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  1. #1
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    How do you find your groove?

    Ok, so jnanian's thread http://www.apug.org/forums/forum50/1...do-you-do.html got me thinking. Good thoughts over there so didn't want to side track that.

    But:

    It occurred to me that many of the photographers we (as a population) revere or admire, did their level best to find, make, and follow a rut; their "groove".

    Ansel Adams and f64 are almost quintessential in this, actually codifying their groove. http://en.wikipedia.org/?title=Group_f/64 It is a groove that many endeavor to follow.

    In certain cases a rut or groove can get so deep that a photographer's name can become a verb; think about being "Karshed". That's quite a "rut" to be in.

    When I say Henri Cartier-Bresson, or Hurrel, what styles do you think of?

    It seems to me that most commercially successful photographers have done their level best to find a groove or rut to follow.

    So, How do we find our own grooves?

    And how do we keep those grooves fun and productive?
    Mark Barendt, Beaverton, OR

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin

  2. #2

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    Rut, groove, fetish: sometimes they blur together. Diane Arbus certain had a rut, so did Ansel Adams.

    I don't think you "find" your groove. Everyone has things they like, are fascinated by, yet only a handful decide to fully traverse the path nature has laid out before them. You have to be brave enough (or simply insane enough) to pursue what you really want to shoot.

    Take me, for instance. I like to shoot naked ladies. I also want to stay married, so I shoot only ONE naked lady.
    In life you only get one great dog, one great car, and one great woman. Pet the dog. Drive the car. Make love to the woman. Don't mix them up.

  3. #3

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    You first, please... how do YOU find YOUR groove?

    But Wolfeye has it right, those terms all blur together and are only differentiated by the implications of success and failure. For me finding success (a "groove" I suppose) is a simple as doing wht I know works. Finding a future vision (a "new groove"???) is as simple as just doing something different. If it works it can establish a future vision. If it doesn't work, it may have been a fun experiement.
    Last edited by BrianShaw; 06-26-2014 at 09:34 AM. Click to view previous post history.

  4. #4

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    I spent years looking for my "groove" or "rut". For me, it was a good bit of soul-searching and a massive amount of experimenting with different things until I found what I was looking for. Now I'm working on a project that I hope to finish shooting in the next six months or so.

    A while back (before the end of 2013), I became fascinated with cityscapes at night. I'm not sure why, really. The main factor, if I was to be honest, is I'm not a very social person, and I wanted to photograph without dealing with too many people asking me about my cameras, what I'm shooting and why, etc. And I've come to find that the lack of people, the loneliness, in a city full of people can make a really great photograph. Making more photographs like this seems to be my groove right now, and I hope it's a groove I stay in until I make enough photographs to show this project publicly.

    Some people seem to find this groove faster than others. There were a few students I went to school with that seemed to have found something that worked for them before graduating. I had to graduate, figure myself out, and survive my Saturn's return, before I finally got my crap together, photographically and in other areas of my life as well.
    "I have captured the light and arrested its flight! The sun itself shall draw my pictures!"

    -Louis Daguerre, 1839-

  5. #5
    jnanian's Avatar
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    hi mark

    i think sometimes your groove finds you.
    you find something you have fun with
    and play it out as long as you can ...
    i've ridden on the same bus for years
    sometimes the driver gets stuck or makes a wrong turn
    or you give your seat up and stand
    but i just enjoy the ride.

  6. #6
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    I would think there are a variety of ruts or grooves we follow over time. Some positive, some negative, and some by demand.

    For me I started out doing wildlife photography. This was a positive. I had all the necessary tools at the time, but always lived hundreds of miles from the "real" wildlife I wanted to photograph. This became a real negative. So, the demand became an item I brought on myself and shifted to landscape which was not out of my reach in locales. It was a large paradigm shift in technique and hardware overall for me.

    However, once in that groove I've never looked back. To keep out of the negative rut I do a lot of changes & experimenting with my routine. It seems to work very well for me to date.
    Last edited by Trail Images; 06-26-2014 at 11:20 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    "Nobody cares how much you know, until they know how much you care"

    - Theodore Roosevelt -

  7. #7
    cliveh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jnanian View Post
    hi mark

    i think sometimes your groove finds you.
    you find something you have fun with
    and play it out as long as you can ...
    i've ridden on the same bus for years
    sometimes the driver gets stuck or makes a wrong turn
    or you give your seat up and stand
    but i just enjoy the ride.
    +1 Stay on the bus.

    http://www.fotocommunity.com/info/He...Station_Theory

    “The contemplation of things as they are, without error or confusion, without substitution or imposture, is in itself a nobler thing than a whole harvest of invention”

    Francis Bacon

  8. #8
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cliveh View Post
    Oh I'm staying on the bus. In fact I'm getting closer and closer to finding the groove.

    Working for a living is slowing me down though.
    Mark Barendt, Beaverton, OR

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin

  9. #9
    ROL
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    How do you find your groove?

    I pull my pants down, turn around, look in the mirror… I find my groove is still in me.

  10. #10
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BrianShaw View Post
    You first, please... how do YOU find YOUR groove?
    Ok, one example to start.

    I try to shoot what's exciting/interesting for me, people, typically gatherings/events/portraits. For me a big part of shooting is the people and trying to make them happy with a print.

    One of the things I'm working on is how to get people comfortable and thinking that something special will come of a formal, or semi-formal, portrait in a less than formal setting, for example when out camping. Here the camera can play an interesting roll, the camera can be a prop. Forget all the technical mumbo-jumbo, there is a real difference in how the sitter acts if I pull out an RB67 or Toyo 45A or Holga or F5 or an iPhone. I view it as my job to be able to wrest a good shot from my subject. Not always the camera that's the star either. A little FP100C for the sitter goes a long way toward working with a stranger.
    Mark Barendt, Beaverton, OR

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin

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