Photographic Snobbery & Other Annoyances...

Discussion in 'Ethics and Philosophy' started by Shawn Rahman, Apr 13, 2007.

  1. Shawn Rahman

    Shawn Rahman Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,000
    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2005
    Location:
    Whitestone, NY
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Please feel free to add to the list. I'll get things started:

    - Referring to lenses as “glass”.

    - Referring to film developing as “souping”.

    - “Photography means nothing – it is life that interests me”, or something like that. With apologies to HCB, far and away my favorite photographer.

    - The merits of shooting RAW v. JPEG. Digital, I know, but what is more boring than listening to such drivel?

    - The merits of today’s FB v. RC papers. Seriously folks, does anyone actually think an RC print won’t archive as well, all else being equal?

    - Closet-gearheads who profess that the equipment really doesn’t matter.

    - On Photography, by Susan Sontag.

    - No-name photogs who think anyone would possibly want to dish out hundreds or thousands of dollars their “limited edition” prints. Check any issue of B&W for a reference.

    - The idea that photographs must "say something". PLEASE. Most of the photographs I love most say nothing to me. I just like looking at them.
     
  2. clogz

    clogz Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,842
    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2002
    Location:
    Rotterdam, T
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    What's the use of getting annoyed? The light is right at the moment so I'm going out to shoot...eh...sorry take some pictures :smile:

    Hans
     
  3. jstraw

    jstraw Member

    Messages:
    2,703
    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2006
    Location:
    Topeka, Kans
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The world is too filled with real outrages for me to find photographers using photographers' vernacular an issue.

    As opposed to discussing the merits of staining v. non-staining developers?


    Wrong question. I don't (and can't) know that they will. And that's the point.


    Just because you can't hear it, doesn't mean it's not talking. :wink:
     
  4. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

    Messages:
    9,522
    Joined:
    May 24, 2005
    Location:
    Washington DC
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    At one point in time, even St. Ansel qualified for this opprobium. Richard Avedon was once an unknown. I find this item insulting to the efforts of so many different folks here who are trying to build a career as an artist. Frankly, this sounds like just a bit of jealousy from someone who must have tried, but failed, to sell anything, and so resents those folks who are selling work for more than his failed to sell for.
     
  5. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Member

    Messages:
    4,913
    Joined:
    May 17, 2006
    Location:
    Northern Aqu
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    Um...

    Where's the snobbery in any of this?

    Looking down your nose because someone else doesn't use your brand of expensive camera is snobbery.

    Looking down your nose because you don't think expensive cameras are worth the money is reverse snobbery, and arguably even more tedious.

    But from your list, outmoded slang and occasional delusions of grandeur are hardly worth getting excited about.

    Cheers,

    R.
     
  6. Jim Jones

    Jim Jones Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,428
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Location:
    Rural NW MO
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Yes, indeed. I was compelled to read this in a college course. A book on photography without any photographs is immediately suspect. Living with a notorious photographer did not qualify Sontag as an expert on the subject. On Photography is proof that an otherwise successful author can write almost anything on any subject, and suckers will buy it.
     
  7. Pinholemaster

    Pinholemaster Member

    Messages:
    1,504
    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2005
    Location:
    Westminster,
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    Everyone has a name, and if they can convince someone to part with 100K, more power to them.

    As far as Sontag, the book is more about her failed relationship with Richard A then about 'photography.' It was her "Screw you Richard rant." The funny thing is years later she fell for another photographer. Go figure.

    So, it really doesn't matter to me about the gear. This morning's walk with the dogs, I grabbed some glass just in case I needed to celebrate life, and later I plan to have my lab soup the film for me 'cause life's too short to worry about FB or RC when all I'm doing is enjoying the scene.

    Someday I'll convince the world not to shoot Jpeg - RAW all the way baby.
     
  8. Ian Leake

    Ian Leake Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,424
    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2005
    Location:
    Switzerland
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    Every field has it's special jargon and slang so it's not worth worrying about. Learn the words and use them or not depending on your own preference.

    Many people have different opinions about what is important. I don't have to agree with everything that other people believe, but I've also learnt plenty by listening to others' opinions.
     
  9. jstraw

    jstraw Member

    Messages:
    2,703
    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2006
    Location:
    Topeka, Kans
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Hmm...I wonder what Annie L thinks of "On Photography."
     
  10. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

    Messages:
    20,096
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2003
    Location:
    local
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    hans -

    i think you mean
    burn some film 8D

    hkr --

    life's too short to be annoyed
    useless-link

    --john
     
  11. Robert Hall

    Robert Hall Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,047
    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2004
    Location:
    Lehi, Utah
    Shooter:
    ULarge Format
    Guilty!

    Guilty!

    Guilty!

    Huh?

    Uh, yes.

    The right tool for the right job.

    Guilty! (well, thousands only if they really feel they have to.) :wink:

    Agreed!
     
  12. copake_ham

    copake_ham Inactive

    Messages:
    4,090
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2006
    Location:
    NYC or Copak
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Sorry to go a bit OT but does anyone here know the root and etymology of the word: snob?
     
  13. bdial

    bdial Subscriber

    Messages:
    5,433
    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2005
    Location:
    NE U.S.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Actually, I think that a book about photography with no photographs is sort of a refreshing notion.
     
  14. Sponsored Ad
  15. c6h6o3

    c6h6o3 Member

    Messages:
    3,219
    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2002
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    I know that it won't. Not that I mind, since RC prints don't look as good as fiber based ones anyway.
     
  16. reellis67

    reellis67 Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,887
    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2005
    Location:
    Central Flor
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
  17. Rolleiflexible

    Rolleiflexible Member

    Messages:
    1,274
    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2005
    Location:
    New York Cit
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Plus they feel icky.
     
  18. colrehogan

    colrehogan Member

    Messages:
    2,016
    Joined:
    May 11, 2004
    Location:
    St. Louis, M
    Shooter:
    Large Format Pan
    I tried to read On Photography, but lost interest and haven't finished it yet.
     
  19. Dan Fromm

    Dan Fromm Member

    Messages:
    4,167
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    My, we're all bored today. Cranky, too.
     
  20. DougGrosjean

    DougGrosjean Member

    Messages:
    341
    Joined:
    May 23, 2006
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Two quotes:

    "A rose by any other name would still smell as sweet."

    "The proof of the pudding is in the tasting."



    The things you're complaining about are just words / terms. If the photographer is producing good work, or learning his / her way, or having great fun in the process, I don't care what vocabulary he / she uses. I included having fun because you want new people coming up the ladder. They're the ones having fun, but maybe tossing some odd language about.

    However - if the photographer doesn't actually know what he/ she is doing, isn't producting good work in spite of using flowery / snobbish language, and isn't even having fun - then I'd be the first to laugh at him / her for being a poser instead of an enthusiast; poser being somebody for whom the hobby is just a lifestyle accessory.

    Beware - sometimes it's very hard to tell the difference.
     
  21. big_ben_blue

    big_ben_blue Member

    Messages:
    215
    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2005
    Location:
    near Ottawa,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I dunno; may I suggest scheduling a visit to a respected phychoanalyst if you hear voices coming from a photograph again :D . Do they tell you to do things or come with divine messages attached? If the photographs are mounted on a wall, it's probably just your neighbors stereo set at high volume:rolleyes: .
    While cleaning out a storage room during my college days, I came across that book, and being completely naive and ignorant to both subject and author, I set forth reading it cover to cover. Wasn't that impressed by it (maybe due to the fact that I didn't understand much to begin with); much bloated artsy talk and no substance (kinda like a bland low-carb diet). But at least I managed to finish it:wink: .

    Chris - it's Friday the 13th today
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 13, 2007
  22. Curt

    Curt Subscriber

    Messages:
    4,560
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2005
    Location:
    Pacific Nort
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
  23. Early Riser

    Early Riser Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,630
    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2005
    Location:
    USA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    RC paper is not as archival and for a very simple reason. The RC base does not expand and contract like the emulsion does, so eventually the emulsion with the image on it, peels off of the RC base or cracks.
     
  24. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

    Messages:
    20,096
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2003
    Location:
    local
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    i dunno -

    according to kodak and the image permanency institute,
    rc photographic paper is more archival than fiber based paper.
     
  25. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Member

    Messages:
    4,913
    Joined:
    May 17, 2006
    Location:
    Northern Aqu
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    Are you sure about this?

    Cheers,

    R.
     
  26. Leon

    Leon Member

    Messages:
    2,075
    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2003
    Location:
    Kent, Englan
    Shooter:
    Medium Format