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Author Topic: Photography and The Death of Reality  (Read 7779 times)
David Sutton
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« Reply #60 on: April 22, 2014, 02:18:43 AM »
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Picasso?  Uelsmann.  Everything in his image is authentic, real by every metric because it was shot on film without manipulation.  What Uelsmann does is add up realities until they become surrealities.  Read the quotes from Picasso in the thread (paraphrased or not) and Uelsmann kind of slides right in.

There are a ton of Rembrandts of photography, in my opinion.  Maybe plural - Tons of Rembrandts.  Lots of great photographers who understand that a dull subject with spectacular light trumps a spectacular subject with dull light.  

The ultimate Rembrandt of photography may be Jeffrey Crewdson, who controls light in his images as obsessively as a painter would.

But when it comes to cubism, surrealism, fever dreams... you can begin with Uelsmann, who creates fever dreams with the most mundane realistic images, alternate realities with the most mundane of realities.  Until the extreme illustrator capabilities of Photoshop became available, Uelsmann was the closest thing in photography to Picasso.
Indeed. So many have pushed photography past its accepted boundaries with extraordinary work in photography's comparatively short history.
Many are now forgotten in the rush for the new.
C'est la vie.
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amolitor
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« Reply #61 on: April 22, 2014, 05:22:38 AM »
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So poop in the Art Gallery is Art; poop outside the Art Gallery is poop, because it is not contextualized as Art?

Not quite. This is similar to, but not the same as, what I wrote.
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Isaac
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« Reply #62 on: April 22, 2014, 10:36:19 AM »
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So poop in the Art Gallery is Art; poop outside the Art Gallery is poop, because it is not contextualized as Art?

Not quite. This is similar to, but not the same as, what I wrote.

True: that is similar to, but not the same as, what [you] wrote.

What you did not venture to suggest was why some things might be experienced as Art while other things are not experienced as Art -- and that seems to be the crux of the matter.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2014, 10:43:09 AM by Isaac » Logged
Dave (Isle of Skye)
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« Reply #63 on: April 22, 2014, 10:44:54 AM »
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..and that seems to be the crux of the matter.

Isn't the real crux of the matter, that art is derived from the perception of creativity?

Dave
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Isaac
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« Reply #64 on: April 22, 2014, 10:47:58 AM »
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You'll have to tell us what, in particular, you mean by "art is derived from the perception of creativity" :-)
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amolitor
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« Reply #65 on: April 22, 2014, 01:18:15 PM »
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I don't pretend to know why some things are experienced as Art, and others are not. If we had completely cracked the code on that, then anyone could do it, eh?

I think I have some methods and ideas up my sleeve by which, specifically, photographs can be made which are more likely to be experienced as Art, but it's not reliable. Also, I have nothing for sculptors, performance artists, and so on.

Context does matter, as near as I can tell.
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Dave (Isle of Skye)
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« Reply #66 on: April 22, 2014, 01:25:30 PM »
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You'll have to tell us what, in particular, you mean by "art is derived from the perception of creativity" :-)

If a thing has been produced through a creative process that is identifiably unique to that creator and/or contains within it something which did not exist before its creation.

However, photography tends to teeter on the edge of this supposition, as we create through exclusion in an often much less uniquely identifiable manner. Uniqueness and creativity are always there of course, but are much more difficult to identify, when surrounded by a constant tsunami of less skilfully, but none the less comparable counterparts.

Dave
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Ben Rubinstein
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« Reply #67 on: April 22, 2014, 01:40:54 PM »
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Try teaching photography in an art school, except the students I teach are usually far more open minded than most, including most of their art teachers Cheesy
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darr
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« Reply #68 on: April 23, 2014, 11:57:29 AM »
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Uniqueness and creativity are always there of course, but are much more difficult to identify, when surrounded by a constant tsunami of less skilfully, but none the less comparable counterparts.

I would think if an image has the qualities of "uniqueness and creativity," it would be MORE obvious than less.
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Isaac
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« Reply #69 on: April 23, 2014, 01:08:48 PM »
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Context does matter, as near as I can tell.

It always helps to tell someone that they're looking at Great Art.

Just another circus?
« Last Edit: April 23, 2014, 01:32:53 PM by Isaac » Logged
duane_bolland
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« Reply #70 on: April 23, 2014, 01:31:00 PM »
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From the article: "The message of this article is twofold: One, to get you inspired to make the most creative images ever, and not to be afraid to follow your heart when it comes to digital enhancements."

I'm sorry, but I wasn't inspired.  The article probably should have been called "Photography and The Death of Creativity".  The first two images are basically textbook clichés of modern landscape photography.  Wide angle, backlit images are all the rage, as is HDR.  I don't find anything "inspired" or "creative" about the them. 

Jerry Seinfeld once said something to the effect, "If you have to swear to make something funny, it isn't actually funny."  I have a similar philosophy on photography and art.  I define art as creating something original from nothing for purely emotional or aesthetic reasons.  Post processing mostly entails moving virtual sliders in software to get something different from the original.  I find it a stretch to call that activity photography or art, and it certainly isn't creative and original.  Likewise, shooting the same locations over and over isn't art either.  The world doesn't need another image of Horseshoe Bend or Landscape Arch or the Old Man of Storr.

I do actually like the third image, even if it is heavily post processed. The post processing enhances the textures in the room, and I like the muted color palette.
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Isaac
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« Reply #71 on: April 23, 2014, 01:49:11 PM »
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…shooting the same locations over and over isn't art either.
Making pictures of the same locations over and over again, might be an indication that what someone is attempting to do is understandable as art:
-- "This picture would not likely have been the first picture the photographer made of this general subject. One of the causes leading up to its making was sustained, thoughtful looking not only at the subject itself, the farm landscape of the eastern part of the mid-Hudson Valley, but also at the pictures she was getting from that subject."
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John Camp
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« Reply #72 on: April 23, 2014, 02:45:24 PM »
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Making pictures of the same locations over and over again, might be an indication that what someone is attempting to do is understandable as art:
-- "This picture would not likely have been the first picture the photographer made of this general subject. One of the causes leading up to its making was sustained, thoughtful looking not only at the subject itself, the farm landscape of the eastern part of the mid-Hudson Valley, but also at the pictures she was getting from that subject."

Isaac, I like that quote (where's it from?) but I suspect what Mr. Bolland was talking about is the non-thoughtful replication of Adams-like images by going to very famous, specific tripod-holes locations, and trying to capture the same light and look, and then making that your art form. I was traveling in the area of Jackson Hole, once, a beautiful area with jagged mountains and a lake. I didn't actually know that I was at a famous photo spot, but I drove past a turnout in which a dozen people had set up the most exquisite camera equipment, all to take exactly the same shot around sundown...I have no problem with people taking almost any landscape photo, but that activity struck me as a little odd. There may be hundreds of good shots of half-dome remaining, asnd if they're the product of sustained, thoughtful looking, then they probably won't much resemble Adam's famous shot, and might even show us something very new.

Try teaching photography in an art school, except the students I teach are usually far more open minded than most, including most of their art teachers Cheesy

I don't teach photography, but I do occasionally teach in my main profession, and what I find in young students usually isn't open-mindedness, but ignorance. That ignorance leads them all over the place, which may resemble open-mindedness, but shouldn't be mistaken for it. When I say ignorance, I don't mean stupidity, it's just a lack of knowledge, which isn't their fault, they just haven't been around long enough to be aware of all the failed experiments of the past. And they haven't been around long enough to have conducted a lot of life experiments on their own. In my field, I have been asked, "Really, bottom line, no bullshit, what should I do to get where you are," and for healthy young people, I suggest that they join the Army or become a cop. I don't think that advice, though sincere, has ever been taken. But in my field (which I'm avoiding talking about directly) experience provides you with necessary adult reference points, and the most intense way to get those, that I can think of, is to join the Army or become a cop. You don't have to do it for long, but for a while. The fact is, with photography, the fundamentals are fairly easily attained; that can be done in a few weeks of hard work. What's much harder is to develop ideas that will lead you to the creation of art, and to get there, you have to experience a lot, you have to reflect a lot, and then you have to act on what you think. Young people generally haven't had the time or the guidance to do that.
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Isaac
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« Reply #73 on: April 23, 2014, 03:12:52 PM »
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I like that quote (where's it from?)

Click the underlined green text, that'll take you to the source.

…the non-thoughtful replication of Adams-like images by going to very famous, specific tripod-holes locations, and trying to capture the same light and look,…

Seems like "non-thoughtful" is doing all the work in that sentence because, as I expect you understand, the same light and look… would require a lot of thought and is very difficult to do.

Galen Rowell wrote about how he wished he'd taken multiple versions of scenes in his early days (rather than economizing on film processing) because although he'd repeatedly made great efforts to find the same light at those locations it never really happened.

…and then making that your art form.

Well… rephotography ;-)

…it's just a lack of knowledge…

otoh "What gets us into trouble is not what we don't know, it's what we know for sure that just ain't so." :-)
« Last Edit: April 23, 2014, 03:23:25 PM by Isaac » Logged
duane_bolland
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« Reply #74 on: April 28, 2014, 03:59:45 PM »
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I suspect what Mr. Bolland was talking about is the non-thoughtful replication of Adams-like images by going to very famous, specific tripod-holes locations, and trying to capture the same light and look, and then making that your art form.

John, your interpretation of my comments was generally correct.   

From an artistic perspective, I heavily value creativity.  Copying someone else's work and style is not artistic.  However, I'm not entirely against copying.  A few scenarios come to mind:

1) In some contexts, visiting the same spot repeatedly can be a lovely artistic and therapeutic exercise.  This might be analogues to some of Andy Warhol's art.  I also like projects that document the same scene repeatedly through different seasons or years.

2) One could argue that learning the techniques of the "masters" is a good first step before pushing the artistic envelope.  I'm sure we all experiment with recreating photos that we admire. 

3) I think it is exhilarating to visit the world's prime landscape locations.  I wish everyone could get out there and enjoy them.  (Except not all at once or while I'm there!)  I remember fondly my first encounter with Delicate Arch and then later Zion.  And as photographers, we can't help but photograph what we see.  So go ahead and shoot it. 

My beef with #2 and #3 is when the photographer starts showing off their copy-cat photos as if they created something refreshingly original.  Odds are, they didn't. 
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Isaac
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« Reply #75 on: April 29, 2014, 03:33:08 PM »
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From an artistic perspective, I heavily value creativity.  Copying someone else's work and style is not artistic.

"…might we be better off ratifying the ecstasy of influence — and deepening our willingness to understand the commonality and timelessness of the methods and motifs available to artists?"
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HSway
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« Reply #76 on: April 30, 2014, 04:21:15 AM »
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Looks like another issue of the regular periodicum on death of Reality, Photography ect.

But the photography doesn’t seem changed. In fact it’s no different to the photography in the past in any respect.

These discussions probably come from a notion that there are slightly easier ways to interact with and influence the content than in the past. Provided that we talk about Photography. Not like the content even left 'on its own' was any more true on film. Very far from it.

So no. It continues to be what we want it to be.

Pretty much as with everything else. Admittedly, the mess in our heads has somewhat thickened with the internetization and in our ever more computered world some 5, 10 years ago already. And it doesn’t look set for an improvement, neither a fast nor a magical one but seems more like going through some for our tastes rather long, but natural and unavoidable curve of experience and maturity with ourselves. So that when we reach the next milepost in something (terribly desirable and needed, outstanding and fantastic) we could also handle its use. And that you still stay with the Subject and the original Objective more than fixated on the means - the software. Because when you make it, the software in this instance, your World you are passionate about, it will turn into it and same as your perspective, you will change. And may even want others to take the similar view.

So next time you ponder on this simply ask yourself. It’s that simple. And powerful. Trust me. The rest can carry on investigating their own death. Doing it in a due detail will remain a lifetime task for most.
Those capable of defining it for themselves, not deviated too far from common sense of an everyday man, are likely to succeed in seeing all the variations, creative use and the Experience coming from it in harmony rather than element of distraction, let alone a direct conflict.

Aesthetical experience goes through every aspect of our lives, though. That is to be remembered. And Art is a universal term applicable for everything that is connected with human Mind, potentially AND in Reality. So that, too, is to be remembered. As such, we have no other guide, than our Brain. Don’t look for it elsewhere. THAT is beyond all that what we have made comfortable for us so far. However easy ways would be nice, some things are unfailingly beyond their reach, and will remain there forever.
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Isaac
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« Reply #77 on: May 19, 2014, 01:07:19 PM »
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…photos can be the best representation of reality that we can manage. They don't necessarily have to be, but they can be.

Meskin and Cohen give an "account of the information carrying capacity of photographs" that "makes no reference to the realism or objectivity of photographs, nor to their accuracy, nor … does it imply anything about whether or not we ordinarily make correct judgements on the basis of photographs. … But while photographs typically carry information about many of the visual properties of the objects they depict … photographs do not typically provide information about the location -- with respect to viewers of that photograph -- of the objects they depict."

pdf Photographs as Evidence, Aaron Meskin and Jonathon Cohen

That account separates photographs from other depictions (for example paintings) and visual prosthetics (for example binoculars).


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OldRoy
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« Reply #78 on: May 20, 2014, 01:03:22 PM »
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Try teaching photography in an art school, except the students I teach are usually far more open minded than most, including most of their art teachers Cheesy
One interpretation might be that the students, with far less experience and education, are far easier to fool than the teachers - indeed may be very accomplished at fooling themselves if it serves a social function.
Roy
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Isaac
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« Reply #79 on: May 20, 2014, 01:18:22 PM »
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We all seem remarkably good at fooling ourselves ;-)
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