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Author Topic: Winter 2010  (Read 3442 times)
Timo Löfgren
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« on: January 11, 2010, 12:31:22 PM »
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.......
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RSL
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« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2010, 12:35:09 PM »
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Timo, Stunning! I don't go around calling things "awesome," but this is a case where I'll have to do that. Awesome!
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PhillyPhotographer
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« Reply #2 on: January 11, 2010, 12:35:38 PM »
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Quote from: Timo Löfgren
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I really like it.
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Eric Myrvaagnes
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« Reply #3 on: January 11, 2010, 12:52:41 PM »
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Ditto! Exquisite!
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-Eric Myrvaagnes

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dwood
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« Reply #4 on: January 11, 2010, 02:06:35 PM »
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That's just lovely Timo. I often find pictures like this (less is more) to be the most intriguing.
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kikashi
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« Reply #5 on: January 12, 2010, 02:45:38 AM »
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Very beautiful. Minimalism seems to flourish in winter.

Jeremy
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stamper
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« Reply #6 on: January 12, 2010, 03:17:59 AM »
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Quote from: RSL
Timo, Stunning! I don't go around calling things "awesome," but this is a case where I'll have to do that. Awesome!

I have looked at this image several times and I would be interested in why you find it "awesome"? I feel it needs an explanation. Personally I find it uninteresting but I am willing to be educated about it.
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Rob C
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« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2010, 03:33:22 AM »
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Quote from: kikashi
Very beautiful. Minimalism seems to flourish in winter.

Jeremy



That's why you should never buy underwear in the winter, Jeremy. It won't fit you in summer.

Rob C
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Rob C
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« Reply #8 on: January 12, 2010, 03:34:37 AM »
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Quote from: Timo Löfgren
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Can't beat dem thirds!

Rob C
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RSL
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« Reply #9 on: January 12, 2010, 07:04:29 AM »
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Quote from: stamper
I have looked at this image several times and I would be interested in why you find it "awesome"? I feel it needs an explanation. Personally I find it uninteresting but I am willing to be educated about it.

Stamper, It's probably a matter of taste. Some would like it. Some wouldn't. To me it's a fine demonstration of the power of minimalism. It's delicate and exquisite with everything in it muted except for the trunk of the tree, which anchors the tones. As Rob just pointed out, the rule of thirds works here. The triangular tree's about a third of the way from the left of the picture, and it's offset by an understated diagonal rise in the snowbank on the right. As I've said before, I'm not a fan of rule-based composition, but this is a case where it works very well, though I'd bet Timo's composition was intuitive rather than rule based.

And I've just given the kind of explanation I'd hate if I were listening to someone else try to explain why a picture works. In the end, the thing that really matters is the transcendental "ah!" you get when you look at it. There really isn't any way to explain that. It's either there or it isn't.


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Eric Myrvaagnes
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« Reply #10 on: January 12, 2010, 08:31:10 AM »
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Quote from: RSL
And I've just given the kind of explanation I'd hate if I were listening to someone else try to explain why a picture works. In the end, the thing that really matters is the transcendental "ah!" you get when you look at it. There really isn't any way to explain that. It's either there or it isn't.
Right on!. Rules can be useful, but they never make the picture. To paraphrase somebody or other, "If I need to explain it, you ain't never going to get it!"

Eric


P.S. The image is stunning, take my word for it.   

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-Eric Myrvaagnes

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RSL
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« Reply #11 on: January 12, 2010, 09:00:35 AM »
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Timo, I see that the B&W magazine 2010 portfolio contest closed its doors to entries on December 31st. I sure hope you have a portfolio in that contest.
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EduPerez
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« Reply #12 on: January 12, 2010, 09:03:10 AM »
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Quote from: stamper
I have looked at this image several times and I would be interested in why you find it "awesome"? I feel it needs an explanation. Personally I find it uninteresting but I am willing to be educated about it.

Far from trying to educate anyone, but I can tell you why I like it very much.

That photograph creates an atmosphere and tells lots of things, you can clearly see the scene with all its details, it just takes you there; but it also contains the absolute minimum information required for that, it is completely void of any superficial or unneeded element.
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Justan
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« Reply #13 on: January 12, 2010, 09:47:10 AM »
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Quote from: RSL
Stamper, It's probably a matter of taste. Some would like it. Some wouldn't. To me it's a fine demonstration of the power of minimalism. It's delicate and exquisite with everything in it muted except for the trunk of the tree, which anchors the tones. As Rob just pointed out, the rule of thirds works here. The triangular tree's about a third of the way from the left of the picture, and it's offset by an understated diagonal rise in the snowbank on the right. As I've said before, I'm not a fan of rule-based composition, but this is a case where it works very well, though I'd bet Timo's composition was intuitive rather than rule based.

And I've just given the kind of explanation I'd hate if I were listening to someone else try to explain why a picture works. In the end, the thing that really matters is the transcendental "ah!" you get when you look at it. There really isn't any way to explain that. It's either there or it isn't.


This kind of work requires a receptive audience. Sometimes I find minimalist stuff, no matter how well done, painfully tedious, and other times it is able to completely capture my attention.

This site has a number of photographers, Timo amongst them, who have a fabulous sense of this kind of composition. No matter if one likes the style or not, a lot can be learned by observation and attempts to do similar things.

A book I bought recently named "Photoshop Fine Art Effects Cookbook" (thanks for the reference Bill!) has a section they call “Tranquil Landscapes” that deals with what the authors call a “the minimalist approach of Japanese design.” This briefly addresses some techniques used to achieve minimalist ends.

Due to several works I've seen here, if we ever get a local snow dump I'm gonna do a series along the lines of some of the minimalist stuff I've seen here. Probably won’t do the concept justice but it will make for a starting point.
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stamper
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« Reply #14 on: January 12, 2010, 10:04:21 AM »
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Quote from: Eric Myrvaagnes
Right on!. Rules can be useful, but they never make the picture. To paraphrase somebody or other, "If I need to explain it, you ain't never going to get it!"

Eric


P.S. The image is stunning, take my word for it. 

Thanks for the feedback. As stated it is a matter of taste? Just because the rule of thirds is being used it doesn't make it a good image? I have been out in the snow recently and seen similar scenes. I wouldn't for one moment thought to take one of them because it looks just like a tree covered in snow. Perhaps I am looking for something more positive? As to the remark

"If I need to explain it, you ain't never going to get it!"

I thought that this forum is all about explaining and understanding. The first few comments on the thread praised the image without anyone explaining why. This thread from a few days ago addressed this.

http://luminous-landscape.com/forum/index....showtopic=40661

It seems that the good thoughts expressed has gone unheeded by some of the posters?

Edit. I have just had another look at the image and I still don't see anything that I like about it.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2010, 10:07:46 AM by stamper » Logged

tokengirl
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« Reply #15 on: January 12, 2010, 10:55:08 AM »
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Quote from: stamper
As stated it is a matter of taste?

I think that's exactly it.  If a particular image or type of image is not your cup of tea, there's probably not a lot of explaining that can be done to change your mind, and there's nothing wrong with that.  For example, many people love the "HDR look", but I usually find it painful to look at.  Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

FWIW, I happen to love the photo, I enjoy these types of images very much.
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dwood
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« Reply #16 on: January 12, 2010, 11:23:33 AM »
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Quote from: stamper
Edit. I have just had another look at the image and I still don't see anything that I like about it.

I'm drawn to this image and I get a real sense of 'being there'. It has emotional impact for me. I like the simplicity and elegance of the image. On the other hand, I wouldn't try to talk you into liking it stamper. That's your call, of course. Just goes to show how subjective photography, and any art form, is. No right or wrong responses, really.
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iancl
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« Reply #17 on: January 12, 2010, 11:31:38 AM »
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Quote from: stamper
Edit. I have just had another look at the image and I still don't see anything that I like about it.

Alright, I'll try for a more extended description of why I also think this is a strong image.

For me, a lot of what I'm looking for in an image is some sort of emotional impact or connection with/through the image upon viewing it. I am also interested in the image holding my attention for more than an instant. Images that are visually stunning often don't have the ability to be engaging for a longer period. I find that Timo's image, here, succeeds on both of these fronts.  I've been back to this page several times and viewed/experienced this image for almost all of Minor White's suggested 30 minutes and I still find the image provocative and engaging. I would happily live with it longer.

Timo's photograph manages to express so much about winter with so few elements. The frost and ice clinging to the branches of the tree and outlining its form make for visually stimulating components of the image. Due to the minimal number of elements in the composition and the gloriously clean background, I find that I can really let my eyes rest upon the ice-coated tree and absorb the intricacy of the details there. However, I find that what is really important is how clearly the fragile and usually fleeting display of the ice expresses the delicate beauty of winter. The clean purity of the blanket of snow conveys so much about the power of winter. The silence of a snow-covered landscape can almost be heard (or, rather, not heard) through Timo's image. I also find here, a reference to the power of snow to isolate and to subdue. I feel Timo has expressed this less joyous side of nature through his choice to keep the contrasts low and keeping this slightly underexposed. This allows the sky to feel somewhat heavy and closed in. The toning he has applied works well to accentuate these elements of the composition.  

Part of what makes this image so successful for me is that it achieves all of this with such a minimalist composition. It is fully engaging despite having such a paucity of elements. Clearly, it has just enough subtle detail to remain compelling for long periods. The variations of tone in the foreground snow strike me as especially nicely maintained. Moreover, I think many underestimate how difficult it is to find such clean, minimal scenes. Despite loving this sort of compositional structure and always looking for it, I find it is hard to locate such clean horizon lines and isolated elements. I often imagine it would be easier in a less flat landscape (I'm in southern Ontario) where rolling hills (or more) would give you the ability to get down below your subjects and isolate them more easily. However, that is merely a supposition.

I will now join a number of the other posters and say that there really is simply an issue of taste here. Either you like and enjoy minimal compositions with sparse elements or you do not. Do you like Beethoven or Arvo Pärt? Mahler or Satie? Monet or Mondrian? Klimt or Klee? Rubens or Rothko? Ansel Adams or Sugimoto?

If you feel interested in exploring similar work, I might suggest some of the work of Michael Kenna. His most recent work from Hokkaido comes to mind looking at Timo's image here. Even his earlier Hokkaido portfolio is worth a look too. You could also check out Josef Hofflehner's portfolio; especially his snowscapes. There are plenty of other names I could suggest, but looking at those portfolios would be a good grounding in a similar style. I think Timo's image here achieves much of the best of those other examples.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2010, 11:34:59 AM by iancl » Logged

wolfnowl
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« Reply #18 on: January 12, 2010, 12:14:37 PM »
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Very nice!

Mike.
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John R
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« Reply #19 on: January 12, 2010, 12:19:36 PM »
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I think Timo is just a good photographer. He can see well and  practices the art of seeing and incorporates good visual design. They do teach this in schools and it comes down to us through ancient art and painting in particular. The type or style or genre is not as relevant as good visual design and incorporating cultural expression- conveying something about what we see and what it means to us. We often are not conscious of the effects of an image until we review it later. If we recognize something and like it or see it as particularly expressive, we try to incorporate it and it becomes part of our conscious psyche and we can use it in a more deliberate way. This is an ongoing process for any serious photographer. I will take Timo's image over most postcard images any day, despite the fact I also like postcard images and do appreciate how well they were taken. I just appreciate the subtlety of this image more because it expresses much more than most postcard-like images with their sunny blue skies.

JMR
« Last Edit: January 12, 2010, 01:51:14 PM by John R » Logged
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