Photographers with Bad Attitudes
Troughout the years I have met many great photographers. Many of them were very helpful and were a joy to speak to and work with.
There were a few though that were less than friendly. There were a few photographers around when I was starting out that instead of helping a beginning photographer, were downright rude. The attitude was that they were on a higher level and could not be bothered by a simple beginer. Some said rather hurtful things, not constructive critisism, but just callous comments that were meant more to ridicule than to serve as learning tools. I still remember the negative attitude of some of these photographers 20 years later. I guess that because of that I always try to be helpful in a positive way with new photographers. I believe in sharing whatever little knowledge I have with anyone who asks.
p.s. Forgot to add. I don't believe there are any photographers here at APUG with bad attitudes such as the ones I described. Everyone here is always willing to share their knowledge and provide constructive critisism. I think this an overall friendly community and that is one of the reasons I love visiting this site!
Have you ever run into photographers with a bad attitude that left a negative lasting impression on you?
Last edited by snegron; 06-23-2007 at 10:05 AM. Click to view previous post history.
Interestingly, I had an experience at the West Side Camera Club in NYC where we invited a pro in to critique our work. I was nervous about showing it since I was very new at photography. When my slide came up the pro grunted: "Well, how did THIS get in there??" and went on. I was so aggravated by this that I vowed to work at photography and get very good at it so I would never suffer another remark like that.
So, in a left-handed way this boob did me a huge favor.
I wonder if that signature Jorge used to use...if you own a camera you're a photographer; if you own a piano you own a piano...has implications here. It's so superficially easy to make photographs that some people don't appreciate how much work goes into making good ones, which perhaps brings out the rude and defensive behavior you describe in a few who've spent years mastering skills the novice doesn't even realize exist. Not that that's an excuse for such behavior, but it might be a factor in understanding it. So far, I've been lucky enough to not have had such an unpleasant experience.
Guess I've been lucky. Hope it stays that way. I try and remember it when I share my limited experience.
Consider this: Most lenses are better than most photographers...
Fortunately 'photographers' like the one you encountered now have their own sandpit, I think it's called Pnut or something.
Originally Posted by schroeg
Anáil nathrach, ortha bháis is beatha, do chéal déanaimh.
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There are idiots in every profession -- some of them spread the gloom instead of teaching. Most professional in photography I've met have been gentle, helpful and well worth listening too.
Whiteymorange took the words right out of my mouth. There are jerks and nice people everywhere.
Understandable logic. I think it narrows down though to "it's not what you say but how you say it". If a novice looks to a pro for advice, why would the pro ridicule him instead of helping him understand the work involved in obtaining a good image? It is too easy to dismiss the work of others with a rude commment that might ultimately stiffle the creativity of a potential young artist.
Originally Posted by jovo
Photography, like any other art form, is subjective. When I was younger I used to think that Picaso's art was infantile and lacked any creativity. It was, after all, nothing like the work of the old masters who created intricate scenes and were masters at capturing mood through light. As I did more research I looked at Picasso's early work and realized how he was in fact a true artistic genius. A study of his early work (especially his blue period) helped me understand his later representation through cubism. I could have dismissed Picasso's later cubist style as infantile, but I would have been missing the point entirely. His style may not be pleasing to many, but others see it in a different way.
Once I had a photographer tell me that I was wasting my time with photography because I had no talent. Had I listened to him I would not have enjoyed so many years of capturing images that have such important meaning to me.
Another time I had an "advanced ameteaur" who professed knowing everything about photography tell me after eagerly showing him my brand new Pentax K1000 that this camera was obsolete and that I would not be able to create anything good with that camera. After all, automated cameras were all the rage back then. Had I listened to this bozo I would have never developed any significant photographic skills relying heavily on automation. I would have never developed my interest in having total control in the image making process.
People are fascinating, and sometimes the paradoxes that people present make them really interesting.
A number of years ago I did a workshop with a noted art photographer. The man was an abrasive SOB who tried to convince us that unless we were using only "the best" German equipment (Technikardan, Leica, etc), we could not possibly produce any good work. His work was very good, but his attitude made being around him uncomfortable.
On the other hand, I learned some things about seeing and perception from him that I could never have learned from anyone else.
My 2 cents--
I believe, firmly, that each of us, whether a photographer, or sculptor, or commercial artist, or a Web designer, can learn from each comment another human makes, whether that comment is from so-called expert, or from someone who is giving an honest critique. It is my personal attitude I accept the comment in.
[FONT=Verdana]"the real truth of a photographic image is in its ability to evoke emotion."--Bryan Peterson[/FONT]
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