The by the way of. . . . . using prefab

Discussion in 'Ethics and Philosophy' started by gzinsel, Aug 12, 2014.

  1. gzinsel

    gzinsel Member

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    The "use and abuse" of prefabricated objects, ( things that exist already in the word made by others), things that we photograph, i.e. trees, building, people, cars, landscapes, any assortment of still life, etc. AND those materials photographers use (film, paper, dev. etc. . . ) made by others, HINDER "the artist" image or ability "to Image"?

    Moreover what exactly is the relationship between prefab society and prefab photography? And how does it effect, and affect image quality?

    would art history/ fine art photography be much different, If every image was constructed from scratch? I know the absurdity of this question, but I must ask. Do you feel hemmed in by "the prefab", or is the the prefab so enticing, its like crystal meth? or sex? or Both at the same time? Do you feel compelled by the prefab? or does it repulse you? does buying and using a modern camera and film repulse you? do you feel the need to make your own camera, lens, film holder, wet plate, etc. .. .AND make "your own" world to photograph? do you want to leave the world we live in? Metaphorically, of course?
     
  2. eddie

    eddie Subscriber

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    I don't feel "hemmed in" by using a camera. The creation is in one's ability to see... to identify the subject and capture it in a way which communicates what you've seen to the viewer.

    For a few years,though, I've been working on images which don't require a photographic subject, though they're made on film and SG paper. I don't even use a camera/lens for them. In fact, I just posted this one to the Gallery:

    cityscape1.jpg
     
  3. mauro35

    mauro35 Member

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    This thread is very inspiring for me, because I have thought about the issue and never came to a real conclusion. At the moment I think I am not primarily concerned about using cameras, films or paper made by others, but I feel like my photography is sometimes restricted in that I can only image something that is present in the environment and reflects light, whereas a painter can image his/her own pure mind´s view. This in turn generates the need to physically move around to meet something that resembles that mind´s view and try to fit it in that original idea. As photographers are we always stuck with the crude real world?
     
  4. pdeeh

    pdeeh Member

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    Perhaps it would help to abandon the false belief that photography has anything to do with reality.
     
  5. mauro35

    mauro35 Member

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    I agree that in the end a photograph is not the real state of what it represents, because it is in fact a representation. What I mean is that compared to sculpture or painting for instance in photography we have to use light and light is reflected by something real, like objects. The tools are films, cameras and so on, but the subject was an object that reflected light. When a painter paints, the tools are colors, canvas...but the subject comes entirely from the mind, with no direct physical connection with something real. Even if I want to paint an object, the light from the object goes only to my eyes and then I completely create something new when I put some colors on a white surface, that color was not physically linked to the object (I´m thinking now about Magritte´s "this is not a pipe"). That makes photography the most physically tighten form of art in my opinion.
     
  6. pdeeh

    pdeeh Member

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    You might want to talk to a few painters about this point of view.

    The idea of a "direct physical connection" is a bit slippery too, isn't it?

    Let alone the idea of a "real thing".
     
  7. mauro35

    mauro35 Member

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    It would be interesting indeed to hear the point of view of a painter, related to the concept introduced by the OP of images made entirely from scratch. I myself am really bad at even drawing anything, but feel the need to represent my mind´s view with graphic arts. That was the reason why I approached photography. I wonder whether painters always manage to create the original idea they had in mind?
     
  8. Vilk

    Vilk Member

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    between the lofty babble of "photography," whatever that might be, and anything "physical" there are individual instances of photography, namely, photographs. the importance of this discussion is inversely proportional to the (weight of) purpose and the (amount of) content of the photographs we think of at the moment we decide to join the discussion. let's have a look at the same one, then talk "prefab" again--

    http://www.desordre.net/photographie/photographes/eddie_adams/eddie_adams.jpg

    hey, we could even talk "reality..."
     
  9. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser

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    the only thing photography has to do with is the imagination and brain if the person making the photographs.
    if the person want to connect that to prefabrication, so be it, but photography is about as close to non reality / illusion as it gets.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 13, 2014
  10. snapguy

    snapguy Member

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    been covered

    I believe two gentlemen from Red Hook, Brooklyn, New York discussed this topic at length in their thesis for the Sam Houston Institute of Technology, Boca Grande Campus, in 1947. These scholars, Baldie R. Dash and Mr. Hooey, determined to the satisfaction of the university that reality does not exist and you can't photograph it. At least not in Texas or Alabama.
     
  11. gzinsel

    gzinsel Member

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    good points Jnanian

    If I may say. . . though we often find ourselves (photographers) like all other types of imagist (those who produce images) at a distinct position( it doesn't matter if it has advantage or disadvantage) . Our images are made from the direct result of other peoples fabrication, that are placed in the scene. So for example, a city scape of Chicago. Numerous city planners, architects, plumbers, electrician . sign painters, etc. . . . Have had their "hand" in the involvement of the fabrication, which lends to and for a person to consider an aesthetic position. For the photographer- it would be "to click or not to click"- "one off". For other artists, they may do with the mental phenomena what they wish! change it may ways, if so desired, or keep it exactly like "that" .

    so, even though photography is not real, in so far that, it is an image, it was made to mimic "the REAL". That is where the great tension lies in the medium of FILM PHOTOGRAPHY, as apposed to digital, because of photoshops awesome (or not so awesome) ability to completely remove from the image, say a building or a not so pretty human head.

    if I may . . . . the verb "to image" Is quit different for a film photographer, then say any one else of the visual arts . While "imagination" (quite different then image) conjures Ideas, mental activity. . . . . giving you, the photographer purpose. We, as photographers, Have limitations that painters, draftsmen, sketch artists. sculptures, do not have. BY and large we have to work with, what other people have made for us to use as "props"- . . . that is prefab.

    the verb "to image" (NOT to imagine" ) but to image is to record, and is to process ? to make image, we mimic- visa ve, lens and light sensitive material. To process, we use chemicals. production come about, STRICTLY because of other people's work
    (labor). I find, at times, this difficult to deal with, so I switch mediums, I will do some painting, or draw, or sculpture.

    If you compare that to others in the visual artists world . we are . . . . Should I be so bold, as to say . . . .unique!
     
  12. eddie

    eddie Subscriber

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    Not true. As John said, we're only limited by our imaginations (or our preconceptions of what a photograph is).
     
  13. bdial

    bdial Subscriber

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    The work of others is always a component in image creation, unless you prepare your own emulsion or paint pigments or dig your clay out of the ground and work it with tools you forged.

    Our imagination and skill working with the materials and tools, whatever they are, brings the images in our heads to life.
     
  14. gzinsel

    gzinsel Member

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    Dear Pdeeh,

    I must disagree with your conjecture "Perhaps it would help to abandon the false belief that photography has anything to do with reality."


    This is my understanding of the real. I would say that there are objects in the world, say a monitor, or a camera, or a roll of film, or a pretty girl, or, etc. . . I would say that those all real things. They exist. I can pick up a camera and a roll of film, which are real, and make an exposure, of a real thing, say, the girl . Based on the geometry of the lens, I will reproduce on a silver emulsion an image. The silver is real. the gelatin is real. the chemicals used to reduce down to a metallic state are real. I make an enlargement on a piece of paper, thats real- I have an object in my hand, I call it a photograph, would you like to see it? someone says sure. I am of the opinion, that they think and believe, those photographic prints in my hand, are real. I am also of the opinion, that they think and believe, that at some point in real time, I used a camera to make those negatives from which I made the prints. At no point in time, would I think or believe, that they think or believe, that the photographic prints I am showing them are non-real

    however,I can not photograph, the un-real, though. Light has to fall or an object, and reflect light, in order to make a photograph. even a photogram, is real, it is a real piece of paper. It is a reality. it does exist.

    CONTENT and understanding, conceptualization. . . . . the meta, or as some people call it the phenomenology, on the other hand. You would/could have a good argument, that, that does not deal with reality, therefor allowing you to disassociate with the belief that is has anything to do with reality. But the objects are real.

    Lets say, I make a photograph of a very, very pretty girl standing in a green lush field, standing next to a very pretty flower. thats image no.1 Lets say the next photograph i take is from altering the girls face. I spray paint on the girls face an "X" .thats image no.2. Lets say I develop the roll of film, and print them both, to show side by side. The first photograph I print normal with an additional "burning in" of an "x" on the flower. the second photograph, I print normal, no additional burning in. And show them as a diptych. the title of the piece is "which x is real" ? The 1st photograph has an "x' over the flower, thats a bruning in/on the paper. the second photograph has an "x" over the girls face, spray painted no less.

    how would you respond to that. . . . I think both of them are real. I think there are two real prints there. I may think that its dumb idea, some one trying to "cute" with the medium. trying to be too clever. . . etc. some one else may love it. However you come out on the aesthetics and content, they are in fact based in reality, they are not an illusion or phantom. It is in fact dealing with reality or the real. however you like to say it.
     
  15. David Brown

    David Brown Subscriber

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    No.
     
  16. Allen Friday

    Allen Friday Member

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    I have played around with the following a few times over the years. Take a piece of photo paper or a negative, color, black and white, handmade or purchased, put it on an easel in a completely dark room. Shine colored flashlights on the paper--from various distances, moving in different directions, across the paper, in and out from the paper, wide beams of light and narrow beams. Put the paper on the floor and hang the light by a string and give it a push letting it swing until it comes to rest. Use the light to directly create the image, no reflected light needed.
     
  17. mauro35

    mauro35 Member

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    Nicely said! This is my feeling about the topic as well.
     
  18. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser

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    gzinzel

    photography just has to do with drawing with light.

    it is just about making images on light sensitive materials, nothing more, or less

    a lot of people who use cameras make photographs, are photographers
    are held hostage by their preconceptions of what a photograph is, might be or could be, so they are blind to so many possibilities that exist.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 13, 2014
  19. pdeeh

    pdeeh Member

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  20. Maris

    Maris Member

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    Nothing can be made from scratch, not even photographs. As Carl Sagan wisely put it:"If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe."
     
  21. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser

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    i dont know maris ,,,
    seems if you lie in the summer sun and put something
    on your skin to block it from getting a tan ... you are getting
    photograph to me .... :smile:
     
  22. gzinsel

    gzinsel Member

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    Yes and yes and more yeses to Pdee! I got a taped copy of that album in 1986, Although i beleive it was made in 1981-84 somewhere in there. That link brought back a lot of. . . . Shall i say. . . . " fond memories. . . . . On the other side of the tape was murmur, by R.E.M., so there you have it

    as to Jnanian, I will of course, take exception to your wording, (LABORIOUS) I know, , , I know. . . It is very rare I draw with light. Although there is a great image of P. Picasso where he used a "light rod" in front of the camera to "expose the gesture" then the strobe hit to freeze him. I do not know who took the photograoh. I just wait for the sun. as always cheers, Have the next one on me!