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Author Topic: Antartica The Global Warming  (Read 31886 times)
CatOne
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« Reply #100 on: September 19, 2007, 10:48:47 PM »
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Subtle us a brick to the head, eh.   
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=140574\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Sometimes sublety is overrated.  Like sarcasm, it can miss people that have $$$ to pay  

That said, I went on the last Antarctic trip.  A couple comments:

1)  It is TOTALLY worth it.  It's a beautiful place; the scenery and wildlife are peerless

2)  It's absolutely not as gloomy and dreary as the picture set I saw from that book on the site.  I don't know if he only showed gloomy shots, or he only shot on gloomy days, or he got 6 weeks of bad weather, or he forgot that when you shoot snow and ice you have to dial in like 1 to 1 2/3 stops of positive exposure compensation to keep your snow from looking grey.  Going with instructors like Michael and crew could have maybe given him some pointers      
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NikosR
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« Reply #101 on: September 20, 2007, 12:05:51 AM »
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2)  It's absolutely not as gloomy and dreary as the picture set I saw from that book on the site. 


I think that AntarticMat above has comprehensively answered to this one in his two posts. I have no reason not to believe a full-time resident vs. the occasional summer visitors. Even if the conditions in MR's visit were the prevailing conditions (which they obviously aren't), I'm sure that many of MR and Co pictures do purposefully overstress some aspects of the landscape, as most traditional landscape photography does.

But I have to ask again: Does it really matter?

I hate to say this, but I'm starting to get the nasty feeling that MR's comment on the book was fundamentally driven by self interest.
« Last Edit: September 20, 2007, 12:08:01 AM by NikosR » Logged

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michael
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« Reply #102 on: September 20, 2007, 04:45:04 AM »
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I hate to say this, but I'm starting to get the nasty feeling that MR's comment on the book was fundamentally driven by self interest.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=140617\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Or maybe, just maybe, mind you, the motivation was a love for the art of photography and a strong appreciation for Antarctica. Combine these, and for me this book becomes offensive.

I can only repeat – a stand-alone photograph which shows Antarctica looking like it was shot on a bleak, overcast day and then underexposed by two stops can be art. But a book with a hundred or more such photographs is simply propaganda.

Enough said.

Michael

Ps: As for what that self interest might be... I'm stumped. My new Antarctic workshop sold-out 90% in less than 24 hours to previous attendees and those on the waitlist, so it isn't as if I needed to generate some controversy to sell tickets. The remainder sold out the balance in a few hours after first posting, and there are now more than 30 people on a new waitlist.

Gee, here's an alternative thought. Maybe I actually believed what I wrote, without an underlaying nefarious motivation. What a concept!
« Last Edit: September 20, 2007, 04:47:46 AM by michael » Logged
jeremyrh
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« Reply #103 on: September 20, 2007, 02:55:44 PM »
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Or maybe, just maybe, mind you, the motivation was a love for the art of photography and a strong appreciation for Antarctica. Combine these, and for me this book becomes offensive.

I can only repeat – a stand-alone photograph which shows Antarctica looking like it was shot on a bleak, overcast day and then underexposed by two stops can be art. But a book with a hundred or more such photographs is simply propaganda.[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=140650\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
"Offensive"? - oh, puhleeze - how precious can we get? I recommend that anyone tempted to comment further just re-read Mat's posts. If you have some reason to think that what he says is not true, then go ahead and present the evidence. Until then, which is the propaganda - a book of dreary photos or a few web pages with sunny icebergs?
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benInMA
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« Reply #104 on: September 20, 2007, 03:05:23 PM »
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Actually pulling Raw weather data from the weather stations more then proves Mat's view of the weather.  Lots of the stations claim to have only around 75 days a year that are not 80%+ overcast AND have any sunlight at all.  With near total darkness for 6 months a lack of clouds doesn't really help for photography much of the year.

Oh well.. I'm glad this Michael's article on Copeland's work raised such a stink here.. I might not have heard of the book otherwise.. I'm definitely buying it now!
« Last Edit: September 20, 2007, 03:07:27 PM by benInMA » Logged
CatOne
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« Reply #105 on: September 20, 2007, 05:40:00 PM »
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Actually pulling Raw weather data from the weather stations more then proves Mat's view of the weather.  Lots of the stations claim to have only around 75 days a year that are not 80%+ overcast AND have any sunlight at all.  With near total darkness for 6 months a lack of clouds doesn't really help for photography much of the year.

Oh well.. I'm glad this Michael's article on Copeland's work raised such a stink here.. I might not have heard of the book otherwise.. I'm definitely buying it now!
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=140777\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

"Near total darkness for 6 months?"

Someone needs to learn about daylight.  6 months of the year they have AT LEAST 12 hours of sunlight (see the definition of "equinox").

Also note that a the most visited part of Antarctica (the upper tip of the peninsula) is north of the Antarctic circle which means it never gets 24 hours of night.  The sun comes above the horizon, if only for a bit.

In the week we were along the peninsula we saw sunshine a few times (more on the east side than the west).  I simply cannot imagine he could have been there 6 weeks and have had no sun.
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jeremyrh
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« Reply #106 on: September 21, 2007, 12:37:23 AM »
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Going with instructors like Michael and crew could have maybe given him some pointers     
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Is Michael an instructor? Does he give shooting pointers?
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benInMA
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« Reply #107 on: September 21, 2007, 06:53:55 AM »
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I was referring to the combination of weather & amount of daylight.

If you've got a clear day but no sunlight.. you're not going to take any bright and sunny pictures.

If you've got 24 hours of daylight (summer) but it's overcast.. no bright and sunny pictures.

Go look at the weather data, any trip is rolling the dice.
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jjj
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« Reply #108 on: September 21, 2007, 07:49:17 AM »
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It's absolutely not as gloomy and dreary as the picture set I saw from that book on the site.  I don't know if he only showed gloomy shots, or he only shot on gloomy days, or he got 6 weeks of bad weather, or he forgot that when you shoot snow and ice you have to dial in like 1 to 1 2/3 stops of positive exposure compensation to keep your snow from looking grey.  Going with instructors like Michael and crew could have maybe given him some pointers     
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=140602\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I had a look at his his professional photography site and I hardly think he needs any pointers in photography from some photo geeks who are more concerned with maximising dynamic range and how ACR is coded, rather than simply taking good photos.

BTW you seem to have forgotten that for large parts of the years there is little or no light. So six weeks of gloomy 'days' is very easy to guarantee in Winter.
It's funny how  Antarctic Mat, who is actually based there, seems to think Michael's pretty pictures are equally unrepresentative as in his experience, it can be very grim.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2007, 08:18:04 AM by jjj » Logged

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jjj
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« Reply #109 on: September 21, 2007, 08:14:59 AM »
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Gee, here's an alternative thought. Maybe I actually believed what I wrote, without an underlaying nefarious motivation. What a concept!
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=140650\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
I believe you completely on that point. You simply stated what you thought and it seems very consistent with what you have written over the years.
But where your reasoning falls flat on it's face is you try and bring your objective/technical head to something completely subjective.
You said this in your opening paragraph.
"My first response on glancing at the dust jacket was, what a somber scene to choose for the cover."
My response was more positive - 'What a great image to reflect the title/book'. Personally I like his work, I had a look at his website, he's not exactly an untalented photographer. But to someone like yourself who loves perfectly exposed, perfectly printed images, his work simply won't float your boat. But then you make the mistake of trying to be rational about his pics. They aren't to your taste, his vision is different from yours and I'm very glad there are people who aren't so hung up on 'perfect' imaging. It gets very boring after a while. I have photography books that are full of images that too many current photographers would decry and laugh at for their poor technical prowess, but what great pictures they are.

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Or maybe, just maybe, mind you, the motivation was a love for the art of photography and a strong appreciation for Antarctica. Combine these, and for me this book becomes offensive.
Offensive! what hyperbole. Besides I think Sebastian Copeland's images + book will have a more positive effect than your photos from there. Don't forget he's batting on the same side as you, just because he's taking different sorts of pictures from your 'pretty' shots doesn not in any sense make his work offensive. As mentioned above by Antarctic Mat, your images are no more representative that Sebastian's, so are your images offensive?
« Last Edit: September 21, 2007, 08:19:01 AM by jjj » Logged

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CatOne
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« Reply #110 on: September 21, 2007, 10:49:20 AM »
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I had a look at his his professional photography site and I hardly think he needs any pointers in photography from some photo geeks who are more concerned with maximising dynamic range and how ACR is coded, rather than simply taking good photos.

Okay then.

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BTW you seem to have forgotten that for large parts of the years there is little or no light. So six weeks of gloomy 'days' is very easy to guarantee in Winter.
It's funny how  Antarctic Mat, who is actually based there, seems to think Michael's pretty pictures are equally unrepresentative as in his experience, it can be very grim.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=140952\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I'm perfectly well aware that for parts of the year there is little or no light in Antarctica.  Again, this is subject to where you are in Antarctica (perhaps read up on what the Antarctic circle is, and how it affects daylight).

Also perhaps you should read the site where he notes that he went to Antarctica in February 2006 (when there are most certainly NOT days with "little or no light").  He notes also that he returned to the ice in 2007, without specifying the dates... but I doubt it was July 2007 when it's dark, or he wouldn't have had time to publish the book.  

I didn't travel on the guy's itinerary.  So I can't say first-hand whether he encountered 6 weeks of purely gloomy weather.  We didn't have perfect weather on our trip, either, but I can present one exhibit from a shot I took the first day we landed on the Antarctic Peninusula, on Brown Bluff:



Now this is the eastern side of the peninsula so it tends to have weather that's nicer in general, as I understand.

You know what else is interesting... the picture of Mr. Copeland "photographing" has him against a sunny, blue sky:



Interesting, no?
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jeremyrh
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« Reply #111 on: September 22, 2007, 05:52:20 AM »
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I'm still mystified by the idea that a book of photographs of a place should represent exactly what that place is like. I have a book of photos of Iceland by Daniel Bergmann. I love the book, but I don't think anybody would suggest it is a statistically accurate portrayal of Iceland (there are no shots of rain, for example). I have a book of photos of Kate Moss, taken by people who are paid big bucks to make her look as good as possible. That's art. That's photography. Why is this book any different?
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Jonathan Wienke
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« Reply #112 on: September 22, 2007, 06:49:30 AM »
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I'm still mystified by the idea that a book of photographs of a place should represent exactly what that place is like.
...
Why is this book any different?

If you're using images to "raise global warming awareness", you're moving out of the scope of photography-as-art, and into photojournalism. If the photos were simply presented as beautiful images from Antarctica, nobody would care about manipulations or toning or whatever. But since they're being presented in a documentary context, the ethics of photojournalism come into play, and it is reasonable to expect and demand that the images actually represent the subject in a reasonably accurate manner. The type of manipulations done to these photos would be unacceptable in most newspapers; they create a misleading impression that heightens the urgency of the author's premises at the cost of the truth.
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michael
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« Reply #113 on: September 22, 2007, 07:35:38 AM »
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There's too much vitriol here, and what irks the most is that much of it is from people that have neither seen the book nor been to Antarctica. Taking positions on a subject with which one has no experience is all too easy on the net. It simply becomes positioned debate, all fury and no substance.

So, on that note, I'm done.

Please try and refrain from personal attacks. These and insults will be promptly deleted. Reasoned debate by people who have at least seen the book in question are welcome. Unsubstantiated rhetoric isn't.

Michael

Ps: The jacket photo of Copeland obviously taken on a sunny day made me chuckle. I hadn't noticed it before. What more needs to be said?
« Last Edit: September 22, 2007, 07:41:30 AM by michael » Logged
jeremyrh
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« Reply #114 on: September 22, 2007, 10:30:56 AM »
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If you're using images to "raise global warming awareness", you're moving out of the scope of photography-as-art, and into photojournalism.
...
The type of manipulations done to these photos would be unacceptable in most newspapers; they create a misleading impression that heightens the urgency of the author's premises at the cost of the truth.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=141200\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
In what way do these images impact the story on global warming? They are, as far as I can judge from the website, fantastic images that give a strong impression of what Antarctica is like. That impression is not, according to Mat, misleading. They may not be to your taste, or to Michael's taste - so be it. But they are not deceiving in any way as regards an argument on climate change.
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NikosR
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« Reply #115 on: September 22, 2007, 11:30:41 AM »
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It would be interesting if someone (MR?) would put the article in question and this thread to Mr. Copeland's attention and invite a response? I, for one, would be interested to read what he has to say about the matter.
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Nikos
DavidB
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« Reply #116 on: September 23, 2007, 04:23:21 AM »
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I haven't seen the book in person: I've only been able to look at the gallery of images on the website so far.  There are some images with brighter areas, but mostly it's fairly subdued.  The obvious work on them (I was going to say "Photoshopping" but I'm not supposed to use that word ) including things like vignetting do indicate that this is a deliberate decision, but it doesn't strike me as "wrong".
I haven't seen the Real Thing yet, but even then I don't expect that I will see it in all its moods.  The website certainly hasn't offended me in that way, but maybe the book might be different.

Incidentally, with all the processing that's been applied to these images I'm amazed that no care seems to have been taken to get the (flat) waterline horizontal in these images.  As the website's gallery progressed through the images I in fact found the "horizon" tilting to and fro quite unsettling.  But then I know I'm hypersensitive to this in photos...

Lastly, I thought it interesting that the Antarctica photos in John Paul Caponigro's gallery from the last L-L trip are predominantly dark/sombre.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2007, 04:26:08 AM by DavidB » Logged

jjj
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« Reply #117 on: September 23, 2007, 09:14:02 PM »
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Okay then.
I'm perfectly well aware that for parts of the year there is little or no light in Antarctica.  Again, this is subject to where you are in Antarctica (perhaps read up on what the Antarctic circle is, and how it affects daylight).
I'm well aware of that fact, assuming otherwise in the manner you do is simply patronising. I have a background Astonomy and Geology BTW.


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Also perhaps you should read the site where he notes that he went to Antarctica in February 2006 (when there are most certainly NOT days with "little or no light").  He notes also that he returned to the ice in 2007, without specifying the dates... but I doubt it was July 2007 when it's dark, or he wouldn't have had time to publish the book. 
Not sure what your point is really as this July in the UK it rained constantly. Normally the hottest and [I think]nearly the driest time of year. Weather like mileage varies. Every quite locally. In Whitby today the weather was mostly bright and sunny, in nearby Middlesborough it was anything but.
 

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I didn't travel on the guy's itinerary.  So I can't say first-hand whether he encountered 6 weeks of purely gloomy weather.  We didn't have perfect weather on our trip, either, but I can present one exhibit from a shot I took the first day we landed on the Antarctic Peninusula, on Brown Bluff:
Now this is the eastern side of the peninsula so it tends to have weather that's nicer in general, as I understand.
You took a picture in sunshine, when you were in one small part of the very large Antartic Continent. So what, it not like it proves anything of significance anyway? "Hey look I took a picture in Thailand and this proves the pictures taken in China are rubbish."
 
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You know what else is interesting... the picture of Mr. Copeland "photographing" has him against a sunny, blue sky:
Interesting, no?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=140980\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Not really, as there are pictures taken by Sebastian shown  in the TV presentation, where it looked pretty sunny to me. Which seems to be completely overlooked in the pointless ranting. And even if he did take a picture when the sun was shining, he may not have used that image in the book. It may even have been a posed picture. Quite common with portraiture, you know.  
But even if the weather was fine and he was there in summer, the sun does set and the weather varies and quite possibly, the more dramatic pictures were done nearer to sunrise/set than noon. Midday usually makes for uninteresting landscape images, hence a lot of stuff is shot where the sun is lower.

None of any of this really matters anyway as it's simply a book of one person's personal interpretation of a place. Just as your and Michael's images are simply your interpretation.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2007, 09:17:29 PM by jjj » Logged

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« Reply #118 on: September 23, 2007, 09:24:24 PM »
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Lastly, I thought it interesting that the Antarctica photos in John Paul Caponigro's gallery from the last L-L trip are predominantly dark/sombre.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=141362\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
And very good too.
Not too mention undermining some of the arguments above.
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michael
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« Reply #119 on: September 23, 2007, 09:35:57 PM »
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I think that the axes have now been ground fine enough on this one.

This topic is now closed.

Start a new one if you wish, but this time solely on the merits of the arguments, not centered on personal attacks and insults.

Michael
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