, seem to bare little relevance to the presence of this rather interesting character.
Color dominates this image visually, yet it over-rides the essence of what the photograph is about, which seems to be the person and his kit, judging from your opening statement.

Please excuse my over indulgence, Jerome. I'm practicing.
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Old November 2nd, 2013, 05:43 AM
Paul Abbott Paul Abbott is offline
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Hey James, what are you doing to yourself?! :D

I'm not about to stop shooting in colour on the street just because there maybe a blob of red across the avenue or a sign with a red field here or there. What is important is to catch a moment regardless and these happenstance moments do not conform to this old and 'dodgy' wisdom.
The colour red may distract but I welcome that because when I view a street photograph my eye constantly wanders around the frame anyway taking in the environment and context as well as the point of the photograph.
I come across lots of colour street photography with splashes of red occurring within the scene, some photographers use this as the subject, alone. Most are not bothered by it because it's part of all the 'trappings' in the street and I understand this.
Above all, my sensibilities towards the use of colour instead of B&W on the street have changed, especially in this day and age where the use of colour is more befitting and contemporary for the way I am seeing and shooting.
When we shoot street photography what we're essentially talking about is "pure photography", as much as you can have such a thing of...Would it not be purer to shoot things in colour as we see them rather than altering them?

Anyway, it's all just a bloody state of mind really. :) Get it? Bloody, as in red, no?
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Old November 2nd, 2013, 05:45 AM
Paul Abbott Paul Abbott is offline
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I have now donned my 'fireproof' jacket...:D
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Old November 2nd, 2013, 07:45 AM
James Lemon James Lemon is offline
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Originally Posted by Paul Abbott View Post
Hey James, what are you doing to yourself?! :D

I'm not about to stop shooting in colour on the street just because there maybe a blob of red across the avenue or a sign with a red field here or there. What is important is to catch a moment regardless and these happenstance moments do not conform to this old and 'dodgy' wisdom.
The colour red may distract but I welcome that because when I view a street photograph my eye constantly wanders around the frame anyway taking in the environment and context as well as the point of the photograph.
I come across lots of colour street photography with splashes of red occurring within the scene, some photographers use this as the subject, alone. Most are not bothered by it because it's part of all the 'trappings' in the street and I understand this.
Above all, my sensibilities towards the use of colour instead of B&W on the street have changed, especially in this day and age where the use of colour is more befitting and contemporary for the way I am seeing and shooting.
When we shoot street photography what we're essentially talking about is "pure photography", as much as you can have such a thing of...Would it not be purer to shoot things in colour as we see them rather than altering them?

Anyway, it's all just a bloody state of mind really. :) Get it? Bloody, as in red, no?
I will decline to disagree with you on a number of significant points .
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Old November 2nd, 2013, 08:50 AM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Originally Posted by Paul Abbott View Post
...........
When we shoot street photography what we're essentially talking about is "pure photography", as much as you can have such a thing of...Would it not be purer to shoot things in colour as we see them rather than altering them?
Well, I'd say pure street photography, to me at least, as as pure "war photography" depends on one's references. If one uses the iconic photographers of the first 50 years, B&W must come to the fore. So for me, 'pure" street photography has to be B&W. Only then does one deal with shapes, gestures, textures and light without the distracting razzmatazz of color, especially man-made!


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Originally Posted by Paul Abbott View Post
Anyway, it's all just a bloody state of mind really. :) Get it? Bloody, as in red, no?
Of course! When you declare a color, then you'd better show it!

Asher
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  #11  
Old November 2nd, 2013, 02:33 PM
Tom dinning Tom dinning is offline
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Originally Posted by Paul Abbott View Post
Hey James, what are you doing to yourself?! :D

I'm not about to stop shooting in colour on the street just because there maybe a blob of red across the avenue or a sign with a red field here or there. What is important is to catch a moment regardless and these happenstance moments do not conform to this old and 'dodgy' wisdom.
The colour red may distract but I welcome that because when I view a street photograph my eye constantly wanders around the frame anyway taking in the environment and context as well as the point of the photograph.
I come across lots of colour street photography with splashes of red occurring within the scene, some photographers use this as the subject, alone. Most are not bothered by it because it's part of all the 'trappings' in the street and I understand this.
Above all, my sensibilities towards the use of colour instead of B&W on the street have changed, especially in this day and age where the use of colour is more befitting and contemporary for the way I am seeing and shooting.
When we shoot street photography what we're essentially talking about is "pure photography", as much as you can have such a thing of...Would it not be purer to shoot things in colour as we see them rather than altering them?

Anyway, it's all just a bloody state of mind really. :) Get it? Bloody, as in red, no?
And neither should you stop, Paul. That's your business. Our business is different, though. We are the viewers and we have our own story to tell.
Just as there are so many levels you can shoot at, there are jsut as many we can viwe at. We might take this as a casual snapshot, recorded for sharing with the family and friends so that they may see where you have been and what you saw that interested you. Our lives are filled with such imagery. But here, there seems to be more intent, a personal one, because you speak of your preferences and choices in recording such moments. Why, even the blatant suggestion that what you are doing is 'pure photography' implies a few steps above casualness and coincidence.
If we were sitting over a class of your favourite beverage at the local pub and you pulled out the album from the recent trip to London then I would nod with interest and move on, after possibly discussing the nature of such characters and the temperature of English beer. But there is no beer on tap here. Just an open forum to discuss the contents and structure of photographs.
Mind you, some people are picky. I was surprised no-one asked you to remove the black blob from the bottom left corner.
I'm not here to tell you how to take your photos. I just passing, thirsty and hot, and felt like practicing on a photo. As for JAmes. He's just picky.

Cheers
Tom
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Old November 2nd, 2013, 05:41 PM
James Lemon James Lemon is offline
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And neither should you stop, Paul. That's your business. Our business is different, though. We are the viewers and we have our own story to tell.
Just as there are so many levels you can shoot at, there are jsut as many we can viwe at. We might take this as a casual snapshot, recorded for sharing with the family and friends so that they may see where you have been and what you saw that interested you. Our lives are filled with such imagery. But here, there seems to be more intent, a personal one, because you speak of your preferences and choices in recording such moments. Why, even the blatant suggestion that what you are doing is 'pure photography' implies a few steps above casualness and coincidence.
If we were sitting over a class of your favourite beverage at the local pub and you pulled out the album from the recent trip to London then I would nod with interest and move on, after possibly discussing the nature of such characters and the temperature of English beer. But there is no beer on tap here. Just an open forum to discuss the contents and structure of photographs.
Mind you, some people are picky. I was surprised no-one asked you to remove the black blob from the bottom left corner.
I'm not here to tell you how to take your photos. I just passing, thirsty and hot, and felt like practicing on a photo. As for JAmes. He's just picky.

Cheers
Tom
I don't consider myself picky but I do know good images when I see them, however I am my own worst editor when it comes to my own images.
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Old November 2nd, 2013, 06:57 PM
Tom dinning Tom dinning is offline
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Originally Posted by James Lemon View Post
I don't consider myself picky but I do know good images when I see them, however I am my own worst editor when it comes to my own images.
I wasn't asking you if you thought you were picky, James. That was my observation. You are entitled to defend yourself but I'm not a good listener.
Incidentally, what enables you to know a good image when you see one?
For example, is this a good image?



_DSC6092 by tom.dinning, on Flickr
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Old November 2nd, 2013, 09:30 PM
James Lemon James Lemon is offline
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Originally Posted by Tom dinning View Post
I wasn't asking you if you thought you were picky, James. That was my observation. You are entitled to defend yourself but I'm not a good listener.
Incidentally, what enables you to know a good image when you see one?
For example, is this a good image?



_DSC6092 by tom.dinning, on Flickr

I am not defending myself I was simply pointing out your mistake in perception.
I did not know it was ok to post pictures in other people threads? Regarding your image I would have to say that it does not have anything much to hold a viewers attention and probably would be very limited in the audience it would capture . I personally like sharp images that have not been heavily manipulated with effects, conversions, etc. The main problem I see with this image is it is all to common of a sight and not much of challenge to get images of bums on the street. Although I do like the composition and the geometry of the image and I suppose that it may capture ones curiosity for the simple reason that one will always look in the same direction as another person but even with his soiled footwear and half bare feet it is tenuous at best.
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Old November 2nd, 2013, 10:17 PM
Tom dinning Tom dinning is offline
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Now you are being picky, James.
So what happens if I choose to post a picture here for the sake of discussion? Isn't that what grown ups do? Discuss with latitude.
You didn't answer the first question, James. For clarity, I will ask it again. If you choose to not answer it let me know and I can go elsewhere.
You said: "I do know good images when I see them". I'm asking of you to elaborate, ie, what enables you to know a good image when you see it? I included this image in the hope it might provide an example of an image you could deliberate on. So far you have told me what you think of it but have not yet given me any indication of your enablements. If I am to be impressed by your judgements, as you say you have, surely you can tell me what particular abilities you have which enable you to make such decisions. I'm sure we would all be interested. In that way we can refer all further images to you for appraisal, just in case your judgement differs from others.

Knowing your personal preferences for sharp images without heavy manipulation (which in itself is a contentious issue) is totally irrelevant to any discussion relating to the qualities an image might hold. Likewise with commonality of subject matter. Do you say the same things about portraits of your wife, who might also be of equal proximity to a camera. And please don't tell me you're not married. That would be really picky.

So, while you were busy shredding this photo, which, by the way, has no value past that to which I place on it, you have missed the point once again. Photographs are not about geometry, sharpness and bandages. If that is all you can see then all photographs you look at will be bad ones, because they will be wasted on you.
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Old November 2nd, 2013, 11:15 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Originally Posted by Paul Abbott View Post
In regard to the second image I think it's obvious about my motive for photographing them. As with the bananas in my last street photograph, things tend to come in threes sometimes...:)



Leicester Square, London '13 - Paul Abbott
RICOH GR


Paul,

I do wish to get us back on track to the essence of your thread once more. I missed the significance of the two smokers. They're together by the commonality of needing a nicotine and oral attachment fix, which, likely as not, is now illegal banned indoors in many public places. The other fellow, pivoting on his heels, seems to be persuading someone to do something they normally would not.

The color purple links them, but the underlying stories are also interesting.

Asher
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Old November 3rd, 2013, 07:57 AM
Wolfgang Plattner Wolfgang Plattner is offline
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Hu, what's on ...?
I don't care wether it is BW or color, it is the content, that is important for me ...
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Old November 3rd, 2013, 08:19 AM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Originally Posted by Wolfgang Plattner View Post
Hu, what's on ...?
I don't care wether it is BW or color, it is the content, that is important for me ...

Wolfgang,

Surely it's the content and it's presentation! After all, why would Ansel Adams spend and advise so much time in the darkroom getting the latter right. Your own particular way of "showing" is a part of your photographic signature.

Even lack of processing is an artistic decision, but it should be that you really like it, as it is in color, out of the camera!

To me, the main thing is not the content but the aura of a unique experience the image presntation provides, when technique doesn't announce it's identity and presence.

Asher
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Old November 3rd, 2013, 01:04 PM
Nicolas Claris Nicolas Claris is offline
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Originally Posted by Paul Abbott View Post
…/…
Above all, my sensibilities towards the use of colour instead of B&W on the street have changed, especially in this day and age where the use of colour is more befitting and contemporary for the way I am seeing and shooting.
When we shoot street photography what we're essentially talking about is "pure photography", as much as you can have such a thing of...Would it not be purer to shoot things in colour as we see them rather than altering them?

…/…
Ha! I'm not anymore alone to scream in the dark! Thank you Paul!
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Old November 3rd, 2013, 03:39 PM
James Lemon James Lemon is offline
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Now you are being picky, James.
So what happens if I choose to post a picture here for the sake of discussion? Isn't that what grown ups do? Discuss with latitude.
You didn't answer the first question, James. For clarity, I will ask it again. If you choose to not answer it let me know and I can go elsewhere.
You said: "I do know good images when I see them". I'm asking of you to elaborate, ie, what enables you to know a good image when you see it? I included this image in the hope it might provide an example of an image you could deliberate on. So far you have told me what you think of it but have not yet given me any indication of your enablements. If I am to be impressed by your judgements, as you say you have, surely you can tell me what particular abilities you have which enable you to make such decisions. I'm sure we would all be interested. In that way we can refer all further images to you for appraisal, just in case your judgement differs from others.

Knowing your personal preferences for sharp images without heavy manipulation (which in itself is a contentious issue) is totally irrelevant to any discussion relating to the qualities an image might hold. Likewise with commonality of subject matter. Do you say the same things about portraits of your wife, who might also be of equal proximity to a camera. And please don't tell me you're not married. That would be really picky.

So, while you were busy shredding this photo, which, by the way, has no value past that to which I place on it, you have missed the point once again. Photographs are not about geometry, sharpness and bandages. If that is all you can see then all photographs you look at will be bad ones, because they will be wasted on you.
Let me reiterate myself Tom . What I really meant to say was I know what I like instead of I know a good image when I see one but since we are on subject to answer your question one does not need to be a" Mental Giant" to recognize a good image, any Joe or Mary public can recognize a good image, no special skill or abilities required . Also I can assure you that you are once again mistaken with your assumptions about what I may see or not see in photographs or the significance of them.
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Old November 3rd, 2013, 08:07 PM
Tom dinning Tom dinning is offline
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Let me reiterate myself Tom . What I really meant to say was I know what I like instead of I know a good image when I see one but since we are on subject to answer your question one does not need to be a" Mental Giant" to recognize a good image, any Joe or Mary public can recognize a good image, no special skill or abilities required . Also I can assure you that you are once again mistaken with your assumptions about what I may see or not see in photographs or the significance of them.
I know joe and Mary, James.to be quite honest, unless they are reasonably informed and familiar with the vernacular of photography they wouldn't know a good picture if someone rolled it up and poked them in the eye with it. I would point out that both Joe and Mary are mental giants in their own field.
I may not always be right, James, but I am never wrong!
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Old November 4th, 2013, 04:49 AM
Paul Abbott Paul Abbott is offline
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Here is a link to some of David Solomons images that contain the colour 'red', used as a subject and otherwise...http://davidsolomons.com/up-west/#PHOTO_1

I think you all know that I am a great lover of B&W and used to appreciate it and feel very strongly for it in street photography, but my mind has changed and opened up to the appreciation of colour...through the sheer appreciation and understanding of the work of others in this field.
For me now, B&W just strikes me as a little anachronistic and out of style (don't get me wrong, there will always be a use for it), but i've moved on from the use of it on the street. In my mind it doesn't work for me anymore. Colour is now, B&W was then...3D will be sometime in the future. :D

I believe that in time to come there will be a much better appreciation and understanding for colour in street photography and they will hold they're own 'glow' from this age, just as there now is for B&W images taken in the past.

...Now, where were my 'dog' images, I really need to get back to converting them into colour, at least that way, they will be a different breed from Mr. Erwitt's! :)
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Old November 4th, 2013, 09:13 AM
Jerome Marot Jerome Marot is offline
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Ha! I'm not anymore alone to scream in the dark! Thank you Paul!
You are certainly not alone. May I suggest that you bough the book Street Photography Now by Sophie Howarth and Stephen Mc Laren?


For the French: here on amazon.fr, or just enter the ISBN at a seller of your choice: 0500289077
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Old November 4th, 2013, 10:45 AM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Here is a link to some of David Solomons images that contain the colour 'red', used as a subject and otherwise...http://davidsolomons.com/up-west/#PHOTO_1
Paul,

You are so right in giving credit and praise to Solomon's color images. But remember the color was planned and even some of the images were posed. Here, color is an essential part of the series, like the flowers in a vase.

Whenever one makes color the spine of the story, then of course, B&W can never carry that off!

Asher
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Old November 4th, 2013, 01:43 PM
Paul Abbott Paul Abbott is offline
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I posted that link in the interest of the colour red being a so-called distraction by James...clearly there are roguish elements of red in certain pictures but I don't see them as a distraction. I just don't think it matters in street photography especially when faced with something happening...
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Old November 4th, 2013, 02:42 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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I posted that link in the interest of the colour red being a so-called distraction by James...clearly there are roguish elements of red in certain pictures but I don't see them as a distraction. I just don't think it matters in street photography especially when faced with something happening...
Paul and James,

The color red, in many pictures can pose a screaming distraction away from the gestalt of an image one want's to show. However in Solomon's street seres, red is the motif and so cannot be ever considered a distraction in that context.

The problem with street photography is that what one sees is generally made up of the groupings, movements, intentions, postures, pose and gestures of the denizens of the place. When a bright red, yellow or orange color is in someone's coat, umbrella or an awning, the delicate balance of what we want to show might be in jeopardy. So that's the beauty of B&W, it deals with all of the elelemts I mentioned nd more, but does not suffer from unwanted distractions of screaming color.

In the woods, by contrast, all the animals seem to have knowledge od an harmonious color palette which humans like to disobey so as to draw attention to themselves.

So, for many photographers, street photography will be in B&W, however for the especially talented, color, instead of being a distraction can become a celebratory gesture.

Asher
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  #27  
Old November 5th, 2013, 05:50 AM
Paul Abbott Paul Abbott is offline
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Asher, you are really moving these 'bloody' goal posts around. :D
Do you honestly think that a lone bus in the corner of a frame and a lone flash of a red bus-stand's seat is all integral to why he is using colour? I don't. I have already stated that he has used the colour red as the subject in some photographs but absolutely not in others, can't you see that difference?

If I have made the decision to document all what is happening on the street in colour, why should I then have to change my mind and convert to B&W just because there is a splodge of red in the scene for fear it may be distracting...when really this rule shouldn't apply in colour street photography. Any other genre yes, but not street for obvious reasons.
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  #28  
Old November 5th, 2013, 07:25 AM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Abbott View Post
Asher, you are really moving these 'bloody' goal posts around. :D
Do you honestly think that a lone bus in the corner of a frame and a lone flash of a red bus-stand's seat is all integral to why he is using colour? I don't. I have already stated that he has used the colour red as the subject in some photographs but absolutely not in others, can't you see that difference?

If I have made the decision to document all what is happening on the street in colour, why should I then have to change my mind and convert to B&W just because there is a splodge of red in the scene for fear it may be distracting...when really this rule shouldn't apply in colour street photography. Any other genre yes, but not street for obvious reasons.
Paul,

I celebrate your work because it's not only executed effectively, but also originated and driven by your own well-steered passions. My views on color, then do not diminish or modulate my appreciation of your work! I accept and welcome your view of your world. Still, nature tends to have color balance and clothing and street ads, not so much. Each artist will choose what works best for them at that time. B&W and color, each have their own leverages on our mind and that is true no matter who is the photographer.

......and, BTW, if an artist announces a series in red, it now becomes the facet to be discovered, (easily or not), by exploring each and every offering in the collection. It's engaging and fun!

Asher
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  #29  
Old November 5th, 2013, 09:57 AM
Jerome Marot Jerome Marot is offline
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Originally Posted by Paul Abbott View Post
when really this rule shouldn't apply in colour street photography.
Since when are photographers allowed to choose the rules by which their images will be judged?
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  #30  
Old November 5th, 2013, 10:38 AM
Paul Abbott Paul Abbott is offline
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Jerome, I have posted other street photographs on here where there has been red elements within the scene and no one has mentioned anything about the colour red as a distraction. In this instance it all seems to me to be a bit of a 'woolly' and inconsistent rule, that's all. Personally, I don't see red as a distraction in a street photograph, I only see it as trappings of the street.
For instance, my 'Floored In Camden' image has a red bus in the top left corner...this didn't seem to be a distraction to anyone in that instance. My shot of the three Chinese people eating bananas there is a guy with a red shopping bag, again no words to this effect either...

Asher, don't get me wrong, I appreciate all what you say, regards.
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