I have no interest in going into the business side of photography, so I don't feel like that applies to me. I'll be glad to take a non-photo job to make ends meet. It seems to come as a great surprise to many people (read: men) that many art photo people don't really have much interest in doing commercial work. Certainly there are business aspects to making it in the art world as well, but experience is the best teacher there, along with fellow photographers that you get to know and learn from.
Originally Posted by Helinophoto
I definitely do attend an art school and I wouldn't have it any other way. The work I've seen around me in just the past year has been outstanding.
Ah, statistics and percentages .....
I expect there are some useful conclusions to be gathered about the relationship between gender and participation in the world of photography - whether it is photographic businesses, art photography, participation in forums, or whatever.
But they would be statistical conclusions, not particularly applicable to any single photographer.
Over the years here on APUG some of the most welcome and interesting posts have come from women, including some who aren't necessarily easily "identified" as women unless they have chosen to be so identified.
Some still post, while others aren't here very often. Too bad, as far as I'm concerned.
And when it comes to having a thorough technical knowledge, there is no doubt in my mind that gender is in no way a predictor of that.
I wonder how Helen Bach (Helen B) is doing?
Nor is gender a predictor of the depth and breadth of those mixed technical/artistic skills that we as photographers tend to value.
I type this while looking at a very fine print I have from BWKate - I hope she is doing well?
Nor is gender a predictor of willingness to become involved with more difficult and tactile alternative processes - I wonder when I'll get to see more of sly's wonderful work in large format alternative processes?
“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
I started out my post, as you might recall, with the info that the photo classes I've taken have had more women than men. None of these classes shied away from technical info either. In fact, the one instructor I had who didn't even get most of the technical info right and printed his example for the class on the back of a sheet of paper was a guy. And I don't know any female photographer on here who doesn't have a good grasp of the technical aspects. I also know more women than men working as photographers outside of APUG.
Originally Posted by Helinophoto
Maybe you're not trying to be condescending, but the sound of your posts very much fits the bill.
I'm deleting the rest of what I was going to post to save Suzanne the trouble. (Go Suzanne, btw)
I agree with those saying that women tend not to be so interested in these forums but here in my rather large photographic circle I would say at least half are women if not more than half. The curator of photography at the Portland Art Museum is a woman. I used to have a lot more custom lab clients than I have now. Now my last 2 main clients are women.
My question is why don't women drink single malt scotch and why do they have so many book clubs.
How many of those students stayed involved in photography after graduating or leaving school? As I mentioned, exactly ONE of the women in my college photo classes stuck with it after graduating. ONE. Out of 14 or 15. Out of the 10 men in the program, 6 are still doing photography. Four of us are fulltime pros. So is the one woman.
Originally Posted by winger
Women are absolutely capable of mastering the technical aspects of it. My former classmate did, and she is a very creative artist whose work I love. I respect her as a person and an artist. There are several women here on APUG and on the Leica users group and Rangefinderforum (other places I talk photography online) who also create magnificent work and have mastered the technical stuff too. Still, based on what I have seen, I think most women do not have the desire to do so or the drive to succeed as professionals. If that upsets women, they alone have the power to change it. Shooting the messenger might make you feel good, but it changes nothing.
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Still, based on what I have seen, I think most women do not have the desire to do so or the drive to succeed as professionals. If that upsets women, they alone have the power to change it.
I think you're just ignorant, and basing your judgments only on your personal experience. I don't mean "ignorant" in a pejorative sense, but just a matter of fact one.
Also, what is a "professional" to you? Someone who does commercial work? What about photographers who make bodies of work of their own design and don't do anything else? I know plenty of women doing just that.
Fine Art Photography of Indiana and other places no one else photographs.
Surely someone's told you that there's no such place?
Women are.... Men are....
Aren't we making pretty BIG generalizations? Most of what are being said in this thread do not apply to men and women in my immediate social circles - photographers and non-photographers.
Personally (and I am a male), I do not go to photography shows or shows of most kinds in other areas of interest. My local camera store actually has a female staff. Some of the topic on photo forums do not interest me where as some do. I have no idea why these things seems to be dominated by men. Oh, yeah, I LOVE equipment... (as I look through KEH for third time today...)
Last edited by tkamiya; 01-05-2013 at 12:14 AM. Click to view previous post history.
Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?
Well, I knew with a header like that, the misogynists would be coming out of the wood work.
I appreciate APUG a lot for its scope, and the fact that it is not hip deep in sexism, as some other forums are. Thanks to all the outstanding men and women on this forum who have made it such a friendly and exciting place to visit. And a thank you and a hug to Matt King - see you later this year, I hope.
Women and men do live in different worlds, to some extent. World wide women carry the lions share of the work of caring for babies, children, the disabled and the elderly. More women live in poverty than men. More women are victims of domestic violence than men. Brains, ability, creativity, guts, tenacity are not exclusive to either gender, but the chance to use them for more than keeping yourself and your children alive is not always evenly distributed.
Chris - you comment on women not being serious enough for the tough work of photography. I don't know how long ago you studied, but I wonder if you have actually asked any of your previous female classmates why they are not working as professional photographers.
I studied photography decades ago. I dropped out because of the relentless sexual harassment of one teacher - the BIG NAME at the school. When I tried to report his actions I was told I should be flattered (!!) Obviously I wasn't tough enough for the manly profession of photography. I worked in a camera store (the owner was a woman) for awhile, then I had my first child, my second...... And my life became centred on parenting. My experiences as a mother led to new interests and passions, a return to study and a career. Photography was in eclipse for many years, because there just wasn't time for it. I returned to it as my kids got into their teen years. It has been a important stress breaker and creative outlet for me. Am I a professional? No. Am I serious about photography? Can't imagine life without it.
Again a big thanks to the majority here on APUG, for welcoming everyone, and being such a terrific source of information, support, humour and wisdom.
A thought occurs. On forums, not just this one, I wonder if there is any percentage of men who pretend to be women and women who pretend to be men - it's all virtually anonymous (OK I know a few people know each other personally). I have no idea, but could be an interesting statistic. It is unlikely to be zero - or is it? discuss!
Well now that's about as sensible as a tutu on an elephant. What porn flick have you been watching where all the high-end saleswomen are pretty and young? I'll give you the impeccably dressed bit, but most of the salespeople I know who handle exotic cars or high-end real estate are older, be they men or women, and they exude professionalism, not sex.
Originally Posted by johnielvis
There used to be one woman at my local camera store who was my favorite salesperson there. She has since left, but in talking to her, she explained that she encountered frequent sexism from male customers who would ask for and wait for a male salesman because they felt she couldn't know enough to wait on them. She was actually one of the most technically accomplished photographers in the store. She helped me once, and was so good with her answer and her advice that I kept coming back, and we became friends. And she certainly wasn't going to be using her sexual wiles to seduce customers into buying gear by flirting with them- she's a flannel-and-hiking-boots wearing, hasnt-used-lipstick-since-junior-prom, mullet-sporting lesbian. She had no interest in flirting with the customers, male or female, as she was also happily partnered. And as I already mentioned, a damn fine photographer.