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Author Topic: Michael's Landscapes  (Read 32346 times)
to-mas
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« Reply #20 on: November 02, 2006, 05:01:23 PM »
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good and hard question
at least for me

it let me think
thanks

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Ask yourself this:  "What photograph have I taken which I want the world to remember me by?"  That, is probably your masterpiece.
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dbell
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« Reply #21 on: November 03, 2006, 02:57:27 PM »
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Ask yourself this:  "What photograph have I taken which I want the world to remember me by?"  That, is probably your masterpiece.
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If my answer to that doesn't change at least yearly, I'm not shooting enough.

I also think the idea that I've already created a "masterpiece" would be pretty poisonous. Where do you go from there? I'd like to think that my best work has yet to be done (it's very hard to stay motivated if I don't think that way).

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Daniel Bell
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russell a
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« Reply #22 on: November 03, 2006, 05:01:33 PM »
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I'd like to think that my best work has yet to be done (it's very hard to stay motivated if I don't think that way).

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Daniel Bell
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Good strategy, Daniel. This is especially true in that what I might regard as a "masterpiece" has little to do with the opinions of others or the "judgement" (if there is one) of posterity.
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alainbriot
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« Reply #23 on: November 04, 2006, 10:52:38 AM »
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As an artist I find it more important to ask myself "what is the source of my inspiration" than to ask "what are my masterpieces".  

Answering the former of these two questions may lead to possible answers for the later.  Answering the later may only result in self-delusion.
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Alain Briot
Author of Mastering Landscape Photography, Mastering Composition, Creativity and Personal Style., Marketing Fine Art Photography and How Photographs are Sold.
http://www.beautiful-landscape.com
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« Reply #24 on: November 04, 2006, 08:20:06 PM »
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One aspect that is often overlooked in assessing the iconic value of an image is the cultural and geographical backbround of the viewers.

Things being what they are US and European viewers have overwhelmingly dominated the scene and therefore strongly contributed to defining what masterpieces are. Masterpieces are mostly images WE (US and European photographers) have been familiar with through our own experiences.

I think that Michael's travelling is an attempt to cover new grounds by picturing locales that have been less covered by most masters. Although some fine work came out of that, it is IMHO basically bound to fail since time on the spot is indeed the most important aspect needed to create what I call magic images. However talented he is, it is mission impossible to spend only 2 weeks somewhere and hope to take images better than those taken by locals, even if there are more mega pixels.

The only hope for new top stuff coming out in the coming years is IMHO top local photographers to emerge in China, Africa, etc... but then again, are WE (US and European viewers) going to acknoledge these images as masterpieces?...

Cheers,
Bernard
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John Camp
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« Reply #25 on: November 04, 2006, 09:26:25 PM »
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The only hope for new top stuff coming out in the coming years is IMHO top local photographers to emerge in China, Africa, etc... but then again, are WE (US and European viewers) going to acknoledge these images as masterpieces?...

Cheers,
Bernard
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We already do, to some extent, with Japanese photogaphers. With other Asian photographers, the problems have generally been political and social -- they've been largely too poor and otherwise occcuppied to put cameras in the hands of the potentially most-talented. But I think we'll recognize the masterpieces when they come. And they will.

JC
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Stephen Best
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« Reply #26 on: November 04, 2006, 10:28:39 PM »
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But I think we'll recognize the masterpieces when they come. And they will.
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It's a bit arrogant to assume they're not already out there. How long has photography been around? We've moved on from the days when the English/French/German aristocracy traveled to far flung places to bring back images of what these places and people looked like.

Iconic masterpieces are largely a product of saturation marketing anyway. Most photographers hate these so-called masterpieces and would much rather be remembered for other (often more personal) work. Or, more likely, their contribution to photography as a whole. A single image says nothing about the photographer. Everybody has at least one masterpiece in them.
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pgpgsxr
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« Reply #27 on: November 05, 2006, 01:09:52 AM »
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Hello,
 I think Michael should try working in the landscape with the M8, the Leica rangefinder seems to be a camera which is very special to him. Maybe he isnīt any better at street photography, itīs just that camera adapted to him and not the other way round and so he got some cool shots the other day. Ok we know the camera has got very few megapixels compared to digital backs, but for god sake its the image which counts!!
 Paul
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michael
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« Reply #28 on: November 05, 2006, 07:26:54 AM »
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Needless to say, it's the subject that dictates the tool. A rangefinder / viewfinder camera is usually inappropriate for landscape work, yet used by many. Photographers who use the Mamiya 7II or Fuji 617 may disagree.

For landscape and nature a camera with a groundglass (view or SLR) has its advantages. For documentary shooting the rangefinder. Horses for courses, as the British say. If ones budget and range of photographic interests allow then a mix of cameras is what's needed.

As for "masterpieces", here's my take. I do photography because it's what drives me. I do it for my own purposes; for my own creative satisfaction. Then, like most artists, I enjoy sharing my work with others. Accodales are welcome, but so is critisism. We learn from our failures.

Lables such as "masterpiece" are external to the process of creating art. They're arbitrary and subjective, not to mention fleeting in most cases.

My own judgement of my work is that of the hundreds of thousands of iimages that I've taken over the years, the hundreds that have appeared in print in books, magazines, exhibits and portfolios, about a dozen are ones that I think will last. By this I mean that they may end up being recognized by others as having made a small contribution. At least to my eyes.

Michael
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John Camp
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« Reply #29 on: November 05, 2006, 11:43:17 AM »
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My own judgement of my work is that of the hundreds of thousands of iimages that I've taken over the years, the hundreds that have appeared in print in books, magazines, exhibits and portfolios, about a dozen are ones that I think will last. By this I mean that they may end up being recognized by others as having made a small contribution. At least to my eyes.

Michael
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That seems about right to me. You should do a folio.

JC
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #30 on: November 05, 2006, 11:52:09 PM »
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It's a bit arrogant to assume they're not already out there. How long has photography been around? We've moved on from the days when the English/French/German aristocracy traveled to far flung places to bring back images of what these places and people looked like.

Iconic masterpieces are largely a product of saturation marketing anyway. Most photographers hate these so-called masterpieces and would much rather be remembered for other (often more personal) work. Or, more likely, their contribution to photography as a whole. A single image says nothing about the photographer. Everybody has at least one masterpiece in them.
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Stephen,

The point is not that masterpieces from Asian photographers do not exist, but that these images appear not to have reached wide recognition. I have a few books from Chinese landscape photographers that are really good, but those books can only be bought locally in China and very few Westerners have heard of them.

On your last point, I totally agree with that commercial success should not be the only criteria to assess the masterpieceness of a piece.

As a side topic, assessing the actual audience of images could become easier in the coming years thanks to the net. This democatization of images is a fascinating topic. Considering that most print buyers rarely buy larger than A2 prints, and that most DSLRs within 2/3 years will be able to deliver high quality prints of such a size, we could have millions of talented folks out there able to make a little money from their best work.

Cheers,
Bernard
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Stephen Best
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« Reply #31 on: November 06, 2006, 12:43:09 AM »
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As a side topic, assessing the actual audience of images could become easier in the coming years thanks to the net. This democatization of images is a fascinating topic. Considering that most print buyers rarely buy larger than A2 prints, and that most DSLRs within 2/3 years will be able to deliver high quality prints of such a size, we could have millions of talented folks out there able to make a little money from their best work.
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Maybe. If I look around, there's already an embarrassment of great images from all over the globe. It's quite depressing really :-). I think the market for impulse buys of an image seen on someone's web gallery is maybe only for lower priced prints. Which brings us back to the marketing of masterpieces and the selling of the photographer as a brand. By necessity this excludes the gifted peasant from western China who sold his aging mother's only ox to buy a Canon (tongue firmly in cheek).
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #32 on: November 06, 2006, 02:21:04 AM »
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Which brings us back to the marketing of masterpieces and the selling of the photographer as a brand. By necessity this excludes the gifted peasant from western China who sold his aging mother's only ox to buy a Canon (tongue firmly in cheek).
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Interestingly, I am just back from 2 weeks in Western China.

I saw many Canons but there were still many ox around.  

Cheers,
Bernard
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John Camp
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« Reply #33 on: November 06, 2006, 04:13:30 PM »
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I wonder if Michael's 'Horse Wash' photo might be his final comment about the posters on this thread? 8-)

JC
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image66
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« Reply #34 on: November 06, 2006, 04:52:01 PM »
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I wonder if Michael's 'Horse Wash' photo might be his final comment about the posters on this thread? 8-)

JC
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Well, THAT is one photograph that I'm bugging my wife to get me for Christmas. Absolutely awesome.

If a camera can "inspire" a person to photograph like this, then it means that the intangibles of camera design ARE more important than the technical specifications.
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howiesmith
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« Reply #35 on: November 06, 2006, 05:09:46 PM »
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I once, because of a class assignment, interviewed a rather well-known photographer (object of the assignment).  When I asked why all his answers were about wildlife photography, he replied "because that is what you said you wanted to talk about."  I went on to find out he photographed almost anything (and the images are very good).  Doesn't always pay to put photographers into a ceratin box type.
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Mike Louw
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« Reply #36 on: November 11, 2006, 11:58:37 AM »
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If I were Michael I would find it very amusing to find myself discussed like this !  

@Alain, if I'm not mistaken "Running White Deer" was made in county Wicklow, Ireland (just down the road from me). I live here, but have never created a "masterpiece" like that  
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