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  1. #81

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    Quote Originally Posted by David H. Bebbington
    Not too clear what point you're making here, Jerry, but as you are a professional photographer, let me ask you just one question: How do you sell yourself to potential customers? What quality do you suggest to them that you have which would make them come to you and spends hundreds if not thousands of pounds instead of taking the pictures themselves on a digital point and shoot? I would be astonished if, whether overtly or by implication, you did not suggest to them that you are more imaginative and creative (and also more highly skilled) and thus able to produce better pictures!

    Best regards,

    David
    I'm lucky. I've been around long enough to have a reliable group of clients who ask when they need me (touch wood!) - there are new clients but they tend to arrive by recommendation. So, I'm in the fortunate position of rarely needing to persuade people of what I can do. This is doubly good because I'm not really very good at selling myself.

    Believe it or not, I don't believe that my professional photographs are creative. Mostly I'm working within a brief and there's an Art Director telling me what they want. Often my brief is to emulate another image in another book or magazine. If the AD is good and experienced I'm even happier.

    I'm not denying I have skills but they are of a practical/technical nature. My clients don't want me to be creative, they want me to take the pictures in the brief. I count things like exposure, lighting and even composition to be technical problems to be solved with my technical knowledge - I didn't invent any of the techniques I use. So, I'm not being "more creative" if I move the light further to the left.

    If you must use the word, my creativity is in problem solving. Knowing how to get the job done. A bit like solving a crossword - but I didn't invent the crossword. I may be a good problem solver, but so are most other people in their own way. Given time I can show people how to do what I do - there's no magic to it. And I don't for a minute wish to belittle the huge satisfaction others get from doing or looking at art.

    My "Creative" skills are exactly the same ones I used when I was a teacher, solving everyday problems in the classroom - or the ones I used yesterday when I repaired the plumbing. I really adore making pictures and I'm totally engrossed in what I do, but it's not the sacred activity some "Artists" would have us say. If the "Artists" would accept that they are no more nor less "Creative" than the average teacher, baker or candlestick maker, then I'd join the club tomorrow, gladly. Until then I'd rather be just a jobbing photographer.

    Regards
    Jerry

  2. #82
    jd callow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by doughowk
    I strive to create a fine print; so, why not declare that I'm an artist who produces/creates fine prints - shorthand is fine art print.
    A very reasonable explanation, but if it is the print that is fine it might be better written as fine, art print. Otherwise it is the art that is fine, which may be what you are saying and is more than OK with me. I can't bring myself to say that my art is fine, because too much of it is most assuredly not.

    *

  3. #83

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    Quote Originally Posted by doughowk
    Most people I've met who pretend at self-effacement have a superiority complex. From a knowledge of British history, I have to wonder if its a national character trait.
    I agree - it's historically a very British characteristic, but only of a certain class, associated mainly with the power and wealth that generally supported it.

    Quote Originally Posted by doughowk
    I am an artist because I revel in the act of creation. I think all humans are capable of being artists but most are satisfied with killing time (watching sports, etc..). I strive to create a fine print; so, why not declare that I'm an artist who produces/creates fine prints - shorthand is fine art print.
    I agree with that - with the proviso that rather than 'most being satisfied..' I think that is certainly true of lots of people, and why not, but I also think many people just don't get the opportunity to explore their artistic potential. It's not taught well in schools, here at least, and the arts aren't supported enough in the community. But if you do it, do it and be proud of it!
    Whether a 'fine print' is different from a 'fine art print' well, I think it is. Certainly the person who makes the fine print isn't necessarily the creator of the image, so in that way it's different. It's also possible to make fine prints of your own work, but not consider your work 'art'. For example, I don't think of the portraits I may 'fine print' as art (or much else as it happens but I appreciate that other photographers do).

    I absolutely believe that photography can be a 'fine art' - I thought that discussion had been talked out decades ago - but I think that is different from thinking about how people engaged in 'creative activities' view themselves and are viewed by society at large. I just think there should be more of it in general and we should be proud of and support more all our 'creatives' - whether writers, artists, photographers, scultors, musicians, film-makers.....Most 'artists' do not want to be put on pedestals. They want what they do to be seen as a reasonable thing to do that at least sometimes brings in some dosh as well as some recognition.

    I think far more people should call themselves artists, then eventually the word may lose some of the negative conotations that seem to be associated with it.
    Last edited by catem; 06-17-2006 at 02:47 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  4. #84
    bill schwab's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jerry lebens
    Believe it or not, I don't believe that my professional photographs are creative. ... Often my brief is to emulate another image in another book or magazine. ... My clients don't want me to be creative... I didn't invent any of the techniques I use.
    Considering all of these things you've described about yourself, it amazes me that you feel you have the experience and expertise to criticize how other "creative" types might express and portray themselves.

    Quote Originally Posted by jerry lebens
    ...If the "Artists" would accept that they are no more nor less "Creative" than the average teacher, baker or candlestick maker, then I'd join the club tomorrow, gladly. Until then I'd rather be just a jobbing photographer.
    I don't know Jerry, it might be a club that is quite happy not having you as a member. Why would you think an artist feels they have any more credibility than those bakers, teaches and candlestick makers you speak of? They sell their trade, don't they? Why have you such distiain for "artists" that you feel that promoting themselves in anyway is unseemly? Also, your description of UK "artists" being any different than those here, in my experience, is BS. I spent time in an "art school" in Glasgow, met many accomplished Scottish and otherwise "artists" and found none of them to be the creeps you describe. Why do they so threaten you and others that use those same, tired stereotypes?

    Bill
    Last edited by bill schwab; 06-17-2006 at 02:41 PM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: poor grammar

  5. #85
    Ed Sukach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stargazer
    That's why the Brits are so self-effacing and self-conscious about calling themselves artists, writers, poets, photographers, creative types etc.
    It's not because they're self-effacing and humble at all but because they were taught from an early age to think that if they pretend to be then that's the only way to be ultimately really really good and to be taken seriously.
    I won't argue with this ... I'm sure that you, being from the U.K., know quite a bit more than I do about the British "conditoned responses".

    I *did* know AB, though, and he was not pretending. That was a clear and honest statement on his part... He was, very nearly, amazed and ... uh ... "puzzled" at his success, and his status among the Art Dealers, and the ragged-ass public. I'll only say that he was not alone: if there was anything like a "common ground" among those who have "made it" ... it was this attitude - at varying strengths.
    Carpe erratum!!

    Ed Sukach, FFP.

  6. #86
    bill schwab's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ed Sukach
    I'll only say that he was not alone: if there was anything like a "common ground" among those who have "made it" ... it was this attitude - at varying strengths.
    I cannot agree more Ed. I have had the good fortune to meet and speak with many some of us might find "famous" and never once has there been one that projected the attitude I see referred here so often by some as the "wearing black", "sipping on a wine glass" while looking at you down their nose type. Sometimes I can't help but feel it is the people who speak with such contempt for "artists" that are the ones with a "superiority complex." Some people like to wear black (it is a more formal "color", isn't it?) and I know many love wine. The perception some formulate about them often speaks more of those that perceive than those who are perceived.

    B.

  7. #87
    blansky's Avatar
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    Yeah. So there.

    Some of us wear black because we sip so much wine. When we spill, it doesn't show up.

    Michael
    I couldn't think of anything witty to say so I left this blank.

  8. #88
    Stoo Batchelor's Avatar
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    [COLOR=Red][SIZE=2]art. [/SIZE][/COLOR] human creative skill or its application; the branch of creative activity concerned with the production of imitative and imaginative designs and expression of ideas, especially in painting; products of this.2. [COLOR=Red]any skill; craft or activity requiring imaginative skill. [/COLOR] blah, blah, blah. [COLOR=RoyalBlue][Hutchinson Consise Encyclopedic Dictionary][/COLOR]

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


    Quote Originally Posted by doughowk
    I am an artist because I revel in the act of creation.
    Doughowk

    You have every right to call yourself an artist.

  9. #89
    MurrayMinchin's Avatar
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    I wonder...if someone who disdained the whole 'fine art thing' was happily (yet infrequently) selling their photographs at craft fairs for around $75.00 was approached by a gallery owner who could increase their sales, and raise the amount they got for each print to $400.00...what would they say?

    Murray
    _________________________________________
    Note to self: Turn your negatives into positives.

  10. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by MurrayMinchin
    I wonder...if someone who disdained the whole 'fine art thing' was happily (yet infrequently) selling their photographs at craft fairs for around $75.00 was approached by a gallery owner who could increase their sales, and raise the amount they got for each print to $400.00...what would they say?

    Murray
    WHAT. And sell out. I'd feel so unclean.



    Michael
    I couldn't think of anything witty to say so I left this blank.



 

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