The Lesson of Engelbert Humperdinck

Discussion in 'Ethics and Philosophy' started by Gerald C Koch, Aug 18, 2011.

  1. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    Often we see posts on APUG asking how a photographer achieved a particular look. Now curiousity is perfectly valid and can lead to many positive things. But it's not a good idea to closely imitate someone else's style. The german composer Engelbert Humperdinck was so enamoured of the music of Richard Wagner that he sought to imitate it in every possible way. Deservedly or not he shall always be known as a Wagner wannabe. I think there is a lesson here.
     
  2. Newt_on_Swings

    Newt_on_Swings Member

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    For humans, life is about imitation, such is the way that we learn. Even our thought patterns when describing a particular form of art or image is to offer references to other similar pieces. Very few get to break out of the mold, of those who do, many are misunderstood or undiscovered, they are scattered by the wayside, the few who are successful, are remembered for all history. That being said, the human mind is an endless well of creativity, it would be a waste to spend a life copying another. Im thankful of the age that we live in, there are so many creative minds out there, and only now do we have such access to see and hear them so easily.
     
  3. Jim Jones

    Jim Jones Subscriber

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    Humperdinck is best known for the charming opera, Hansel and Gretel. Wagner couldn't have tackled that story without encumbering it with interminable hours of Teutonic yowling and theatrical excesses. Gustav Mahler was another fan of Wagner. Despite that, he also wrote some fine music. I much admire the photography of Adams and Weston. Unfortunately, my photos don't indicate this.
     
  4. Monito

    Monito Member

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    Don't emulate a single photographer's style. Emulate several and keep adding styles and techniques to your repertoire and before long you'll have your own style without knowing it.
     
  5. steven_e007

    steven_e007 Member

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  6. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    everyone ends up being a wannabe in one way or another
     
  7. Jim Jones

    Jim Jones Subscriber

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    The famous German composer Englebert Humperdinck lived from 1854 to 1921. I understand a contemporary musician has recently been performing under his name
     
  8. Worker 11811

    Worker 11811 Member

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    That is so funny because it is so true!

    Even if you imitate another's work it is probably impossible to completely duplicate it because you instinctively introduce little bits of your own style. Even if Humperdinck wrote operas LIKE Wagner he could not have wrote operas that duplicated them. Only operas that EMULATE them.

    Further, by emulating another's work you also learn something about the person.

    There is a reason I posted my father's photos on my Flickr site:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/randystankey/sets/72157627061002122/

    He died when I was 17 years old and I inherited his negatives. For years, I kept them safe but didn't do anything with them but, a while ago, I got them out and scanned them. As I looked at those images, I learned many subtle things about the way my father thought and saw the world when he was alive. I got the opportunity to know my father by looking at his work and studying it and emulating it.

    Humperdinck got to know Wagner in a similar way by studying is work and emulating it.

    A person who emulates another's photography also has a chance to learn from it in a similar way.

    It is immoral to simply copy another's work but it is not immoral if you learn from it and grow from it.

    We are great because we stand on the shoulders of giants.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Standing_on_the_shoulders_of_giants
     
  9. Brian Legge

    Brian Legge Member

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