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Thread: Masters

  1. #101

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    At the risk of over-simplifying, the reason we set up the camera & tripped the shutter is because we saw something in the subject/scene worth recording eventually on paper/print. Maybe its conscious or sub-conscious, but we did pre-visualize something. The exposing of the negative is, ideally, to capture enough information to realize that vision of a final print. Our technical skills are tested by the various situations in which we photograph. If the information is lacking or overwhelmed by other information, our darkroom technical skills are required to still produce our original vision. Creativity as well as craft is part of the entire process for we are creating something unique - it may not match our original vision as we explore the potentials of the negative. One might even call the outcome a post-visualization process, though that term is identified with photographers like Jerry Uelsmann.
    To sum it up, a perfect negative is that which contains the information you need to create your vision, and that information has to be readily accessible during the printing process.
    van Huyck Photo
    "Progress is only a direction, and it's often the wrong direction"

  2. #102

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    To sum it up, a perfect negative is that which contains the information you need to create your vision, and that information has to be readily accessible during the printing process.
    Simple ideas are often the best ones....could not have said it better...

  3. #103

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jorge
    Simple ideas are often the best ones....could not have said it better...
    Jorge, chalk up another of Doug's statement for the t-shirt. Well said Doug!
    Francesco

  4. #104

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    Hey Jay, just so you know, I was referring to Poindexter in the movie "Revenge of the Nerds". The 50s?
    Francesco

  5. #105
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jorge
    Yep, Ansel Adams was the buffoon who decided it was a good thing to previsualize as useful technique...what did he know??.....
    I think the key part of this statement is 'as [a] useful technique'. It doesn't really mean anything does it. It's a 'technique'. Techniques are something you chose to use or not. AA went as far as choosing the exact paper and developer he was going to print on and no doubt he even took into account the specific lot of paper he was using at the time - I understand papers and film didn't have the precise quality control we have now.

    However, I also know that he changed his mind later and desired to print the negs differently. Too bad that he chose to previsualize so severely because I suppose the negative would be useless for any other print than the one he decided on the exact day and point in his life. By being so anal and unyeilding he painted himself into a corner. It would've been better if he had made a more general negative so he could print it differently if he so chose....but he didn't so that's that.

  6. #106

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    That is a rather interesting interpretation of Ansel Adams approach to photography. Personally I would not view such dedication to the mastery and innovation of the craft of photography in a negative way, such as you have Art.
    Quote Originally Posted by Art Vandalay
    By being so anal and unyeilding he painted himself into a corner. It would've been better if he had made a more general negative so he could print it differently if he so chose....but he didn't so that's that.
    And the second part of your statement just doesn't make sense to me (though my knowledge may at fault here).

  7. #107
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    John, I can't help you with the confusion but maybe I just didn't state it properly. I was commenting on something that I've encountered before that just doesn't work for me. That's the strict adherence to the doctrines of somebody else - namely AA. His version of previsualization is often held up as a holy command and my sarcastic comment was pointing out that by being so severe you have limited yourself to your feelings at that point in time. What if you change your mind and wish to print the image differently at some point in the future? What if that brand of paper is discontinued? Then your sunk because (allegedly) you've created a negative for that paper/developer combination and anything else would be of lesser quality. I know I'm pushing the idea to the extreme but the way I see it presented by others is that producing negatives, without a precise result in mind is somehow bogus and/or a sign of 'poor craft'.

  8. #108

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    [color=black]I think there is a line that links Absolute Technical Mastery at one end with Significant Creative Achievement at the other. People move about on that line at various stages of their photography, according to the efforts they put into improving their 'vision and creativity' or learning 'technical mastery' of the craft.[/color]
    [color=black]Generally, when we start out, technical mastery and the creative aspects seldom come together and meet in the same picture.[/color]

    [color=black]But as we apply the effort and learn, the two come together more often.[/color]

    [color=black] [/color]

    [color=black]The thing is however, people give different priorities to what they see as advancing their photography. Some might use whatever film is in the camera, flick it onto Auto and point and shoot, with the creativity being the beginning and end of what is important to them, as long as it results in something in a print! Others go through film/developer combinations until they are blue, refining their technical knowledge until they can predict the proportion that each zone will appear in the final print.[/color]

    [color=black]If you are truly an exceptional photographer, you will achieve both in the final image. Using landscape photographers as examples: Ansel Adams and his ilk, and I would suggest Bruce Barbour as a modern day example.[/color]

    [color=black] [/color]

    [color=black]Fortunately, photography is now considered enough of an 'Art form' that you do not have to have a perfect balance of both. But (and this is just in my opinion), the more consistently you are able to support significant creativity in your photography with disciplined, accurate techniques, the better a photographer you should be regarded.[/color]

    [color=black]Many have already said it; .... some get lost in the tech aspects, and their creativity suffers through lack of attention. I have seen outstanding ULF prints, the result of decades of dedication and refinement that leave me cold with boredom. Likewise, the other way. Plastic camera shots that are unrecognisable, but should be appreciated for the wonderful pure creativity involved.[/color]

    [color=black]We all should have our individual views about what is most important for our own images.[/color]

    [color=black] [/color]

    [color=black]Personally, for the record I apply creativity to my photography with a passion (and normally it is excruciating and rarely satisfied) and I try to support that with technical skills necessary to achieve the result I want. I don't pursue technical accomplishment for its own sake, seeking subjects to display the technical merits of the image. [/color]

    [color=black]However, who is to say any one way is right or wrong? In addition, who is in a position to criticise anyone who has applied themselves with passion, vigour and dedication to their personal goals of photography (just my 2 c).[/color]
    Last edited by John McCallum; 10-13-2004 at 12:30 AM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: (sp)

  9. #109

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    You know Lee....I don't see it, but it must be full...the day here sure has been.

    Maybe it has something to do with all the seismic activity, beats me...
    Mike C

    Rambles

  10. #110
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    Hear hear John. I completely agree with you and I feel very fortunate that I can relate to works from both ends of the spectrum and everything in between. I only wish I was better at both the creativity and the skill, but I suspect everybody feels that way at one time or another.



 

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