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  1. #41
    Bill Burk's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    4x5 Format
    Quote Originally Posted by cliveh View Post
    My original question was aimed more at the arrangement of the subject, rather than the operation and framing of the camera. I would imagine that some of the best portraits are not arranged, but more a question of timing during the interaction between the photographer and the model. Also how do you arrange objects for a still life shot that don’t make it look contrived? I once attended a lecture where a landscape photographer described how he might photograph a desert, but put a skull in the foreground to enhance the image. It is this sort of contrivance I am questioning. Also I would add, not dismissing it, as I know practically all advertising photography is arranged. But is that getting the best out of the image?
    That's what I was thinking. In my case, my talent "lies elsewhere" and that is why my arrangements feel contrived.

    I think "Irving Penn" and I get. Well I get Bill Burk but it's just NOT at the level of beauty that I get when I take what I find beautiful in front of me.

    I'll post a favorite "La Bufadora Still Life" when I get a chance. Shot in Mexico below Ensendada at the famous blow-hole with water shooting up...

    I'm impressed that I caught the spray... as if it were an inverse shadow of the still-life I'd arranged.... But MY arrangement itself is stilted.

  2. #42
    yurisrey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    New York Metro Area
    Multi Format
    Sort of like mise en scene. I think its rather subjective, because the placement (or the non-placement) of a certain item has meaning. In my approach I like not to mess with nature, hence when I do landscapes, natural subjects, etc.; I don't manipulate the environment but rather try use it. In short, I personally wouldn't agree with the chap who used the skull in the desert. On the other hand, in the studio or on a 'closed set,' I carefully arrange the subject(s) that are in the frame.
    "The real work was thinking, just thinking." - Charles Chaplin

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