I would like to discuss the aesthetics of photography...

Started May 24, 2013 | Discussions thread
David Hull
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Re: I would like to discuss the aesthetics of photography...
In reply to Great Bustard, May 25, 2013

Great Bustard wrote:

...based on this post:

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/51516317

Particularly, this paragraph, and particularly the portion I highlighted in bold:

I had a recent (very successful!) gallery show of prints up to 20"x30" from the E-3. Got many comments about how "natural" the prints looked. Several people said they didn't realize at first they were photographs. They used terms such as "relaxed, smooth and inviting" to describe them. Several, including other photographers, thought they were from film, though the photographers said they were puzzled by the lack of film grain. They were surprised to hear they were digital. Several, including buyers, said they generally don't like prints from digital cameras because they are too "self-conscious" in that they have too much unnecessary detail, too obviously photographic, and too unpleasant to live with on the wall, even if initially striking.

What do people think?  It's a very interesting observation, in my opinion.

But, I think it is hardly a new one... Didn't we fight this battle (or something quite similar) 100 years ago with the protagonists being the likes of Group f64 and the pictorialists (represented perhaps by the Brotherhood of the linked ring in the UK , Photo-Secession in the US)?

Whether or not detail "works" or not depends on the photograph it would have been nice to be able to look at the images being discussed.

Your quote reminds me a bit of the things you read in Stereophile Magazene (and elsewhere) regarding the  warmth, beauty and "truth" of a good vinyl recording that is somehow lost in the digital process.  I think that your paragraph comes close to the photographic equivalent.

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