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Old Jan-24-2012, 09:54 AM
#1
Hackbone is offline Hackbone OP
Always learning
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Why do other photographers laugh at my work!!??
Why do other photographers laught at my work and call me a "fauxtographer?"

Well it could be you aren't adhering to the rules of a quality print. It really is hard to say you don't like a print that you've taken of your child. Come on, it's my child she/he is great looking ( even though there might be a little of Marty Feldman in them, humor for the old folkes)

Below is a list of rules from the Professional Photographers of America that should be in a great photograph. They are supposed to be in order but many argue over the placement of a few.

Try to use these rules as a guide in your work. Copy them and tape them to your refrigerator or camera back and review them before every attempt.

Come on and lets elevate the level of photography that has been on a slippery slope for a few years now. The digital revolution bears part of the blame but we are to blame for most of it.

Don't stay a Fauxtographer for ever!!!


Impact is the sense one gets upon viewing an image for the first time. Compelling images evoke laughter, sadness, anger, pride, wonder or another intense emotion. There can be impact in any of these twelve elements.

Technical excellence is the print quality of the image itself as it is presented for viewing. Retouching, manipulation, sharpness, exposure, printing, mounting, and correct color are some items that speak to the qualities of the physical print.

Creativity is the original, fresh, and external expression of the imagination of the maker by using the medium to convey an idea, message or thought.

Style is defined in a number of ways as it applies to a creative image. It might be defined by a specific genre or simply be recognizable as the characteristics of how a specific artist applies light to a subject. It can impact an image in a positive manner when the subject matter and the style are appropriate for each other, or it can have a negative effect when they are at odds.

Composition is important to the design of an image, bringing all of the visual elements together in concert to express the purpose of the image. Proper composition holds the viewer in the image and prompts the viewer to look where the creator intends. Effective composition can be pleasing or disturbing, depending on the intent of the image maker.

Presentation affects an image by giving it a finished look. The mats and borders used, either physical or digital, should support and enhance the image, not distract from it.

Color Balance supplies harmony to an image. An image in which the tones work together, effectively supporting the image, can enhance its emotional appeal. Color balance is not always harmonious and can be used to evoke diverse feelings for effect.

Center of Interest is the point or points on the image where the maker wants the viewer to stop as they view the image. There can be primary and secondary centers of interest. Occasionally there will be no specific center of interest, when the entire scene collectively serves as the center of interest.

Lighting—the use and control of light—refers to how dimension, shape and roundness are defined in an image. Whether the light applied to an image is manmade or natural, proper use of it should enhance an image.

Subject Matter should always be appropriate to the story being told in an image.

Technique is the approach used to create the image. Printing, lighting, posing, capture, presentation media, and more are part of the technique applied to an image.

Story Telling refers to the image’s ability to evoke imagination. One beautiful thing about art is that each viewer might collect his own message or read her own story in an image.

If you can get your hands on a Loan Collection book (the best of competition) it is well worth studying.
http://www.bonanza.com/listings/Prof...on-00/45190954

Sorry for the rant but I went home to PA to take care of mom and dad and I had too much time to think.
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Old Jan-24-2012, 11:06 AM
#2
Quincy T is offline Quincy T
from ear to ear
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Reality checks are essential. Thanks Hackbone.
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Old Jan-24-2012, 11:36 AM
#3
zoomer is offline zoomer
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The problem with "rules" is that in a room with three people, each of the three may have a different interpretation of each these rules.

If a photo has impact it doesn't matter if it breaks all the "rules"...although typically it takes a strong performance in at least one of the "rules" for a photo to have impact.
Old Jan-24-2012, 11:47 AM
#4
Hackbone is offline Hackbone OP
Always learning
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoomer View Post
The problem with "rules" is that in a room with three people, each of the three may have a different interpretation of each these rules.

Agree but when you put three people together who understand the rules they would be in agreement more that not.


If a photo has impact it doesn't matter if it breaks all the "rules"...although typically it takes a strong performance in at least one of the "rules" for a photo to have impact.
But you maye be able to improve the impact with image placement, change to B & W or whatever. Impact can be good or bad, it is still impact.
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Old Jan-24-2012, 02:03 PM
#5
Bilsen is offline Bilsen
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Nice read Hack. You should have too much time more often.
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Old Jan-24-2012, 02:41 PM
#6
Bryce Wilson is offline Bryce Wilson
Wants More Glass
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Bravo!!!!

I think I'm going to print up a bunch of copies of this and have them laminated.
Old Jan-24-2012, 11:58 PM
#7
reyvee61 is offline reyvee61
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Great post for sure...thanks for this
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Old Jan-25-2012, 06:23 AM
#8
divamum is offline divamum
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Charles, these are all great points and it's good to see them collated and expressed so coherently. There was a discussion in Challenges recently trying to quantify various aspects of a "good" shot - you should repost over there!!
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Old Jan-25-2012, 06:35 AM
#9
Nikolai is offline Nikolai
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Not to tout my own horn, but I honestly do think my C theory is easier to remember and to apply, even if it doesn't cover frame selection process :-)
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Old Jan-25-2012, 09:34 AM
#10
RyanS is offline RyanS
Always Learning
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I don't think I have anything new to add to the discussion other than to add the possibility that talent has something to do with it. Specifically, I am referring to a special aptitude for inherently recognizing what makes an impactful image impactful. For a long time I took issue with this idea, because (to me) it seemed to suggest that one couldn't improve beyond a certain point. I now believe that is not the case.

Talent does matter. However, I think it matters only in how quickly one can improve. I don't believe it affects the ability of one to improve. For example, Leonardo DaVinci was considered a master by age 20. He was so good that his mentor, after seeing him paint, put down his brush and never painted again. I believe he was able to achieve so much so quickly due to talent. Another painter might learn to paint like Leo, but it might take them decades to learn the skill. Others might need to live for 150 years to achieve the same skill level.

Let me throw out an idea that might be controversial. If your skill as a photographer is rapidly improving you probably have an aptitude for it (talent). If it isn't, that doesn't mean you can't learn it. It simply means it may take you longer to learn it. Don't be like DaVinci's instructor and put down your brush just because you meet an amazingly talented artist. Simply accept that they are gifted and then go back to work. What you have to contribute might not be as impressive as the Mona Lisa, but it is still important and every bit as relevant to life, happiness, and art.
Old Jan-25-2012, 07:05 PM
#11
0scar99 is offline 0scar99
Big grins
I think with photography you can master the 'science' without mastering or being capable of mastering the art.
Old Jan-25-2012, 08:17 PM
#12
Icebear is offline Icebear
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 0scar99 View Post
I think with photography you can master the 'science' without mastering or being capable of mastering the art.
I think you're talkin' about me. Except I haven't mastered the science by a long shot.
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Old Jan-25-2012, 09:55 PM
#13
Overfocused is offline Overfocused
Photo Nut
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 0scar99 View Post
I think with photography you can master the 'science' without mastering or being capable of mastering the art.

Truth. I think I am somewhat of an enigma, however. My brain autonomously does the scientific part with ease and I think that has turned into the way I express myself artistically... with science. It's sorta confusing sometimes since I don't really know how to connect with my own pictures very well emotionally at all (or most anyone elses for that matter)
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Old Jan-26-2012, 03:14 PM
#14
fireguy.ed is offline fireguy.ed
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 0scar99 View Post
I think with photography you can master the 'science' without mastering or being capable of mastering the art.
I completely agree. I can take a technically correct photograph, but it may just be a photograph. While someone else can take a shot with their phone camera and it has the elements to make it art.

Also, we all can't be good at every style of photography. I think some people, myself included sometimes, try to be a "jack of all photos", but just end up a master of none... ok, maybe a few styles once (if) we realize our strengths...
Old Jan-26-2012, 03:26 PM
#15
Hackbone is offline Hackbone OP
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If we take technically correct photographs with the rules applied doesn't that mean they are art!
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Old Jan-26-2012, 04:33 PM
#16
Bryce Wilson is offline Bryce Wilson
Wants More Glass
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hackbone View Post
If we take technically correct photographs with the rules applied doesn't that mean they are art!
I would say what you describe is a "journeyman". I would think an artist would either break the rules or create his or her own.

My two cents.
Old Jan-26-2012, 08:07 PM
#17
reyvee61 is offline reyvee61
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If we were still etching images and words on stone it would be a skill-set that involved creativity and laborious skill but with digital there is science involved and there has to be a marriage of technical skills and creativity to create what you might envision ....
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Old Jan-26-2012, 08:25 PM
#18
Cowboydoug is offline Cowboydoug
Kidnapper
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These "RULES"... they are guides... With practice & intent they become natural... These Rules... ...yeah, they are there but they are intrinsic at this point... I can just see LEO (thanks Ryan...that made me LOL) but I can just see Leo with his note pad going over a check list... did i do this , this, this & this... Most, if not all of these Rules or Guides are apparent in most of the work we do as pro's... they need to be... otherwise you won't be pro for long. It is because of study and practice that they are natural to us NOW...

Thanks Charles for the interesting and thoughtful post and to all who have added... oh and Charles... YES... you're an artist....lol
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Old Jan-26-2012, 08:56 PM
#19
Awais Yaqub is offline Awais Yaqub
One Inspired soul
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Charles, thanks for great post
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Old Feb-01-2012, 04:25 AM
#20
Swartzy is online now Swartzy
Right Brained Scientist
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanS View Post
I don't think I have anything new to add to the discussion other than to add the possibility that talent has something to do with it. Specifically, I am referring to a special aptitude for inherently recognizing what makes an impactful image impactful. For a long time I took issue with this idea, because (to me) it seemed to suggest that one couldn't improve beyond a certain point. I now believe that is not the case.

Talent does matter. However, I think it matters only in how quickly one can improve. I don't believe it affects the ability of one to improve. For example, Leonardo DaVinci was considered a master by age 20. He was so good that his mentor, after seeing him paint, put down his brush and never painted again. I believe he was able to achieve so much so quickly due to talent. Another painter might learn to paint like Leo, but it might take them decades to learn the skill. Others might need to live for 150 years to achieve the same skill level.

Let me throw out an idea that might be controversial. If your skill as a photographer is rapidly improving you probably have an aptitude for it (talent). If it isn't, that doesn't mean you can't learn it. It simply means it may take you longer to learn it. Don't be like DaVinci's instructor and put down your brush just because you meet an amazingly talented artist. Simply accept that they are gifted and then go back to work. What you have to contribute might not be as impressive as the Mona Lisa, but it is still important and every bit as relevant to life, happiness, and art.
I do agree with you to a degree, albeit a couple of considerations are overlooked. Talent is difficult to quantify. We recognize it when we see it. Now let's consider the flip side, lack of talent.

There are those who have very little talent for a particular interest. Work and dedication will only take them so far. Sadly, they never will achieve a level higher than satisfactory. This dilemma not only applies to photography but for any endeavor. We see those challenges daily for some, including ourselves.

What is most difficult is recognizing whether one has a talent or propensity towards a particular endeavor. This should be the bigger question each individual should ask themselves, especially when charging fees for their handicap.

Many areas of photography can be learned. Lighting ratios, posing, camera settings, all can become a learned thing. Having the ability to recognize and implement excellence is something which separates by way of talent.

JMHO
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