Our (photographers) taste in photos vs the general public

Started 10 months ago | Discussions thread
GeorgianBay1939
Senior MemberPosts: 2,497Gear list
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Re: To Florida and brick33308
In reply to Jim N'AZ, 10 months ago

Jim N'AZ wrote:

Yes, I fully agree with your post, brick. Well said.

Due to the volume generated on/in this thread, I will be brief.

The term "analysis paralysis" has come to mind over and over when reading the OP postings. There was a post further up the thread by NewGirlLiz http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/53013194 that summed it up quite well too.

Florida comes back time after time asking for advice on the same images, albeit reworked in some way, but he has become so repetitive that I understand his confusion with all the varying opinions flooding in concerning his multiple images posted. His addendum is always marked with "how else am I going to learn?" Methinks, Florida, it is time to sink or swim, but strike out on your own, or you will be chasing your tail forever, photographically speaking, that is

My advice to him would be to back off seeking everyone's opinion upon opinion concerning each jot and tittle and reset his outlook more toward what pleases him, what hits his "wow" button, regardless what we gear heads opine here on dpr. Until he can shoot for his pleasure with some success (because he has no client directing what the final image must be/do) he will forever be mired down trying to please everyone and that is, as we all know, an exercise in futility....

Florida, escape this ANALYSIS PARALYSIS while you can!

Regards, Jim

brick33308 wrote:

I have resisted sharing my thoughts on these images because, given our recent exchange, I didn't want you to assume I was influenced by that exchange or even worse carrying any kind of grudge.

However you've received a sufficient number of criticisms so perhaps mine will be received in the constructive spirit I offer it.

Are these horrible photos? No they are not. But is there anything at all special about them? Likewise no there is not. To me they seem like snapshots that people who don't consider themselves photographers (whether pro or, like me, serious amateur) would snap were a point and shoot thrust into their hands.

As a real photographer (and that is what I think you are judging from some of your other work I've seen) I would expect you would want to put up for display on a forum for and by photographers work that if not your best is nonetheless work that you are truly proud of. And I wonder if that's how you truly feel about these images. If not, then this thread comes across somewhat needy - desperate for attention. Again, it's not my intent to be rude or inappropriate, but rather to give my honest opinion which you clearly asked for by putting your photos on the forum for the second time with a repackaged request for people to look at them and interact with you.

Yes, NewGirlLiz, brick33308 and you shed some good light on factors influencing creative processes.

Most folks who are experienced in the business shield their "creators" from the "focus group" marketers while they seek audience response to products and their characteristics.

My personal experience, running a fairly significant scientific/research/arts organization, confirms that using audience feedback to determine the product leads to mundane outputs with high salability.  (Which is very appropriate in some contexts, not appropriate in other.)

This article about "focus groups" used to seek audience peaking illustrates the point.

Douglas Rushkoff argues that focus groups are often useless, and frequently cause more trouble than they are intended to solve, with focus groups often aiming to please rather than offering their own opinions or evaluations, and with data often cherry picked to support a foregone conclusion. Rushkoff cites the disastrous introduction of New Coke in the 1980s as a vivid example of focus group analysis gone bad.

Jonathan Ive, Apple’s senior vice president of industrial design, also said that Apple had found a good reason not to do focus groups : "They just ensure that you don’t offend anyone, and produce bland inoffensive products."

If a photographer wants to please others, seeking continuous detailed feedback supporting some sort of consensus is probably not a bad strategy.

If a photographer wants to develop his/her own distinct style of representing a scene, it is probably a good idea to study good stuff, learn how to critique others and to learn how to critique self-made stuff.

Overlaid is the maturation factor.  A few years ago, when I first started getting serious, I didn't have much of a clue WHY I liked some of my output (and was unimpressed by most of it.)  It took about a year of hard work - taking many different exposures of one scene - post processing it radically -  reshooting under different lighting conditions - reprocessing - repeat  until I found WHY I like some outputs and not others.

Perhaps the OP is starting to question the effectiveness of C&C in defining his own values in the art.  Another good/big step for him.

I hope that this helps.

Tom

PS   The above hectoring is a good example of analysis leading to paralysis!!!!

t

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