Watching the LF, ULF and alternative galleries that is exactly my impression too, much too often. Getting so caught by the , let's call it"quality idea"
Originally Posted by VoidoidRamone
and/or by the process itself can be obviously a trap, at least for all those who once focussed their interest on photography primarily and not on printing and wh now loose the track in the darkroom.
A print is no worth itself. And printing is not a niche where one can rest from the permanent creative pressure from which we all "suffer" as amateurs, more or less . Neither the camera shop nor the darkroom are a place to hide.
A la recherche du temps perdu: www. bersac.de
Some people like jazz and some like rap. Some people like tequilla and some like ice wine. Some people like the snap and sizzle of a fully printed gelatin silver print and others enjoy the luminous midtones of a platinum print, or the warmth of a sepia print, or...
I think anybody pointing fingers at one group of photographers should first cast a critical eye towards the group they belong to. Me thinks the ratio of so-so to amazing work is the same for every genre.
Note to self: Turn your negatives into positives.
Good point, Clay. I also hate "namby-pamby polite disagreement." Too many jerks around who stick the knife in your back and finish thieir message with something like, 'Good Luck', or "Best Regards".
Originally Posted by clay
So for what it is worth, here is where I stand. I have seen a lot of alternative work that was both uninteresting and technically deficient. I have also seen about ten thousand times more 35mm and medium format work that was equally or more unintersting, and also poor in its technical execution. And I have not seen more ULF and alternative workers trying to pass their work off as artistic than 35mm and medium format folks doing the same.
I am generally less forgiving of technical deficiency than lack of artistic vision because technique can be improved with effort. Whether an image or series of images is seen as interesting or uninteresting depends on a variety of factors, most of them highly subjective and behyond the control of the photographer. Let's say, for exmaple, that you do a portfolio on gas station toilets, and your work is technically brillant. Some people might find this kind of work totally uninteresting because it is not consistent with their pictorial vision. Others might see this as important and innovative work that treats a taboo subjectr with a lot of sensitivity.
You can not please everybody, so perfect your craft and please yourself. If you do this, perhaps a few others will appreciate your work. If they don't, life goes on.
Service station toilets??? Thanks for the idea. I was about to wrap up the cigarette butts lying in parking lots.
Originally Posted by sanking
I think that sums it up for me. And on a side note, I think a series of cigarette butts in parking lots would be really good. Especially if it was shot in color.
Originally Posted by Harrigan
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I'm a complete newbie at alternative/historical processes, so I guess I'm deficient in image content and process!
My images have been called a lot worse than boring...bring it on!
So are we agreed? All alt-photo practitioners produce boring art, while all silver gelatin and color workers produce 100% beautiful art, 24/7?
Well then Grant this would be an excellent time to start your own seires of photos that maybe less than perfect and which may be judged by others to be boring.
No need to allow the ULF folks to have all of the fun. Your own accomplishments are at least as good.
Claire (Ms Anne Thrope is in the darkroom)
Points have been made earlier about the necessity of making aesthetic judgements about work, how this is a part of appreciating art and artistic processes. This is true, but a statement such as "I don't like/understand Picasso" (purely hypothetical) is totally different from a statement such as "I think all modernists are boring". Or, "I think people who make oversized lumpy sculptures are cluttering up the environment".
It is slipshod, I would have thought, of any critic to make such broad generalisations (not that any critic of any worth could say such things about Picasso, but just using him as a given example...)
Surely it is more important, anyway, to work towards understanding and appreciation rather than "I prefer this to this". Or, "this is boring" which seems to say more about the observer than the work.
Is it 'mundane' photographs that are being objected to (for my money, NOTHING wrong with the mundane - most of my pictures are of - I hope - mundane things) - or is it 'cliched' subject matter/treatment? Very different.
No photographic medium has a monopoly on 'cliche' - it's everywhere, a complete oversaturation of images. I'm not an expert in alt processes or LF (have done some cyanotypes) but I would have thought these are as prone to any other format/medium to cliche, but there are rather fewer such cliched images around because less people are doing them than all the rest. Cliche is not to do with actual subject matter though, but how the whole work comes together (or doesn't come together). I firmly believe that no subject matter has been done to death - it's always possible to re-interpret, and re-create.
This thread puts reminds me of discussion around how to give constructive feedback in galleries.
Surely constructive appraisal is what should be aimed for outside the galleries aswell, rather than tearing down someone else's house?....just my 2p.....
It's been done. Try and come up with something fresh, please.
Originally Posted by VoidoidRamone
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