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Author Topic: Light on tree in fall  (Read 5023 times)
dalethorn
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« Reply #20 on: June 11, 2009, 01:22:49 PM »
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Quote from: shutterpup
Russ,
Your reference of an Ansel Adams shot clarifies everything for me concerning "sense of place." And would you then agree that successful photos, whether they are close-cropped, macro or anything else, would convey that "sense of place?"
I've read in other threads here what you have said about studying the masters, not just of photography but of art in general. I must say that as I make the effort to develop myself as a photographer, not just as snapshooter, that I can see the wisdom in studying the masters. I know some others here beg the question by saying they don't want to be copying what they see in the masters. I don't think you can go wrong by copying the basic rules of composition, color, form, sense of place. By knowing the rules and being able to apply them makes you stronger  as a photographer, not weaker. Understanding and application do not result in copying.
Off my soapbox.

Pardon the intrusion - all of this is correct.  When we argue about studying the masters, it's just a matter of at what point you break off and make your own art that's uniquely you.  A personal judgement you'll have to make in any case.
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shutterpup
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« Reply #21 on: June 11, 2009, 01:27:22 PM »
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Quote from: dalethorn
Pardon the intrusion - all of this is correct.  When we argue about studying the masters, it's just a matter of at what point you break off and make your own art that's uniquely you.  A personal judgement you'll have to make in any case.

No intrusion. And I think what you say applies to any artistic endeavor.
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cmi
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« Reply #22 on: June 11, 2009, 01:36:33 PM »
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Quote from: RSL

Very interesting. So in this one, he deliberately choosed a view where he had a mountain behind this nice tree...
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RSL
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« Reply #23 on: June 11, 2009, 01:44:26 PM »
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Quote from: cmi
Very interesting. So in this one, he deliberately choosed a view where he had a mountain behind this nice tree...

Yes. He showed the tree in its environment. Sometimes part of a tree is interesting -- something like a large knot in sidelight -- but usually the whole tree is what's interesting, in relation to its environment.
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shutterpup
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« Reply #24 on: June 11, 2009, 01:53:48 PM »
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Quote from: RSL
Yes. He showed the tree in its environment. Sometimes part of a tree is interesting -- something like a large knot in sidelight -- but usually the whole tree is what's interesting, in relation to its environment.

That tree, without the mountain there, could have been anywhere; just a tree. I think this is a perfect example of sense of place.
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RSL
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« Reply #25 on: June 11, 2009, 02:13:21 PM »
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Quote from: dalethorn
Pardon the intrusion - all of this is correct.  When we argue about studying the masters, it's just a matter of at what point you break off and make your own art that's uniquely you.  A personal judgement you'll have to make in any case.

Dale, As I've pointed out before, you don't "break off." You're not absorbing the work of the masters because you're trying to copy it. You're looking at those pictures because they help you get your head around the idea of what constitutes good composition and good graphic balance. On the other hand, I think it sometimes helps to try to copy the masters. You can't really do it, and it teaches you about some of the difficulties involved in doing what they do (or did). In other words, trying to copy the masters can lead you to a level of humility in your approach to photography. You learn, for instance, as HCB put it: to "approach the subject on tiptoe -- even if the subject is a still life." My wife started a gallery in the seventies. We owned it for ten years. During those years I saw all sorts of art come through the doors, and one thing I learned is that the "artists" who refused to learn the history of their art simply didn't do very good work. Breaking the rules often leads to good work and something new, but you have to learn what the rules are before you know enough to break them in a constructive way.
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cmi
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« Reply #26 on: June 11, 2009, 02:17:53 PM »
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Quote from: shutterpup
That tree, without the mountain there, could have been anywhere; just a tree. I think this is a perfect example of sense of place.

Yes, but Im not sure I would have realized it intuitively that the mountain PLUS the tree was making it if it has not been pointed out. I was at the point thinking, some trees are really interesting, but not knowing what this exactly was. So, boring trees --> Zoom in to make it interesting & get detail ---> Boring leaves, at least possibly.

That leads me to the througt, not everything you are able to enjoy as "nice" in the real life works as a photo. This is because we are able to separate the things we are seeing, to detach them from the surroundings. This is a nice tree, and I am not seeing that it may be in fact a too common view to be enjoyed by many. In the photo, the commonness gets obvious to other, but I may not grasp it immeatedly, because I have seen it for real, and for me that may last in the photo. On the other hand if I showed the tree in its ordinary surroundings, it gets just that for a viewer, a ordinary tree in the ordinary enviroment. Makes sense?
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RSL
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« Reply #27 on: June 11, 2009, 02:42:30 PM »
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Quote from: Christian Miersch
That leads me to the thought, not everything you are able to enjoy as "nice" in the real life works as a photo. Makes sense?

Christian,

It makes all kinds of sense. That's the whole point of learning, from the masters and from your own successes and failures, the difference between something that looks "nice" and something that makes a good photograph.  
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cmi
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« Reply #28 on: June 12, 2009, 03:22:24 AM »
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Quote from: RSL
Christian,

It makes all kinds of sense. That's the whole point of learning, from the masters and from your own successes and failures, the difference between something that looks "nice" and something that makes a good photograph.

I like it being here. Should have come sooner.

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dalethorn
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« Reply #29 on: June 12, 2009, 07:03:51 AM »
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Quote from: RSL
Dale, As I've pointed out before, you don't "break off."
You learn, for instance, as HCB put it: to "approach the subject on tiptoe

Breaking off is no different from leaving home for the first time - traumatic for some, not for others. But you still have to, to sever the umbilical cord.

I never approach on tiptoe - I follow the Jack Lalanne school as applied to art - don't climb out of that chair - leap out.
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dalethorn
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« Reply #30 on: June 12, 2009, 07:11:40 AM »
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Quote from: RSL
It makes all kinds of sense. That's the whole point of learning, from the masters and from your own successes and failures, the difference between something that looks "nice" and something that makes a good photograph.

Uh-uh.  Part of what separates the photographic artist from the mere photographer is the second half of digital photography - post processing.  That's where you take the "looks nice" and make it look awesome.  Go to the main page on LL and some of those links will help you see what you can do.
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RSL
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« Reply #31 on: June 12, 2009, 11:00:41 AM »
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Quote from: dalethorn
Breaking off is no different from leaving home for the first time - traumatic for some, not for others. But you still have to, to sever the umbilical cord.

I never approach on tiptoe - I follow the Jack Lalanne school as applied to art - don't climb out of that chair - leap out.

Dale, If you actually believe that studying the work of the masters will grow you an umbilical cord you're never going to become a "photographic artist."

By the way, not approaching on tiptoe and "leaping out" also is called "blundering."
« Last Edit: June 12, 2009, 12:57:03 PM by RSL » Logged

dalethorn
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« Reply #32 on: June 12, 2009, 12:58:36 PM »
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Quote from: RSL
Dale, If you actually believe that studying the work of the masters will grow you an umbilical cord you're never going to become a photographer.

I have the perfect solution for that, Russ.  They can use my umbilical cord.  I'm still alive, and creative, and they're not.

BTW, besides the main page here which has so much to spark some good thinking, I recommend the old Flip Wilson comedy video where he plays God, and gives insight on creativity.  It's not only funny, but actually makes a person think about the hows and whys of creativity.

Let's face it, the transition from snapshooter to a photographic artist who can impress the mavens of LL is way too big to describe here.  Forget about my efforts, they're not important.  Just think about those people reading this, and what can we tell them besides "go look it up somewhere?"  I'll go along with your advice to people who want to learn, up to a point.  And up to a point should be good enough, yes?  After all, it's just another opinion.
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RSL
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« Reply #33 on: June 12, 2009, 02:57:28 PM »
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Quote from: dalethorn
I recommend the old Flip Wilson comedy video where he plays God, and gives insight on creativity.  It's not only funny, but actually makes a person think about the hows and whys of creativity.

Dale, The fact that your creativity studies seem to depend heavily on movie jokes explains a lot.
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dalethorn
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« Reply #34 on: June 12, 2009, 03:21:53 PM »
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Quote from: RSL
Dale, The fact that your creativity studies seem to depend heavily on movie jokes explains a lot.

Russ, you can't simplify life and the moviegoing experience like that.  The experience of all things in the world meshes with your own stored experiences and personality, and produces whatever result.  People read books, and don't "see" the items described with their eyes - they see with their mind, and its memories.  When you talk about the "masters", they don't have the whole of life experience within their portfolios, so you have to fill in a lot of things.

You aren't allowing people here a lot of credit, that when and if they see the Flip Wilson bit, that they can't get a lot out of it.  It just takes patience and imagination.  I carry my images with me on a small computer, and show some of them when it's relevant to something going on where I am at the time.  I don't bore people with slideshows - I just get to the point and then drop it.

Having a video clip of a comedy bit as an illustration of something is an excellent device, as good as carrying an electronic dictionary, or a digital camera.  Then again, some folks might think a digital camera is the devil's poison that killed real photography.
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RSL
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« Reply #35 on: June 12, 2009, 04:25:19 PM »
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Quote from: dalethorn
You aren't allowing people here a lot of credit, that when and if they see the Flip Wilson bit, that they can't get a lot out of it.

Dale, Here's my problem: On the one hand you keep telling people here that they can't get much out of looking at the photographs of the masters, what you call those "dead dudes," though a number of them are quite alive, and then in the next breath you tell them they can learn a lot about photography from watching a Flip Wilson "bit," or reading about Minnesota Fats, a pool hustler. Somehow that kind of advice just doesn't seem to track. You also try to tell them that if they study the masters they'll get hooked into trying to copy the masters, and never develop their own styles. It bothers me that someone might actually believe you and avoid doing the thing most likely to teach him about photographic composition: looking at great photographs. I know you don't look at great photographs because I can see it in your work, but please don't point any of the beginners on these threads in that direction. It's not fair to them.

If you want to respond to this post, have at  it. I've stated my case as clearly as I know how, and I'm dropping it right here.
« Last Edit: June 12, 2009, 04:26:21 PM by RSL » Logged

dalethorn
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« Reply #36 on: June 12, 2009, 04:58:28 PM »
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Quote from: RSL
Dale, Here's my problem: On the one hand you keep telling people here that they can't get much out of looking at the photographs of the masters, what you call those "dead dudes," though a number of them are quite alive, and then in the next breath you tell them they can learn a lot about photography from watching a Flip Wilson "bit," or reading about Minnesota Fats, a pool hustler. Somehow that kind of advice just doesn't seem to track. You also try to tell them that if they study the masters they'll get hooked into trying to copy the masters, and never develop their own styles. It bothers me that someone might actually believe you and avoid doing the thing most likely to teach him about photographic composition: looking at great photographs. I know you don't look at great photographs because I can see it in your work, but please don't point any of the beginners on these threads in that direction. It's not fair to them.
If you want to respond to this post, have at  it. I've stated my case as clearly as I know how, and I'm dropping it right here.

I told you before, if you really meant to drop it, you'd click the ignore button, since we never agree anyway.  But you won't click ignore, because you are eagerly awaiting my next dose of wisdom.  I don't recommend the front-page people here over your "dead dudes" just because this is after all Luminous Landscape, I do it because they know who the masters are, and they're alive and teaching right here.

Now, if you do agree somehow that the front page people here really do know who the masters are, and given my hearty recommendation of them, that would contradict your statements above, yes?  You can't have it both ways, sir.
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