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Author Topic: MF Entry with PhaseOne ?  (Read 5661 times)
Steve Hendrix
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« Reply #40 on: April 02, 2013, 10:07:58 PM »
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Hey everyone,

I had the opportunity to use the Hasselblad H4D and PhaseOne P45+ and IQ160 on several occasions.
I'm really stoked by the image quality they deliver but felt really comfortable using the PhaseOne system.

So I've been thinking about making the move into the medium format world for about a year at least.
Living in uncertain times right now I'm not sure if it is a good idea to spend so much money.
I'm just finishing my bachelor thesis in about 2 months and from there on everything still seems doubtful in terms of future work or internship abroad.
I'm not a starving student are anything like that. I do have to money for a medium format system and I do not need to raise a credit to buy me into the medium format world.
But with all that in mind I was thinking about how good the resale value of a PhaseOne medium format system is right now.
It might be the case that I'll need that money in one or two years and will have to sell the whole system.
So does anyone of you know anything about the resale value? Any experiences?
Other than that where would you sell the system? Would you insert it on a forum like this or does PhaseOne buy those used systems?

Also I'm thinking about an IQ160 or IQ260 right now.
I'm not shooting a lot in a studio... most of the time I'm on location and need to judge the image on the screen. So the P+ series is not an option for me right now.

I hope someone can help me with my decision.
Thanks a lit in advance and Happy Easter to everyone!

Sebastian


Hi Sebastian -

Anytime a client mentions concerns over money, there is reason for caution. You may have your own reasons for your financial concern. You are probably the best shepherd for those concerns. However, one thing for sure - digital camera depreciation is very real. Typically digital cameras can lose 2/3 of their value in just a few short years. This goes for all digital cameras, not just medium format. However, medium format costs more, so the dollar cost of the loss of value will of course be higher. You just need to know for yourself if your purchase puts you into a position you'll regret later. It may or it may not, you'll know more than others not as familiar with your circumstances. But don't count on the resale value of any digital camera holding up so well.

That said, in general, I like to think of medium format digital products as long term investments. They are not just a computer that takes pictures, as Nick's friend said. Computers really only do one thing of value - which is make fast calculations. Cameras, on the other hand - even digital cameras - create images of a certain quality. From that standpoint, if the usability is adequate and the image quality suffices for anything you would use it for, then the longevity of a digital camera can far exceed a computer. From that standpoint, a digital camera could actually have greater value and even usability, compared to a film-based camera. I have many clients using the same digital back they purchased 5,6,7 years ago - damn them!  Cheesy

Certainties:

*The digital camera you purchase will lose a majority of value over 3 years or longer
*If it is medium format digital, it could be a big number!
*If you buy what will resolve your needs regardless of whatever comes next, you may be ok and use that product for a very long time
*If you feel some concern about needing that investment back in cash in 2-3 years, listen to those concerns and proceed with caution. Don't rush things.


Steve Hendrix
Capture Integration
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Steve Hendrix
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MFDB: Phase One/Leaf-Mamiya/Hasselblad/Leica/Sinar
TechCam: Alpa/Cambo/Arca Swiss/Sinar
Direct: 404.543.8475
torger
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« Reply #41 on: April 03, 2013, 02:45:58 AM »
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I am with Ken R and FredBGG on this point: no camera impedes a competent, serious photographer from working slowly and deliberately if and when that is what one wants, so that should never be taken seriously as an argument for buying a bigger, heavier, more expensive camera, or in favor of a camera that lacks automation and convenience features that can easily be ignored, but which might help to catch some fleeting opportunities.

It depends a bit on the photographer's personality. I can find it less stressful to use my tech camera because it's limited to a certain genre, I can't do a quick wildlife shot or similar. With my Canon there's more opportunities, and that can put a little stress and less concentration of what I'm out there to do. I also find it a bit romantic to work with an all-mechanical camera. I simply like it. If I wasn't lazy I'd probably shoot 4x5" film :-).

However, I have noted now when I've worked more with my tech camera I have adopted the same way to work with my Canon, ie I come home with fewer but (hopefully) better images. I would also say that I'm glad that I started out with a DSLR, since you then can explore more, take more "random" shots and learn at a much faster rate than I could with my tech cam. Now when I've started to find my style I can work with the tech cam confidently.

So I do think that "slow & cumbersome" can be turned into an advantage in an emotional way. It's similar to why someone would buy a classic motorcycle instead of a Japanese sports bike.

I find it much easier to use these emotional arguments on a tech camera than on a 645 MF-DSLR though as the latter is so similar to a 135 DSLR. On a 645 MF-DSLR I'd like to have all automated features I could get.
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torger
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« Reply #42 on: April 03, 2013, 02:55:58 AM »
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Why slow down? Is the smile on the face of the girl going to get sunnier if I need another 2 seconds for a Mamiya to focus?

Slow does suck for people photography Smiley. Slow tripod work with geared head is for landscape and still life and similar. In that case I find it more rewarding to slow down and really think about the composition, but also that is personal.
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tho_mas
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« Reply #43 on: April 03, 2013, 04:42:24 AM »
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Slow does suck for people photography

http://cdn.jolie.de/bilder/lavazza-2012-mark-seliger-600x800-1319420.jpg

http://images2.fanpop.com/image/photos/14400000/Katy-Perry-Mark-Seliger-Photoshoot-Behind-The-Scenes-katy-perry-14453377-600-375.jpg
« Last Edit: April 03, 2013, 04:49:54 AM by tho_mas » Logged
torger
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« Reply #44 on: April 03, 2013, 05:22:54 AM »
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Nice images :-). Good to point out that with professional models that can hold a pose it's easier to use slower systems, and of course MF is most often used in professional contexts with professional models, good lighting etc. Some still do portraits with large format film with very nice results. I would not say it is an advantage to have a slower system in that case though.

It would be interesting to know if the first image where a tech cam and the dancer is pictured actually became an image, or if the image is the image shown. It looks like the perspective on the model from the tech camera would be very strange, wide angle low position and all. And the lavazza cup would not be showing :-).
« Last Edit: April 03, 2013, 05:25:01 AM by torger » Logged
tho_mas
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« Reply #45 on: April 03, 2013, 06:12:43 AM »
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Nice images :-). Good to point out that with professional models that can hold a pose it's easier to use slower systems, and of course MF is most often used in professional contexts with professional models, good lighting etc. Some still do portraits with large format film with very nice results. I would not say it is an advantage to have a slower system in that case though.

It would be interesting to know if the first image where a tech cam and the dancer is pictured actually became an image, or if the image is the image shown. It looks like the perspective on the model from the tech camera would be very strange, wide angle low position and all. And the lavazza cup would not be showing :-).
In this scene it looks like he finally managed to get the cup into the composition :-) http://www.gq-magazine.co.uk/entertainment/articles/2011-11/07/gq-art-mark-seliger-photography-interview-lavazza-calendar/viewgallery/0 .
Not sure whether or not the capture taken with the LF camera made it into the campaign. However there's a series of celebrity photos by MS that was shot on LF (AFAIK): http://www.artnet.com/artwork/426202939/425206608/mark-seliger-david-bowie-new-york.html
http://img854.imageshack.us/img854/2323/markseliger.jpg
 
I also don't think it's an advantage to use a slower system... but given the powerful expression of theses image I'd say it is certainly not a disadvantage. In this particular case I suspect the whole workflow (including the camera used) contributed to the atmosphere.... which I would assume is one of the key factors to create such portraits...
Oh, and BTW... the images are also sharp... even without liveview ;-)

I didn't want to prove anything with these images. Just point to someone who uses any kind of format. There are also (some few) sports photographers using LF...

As far as "slowing down"... I never understood why a certain camera used may slow you down (or vice versa makes you shoot faster/more). MF and LF sure requires some more technical precission, okay. But to me it totally depends on the scene, the motif. I've taken Polaroids that took me 4 hours or more to arrange. I've taken MFD images that took me 6 months to capture (obviously that was not the time needed to get the scene in focus :-) ... ). I've also taken photos with my tech cam and digiback that didn't take much longer than 2 or 3 Minutes. It always depends on what and how you shoot ... it depends on what you (are trying to) create.
« Last Edit: April 03, 2013, 06:27:09 AM by tho_mas » Logged
eronald
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« Reply #46 on: April 03, 2013, 09:20:09 AM »
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His subject is a dancer; dancers are a delight to work with because they understand that getting it right needs work and repetition - models are "I'm beautiful" starving bundles of insecurity, which is why I think a dSLR is what you need to catch the 1/10th of a second in the day when they feel strong enough to stand up and can manage a smile Smiley

I think this thread has just about run its straight course and will now meander off Smiley

Edmund

In this scene it looks like he finally managed to get the cup into the composition :-) http://www.gq-magazine.co.uk/entertainment/articles/2011-11/07/gq-art-mark-seliger-photography-interview-lavazza-calendar/viewgallery/0 .
Not sure whether or not the capture taken with the LF camera made it into the campaign. However there's a series of celebrity photos by MS that was shot on LF (AFAIK): http://www.artnet.com/artwork/426202939/425206608/mark-seliger-david-bowie-new-york.html
http://img854.imageshack.us/img854/2323/markseliger.jpg
 
I also don't think it's an advantage to use a slower system... but given the powerful expression of theses image I'd say it is certainly not a disadvantage. In this particular case I suspect the whole workflow (including the camera used) contributed to the atmosphere.... which I would assume is one of the key factors to create such portraits...
Oh, and BTW... the images are also sharp... even without liveview ;-)

I didn't want to prove anything with these images. Just point to someone who uses any kind of format. There are also (some few) sports photographers using LF...

As far as "slowing down"... I never understood why a certain camera used may slow you down (or vice versa makes you shoot faster/more). MF and LF sure requires some more technical precission, okay. But to me it totally depends on the scene, the motif. I've taken Polaroids that took me 4 hours or more to arrange. I've taken MFD images that took me 6 months to capture (obviously that was not the time needed to get the scene in focus :-) ... ). I've also taken photos with my tech cam and digiback that didn't take much longer than 2 or 3 Minutes. It always depends on what and how you shoot ... it depends on what you (are trying to) create.
« Last Edit: April 03, 2013, 09:23:13 AM by eronald » Logged

Edmund Ronald, Ph.D. 
JoeKitchen
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« Reply #47 on: April 03, 2013, 09:37:49 AM »
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Can you make great photographs of people with a tech camera?  Even with an 8x10 view camera using film when your subject is not a professional model?

Master Series: Greg Heisler and Michael Phelps for Time Magazine

In my opinion, it improtant to know what you want and the best tool to get you there, which is why Greg Heisler is considered one of the best.  Saying that a tech camera is not good for people is only true part of the time.  And as much as I like a tech camera, I know that for quick details shots, it is not optimal.  That is when it is time to break out the Canon (maybe a Mamiya RZ if the budget ever allows for it).  
« Last Edit: April 03, 2013, 10:03:20 AM by JoeKitchen » Logged

Joe Kitchen
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tho_mas
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« Reply #48 on: April 03, 2013, 10:01:24 AM »
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His subject is a dancer; dancers are a delight to work with because they understand that getting it right needs work and repetition - models are "I'm beautiful" starving bundles of insecurity, which is why I think a dSLR is what you need to catch the 1/10th of a second in the day when they feel strong enough to stand up and can manage a smile Smiley
what you are saying here is the photographer is a "technician" who has to release the shutter in the right moment. Actually what you are talking about is the definition of a snapshot. Of course that's also part of the art. But just a small part. If a model is really that tensed I would say it's the photographers job to act like a "director" and to create (or at least stimulate) a certain moment...
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amsp
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« Reply #49 on: April 03, 2013, 10:46:42 AM »
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...models are "I'm beautiful" starving bundles of insecurity, which is why I think a dSLR is what you need to catch the 1/10th of a second in the day when they feel strong enough to stand up and can manage a smile Smiley

This has got be some of the most ignorant and offensive crap I've ever read around here, it's blatantly obvious you've never shot with an actual model.
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eronald
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« Reply #50 on: April 03, 2013, 01:56:41 PM »
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This has got be some of the most ignorant and offensive crap I've ever read around here, it's blatantly obvious you've never shot with an actual model.

Well, all I can say is that I've photographed models and dancers, and I loved every minute of working with the dancers. They came on time, they worked well with my make up artist - her being an ex-dancer helped - they held the pose and repeated an action when asked, and produced a sparkling smile on request, and were extremely professional in every way, up to making suggestions and making their opinion clearly heard if something displeased them. As far as models are concerned, almost all of the ones *I* managed to hire in my short career were a real pain, eg. arrived late, got into problems with the make up artist, brought male friends/bodyguards onto the set who were unmanageable, were hard to direct and refused to show a decent attitude in front of the camera when asked. One occasion I remember particularly vividly was a girl who was no fun at all, who in fact confided to my assistant that the agency threatened she would be fired because of her weight, so she hadn't eaten for two days which of course made her sick. I am sorry, I'd prefer to work with a dancer than a model every day of the week, and you can tell me I'm ignorant and offensive, but I prefer people who help get the job done pleasantly and leave everyone feeling happy rather than people who find various ways to ruin my day and create tension with others. BTW, my sets were for small editorial or catalog shoots with a single model, one make-up artist, two fashion people usually (eg. stylist+art director or designer+seamstress), and one assistant.

Edmund
« Last Edit: April 03, 2013, 02:24:26 PM by eronald » Logged

Edmund Ronald, Ph.D. 
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« Reply #51 on: April 03, 2013, 02:26:59 PM »
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Well, all I can say is that I've photographed models and dancers, and I loved every minute of working with the dancers. They came on time, they worked well with my make up artist - her being an ex-dancer helped - they held the pose and repeated an action when asked, and produced a sparkling smile on request, and were extremely professional in every way, up to making suggestions an making their opinion clearly heard. As far as models are concerned, almost all of the ones *I* managed to hire in my short career were a real pain, eg. arrived late, got into problems with the make up artist, brought friends/bodyguards onto the set who were unmanageable, were hard to direct and refused to show a decent attitude in front of the camera when asked. One occasion I remember particularly vividly was a girl who was no fun at all, who in fact confided to my assistant that had been threatened by the agency that she would be fired because of her weight, so she hadn't eaten for two days which of course made her sick. I am sorry, I'd prefer to work with a dancer than a model every day of the week, and please don't tell me I'm offensive if I prefer people who help get the job done pleasantly rather than people who find various ways to ruin my day. BTW, my sets were for small editorial or catalog shoots with a single model, one make-up artist, two fashion people usually (eg. stylist+art director), and one assistant.

Edmund

You might be able to sell that BS to someone who hasn't worked in the fashion business, but to someone who actually has it just comes off as absurd. Real models don't act like that, they are professionals just like those dancers you talk about, and would never work again if they acted like you claim. Neither do they bring friends/bodyguards to set, that sounds more like what you'd get if you're a creep with a camera cruising modelmayhem for "models" than if you're a working photographer using reputable agencies. Also, reputable agencies don't threaten their models to loose weight, they don't sign them in the first place. Having models that need to starve themselves to fit the measurements would be bad for business, as they would be unhealthy and tired all the time. The real fashion business is a very small world where everyone knows each other and word gets around quickly, the things you describe are just not feasible at all. The fact that you think it's ok to badmouth and belittle an entire industry of hardworking men and women that are as important to a successful shoot as anyone else on set (if not more), just so you can puff yourself up is not only pathetic, it's shameful. I can see why your "career" was short lived.


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Paul Ozzello
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« Reply #52 on: April 03, 2013, 02:31:18 PM »
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Probably a reaction to a cheesy pick up line...

Wink


almost all of the ones *I* managed to hire in my short career were a real pain, eg. arrived late, got into problems with the make up artist, brought male friends/bodyguards onto the set who were unmanageable,
Edmund
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fredjeang2
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« Reply #53 on: April 03, 2013, 02:41:38 PM »
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amsp is right. Profesional models from real agencies are really profesionals, and the higher you jump in the level, the higher the profesionalism is. No fanfare, just people working.
In my experience, the most reputated models have always been the more friendly with me as an assistant, no complains of any means on set, job done very well, while yes at lower levels you can find hassles
and posing but it does not last very long and wanabee girls who are playing this (arriving late, complaining, etc etc...) would be rejected and their carreer soon ended.

Now, on "managable", they are, but the photographer has to be at the same level. It's like if you want to ride a race horse, you need to train first with less "difficult" animals.
In any profession at the high level is the same.

In fact, the really profesional models are among the nicest person to work with I ever met.
« Last Edit: April 03, 2013, 02:47:09 PM by fredjeang2 » Logged
eronald
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« Reply #54 on: April 03, 2013, 02:44:54 PM »
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You might be able to sell that BS to someone who hasn't worked in the fashion business, but to someone who actually has it just comes off as absurd. Real models don't act like that, they are professionals just like those dancers you talk about, and would never work again if they acted like you claim. Neither do they bring friends/bodyguards to set, that sounds more like what you'd get if you're a creep with a camera cruising modelmayhem for "models" than if you're a working photographer using reputable agencies. Also, reputable agencies don't threaten their models to loose weight, they don't sign them in the first place. Having models that need to starve themselves to fit the measurements would be bad for business, as they would be unhealthy and tired all the time. The real fashion business is a very small world where everyone knows each other and word gets around quickly, the things you describe are just not feasible at all. The fact that you think it's ok to badmouth and belittle an entire industry of hardworking men and women that are as important to a successful shoot as anyone else on set (if not more), just so you can puff yourself up is not only pathetic, it's shameful. I can see why your "career" was short lived.





Of course you're right about the importance of the model; as regards the starving, well, it has got worse of late, especially in Paris.


Clements, who was Vogue Australia's top editor for 13 years, recounts on one occasion she didn't once see a top model eat a single meal on a three-day gig. Even worse, Clements recounted that on the last day of the job, the model could hardly hold herself up or keep her eyes open. She also claimed that “When a model who was getting good work in Australia starved herself down two sizes in order to be cast in the overseas shows ... the Vogue fashion office would say she’d become ‘Paris thin.’”


Lastly,  I'm sure everything unpleasant you say about me makes sense; I guess creeps like me just get on better with dancers than with models Smiley

Edmund
« Last Edit: April 03, 2013, 04:04:50 PM by eronald » Logged

Edmund Ronald, Ph.D. 
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« Reply #55 on: April 03, 2013, 03:07:52 PM »
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The fact that you think it's ok to badmouth and belittle an entire industry of hardworking men and women that are as important to a successful shoot as anyone else on set (if not more), just so you can puff yourself up is not only pathetic, it's shameful. I can see why your "career" was short lived.

Is that really necessary ?
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Gilgamesh
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« Reply #56 on: April 03, 2013, 04:11:09 PM »
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A good an interesting post.
I have a D800e with prime f1.4 lenses and as long as you fine tune them individually, they are quite something.
I also shoot a Mamiya 7.

I was looking at spending some of my windfall on a MFD system, I have owned a Blad V series and liked the whole process, like putting it on a tripod and slowing it down.

I shoot mostly on location and will be in Mongolia for while soon, so the whole size camera size is also important. I was interested in the Phase 1 argument and the Blad being a tad too big for anything outside on location.
Leaving aside the 645, which may not be a big enough increase in MB / quailty to slate the thirst of "more".

I note that Taylor-Lind shot this month's National Geographic article in China square - I believe a Mamiya6, which does seem the camera of choice for many of the Seven agency photographers and Chloe Dewe Mathews and others at Panos Pictures shoot with the M6.

Keep it going...
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fredjeang2
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« Reply #57 on: April 03, 2013, 05:28:39 PM »
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Is that really necessary ?

No it wasn't, it's been unecessary harsh.

But asmp pointed something that many times would need to be understood more. Many people tend to think that fashion is not art, that all models are anorexic victims, that's not real work but parade, that it's all empty. And it really isn't like that at all. This is a highly and extremely demanding profesional activity, with very serious people involved. I'm not in it any more and found a much more exciting-rewarding activity for my personal route but I won't desprestige fashion because having being inside for awhile I know it's damn hard, damn serious and profesional.

The problem, as it's been discussed in another thread, is that all a certain corny celeb BS lite imagery that has been associated with fashion has deformed everything and created clichés as well as bad image.
« Last Edit: April 03, 2013, 05:53:02 PM by fredjeang2 » Logged
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« Reply #58 on: April 03, 2013, 06:27:51 PM »
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Fred,

 I paid for my education as a scientist partly by writing. As a freelance journalist, for the first 10 years of that work,  I saw all the ugly sides of journalism, struggling and begging to be paid for published work, having my name taken off  articles and a staff member's name put on instead, having to pay bribes and kickbacks to get work, etc. I remember going to the office of the CEO of one group that owned 13 magazines and getting told that they "had blocked payment to freelances that month".

 That was nothing like the white gloves world of the top journalists where articles are commissioned on a phone call, signed when they appear, and invoices are paid. Strangely enough, once I had made a name for myself, things became that clean, everything got paid on time, but it took 10 years hard slog to get to this magical pure level of existence.

 My experience of photography leads me to believe that exactly the same situation holds in photography - you think my opinions of the *models* are bad? Well, sorry, the models are a bit flaky but they aren't evil. My really bad opinions concern the clients. I have a story I love to tell about a cosmetics rep sponsoring an "haute couture" show who asked me to shoot the show for free. Afterwards there was one particular iconic image that I retouched for an hour and blew up to A3 size and brought in. I said they could have it if they paid $10 for the paper. They said "they didn't know". I said ok, went to Habitat, bought a heavy metal frame, and told them they could "decide" whether they wanted the print but couldn't photocopy it - well, they broke the frame to copy the image, and prove they weren't going to pay $10 to an idiot photographer.


Edmund

No it wasn't, it's been unecessary harsh.

But asmp pointed something that many times would need to be understood more. Many people tend to think that fashion is not art, that all models are anorexic victims, that's not real work but parade, that it's all empty. And it really isn't like that at all. This is a highly and extremely demanding profesional activity, with very serious people involved. I'm not in it any more and found a much more exciting-rewarding activity for my personal route but I won't desprestige fashion because having being inside for awhile I know it's damn hard, damn serious and profesional.

The problem, as it's been discussed in another thread, is that all a certain corny celeb BS lite imagery that has been associated with fashion has deformed everything and created clichés as well as bad image.

« Last Edit: April 03, 2013, 06:38:31 PM by eronald » Logged

Edmund Ronald, Ph.D. 
fredjeang2
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« Reply #59 on: April 03, 2013, 06:38:01 PM »
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Fred,

 As a freelance journalist, for the first 15 years of working,  I saw all the ugly sides of journalism, struggling and begging to be paid for published work, having my name taken off  articles and a staff member's name put on instead, having to pay bribes and kickbacks to get work, etc, nothing like the white gloves world of the top journalists where articles are commissioned on a phone call, signed when they appear, and invoices are paid. Once I had made a name for myself, things became that clean, but it took 15 years hard slog.

 My experience of photography leads me to believe that exactly the same situation holds in photography - you think my opinions of the *models* are bad? Well, sorry, the models are a bit flaky but they aren't evil. My really bad opinions concern the clients. I have a story I love to tell about a cosmetics rep sponsoring an "haute couture" show who asked me to shoot the show for free. Afterwards there was one particular iconic image that I retouched for an hour and blew up to A3 size and brought in. I said they could have it if they paid $10 for the paper. They said "they didn't know". I said ok, went to Habitat, bought a heavy metal frame, and told them they could "decide" whether they wanted the print but couldn't photocopy it - well, they broke the frame to copy the image, and prove they weren't going to pay $10 to an idiot photographer.


Edmund

Edmund, I wasn't thinking particularly of you about the opinión on models, but a certain idea that circulates and I read many times.

Of course! This milieu isn't at all tinted in pink. This is far from being fairland. Your story doesn't surprise me. I always when I could, asked the successful photographers about their debuts and I don't count the sordid stories of humiliations, rejections, unpayed assignements etc etc...

This is a world where nobody needs you, needs me, needs anybody. There are 10 Golden seats for thousands and thousands of people pointing at the doors. And the doors aren't closed, they are barricaded. Humiliations at first are the norm. All posible obstacles are made in such a way that only the most resistant with the goal in mind can handle and eventually enter and start to be respected. And yeah, it's zero fun at first. Very hostile.

You live in Paris. When I was Young, you could go to the cine studio in Levalois and ask for a job and they would give you a sweap. Not kidding. If you were interested, they would eventually show you the cables, then you could become a gaffer etc etc...doors were opened for the people who really wanted to work in this industry and you learned within. Now try to go and ask for sweaping the floor. They will bomb you, in fact they will not even answer. Things are barricaded. Too many people wanting the Golden eggs, too Little seats availables.
« Last Edit: April 03, 2013, 06:49:00 PM by fredjeang2 » Logged
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