I think Tony hit the nail on the head.
Originally Posted by Tony Egan
I participate in the local "club", which actually started as a local gathering of snapshooters (total digi-amateurs) who came together via Internet newsgroup. We did not join any other local photo clubs (there are two), which are rather "stale" and rigid for our mentality.
However, in the past two years we started having exhibitions, and I notice more and more this "winner" mentality.
We just put up a "pure film-based" show two days ago, and when selecting photos for the show, I was rather surprised by comment from one member, who said that one of my shots does not belong to the show, since it's "third-rate"...
When I asked for explanation, he said that the photo is "uninteresting" and "unimportant" (it was a 5x7 contact copy of my kids in the back yard, done in the"Sally Mann style" - i.e. lens that doesn't fully cover the format, a bit fuzzy around the edges, etc.). He further explained that the photo exhibition is "like writing a novel" - i.e. that you write it for the others. To which I replied that I 'm writing a diary - for myself only, and don't actually care much what anyone else says.
I provided my prints for the show just to show some diversity (of formats, techniques, etc.), since all the other prints were done from 35mm negatives.
It's a clash of mentality - they are struggling for recognition and approval, and will never produce anything significant, since they are always following trends and copying others.
Me, I'm actually making photos which please me and satisfy me - general audience is almost never in my mind. Only when I look at the final prints I somethimes think I might show them to others.
However, I like to meet in person, and since I'm the only one who knows something about film photography, I gladly give advice and help others whom I managed to get interested in film photography. We even have our own darkroom. So, through educating "digital snapshooters", I help when I can, and it has already paid back, since film and paper consumption has risen significantly in these parts...
So, all in all, it's been rewarding for me, since I actually started a kind of "film photography rennaissance"...
I try guiding the younger (or less experienced) members in finding their own "style" and expression. It's sometimes difficult, since all of them (being amateurs) usually strive for approval and recognition. Unfortunately, they usually think the best (and quickest) way to achieve it is through clever use of various Photoshop filters
That sums it up for me too.
Originally Posted by Denis P.
Ari, continue doing what pleases you.
Anáil nathrach, ortha bháis is beatha, do chéal déanaimh.
don't feel bad, it's not just there,I've been looking at two (somewhat) local camera clubs, both seem to fit into the rich digisnapper category.
I actually went to one meeting, and after the usual niceties, when it came down to the true meat of the matter, it was pretty much a pissing contest over how much you could get away with spending on your hobby without your wife killing you.
The fact that I used film, much less an RB67 and LF pretty much turned me from "you've got to see this guys work" ( I always have a small portfolio with me) to being treated as sort of an ecletic pariah, spoken to, politely enough, but that's about it.
For the time being, I have a few LF friends within a 3 hour drive that I'd much prefer to go out shooting with, and at least be able to have an intellegent conversation with them. (Even if their fingernails have developer stains...)