Open Photography Forums  
HOME FORUMS NEWS FAQ SEARCH

Go Back   Open Photography Forums > OPF Welcome Hall > Layback Cafe

Layback Cafe Let's chat!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old June 19th, 2010, 04:21 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is offline
OPF Owner/Editor-in-Chief
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 34,123
Default Is Photography over?

Elsewhere in another current OPF thread, the question: "What is your motivation" or "What drives your style in photography?" lead to an interesting discussion of motivation: getting one's style as if it is something all self-respecting photographers must somehow accomplish.

Then, commenting on Sandrine's failure to see art in at least much of her own employer's photography, Ken Tanaka, succinctly as usual, made some very interesting points, (outside of that consideration of photography as "art"):

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken Tanaka View Post
...........

The fact that nearly everyone can record a photograph makes it the most democratic of all media. But it simultaneously makes it the most difficult medium in which to distinguish oneself. This past April the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMoMA) hosted a symposium to tackle the obviously unanswerable, but provocative, question: "Is Photography Over?". The museum empaneled a relatively wide variety of renowned figures to discuss the subject -- curators, educators, photographers/artists, and a few professional navel-gazers. Some may find their remarks interesting reading.

Ken,

Your remarks made me rethink about the values we have and the part played by photography. I'd like us to look at the question of our photography, not in terms of style, but intent and impact on society. This I figure might be a more fruitful approach.

"The fact that nearly everyone can record a photograph makes it the most democratic of all media."

The Citizen Journalist: The possession of cameras at the ready everywhere by average people is the most important factor in the continued development and evolution of the citizen journalist. Think of the type of video that exposed the police beating in the Rodney King affair written still argued about here. Think of the impact of just one camera with one point of view. One can argue that the picture does not shoe the entire story. Well, time has move us to a new stage. Thousands of cell phone pictures from every part of the protests streamed out of Iran despite censorship. Having a camera let alone just one single video camera at hand everywhere in the world was unusual just 20 years ago. Now, cell phones are ubiquitous. Never before in the history of man was it so hard to conceal crimes against society!

Think of the truth possible after the murder of Neda. Today, citizen news gathering provides a major new factor in human society's functioning. So "good enough", here, at least, get's out the news despite the harshest censorship. Again there's utterly no need for the picture to be considered as "Art" for it to be either effective or important!

Back to photography for Art: Beyond that, attempting to make Art, by photographing the beautiful, "sentimental" or "romantic", faces what I'd label "The Sunset" conundrum.

The Sunset Conundrum: The more perfect and ideal the sunset appears, the less interesting it might be as a novel work! In science and forensic work, however, the photograph has no such limitations. It increases in importance with every advance in technology. Similarly, undiminished in power, the new photograph still makes one of the most treasured mementos. In advertising and fashion, like art, any new image has to rise above the impact of all others that image invokes. So it might be harder, but the human imagination is infinite. With that as our starting dogma, the photograph is not going to decrease in importance in our lives.

What's likely is that all the famous images our society has iconized, are ready to reappear at the slightest stimulus. So they are always there as we gauge the value of anything new. Evoking such symbols work to both fortify new works and paradoxically risks deflating their potential value in the market place if it's merely classified as "what we've seen before". Having a new voice will always get the most attention. In that, the photograph is not dead and won't die!

Asher
__________________
Follow us on Twitter at @opfweb

Our purpose is getting to an impressive photograph. So we encourage browsing and then feedback. Consider a link to your galleries annotated, C&C welcomed. Images posted within OPF are assumed to be for Comment & Critique, unless otherwise designated.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old June 19th, 2010, 04:23 PM
Asher Kelman Asher Kelman is offline
OPF Owner/Editor-in-Chief
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 34,123
Default

I challenge folk to follow the link Ken has shared and then respond here. "Is Photography Over?".

Asher
__________________
Follow us on Twitter at @opfweb

Our purpose is getting to an impressive photograph. So we encourage browsing and then feedback. Consider a link to your galleries annotated, C&C welcomed. Images posted within OPF are assumed to be for Comment & Critique, unless otherwise designated.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old June 19th, 2010, 08:30 PM
Rachel Foster Rachel Foster is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Michigan, USA
Posts: 3,574
Default

I've not read the linked article, though I did click on it. I don't need to. Or, rather, it wouldn't change my mind. You see, "art," like trends in literature, science (especially psychology), clothing or any human endeavor, is absurdly vulnerable to fads. This year, something is 'in," next year it may well be "out."

If photography is or can be "over," meaning more than being temporarily unfashionable, then it was never of value in the first place. In that case, good riddance. I, however, believe it has value. When done well, it is an art from (can you really say Ansel Adams' work was without value?), and will survive in spite of fads.

If anyone is truly concerned with whether or not photography is "over" (and Asher, I know you well enough that I'm convinced you do not believe this), then I suggest that person carefully examine why s/he does photography. If it's to please the masses, chances are that photographer is not creating art anyway.

Is photography over? Pffffffft.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old June 19th, 2010, 11:06 PM
Kathy Rappaport Kathy Rappaport is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: So. California
Posts: 1,793
Default Not over

Photography is not over in the least. It's actually far from over. It's in transition for certain.

There will always be the need for commerical and fashion work. For wedding and portrait work some people will want traditional photography and for others the new mode of snapshots with cell phones might be acceptable. It's a changing medium.

Professionals must make their work stand out from the snapshooters. It is our job to educate on not how to create the above the snapshot level image but to show them and get people to embrace them. We must edit harder and be different.

Artists still paint. They can't all paint like Picasso, Renoir and Van Gogh.
__________________
You can call me ChatKat
********************
I created this piece of fine art. It's Fine Art because it's mine, I made it and I say it's fine art...
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old June 22nd, 2010, 12:05 PM
John Angulat John Angulat is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: New York
Posts: 1,272
Default

A couple of interest pieces.
Doesn't answer the question, but at least it is alive in these two sectors:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/world/us_...a/10355526.stm

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/22/ny...l?ref=nyregion
__________________
Warm regards,
John Angulat
www.lightsimage.com
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old June 23rd, 2010, 10:12 AM
Alain Briot Alain Briot is offline
pro member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Phoenix, Arizona, USA
Posts: 1,423
Default

It is quite obvious that photography as we have known it until digital took over is over. However, a new photography is emerging. What it is is still in the making, the actual emergence being hampered by the ongoing and constant technological improvements and changes. Now that these have slowed down, and that we have a relatively stable platform to work from, I expect to see this emergence take a more easily recognizable form.

This process is no different than the process that followed the emergence of photography itself. At that time it was claimed that painting was over. Certainly, painting as it was known prior to the invention of photography was over. However, a new painting emerged, and this new painting was characterized by no longer being responsible for representing things as they were. Photography could do this a lot better. Painting therefore took on a different role, that of representing what could not be seen. The abstract, the impressionist, the surreal, etc. became the subject of this new painting.
__________________
Alain Briot
Fine Art, workshops, books: Get 40 Free eBooks when you subscribe to my newsletter:
http://www.beautiful-landscape.com
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old January 2nd, 2011, 01:26 PM
Alain Briot Alain Briot is offline
pro member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Phoenix, Arizona, USA
Posts: 1,423
Default

(continued from above)

What is happening with photography today, is that just like painting before it, the responsibility to represent reality is fading away. It appears that this reality is now falling upon the shoulders of video. This change is made possible in part by the emergence of HD video which gives us a more believable image, especially on TV. It is seconded by the difficulty of manipulating video on computers. While possible, it takes a much more powerful machine than is required to manipulate a photograph. The knowledge necessary is also far less mainstream than for photography. While nearly everyone is familiar with Photoshop, few can name software used to manipulate video, and far fewer actually use this software.

This is seen in many different photography fields. Clearly it is present in fine art, because it is about expression rather than documentation, but it is also seen in reportage, wedding, etc. People who want reality now turn to video. People who turn to photography expect something different than what they see or what they can capture on their own.
__________________
Alain Briot
Fine Art, workshops, books: Get 40 Free eBooks when you subscribe to my newsletter:
http://www.beautiful-landscape.com
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old January 3rd, 2011, 04:52 AM
Georg R. Baumann Georg R. Baumann is offline
Inactive
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,482
Default

Is Photography Over?

After I watched the Introduction and the one hour lasting Day One Part One of the SFMOMA video, I really wonder. I mean, these nine folks sitting on the panel probably represent a very considerable combined yearly income.

Peter Galassi, stated I get paid to believe that the past is relevant to the present.

What a nice job description isn't it?

I am not yet certain, but it does have potential to go straight into my personal new decade book of highlights as the biggest yawn triggering sedative elitist waffle I came across.

Is photographic print over because LCD-Slideshow frames turned into a mass market product?

Is music over because we now have sample libraries and CPU power available that can trigger the entire Vienna Symphonic Orchestra with the push of a button, and sales of classical music CD's has been nearly eliminated?

Is writing over because the market is swamped with nonsensical bullshit?

Is culture over because we are acting like a bunch of idiots concerning our very own resources? Well, eventually, if we are not careful!

Today you can buy a consumer camera with translucent fixed mirror design for 750 Euro that creates sweeping 3d Panoramas, shoots HDR and operates 6x multiframe noise reduction, shoots Video, 10fps, and well no, it does not bring the coffee, not yet...

Of course photography is not over. LOL Period.

Asking this question represents an elitist dilemma more than anything else. The real question is how photography will transform over time.

Photography is over when the eyes are gone, other than that.... next!

Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old January 3rd, 2011, 08:06 AM
jake klein jake klein is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: minnesota
Posts: 747
Default

Photography is over when we stop taking photographs period.

The medium is irrelevant.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old January 3rd, 2011, 08:24 AM
Alain Briot Alain Briot is offline
pro member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Phoenix, Arizona, USA
Posts: 1,423
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jake klein View Post
Photography is over when we stop taking photographs period.

The medium is irrelevant.
That's for sure. But that's true for any activity. The point here is: "is photography as we knew it over?" And I believe it is over as we knew it in 'film days.' In fact, it is very significantly over! But, if people wish to believe photography is the same as its always been, I'm cool with it. This is not a point for argumentation. It's just about witnessing a fact. The "changing of the guards" so to speak.
__________________
Alain Briot
Fine Art, workshops, books: Get 40 Free eBooks when you subscribe to my newsletter:
http://www.beautiful-landscape.com
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old January 3rd, 2011, 08:49 AM
Georg R. Baumann Georg R. Baumann is offline
Inactive
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,482
Default

The near future of photography? To me it is clear, holographic recording/projection. Apple recently was granted a patent on a holographic display that aims to project these without the need of wearing special glasses. The really groundbreaking new technology will be cameras that register holographic images, and that is the not too distant future.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old January 4th, 2011, 07:30 PM
Maris Rusis Maris Rusis is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Noosa, Queensland, Australia.
Posts: 382
Default

Photography over? No! Somewhat abstract philosophising follows:

Photography, as it was invented and then practiced for the next 170 years or so, is the only known way to make image based pictures that are physically and indexically linked to their subject matter. It would be curious indeed if a picture-making process offering this unique combination of qualities was put aside and never taken up again.

In the grand scheme of things there are several picture-making processes in which the first step is "lens makes image". Examples include realist painting, drawing, camera obscura sketches, digital pictures, and photography. Of these photography is only one that delivers pictures that come into existence because they are directly penetrated by a physical sample of their subject matter.

There are several image categories that have an assuredly indexical relationship to their subject matter. Examples include life-casts, death masks, silicon rubber moulds, brass rubbings, coal peels, and photographs. Of these indexical processes the only one that includes the "lens makes image" quality is photography.

In the long run the salvation of photography lies not in how its pictures look. Resolution, colour accuracy, and tonal fidelity don't count. Digital technology, even in its present infancy, can generate any resolution, colour, or tone you like with or without reference to anything external.

Its the special relationship photography has to its subjects and consequently the special relationship it offers to its viewers that maintains it as a picture form worth looking at.
__________________
"Photography or the application of the chemical rays of light to the purpose of pictorial representation...". Photography, the word, coined and first uttered by Sir John Herschel at the Royal Society, Somerset House, London; 14 March, 1839.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old January 4th, 2011, 08:45 PM
Georg R. Baumann Georg R. Baumann is offline
Inactive
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,482
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maris Rusis View Post

Its the special relationship photography has to its subjects and consequently the special relationship it offers to its viewers that maintains it as a picture form worth looking at.
+1

That is why language, music and photography are so closely related in my view, all constitute a language in some respect. Photography is a visual language.

Spoken languages, regardless the origin, have all one thing in common, the value of the words comes from the people speaking with an open heart and open mind, hence the same counts for photography, otherwise we just string words together to sentences.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Art or not? A central repository of links to art related discussions in OPF Cem_Usakligil Photography as Art 1 May 15th, 2011 12:48 AM
Photography studies in abroad oli murugavel Education, Training, Workshops and Shoot Opportunities. 2 August 20th, 2009 10:12 AM
Photography and Art in OPF Cem_Usakligil Photography as Art 17 March 9th, 2009 03:03 PM
Aesthetic impact of photography upon 19th century art world? Colin Dow Photography as Art 3 December 31st, 2008 11:04 AM
The neophyte and photography... a long, boring essay Rachel Foster Entry Digital Photography 4 December 29th, 2007 03:41 AM


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 08:36 AM.


Posting images or text grants license to OPF, yet of such remain with its creator. Still, all assembled discussion 2006-2017 Asher Kelman (all rights reserved) Posts with new theme or unusual image might be moved/copied to a new thread!