My opinion is that democracy should play no role in making such a selection for an APUG book. A "democratic" book will not be an excellent one. My only interest in this was is putting together an excellent book. Otherwise it is just a waste of time. And keithwms, this has nothing to do with my ego. I wouldn't care if my name were mentioned anywhere. I was just volunteering to help produce something excellent.
Most all photography contest have one juror. One. Those things are not democracies. Never. Nor should they be. And if the "majority" would not submit work because of a single juror, even one with extremely wide taste, then they obviously do not ever submit work to any juried contests or exhibitions. And they obviously never submit their work to a critique, since critiques are given by one person. Okay. Their loss.
Egos will be assuaged by those participating in a "democratic" book, but the democratic idea presented here is a weird concept of equality. Everyone certainly has a right to their opinion about which photographs they like, but sorry, not all opinions are equal. Some people only have their likes and dislikes--likes and dislikes that are not based on much more than . . . likes and dislikes.
Anyone who selects an APUG book, whether it is me or someone else, should have a thorough knowledge, and I mean thorough, of the history of photography. And that is for starters. All work viewed should be seen in relation to what has gone before. Some at APUG no doubt have that knowledge, but most do not. They should also have the ability to be totally objective about their own work. And they should have experience as a juror and as a book editor and publisher. if there are others beside myself at APUG who have these qualifications and also the willingness to devote the time required (with, when you get down to it, minimal compensation), then go to it.
Michael A. Smith
This thread/project long ago crossed over into the surreal. It's worse than watching the US Congress trying to figure out how to pay the bills.
I participated in the survey, so I am one of the 100+. I said I'd submit a photograph and purchase a book, regardless of whether my photo was included. But after 30+ thread pages of whining, bickering, insults, threats, and just plain old immature poking-sticks-in-eyes behavior, I think it's time to revisit my survey selections. There is now just too much blood on the carpet for this to be an enjoyable exercise. So I've decided that both my time and money can be put to more productive photographic use elsewhere.
Best of luck to whomever is victorius, or simply left alive...
"When making a portrait, my approach is quite the same as when I am portraying a rock. I do not wish to impose my personality upon the sitter, but, keeping myself open to receive reactions from his own special ego, record this with nothing added: except of course when I am working professionally, when money enters in,—then for a price, I become a liar..."
— Edward Weston, Daybooks, Vol. II, February 2, 1932
I've been away for a while and this thread has grown considerably! I had a look at the LFP book as suggested, and liked what Frank had to say in his opening statement:
"......This book is a small sampling of the range of work being done by forum members. Some of the photos here are indeed a beginner's best effort, while many of the images are from seasoned professionals and established artists. This mix represents the demographic mix of the forum itself and it is probably why the forum has been so long-lasting and successful."
Putting together a book is a painstaking process, and certainly needs to be thoroughly investigated prior to deciding which avenue to take regarding the final printing.
Others thoughts regarding an all encompassing book vs. a selected works edition raise the obvious question of cost and how these works are selected or grouped.
As a former member of several photographic associations, I have a small collection of each association's "Yearbooks" (for want of a better description) which comprise of the winning entries from their annual competitions. They certainly show the "best of the best" for that year, as selected by their judging panel for each selected category. Naturally, entry fees would have covered the cost of printing (along with sponsorship), and every member had a chance to enter. The resulting images were not always to everyone's taste, but they made the cut: to each his own.
The "all in" venture would seem to be better suited to a POD direction, as a "Selected Works" edition implies to me at least, to be a showcase of *the* best work available on APUG.
Regardless of which route it eventually takes, it is not something that can be achieved without forethought, planning and a strong idea of what it is truly promoting. Once you have these things nailed down, only then could the design and printing start.
A survey sent to all members to gauge reaction would be an ideal place to start - anything less couldn't really be an acceptable decision. After all it's an APUG book and every member should be given the opportunity to have his/her say as to what format the book should take.
Ahh, rats. Seems my time away has resulted in not being able to participate in the survey. Anyone happen to have a copy of what the questions were?
Originally Posted by mooseontheloose
I've experienced the problem of bad printing with Blurb - the first set were printed in the EU and the second in AU (I think).
Originally Posted by jnanian
First set had lovely toning on the cover, the second akin to dirty heads on an Epson printer - lines all over it and the tone was awful!
I contacted them with scans to show the appalling difference (and their apparent lack of concern with quality control) and they sent me another set gratis, in all formats that were originally ordered.
Kudos for their response, but admit I'm worried that what I order, may not be the same as what *you* order with respect to quality. They need to ensure that regardless of where the book is printed, the quality and printing remains the same, other wise it rather defeats the purpose.
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That could be handled with an anonymous submission process where those judging have only a number code in relation to the work instead of a name. I think the book should be far more casual than clinical, it does not need to be a museum level creation of the highest caliber. I think it should embody a sense of community, participation, exploration, amateur/pro levels of work, interesting process notes and bio tidbits of the contributors, visually appealing of course and something fun to be a part of.
Egos will be assuaged by those participating in a "democratic" book
Originally Posted by Sean
Couldn't have said it better myself
I can't see how a democratic voting process from among APUG members would make the work worthless. Seems straightforward logic that an anonymous submission process, followed by voting by APUG members, would yield a selection of photos the members would actually like to buy. Or am I missing something?
In life you only get one great dog, one great car, and one great woman. Pet the dog. Drive the car. Make love to the woman. Don't mix them up.
You are missing nothing, Wolfeye.
Thank you for making my point for me so clearly. So you do want to be The Juror then. My goodness, motives expose themselves so crystal-clearly.
Originally Posted by Michael A. Smith
N.b. if you consult a dictionary for the definition of juror, you will see that it is a member of a jury panel, typically a body of twelve individuals. Hence, if you wish to have one person pass "excellent" judgement, you should refer to that person as a judge, not a juror. If you make your language more clear, then you might help others understand your true intentions.
And I am offended by the notion that this should be anything like a photography contest.
Let's take a step back from this unpleasant interlude and remember that we already have an awesome book of sorts, represented right on this forum. APUGers can post almost anything they want, and it is naturally reviewed by others. Hence APUG is already a journal or book of sorts. And, even with all those hideously offensive cat's asses and breasts offending all the MFAs among us, we are all still here and enjoying it.
So... why should the journal or book be substantially different from what we have all loved for years? Why should it be more erudite, more credentialed, more... bland?
The purpose of this journal or book is, I think, to elevate the more salient items from the blur of content. Nothing more.
Last edited by keithwms; 08-14-2011 at 08:15 AM. Click to view previous post history.
My motives were clearly spelled out right at the beginning.
A juror in the legal world is a member of a 12-person jury. The art world is not the legal world. A juror in the art world most often is just one person.
Good luck to all.
Michael A. Smith