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Author Topic: Are we unnecessary?  (Read 18945 times)
Isaac
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« Reply #20 on: October 09, 2013, 12:37:11 PM »
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Too difficult to understand? Well let me type slowly and explain.....
You implied those who did an arts course had a different view from those who had not. Which is not necessarily the case, ...

I implied that those who actually did an arts course may have a different view. Please don't misrepresent what I write.
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Jim Pascoe
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« Reply #21 on: October 24, 2013, 01:28:03 AM »
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We all have seen the questions from the neophytes among us asking about the wisdom/value of pursuing a degree in photography/arts with the conventional wisdom indicating that it's a dumb idea, a position to which I subscribe.
What is never mentioned is "why" that, as a group, we hold so little monetary value.  I would submit that the answer lies within Maslow's hierarchy of needs which indicates that the "need for art" lies at the top of the "need pyramid".
Everything below that tier is more fiscally rewarded in society.  "Satisfaction of life aside"...recall that pyramid when your advice is solicited for career guidance.

I can only answer your question from my own experience.  I did a BA in photography 1995-98 and have made a reasonable living from being a photographer since that time.  By reasonable I mean I feed and house my family - not accumulating any wealth.  But then I LOVE what I do. Are the Degree and my ability to make a living from photography linked?  Who knows - I could probably have made it without the college.  However it did give me three years to concentrate on my subject.  And some personal satisfaction.

Jim
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Christoph C. Feldhaim
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« Reply #22 on: October 24, 2013, 05:02:20 AM »
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"Art is the occasion where god is setting foot on earth."
(my awesome arts teacher in school)

my € 0.02 ...

Have a good day
~Chris
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petermfiore
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« Reply #23 on: October 24, 2013, 06:01:56 AM »
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If one can provide for one's family by doing what one loves, one is rich beyond money.
 

Peter
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Gulag
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« Reply #24 on: October 31, 2013, 11:47:41 PM »
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"Sex is everywhere else to be found, but that’s not what people want. What people deeply desire is a spectacle of banality. This spectacle of banality is today’s true pornography and obscenity. It is the obscene spectacle of nullity (nullité), insignificance, and platitude."

— Jean Baudrillard,  “Dust Breeding”,  2001.
 
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slackercruster
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« Reply #25 on: November 01, 2013, 08:03:16 AM »
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Try telling that to the countless contestants in talent shows, cookery shows, x-factor, xxx got talent, strictly come dancing, quiz shows, football clubs, Olympic water-bearers, etc, etc.

Maslow is not talking about money. And people fight to be recognised by others, to get their 15 minutes, to get a shot at the big one, to be famous, .... precisely because their fundamental needs have been taken care of, and now they want more. They want the self realisation that is the top of the pyramid.

As to whether classical training in a subject is the surest way to become famous is a very different question.


If you can afford it, education is a wonderful thing to supplement talent. But I agree, I would not expect too much from it.

Photography is a very tough field to make money in. Sure, some do it and do it well. But what % of the pie is composed of very successful, well paid photogs?

Over the past decade photography has been downgraded in value as a result of the digital revolution. As a social documentary photographer in the 1970's I could find strangers on the street and they would let me shoot them in their homes. Nowadays nobody will go for that. I ask people if they want free photos and they tell me they don't want or need any more photos. Why should they? With a cell phone and a $60 ink jet printer they are a photographer themselves.

I do photography for the love of it. I make no money from it and get little fame. I think if one desires fame and riches it would be easier to become a rich, world famous actor than a rich, world famous photog.
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slackercruster
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« Reply #26 on: November 01, 2013, 08:09:29 AM »
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I can only answer your question from my own experience.  I did a BA in photography 1995-98 and have made a reasonable living from being a photographer since that time.  By reasonable I mean I feed and house my family - not accumulating any wealth.  But then I LOVE what I do. Are the Degree and my ability to make a living from photography linked?  Who knows - I could probably have made it without the college.  However it did give me three years to concentrate on my subject.  And some personal satisfaction.

Jim


Good for you Jim!
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slackercruster
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« Reply #27 on: November 01, 2013, 08:16:30 AM »
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Would that be the conventional wisdom amongst those who had not pursued a degree in photography/arts, or amongst those who had?

Do you think that would be the conventional wisdom amongst those who attended Rochester Institute of Technology?

It is no dumber than a degree in philosophy or basket weaving. People have to follow their love. But it is good to know up front what type of love affair one is entering.

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slackercruster
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« Reply #28 on: November 01, 2013, 08:19:26 AM »
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Do you have an example of a society without art?

Yes art serves a very important purpose for humans. Many of us 'pay to play' and get nothing back from it other than self satisfaction.

Lets say you like flower photos. Flickr has 3/4 of a million flower photos in just one of their many flower groups. As soon as you post a pix it is burried under the mass of new photos. And that is just one group. Tons of flower groups there and everywhere else. So of course it is hard to distinguish oneself. But we keep on shooting through thick or thin...it is in our blood.
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #29 on: November 01, 2013, 08:26:13 AM »
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In the future … ?



If you extrapolate this, I predict that at some point in the future, our offspring will all be writing poems and playing the flute (possibly while getting maximum exposure in tv reality-shows) to make a living and to attract mates, while "trivial" aspects of society will be done by machines :-)

-h
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Rob C
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« Reply #30 on: November 01, 2013, 03:44:39 PM »
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"If you extrapolate this, I predict that at some point in the future, our offspring will all be writing poems and playing the flute (possibly while getting maximum exposure in tv reality-shows) to make a living and to attract mates, while "trivial" aspects of society will be done by machines :-)

-h"


I note the smile, but I don't accept the premise.

Those 'trivial' things already constitute the employment of the less skilled; if you put a critical mass of them into the unemployment basket, you will have revolution. Beyond a point we have probably already reached, the working people who support the rest will be of too low a number to support anything.

The worst of the credit society experience has yet to manifest itself, but it's crazy to imagine that an economy, our global one, can survive on money that is printed but based on nothing real, such as gold, and whose value is less than zero because it actually represents further debt. The world is toxic; how do you redeem that?

Without the bait of earning well, the overseers that machines require in order to function won't exist. I firmly believe that the time will come when people finally realise that doing away with human workers can't work, as it were; machines don't buy anything and if nobody buys anything, nothing gets made and people die of hunger. We simply need work, if only to establish a personal value that we can use as a means of trade for the things that we require and cannot provide for ourselves.

Rob C



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Ray
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« Reply #31 on: November 02, 2013, 12:25:28 AM »
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...machines don't buy anything and if nobody buys anything, nothing gets made and people die of hunger. We simply need work, if only to establish a personal value that we can use as a means of trade for the things that we require and cannot provide for ourselves.

Rob C


Rob,
What people need is the intelligence and imagination to enjoy their free time without the need to spend money they don't have.

There are only two fundamental limiting factors on the future prosperity of mankind. They are, energy supplies and imagination.

Energy supplies are extremely abundant. I can't see any problem there. As an example of just one abundant source of energy; if one were to cover the largely uninhabited areas of the Sahara Desert (about 9 million square kilometres) with modern Solar Voltaic Panels, the amount of electricity generated would be about 20-30 times the current world-wide consumption of energy, converting all types of energy to kilowatt hours.

There are many deserts around the world which are just waste lands, serving no useful purpose, not to mention the millions of square kilometres of building-roofs and walls exposed to the sun.

Some folks seem worried about world food supplies. They believe that, with a rising world population, the planet might not be able to produce the amount of food required to adequately feed everyone.

Nothing could be further from the truth. The amount of food wasted worldwide, not eaten because the serving was too much, thrown away because it passed its use-by date, discarded during processing because only the refined tasty bits were required, inadequately stored due to lack of refrigeration, and not transported to markets where it's needed due to inadequate road systems, currently amounts to about 1.3 billion tonnes per annum. (That is, 1,300 million tonnes per annum).

In other words, the amount of food wasted is more than enough to feed all the world's hungry. In addition, the amount of food overeaten by all the overweight and obese people in developed countries would also be enough to feed more than another billion future population.

Some people believe there might be a shortage of water that would put a limit on agricultural production and that future wars might be fought over such shortage.

Wars are fought for all sorts of unjustifiable reasons, but there's definitely no shortage of water. It falls freely from the sky, and the seas around the world contain huge quantities of it.

What there may be a shortage of is imagination to devise ways of transporting water from where it's plentiful to where it's not, and recycling and purifying water to drinking standards. The technology and the energy supplies exist to solve all these problems. If they remain a problem, it's due only to incompetence in dealing with the obstacles.
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jjj
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« Reply #32 on: November 02, 2013, 05:33:33 AM »
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Rob,
What people need is the intelligence and imagination to enjoy their free time without the need to spend money they don't have.

There are only two fundamental limiting factors on the future prosperity of mankind. They are, energy supplies and imagination.

Energy supplies are extremely abundant. I can't see any problem there. As an example of just one abundant source of energy; if one were to cover the largely uninhabited areas of the Sahara Desert (about 9 million square kilometres) with modern Solar Voltaic Panels, the amount of electricity generated would be about 20-30 times the current world-wide consumption of energy, converting all types of energy to kilowatt hours.

There are many deserts around the world which are just waste lands, serving no useful purpose, not to mention the millions of square kilometres
There is newer more efficient type of photovoltaic cell that was used to power the 'Big Brother' house (reality tv show) a few years back and you only needed a 10x10miles square in the Sahara to supply tthe entire world with power - distribution issues aside.  Distrribution being the food and water problem too.
Photovoltaic roads are actually the perfect solution as they can be both the source and the distribution. Just have to solve the issue of traction on a transparent surface......
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Ray
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« Reply #33 on: November 02, 2013, 08:47:23 PM »
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There is newer more efficient type of photovoltaic cell that was used to power the 'Big Brother' house (reality tv show) a few years back and you only needed a 10x10miles square in the Sahara to supply tthe entire world with power..

jjj,
That sounds too incredible to be true. I'm not sure 'Big Brother' is a reliable source of information.

Figures on the internet for this type of situation vary wildly. It could be that some sources are referring only to the current use, worldwide, of electricity, excluding the huge amounts of energy consumed in the form of petrol, diesel and LPG.

My source converts all forms of energy currently used, into electricity equivalents, on the basis that the world will eventually have to move to all-electric machines and vehicles as we run out of fossil fuels.  http://landartgenerator.org/blagi/archives/127

However, the main point I was trying to make in my response to Rob, is that all prosperity is irrevocably and directly linked to the cost of energy supplies. In a modern civilisation, nothing moves without expenditure of energy. How we use that energy is dependent upon our imagination (including education, training and competence).

In a society which has developed to the stage where the production of most essential goods and services are carried out by machines, requiring a relatively small labour force to construct, maintain and service such machines, then the rest of the population, who may have no interest or talent for servicing machines, are free to engage in other activities, whether they be surfing the waves, designing new styles of clothes or jewelery, painting pictures or taking photographs, reading the Classics, writing poetry, studying Philosophy, or studying anything that they may have an interest in, or talent for. The list of interesting activities that could occupy someone who is free from the slavery of doing a boring job that is more efficiently done by machines, is almost limitless.

Nobody need starve in a modern civilised society, or go without the essentials of food, shelter and medical care, except perhaps in America where social services seem very oddly deficient in some areas.
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wmchauncey
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« Reply #34 on: November 03, 2013, 08:10:49 AM »
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Ponder this for a moment or two...For Art to flourish, must it be free from all commercial aspect, or...if it is truly great...must it be commercially successful.
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Rob C
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« Reply #35 on: November 03, 2013, 09:09:16 AM »
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Ponder this for a moment or two...For Art to flourish, must it be free from all commercial aspect, or...if it is truly great...must it be commercially successful.


In my case, the commercial aspect was essential for two reasons:

a.  provide the money with which to do it;
b.  the incentive to 'try harder' all the time.

If you refer to the gallery world, then I think you are wading in quicksands; quicksands with plenty of splintered glass inside to make it exciting.

Rob C
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Rob C
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« Reply #36 on: November 03, 2013, 09:25:06 AM »
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However, the main point I was trying to make in my response to Rob, is that all prosperity is irrevocably and directly linked to the cost of energy supplies. In a modern civilisation, nothing moves without expenditure of energy. How we use that energy is dependent upon our imagination (including education, training and competence).

In a society which has developed to the stage where the production of most essential goods and services are carried out by machines, requiring a relatively small labour force to construct, maintain and service such machines, then the rest of the population, who may have no interest or talent for servicing machines, are free to engage in other activities, whether they be surfing the waves, designing new styles of clothes or jewelery, painting pictures or taking photographs, reading the Classics, writing poetry, studying Philosophy, or studying anything that they may have an interest in, or talent for. The list of interesting activities that could occupy someone who is free from the slavery of doing a boring job that is more efficiently done by machines, is almost limitless.

Nobody need starve in a modern civilised society, or go without the essentials of food, shelter and medical care, except perhaps in America where social services seem very oddly deficient in some areas.


Ray, you are ignoring the simple fact that life gives you nothing for nothing.

There is no way that your Utopian vision can happen. Life is far too fragmented and divided into separate sorts of activity, services, production methods and needs. You really believe a machine can take a pile of mud and model a ’59 Coupe de Ville? Can even envisage such a creation? Why do you choose to forget about soul? Soul is the difference, and the reason anybody does anything well, including the manufacture of ocean liners, the designing of buildings and the making of a pair of shoes.

Few people do much of value for no return, at least, beyond the realm of charitable works etc. and I believe that man’s input is always going to be the final arbiter of what other people will want. I’m thinking now of all those poor guys in Salgado’s pictures, scrambling up ladders in open pits called mines… do you think their weary muscles will be replaced any time soon? Massive mechanical diggers have existed for decades; they are not much use in such circumstances and even less so deep down below the surface following the tiny threads of gold.

Rob C
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jjj
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« Reply #37 on: November 03, 2013, 03:49:29 PM »
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jjj,
That sounds too incredible to be true. I'm not sure 'Big Brother' is a reliable source of information.
It wasn't the source of the information, it just happened that BB also used the same type of PV.
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Ray
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« Reply #38 on: November 03, 2013, 11:32:20 PM »
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Ray, you are ignoring the simple fact that life gives you nothing for nothing.
Can even envisage such a creation? Why do you choose to forget about soul? Soul is the difference, and the reason anybody does anything well, including the manufacture of ocean liners, the designing of buildings and the making of a pair of shoes

Rob, you are ignoring the fact that we don't even know what nothing actually is. The closest concept to 'nothing' in my mind is the soul. It has no weight, form or color, and cannot be measured or detected by any scientific process that I'm aware of. I prefer to use concepts such as intelligence, imagination, thoughtfulness, compassion, empathy, perception, taste and smell. All those activities can be measured.

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There is no way that your Utopian vision can happen. Life is far too fragmented and divided into separate sorts of activity, services, production methods and needs. You really believe a machine can take a pile of mud and model a ’59 Coupe de Ville?

Surely you must be aware of the vast importance and necessity of machinery in the production and design of most of the goods and services we use. The modern digital camera is a marvelous little machine, as is the computer I use to process my images. Without machines we're back to slavery, or at best a hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

Surely you must also be aware of the vast progress in mankind's prosperity during the past few hundred years, due to the increasing sophistication of machinery. Why do you imagine such progress will now cease? Is it because the current economic downturn in Spain has clouded your vision?

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Few people do much of value for no return, at least, beyond the realm of charitable works etc. and I believe that man’s input is always going to be the final arbiter of what other people will want.

That's a very uninspiring concept, Rob, and something we should try to change, if indeed it's true. Many of the great concepts, ideas and scientific theories that have contributed greatly to our progress and understanding have originated from people who didn't have to work for a living. In ancient Greece, most of the work was done by slaves, allowing people like Plato and Aristotle the time and freedom to think about important issues. Charles Darwin didn't work on his theories of evolution for monetary profit. Machines in modern societies are our slaves. They should free us from boring , but necessary chores, and provide us with the time to be creative in any way that gives us satisfaction, provided such creative activity doesn't harm others, of course.

Just read a bit of history of the lives of people in ancient civilisations before modern machinery existed. Life must nave been absolutely awful, by our standards, for those who were not in a position of power and authority. The trouble is that history tends to be glorified. One reads about the marvelous exploits and conquests of Alexander The Great, but not so much about the enormous suffering of innocent victims, whole villages burned to the ground and women and children hacked to death as a matter of course. In our modern era, someone like Alexander The Great would find himself in The Hague in a jiffy, charged with the most heinous crimes against humanity.

Thank God I live in this modern age of relative sanity, peace and tranquility. Of course, at any given moment, in some part of the world, one finds examples of insanity prevailing, as in Syria today. But the significance and prominence of such events in a broad historical context tends to be exaggerated by the machinery of modern news reporting when every nasty event can be video recorded and instantly transmitted across the globe.
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Rob C
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« Reply #39 on: November 04, 2013, 03:02:38 AM »
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How can I discuss with an adversary who can't value soul?

Rob C
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