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Author Topic: Street photography & cameras.  (Read 21631 times)
Rob C
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« Reply #80 on: July 02, 2013, 05:43:00 AM »
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If someone is an experienced photographer technically speaking then I don't see the point of trying to worship/copy these forgotten "masters" especially when you can't cover the ground they did? Do what suits you and if you are "successful" then you will have achieved something that is different from them.


Part of the difficulty is that however good one may be, unless one knows something about the past, then one has no measure of where one stands in perspective to the rest of the snappers ploughing the same field.

In fact, one would probably not even be aware that one was in any particular field. And pretty much everyone, unless spaced out, is in a field along with others. Oh that we might be so unique as to have our own field!

Rob C
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RFPhotography
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« Reply #81 on: July 02, 2013, 06:02:24 AM »
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Google William Klein and go to "images" in Google. Here's an example: http://londonartreviews.files.wordpress.com/2013/01/web-williamklein_bikini_moscow_1959.jpg

I did some Googling yesterday after seeing you mention him and found this article, http://www.dpreview.com/articles/0160296055/eric-kim-10-lessons-william-klein-has-taught-me-about-street-photography. Not really sure what he did can be called 'street' because in many of his shots it seems the subjects knew he was there and were reacting to his presence or the shots were posed. 
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RSL
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« Reply #82 on: July 02, 2013, 06:37:32 AM »
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Exactly my point.
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stamper
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« Reply #83 on: July 02, 2013, 07:13:23 AM »
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Part of the difficulty is that however good one may be, unless one knows something about the past, then one has no measure of where one stands in perspective to the rest of the snappers ploughing the same field.

In fact, one would probably not even be aware that one was in any particular field. And pretty much everyone, unless spaced out, is in a field along with others. Oh that we might be so unique as to have our own field!

Rob C

There have been a lot of famous names mentioned in this thread. No matter how good I will eventually come then I don't see myself ploughing fields among the "elite" mentioned nor will I strive to. If I do show my efforts on here or to other photographers then I think I will be a little peeved that someone would mention their names. Rob if you posted an image with respect to Street then if someone said that wasn't as good as Cartier Bresson how would you react?
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Rob C
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« Reply #84 on: July 02, 2013, 11:20:26 AM »
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There have been a lot of famous names mentioned in this thread. No matter how good I will eventually come then I don't see myself ploughing fields among the "elite" mentioned nor will I strive to. If I do show my efforts on here or to other photographers then I think I will be a little peeved that someone would mention their names. Rob if you posted an image with respect to Street then if someone said that wasn't as good as Cartier Bresson how would you react?


Well, for a start, I'm terrified of the concept of doing 'street' when it means shooting total strangers face-to-face in possibly dangerous circumstances, such as doon 'n' oots which seems to be the basic idea today, though when HC-B and pals were doing it, it was usually for left-wing magazines and so that was okay, they were all supposedly in it together, the poor, the magazines (really?) and the photographers!

I did it twice: the first time when I was a trainee in the industrial photo unit and we were kidding around at work saying how easy press stuff was compared with industrial, and two of us went into Glasgow one night (separately) to get some pics to prove the point. We both came back with pics of some girls walking around doing nothing much. Safe options? Chicken? Yes!

The next time, I was in Rome visiting distant relatives and was at a birthday party. It was just at the time of Federico Fellini’s La Dolce Vita and paparazzo hadn’t yet made it into the English language. However, Italian magazines had been full of gossip column stuff for years - it was nothing new there. Anyway, after the party a bunch of us walked down the Via Veneto (celebrated in the movie) and as I had my camera and a flash with me, we decided to have a giggle. We walked down the street toward the US Embassy and Excelsior Hotel, down in front of the bars, and one of the girls pretended to be ‘someone’ and covered her face, waving at me yelling no pictures! no pictures! It was amusing enough at the time. However, as I wasn’t a good drinker then, I was certainly on a controlled high, and so I extended my attentions to several other ladies sitting at pavement tables here and there along the Via, and not a single table objected: every girl primped and posed as if she were about to audition for something. Amazing thing, a camera at night, and at the right time and place.

Of course, I had no idea who any of them was.

Many things really were possible in the 60s, and often just a matter of asking.

Even starlets/models were fair game there, and one day I happened upon something being filmed across from the Trevi and took a fancy to the wench being shot; at a break she walked over to a bar for a drink and I followed and asked her to let me shoot – she did, not a question, nothing. She ‘played’ with one of those wall-telephone units and I got my exposures. Those were indeed the days, regardless of what the young turks tell us now.

But, how would I feel in the situation you quoted, where other snappers got mentioned? Honestly, that’s not a difficult thing to handle: if anything, it’s nice to think your work brings stars to their minds.

I used to do a lot of fashion work for House of Fraser. On my first visit to meet the head honcho I took along my book (we used to call them portfolios) and discovered that the guy was new to Glasgow. He’d been a top manager in Harrods but had been sent up to Scotland to resolve some problems in the group’s northern stores. Anyway, he used to commission photography for Harrods and his first few words to me were never forgotten: this is just as good as the stuff I can buy in London! So yeah, it can be nice as well as the opposite. Trouble was, after he resolved the store problems in Scotland he was sent to do the same in Ireland, and the next manager never commissioned anything, from anyone. A, effin’, men! For me, Buchanan Street died.

But personal trumpet tuning aside, I don’t think it matters at all what others think of your work unless you are pro and in a pro situation. (Compliments are ever nice, of course, and one enjoys them if and when they come.) And even there, it all comes down to personal likes and dislikes, which is why not all clients use the same snapper. Cost also counts with some, and probably more so today than in my era.

Rob C


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RSL
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« Reply #85 on: July 02, 2013, 03:33:48 PM »
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There have been a lot of famous names mentioned in this thread. No matter how good I will eventually come then I don't see myself ploughing fields among the "elite" mentioned nor will I strive to.

Ah yes. Brings back memories. . . of the ten years my wife had her gallery. Almost every day there'd be at least one callow youth coming in with some absolutely uninteresting crap, spouting the idea that you don't need to know anything about art to make art.

Now, I'm not suggesting you need to go to school and get a degree in art. In fact, if you really are an artist that's probably about the worst idea you could come up with. But you need to learn technique and results. As far as technique goes, in photography, if you can read the manual that came with your camera, then, as Elliott Erwitt said, "there's nothing to teach." But results come from "the 'elite' mentioned," and you need to spend days (and nights) reaping the fields sown and ploughed by those "elites." You need to know what went before -- partly to avoid trying to re-invent the wheel, but more importantly to absorb the essence of what it is that makes you react transcendentally to a particular image. Once you've absorbed that, you know what to look for when you try to create your own art. There are no shortcuts in learning to produce art.
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Jim Kasson
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« Reply #86 on: July 02, 2013, 07:15:33 PM »
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If someone is an experienced photographer technically speaking then I don't see the point of trying to worship/copy these forgotten "masters" especially when you can't cover the ground they did? Do what suits you and if you are "successful" then you will have achieved something that is different from them.

I agree about worshiping and copying, but I'd make an exception for attempting to copy someone's work as an exercise to get inside their head.  Try it sometime; for me. it's nowhere near as easy as it seems it should be.

That doesn't mean that you should ignore those who went before. The old saw about standing on the shoulders of those who preceded us only works if we look around to find shoulders to stand on, and if we don't think that we can’t learn anything from the work of others.

Even if you think that you can learn faster following your own muse and having your artistic sensibilities unsullied by contact with the work of others, you can’t expect that your audience will enjoy such splendid isolation. People have been making photographs for more than a century and a half. Photography is the most common form of flat art. Every art director, gallery owner, museum curator, book publisher, and magazine editor you encounter will have experience with the art photography canon that varies from moderate to encyclopedic. Most of your potential customers will be at least somewhat informed (interior decorators possibly excepted). They will all compare your work to that of others. If you’ve done that yourself, you can avoid some really awkward conversations.

Jim
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PhillyPhotographer
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« Reply #87 on: July 03, 2013, 11:33:20 PM »
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No, it really isn't.

Actually it is. But i'm more of a practice photographer than theory. But in the end it all beats Rob C's fear of everything and his never ending rules.
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Rob C
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« Reply #88 on: July 04, 2013, 03:31:17 AM »
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Actually it is. But i'm more of a practice photographer than theory. But in the end it all beats Rob C's fear of everything and his never ending rules.


Goodness, you make him sound like Las Vegas!

;-)

Rob C
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RFPhotography
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« Reply #89 on: July 04, 2013, 07:33:04 AM »
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Actually it is. But i'm more of a practice photographer than theory. But in the end it all beats Rob C's fear of everything and his never ending rules.

As am I. 

But back to the other idea of the comment, it is if you buy into that very restrictive definition of what street photography is.  Many don't. 
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ripgriffith
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« Reply #90 on: July 04, 2013, 12:06:34 PM »
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As am I. 

But back to the other idea of the comment, it is if you buy into that very restrictive definition of what street photography is.  Many don't. 
I take pictures, period.  Call it what you will.   It's your box, not mine.
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RFPhotography
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« Reply #91 on: July 04, 2013, 12:34:58 PM »
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I take pictures, period.  Call it what you will.   It's your box, not mine.

Well, no, it's not 'my box'.  That's the point I'm trying to make.  That the genre of street photography isn't as restrictive as some purport it to be. 

As for the 'box' or classification, it can and does matter.  If a client asks for a mountain 'landscape' it would be difficult to justify sending a 'portrait'.
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Sam789
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« Reply #92 on: July 23, 2013, 02:10:56 AM »
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Its really nice street photography.thanks for sharing this blog.
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ripgriffith
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« Reply #93 on: July 23, 2013, 02:37:37 AM »
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Well, no, it's not 'my box'.  That's the point I'm trying to make.  That the genre of street photography isn't as restrictive as some purport it to be. 

As for the 'box' or classification, it can and does matter.  If a client asks for a mountain 'landscape' it would be difficult to justify sending a 'portrait'.
If you sell your work that way, then fine, put it in boxes.  It's not my intention to put down that kind of photography; it's just not what I do.  I don't shoot for "clients"; people buy my works in galleries and what it is is what it is.
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