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  1. #51

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    Quote Originally Posted by Felinik View Post
    While I personally don't care for grain in my photos I don't think the grain in this image is too outrageous. Has it occured to anyone else that this photo may have started life as nothing more cerebal than an accidental shot that the photographer happened to like when they saw it? It has some of the characteristics of a picture taken by pressing the button on a camera slung over a shoulder. OzJohn

  2. #52
    MattKing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vaughn View Post
    For the record, I like the image of the truck...
    As do I.

    But the grain and blur are important to the result, and at least appear to be the result of conscious choice.
    Matt

    “Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”

    Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2

  3. #53

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    Quote Originally Posted by Klainmeister View Post
    Things come in and out of style and if anything, the more recent pictorialist popularity is probably a backlash against the 'perfect' digital images that aren't strewn with what some consider defects.
    This is what I suspect as well, as with everything; music, clothes, home decoration, whatnot... there seems to be a need for "balance", and not seldom it goes in circles. This can probably be backed by looking at the current instagram "retro" hype, as well as the last years appearance of vintage looking digital cameras. In short, vintage photography seems to be "a la mode" right now...

    http://street-photos.net/ | http://felinik.com/ | http://www.facebook.com/jf.felinik

    "The one with the most stuff when he dies wins"

  4. #54

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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael R 1974 View Post
    Print quality? Nobody sees that or cares, besides perhaps other photographers/printers. In that context, from a marketing perspective, it might be easier to sell photographs that are blurry or grainy or under/overexposed because they are further removed from what the public would normally view as simple photographs. Potential buyers may see them as more than just pictures, and perhaps have a sense of the work the artist put in. A blurry or very grainy print might give the impression the photographer made the picture rather than simply took the picture.
    This does indeed sound like part of the truth. It's kind of like with music, as soon as an artist release a song where something is completely bananas, vocals that sounds like frogs or robots or some other odd species, banjo playing backwards, or something else that is "out of the norm", if the artist is well known enough, it's treated as a stroke of genius and hits the charts with full power...

    So again "a la mode"...


    Last edited by Felinik; 02-15-2013 at 04:28 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    http://street-photos.net/ | http://felinik.com/ | http://www.facebook.com/jf.felinik

    "The one with the most stuff when he dies wins"

  5. #55
    hoffy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MattKing View Post
    As do I.

    But the grain and blur are important to the result, and at least appear to be the result of conscious choice.
    I'm with these guys - I like the picture. Maybe this sounds like a load of wank, but to me, these portrays some emotion, some feeling.

    Put it this way, lets imagine that this picture was indeed very sharp and shot on a grainless film, or heavens forbid, digital. What would we have? A truck on a highway. Nothing more, nothing less. Sure, it might be a technically adequate picture, but I'd say it wouldn't capture the imagination of the average viewer.

    Where's with this picture - the added grain, the blurriness - it adds tension. The way I am interpreting this picture is that either a violent storm is on us or approaching. I am not sure if this is what the photographer intended, but that is the feeling I get.

  6. #56

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    Quote Originally Posted by hoffy View Post
    I'm with these guys - I like the picture. Maybe this sounds like a load of wank, but to me, these portrays some emotion, some feeling.

    Put it this way, lets imagine that this picture was indeed very sharp and shot on a grainless film, or heavens forbid, digital. What would we have? A truck on a highway. Nothing more, nothing less. Sure, it might be a technically adequate picture, but I'd say it wouldn't capture the imagination of the average viewer.

    Where's with this picture - the added grain, the blurriness - it adds tension. The way I am interpreting this picture is that either a violent storm is on us or approaching. I am not sure if this is what the photographer intended, but that is the feeling I get.

    And this leads us to an interesting chain of thoughts, this mean that blur, grain and other possible "distortion" parameters are adding to the composition, right?

    I think then we are back on the same track, why does this work, and why do people appreciate it?

    It's "a la mode"....

    Regarding what the shooter intended with the shot, I dont know, but the shot is from a series of images about a certain group of people driving those "trucks", as kind of a unspoken community thing, it's actually late teenagers 16-18 years, driving those vehicles, home-modified kind of "car-tractors" which are allowed a max speed of 30 km/h and has to have specific dimensions etc. and that youngsters, 16 and up, can get a license to drive.
    Last edited by Felinik; 02-15-2013 at 07:23 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    http://street-photos.net/ | http://felinik.com/ | http://www.facebook.com/jf.felinik

    "The one with the most stuff when he dies wins"

  7. #57
    Rudeofus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael R 1974 View Post
    Galleries need to sell stuff. Generally, photography is a tough sell. Unlike drawing, painting etc, it is difficult to get the public to see the monetary value in a photograph, because the "hand of the artist" is not obvious.

    [...]

    Please note this post is not meant to imply blurry, grainy or "badly" exposed pictures are inherently any better or worse than straight work. I'm just trying to put forth a possible explanation for why we might find more of this type of work in galleries.
    Michael, that's a great explanation for what many seem to observe here, but it also confirms that not everything we see in galleries will pass the test of time. Which isn't new either, AFAIK Picasso burned his early paintings to keep his room warm, while galleries were full of less worthwhile stuff that has long been forgotten since then.
    Trying to be the best of whatever I am, even if what I am is no good.

  8. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by hoffy View Post
    Put it this way, lets imagine that this picture was indeed very sharp and shot on a grainless film, or heavens forbid, digital. What would we have? A truck on a highway. Nothing more, nothing less. Sure, it might be a technically adequate picture, but I'd say it wouldn't capture the imagination of the average viewer.
    If exposed, developed and printed with best current technique, this image would be without merit and most likely ignored by most people. But if deficient technique can turn a pointless snapshot into fine art, something else has gone awry.

    Hokusai might have created fine art by chasing a chicken with paint on its feet across a canvas, but in this case he did invent a new technique to achieve a certain aesthetic. Blurry&grainy prints and the mood created by these defects are not exactly novel, though.
    Trying to be the best of whatever I am, even if what I am is no good.

  9. #59

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rudeofus View Post
    Hokusai might have created fine art by chasing a chicken with paint on its feet across a canvas, but in this case he did invent a new technique to achieve a certain aesthetic. Blurry&grainy prints and the mood created by these defects are not exactly novel, though.
    You're very intent on whether they are innovating or not but I don't think innovation is what makes an artist an artist. Inventing HDR or Instagram doesn't make that person an artist, but if they do something really good with it, then they are an artist and an innovator.

    Clive James' point about Hokusai is not that he invented something new, his point is that he did something incredibly simplistic and kind of inane to create a winning image. And he could do that because Hokusai was not simplistic or inane.
    Like Michael Kenna or Moersch shooting with a Holga - it isn't art because they are the first ones to do it, it's art because they are so good that they can take a very simple fallible tool and make something beautiful.

  10. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael R 1974 View Post
    Galleries need to sell stuff. Generally, photography is a tough sell. Unlike drawing, painting etc, it is difficult to get the public to see the monetary value in a photograph, because the "hand of the artist" is not obvious. People often ascribe value to things they don't think they can do, or things that look as though a lot of work went into them. If they see a drawing, they see a special skill. When people look at sharp, well exposed, grainless photographs, they think they can do it. After all, the film/sensor records the image, the lens focuses etc. The photographer just has to see what already exists and take the picture, right? Print quality? Nobody sees that or cares, besides perhaps other photographers/printers. In that context, from a marketing perspective, it might be easier to sell photographs that are blurry or grainy or under/overexposed because they are further removed from what the public would normally view as simple photographs. Potential buyers may see them as more than just pictures, and perhaps have a sense of the work the artist put in. A blurry or very grainy print might give the impression the photographer made the picture rather than simply took the picture.

    Please note this post is not meant to imply blurry, grainy or "badly" exposed pictures are inherently any better or worse than straight work. I'm just trying to put forth a possible explanation for why we might find more of this type of work in galleries.
    Michael, I think you hit the nail right on the head. I have 4 photographs hanging in our office, 1 is a cyanotype toned with wine, another is a lith, and two are straight BW fiber (warmtone). Never once has anyone said anything about the latter two, while the paint-like aspect of the cyanotype gets constant comments. Someone even called it art!
    K.S. Klain



 

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