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Author Topic: Working the engine  (Read 1046 times)
Dave (Isle of Skye)
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Don't mistake lack of talent for genius.


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« on: April 28, 2011, 08:18:40 AM »
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Took this image a couple of years ago, as I wandered around a local steam rally. It seems to work better in b&w, as I suppose it suits the age and nostalgia of steam. Again I put this into a couple of local competitions to only watch it bomb out completely – ho hum no change there then.

You know I often wonder if showing your work to other photographers is not always the best way of finding out if your image is actually any good or not. Now why would I say that? Well because we photographers, can and will critique an image in ways much deeper than the general public would ever do or even know how to do. So when you do show an image to a non-photographer, they will generally react instantly with either "yes I like it" or "no I don’t like it", which is quite often as deep as their selective and appreciative process goes.

So I suppose what I am saying, is that being critiqued by fellow photographers is one thing and is a good place to start, but it only gives you an idea of how other photographers think and critique, which in turn could bear no relationship what so ever to what the public think.

So why is this important? Well if you ever you do aspire to sell your work (as many of us do), then it will be the general public that buys your work and not fellow photographers.

Food for thought I think…?

Photobloke
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John R Smith
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« Reply #1 on: April 28, 2011, 08:42:43 AM »
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Bloke

I'm bound to like this, aren't I, it's right up my street. It looks like a Fowler compound ploughing engine. It's got a nice gritty mood to it - hot day, hot engine, dungarees rolled down, bit of a problem with the cylinder drain cocks perhaps. That lovely smell of anthracite, steam and hot oil.

As far as the rest of your commentary goes, I think Geoffrey James summed it up when he said that there's no accounting for taste. And if you aim to sell your work to the general public, then the more cliched and garishly tasteless the better, it would seem.

John
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« Reply #2 on: April 28, 2011, 11:38:29 AM »
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I like the image also.  It leaves me wanting to see more in a documentary series.

I make my living selling to the general public and it is true that mundane and cliches are the rule of the day.  They seem to like it better if they have seen it 1000 times before and can feel safe in their purchase.  That said, their money spends the same as the money from a person with a MFA.

Often photographers have split personalities...doing one's own work and then also doing the work the public will buy.  A few seem to find a place where both are possible.  I never have.
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popnfresh
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« Reply #3 on: April 28, 2011, 09:51:19 PM »
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So how many prints of this photograph have you sold?
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Dave (Isle of Skye)
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« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2011, 03:01:08 PM »
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So how many prints of this photograph have you sold?

Sorry it has taken me over a week to reply, been on my hols to Norfolk - but in answer to you question above, none of that image, but then again I have never had it up for sale or thought it worth selling to be honest. It was just a club competition image really and from a couple of years ago and one that did not do well in the competition either - ho hum..

But yes I do sell my 'best' work and (gets out his trumpet and starts to play it loudly) sales seem to be gathering momentum over the last year or two. I never really had the idea that I could ever make a living out of photography, but then, having done very well in an international competition last year, I have since been also asked to do some paid work for a very large international company. So who knows, if it all goes well over the coming weeks.

Also on the subject of 'best' work, I assume we all have images that we will hold back from any on-line forum, simply because we hope to sell it rather than give it away by having it reviewed and therefore downloadable, even in a low res version. So I (and I assume you do to) would never show an image that I thought to be saleable, other than as a mounted print in a gallery with a price tag attached to it.

Photobloke
« Last Edit: May 09, 2011, 09:12:17 AM by photobloke » Logged

Fine Art Photography on the Misty Isle of Skye
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