Ansel Liebowitz

Discussion in 'Ethics and Philosophy' started by blansky, Mar 7, 2003.

  1. blansky

    blansky Subscriber

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    Everyone knows the stories of Ansel Adams and how he camped out for hours and days to get the incredible photographs that he is famous for.

    However, there is a hot new photographer named Ansel Liebowitz doing the same type of work. He is commissioned by Landscape Incorporated to produce the covers for the magazine called Terra Faire.

    The progression of his cover shots are as follows:

    Day 1. Executive meeting in New York with editor, photoeditor, art director, location director, 2 writers, Ansel Liebowitz and his assistant , the stylist, and two interns. The discussion, the cover for May, two months away. Apparently there is a movie coming out on May 5th that features a lot of locations shots in and around the Sierras. We need that for the cover.

    Day 2. Meeting with Ansel, his four assistants, stylist, art director, location director and 2 location scouts and 2 interns. Find the perfect location, check on snow, moon location, time of day etc and report back to Ansel by early next week.

    Day 9. Meeting. Same group as day 2. Location scouts report that they have helicoptered around the area and have 3 locations that could be perfect. They produce photographs showing the entire area and included are the position of the sun, moon and at what times. Snow may be a problem.

    Day 11. Meeting. Same group. Location is decided upon. Two assistants are sent to the area to camp out and report back when conditions are perfect. The other assistant is sent to round up rental equipment for the shoot. The location manager is sent to arrange for transportation air and ground, for Ansel and his group as well as for equipment, for the day the shoot is decided upon.

    Day 19. Sierras. Weather is perfect. Using their satellite phone the assistants contact New York. The shoot is set for 5pm. The equipment has arrived and has been set up. Ansel jumps in a limo and heads to the private airport. He arrives at the nearest airport to his destination and jumps on a helicopter to take him to the staging area. A Hummer then deposits him at the site at exactly 4:30 PM. Unfortunately the driver doesn't stop in time and runs smack dab right into the catering truck. The doughnuts are OK but the capiccino machine and one intern is ruined. Oh well. Luckily the stylist arrived yesterday, in time to hire 3 local Sikorskys to drop 500 tons of fresh snow in patchy areas to even out the flats before the mountains. The valley floor is alive with the rhymthic whine of the six semi trailer generator trucks pumping power to the 126 strategically placed strobes filling the valley with light as the assistants tweak the set up working on polaroids. Ansel, wearing his new trumpeter swan down jacket jumps out of the Hummer and looks at the polaroids and yes it's perfect. He trips the shutter and just to be sure trips it twenty more times as his dutiful assistants skillfully switch the film holders in and out. Whew. The shoot had to be stopped once, while the stylist shot a pesky bear cub that kept edging into the shot. But right on schedule, ten minutes later, Ansel is back in the Hummer heading for the helicopter to take him to the airport. He has a gallery opening to attend later tonight.

    Day 45. Executive meeting New York. Editor, photoeditor art director,
    2 writers, Ansel Liebowitz and his assistant, 1 intern. Ansel, freshly tanned, back from the Bahamas, looks over the pictures which have been photoshopped and printed. They naturally, are admired all around. Ansel - another perfect shoot.

    Day 60. The magazine hits the newstands to rave reviews and Ansel has done it again.

    Another book is in the works. Just in time for Christmas.

    Critics rave that this new Ansel could even be better that the old one, but purists cry foul. Ah, what the hell do they know.

    Michael McBlane
     
  2. Jorge

    Jorge Inactive

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    [​IMG] ..Huh?......
     
  3. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    Michael,

    That is too funny. I imagine that he will have Johnny Bailey defend him when the animal rights folks sue him as the percipitating factor in bear getting shot.
     
  4. blansky

    blansky Subscriber

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    Donald, you are a wise and learned man. It is an honor to converse with you.

    Michael McBlane
     
  5. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    Michael,

    Nope, wrong again...just learned that I can BS most folks most of the time...
     
  6. blansky

    blansky Subscriber

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    Somehow I doubt that.

    Michael McBlane
     
  7. Aggie

    Aggie Member

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  8. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    Let me tell you about my life growing up on the farm...You know the television series "Little House on the Prairie"...well I was the brother of Laura Ingalls Wilder. They didn't mention me in that show since I was an orphan who had been captured by those heathen savages..."Indians?", you ask..."No not at all", say I it was those darned buffalo...I would have pleased had it been indians, buffalo are much worse in a lethargic sort of way.

    After 23 years I escaped...and entered the first grade in school. They said I was advanced and I was so pleased. School was tough, though, walking 13 miles to get there and 15 miles to get back home...never figured that one out. Uphill both ways too. Oh well, that is why I am the way I am today...buffalo those damned buffalo.
     
  9. Aggie

    Aggie Member

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  10. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    Aggie,
    You have it...It takes someone who has been there to understand.
     
  11. SteveGangi

    SteveGangi Member

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    </span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (dnmilikan @ Mar 8 2003, 11:13 AM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'> School was tough, though, walking 13 miles to get there and 15 miles to get back home...never figured that one out. Uphill both ways too. </td></tr></table><span class='postcolor'>
    You forgot the part about being barefoot, in the snow [​IMG]
     
  12. Aggie

    Aggie Member

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  13. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    Steve,
    You are absolutely correct. Thank you for reminding me. I have developed a phenomenon of my advancing age. It is called CRS which is an anocronym for
    Can't Remember S***. I almost forget my name somedays, but my cat...God love her soul reminds me. So far her input has kept the guys in white coats at bay.
    Now that you bring it up...as I recall it, those blizzards of early July were hell. But that is another tale for another day. Have a good day, friend.

    Regards,
    Donald Miller
     
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  15. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    Aggie,
    Wow, what a concept!!! Can you imagine what a person could do with a whole pasture full of the stuff. I can just see it now, my own mini empire...hell, Dave Thomas has nothing on me... Wendy's !!, that is nothing my friend!!! Can you envision Don's Emporium of Horses***?

    "Yes", you say...oh you already knew???
     
  16. Aggie

    Aggie Member

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  17. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    Aggie,
    I like the way you think...scairy, but attractive nevertheless. You want to form a enterpeneurial alliance here? We can probably take the world by storm. What kind of storm? Not sure there.
     
  18. blansky

    blansky Subscriber

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    Seeing as I have gotten very little discussion on this topic I guess my little parody missed the mark and fell flat on it's face.

    I will explain:

    In the old days a movie studio, when it wanted to publicize a movie, it turned to its publicity department to produce photographs of the stars and hence we got the wonderful work of Hurrell etc. The studios also controlled the movienews reels as well as the photoplay etc magazines of it's day.

    Nowadays the movie studios are part of mult national conglomorates that own all the major television networks, radio stations, book publishing houses, newpapers, and periodicals including Time, Newsweek and hundreds of others, as well as a myriad of other enterprises. Therefore when a new "blockbuster" movie is about to foisted on an unsuspecting public there is enormous saturation of various media to achieve this. Everything from, Good Morning America, to History Channel to Letterman to the covers of every magazine you can think of. This is all part of the new propaganda to entice us to attend this "blockbuster".

    This brings us to the celebrity portrait photographer. These peope are the front men, if you will, for an enormous publicity machine to present these "movie stars' to us in a favorable light.( if you'll pardon the pun). The photographers themselves are made out to be celebrities in their own right by the publicity machines and as such, must travel with an entrourage of well wishers and a** kissers.

    The work, whatever you think of it, is essentially, photography by committee, and carried out as such. From conception to completion it is handled much like a movie itself. Some of us, in the people photography field have had mixed feeling about this for a while. This is not the work of Karsh, Newman, Eisenstadt etc.

    To try to get a response I thought I would drive my SUV into the sacred cow of probably the majority of people on this forum. Namely the dedicated large format, educated, meticulous, and earnest people who consider Ansel Adams to be a master, among many others.

    I wanted to see how you would feel about the kind of work you are passionate about being infiltrated and circumvented by people who work in the way of my character, Ansel Leibowitz.

    Some of you might think this rather tedious as it has nothing to do with technique or favorite recipes (oops I did it again) but this is the ethics and philosophy section after all.

    I will start another topic and see if there are responses to that.



    Michael McBlane
     
  19. SteveGangi

    SteveGangi Member

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    Ahhhhh now it becomes clear! It's just part of the general pattern these days. All hype, no substance, NO REAL TALENT (just like Hollywood). Image is everything. Ansel probably has a roady trip the shutter for him too (can't have the star break a nail). Too bad you mentioned SUVs, they are very politically incorrect. You see, Ansel and his movie buddies have decided YOU can't have one. After buying their SUVs, Hummers limos, private jets and multiple unoccupied mansions, they have (in their far greater wisdom) decided if you had *any* of that 1) the rain forests will vanish 2) you will be supporting terrorists 3) you will single-handedly bring on the greatest mass extinction the world has ever seen. They won't give up their luxuries but how dare you aspire to the same things. After all, they know what's best for you. Why is it that the most usless people in the world seem to always reap the greatest rewards and have the most outrageous egoes? Sorry to sound so bitter, but here on the left coast, this sort of stuff is starting to snowball. I don't even own *any* car, and yesterday got flamed for daring to say nobody would dictate what I choose to buy with my money.

    How's that for spinning off on a tangent? [​IMG]
     
  20. Aggie

    Aggie Member

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  21. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    Aggie,
    Now that you have agreed to collaborate on this new venture, where is it that we should plan on placing it? I suggest somewhere that it will gain maximum exposure and be most fitting...something about the thought of a resort of this type placed near the southern terminus of Washington DC seems especially fitting now. I do hope that they have a prevailing southerly breeze.

    If you have further ideas or suggestions, I think that enough of the raw material is being produced to open several resorts. Let's hear your ideas.

    I can see it now...fame and fortune has finally arrived. What is it that someone said about 15 minutes of fame? God, I hope that I live longer then another 15.

    Later,
     
  22. Aggie

    Aggie Member

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  23. SteveGangi

    SteveGangi Member

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    I think I have finally found my place, among people who think more like me. It would not be that bad (but still bad enough) if they practiced what they preach, but they don't. The hypocrisy really gripes me. I'm still ticked at Rob Ryner and his cigarette tax "for the children". Near as I can tell, no children got anything; he just doesn't approve of smoking. I think the resort should go right directly under the Hollywood sign, it should drain down into the film studio or one of their mansions, and I have chickens so i can supply all the chicken s__t you need for the ski runs - not that you'll need any in Hollywood [​IMG] Maybe it's a good thing I don't have to work in the film biz, it would be too hard to bite my tongue.
     
  24. Aggie

    Aggie Member

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  25. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Didn't I read something somewhere about a photographer who continued working even after going blind? Of course, his assistants had to set up the shoot, focus, set exposure, load film, put the cable release in the master's hand - but he was still being credited as the photographer...
     
  26. Ed Sukach

    Ed Sukach Member

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    </span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (SteveGangi @ Mar 9 2003, 07:27 PM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'>I think I have finally found my place, among people who think more like me.&nbsp; It would not be that bad (but still bad enough) if they practiced what they preach, but they don't.&nbsp; The hypocrisy really gripes me. </td></tr></table><span class='postcolor'>
    Hypocrisy irritates the hell out of me, too ... but that is the way this government is - FULL of idiots, crackpots, hypocrites, stupidos ... and wonderfullly intelligent, honest people - who might just be Garbage Collectors as well as Supreme Court Justices.

    I guess it is a lousy system... but ... what else?

    I just saw a bio of Robert Redford on the Biography channel. Whether I agree or disagree with him, I have to admire his ba ... uh, guts ... *SISU* when he stands so firmly for what he believes.
    We should all be so firm in our principles.

    Quote:

    "Liberty is a boisterous sea. Timid men prefer the calm of despotism."

    - Thomas Jefferson