Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)

Started Mar 11, 2013 | Discussions
JoeBrautigam
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Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)
Mar 11, 2013

Hi,

I have a photography project that i have to do and the topic is "culture and tradition" which i have already shot and got handed back to me because it "wasn't good enough" so if any one has any quick ideas that would be awesome and greatly appreciated!!!! Thank you!!

Martin.au
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Re: Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)
In reply to JoeBrautigam, Mar 11, 2013

Just visit a church, preferably an old school religion with lots of silly traditions and large over the top buildings.

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SLRBGNR
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Re: Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)
In reply to JoeBrautigam, Mar 12, 2013

I have no frame of reference for what you already submitted but I'll give you my 2 cents worth. Try not to focus on  the tradition within the culture. That's what most would expect. Why not zero in on simple traditions that are common or similar between cultures. For example, no matter what the nationality, a grandmother loves to spoil her grandchild with an ice cream or a small boy is so excited playing soccer with his father. Anyway, I hope you get my drift. Good luck!

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Roger99
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Re: Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)
In reply to JoeBrautigam, Mar 12, 2013

JoeBrautigam wrote:

Hi,

I have a photography project that i have to do and the topic is "culture and tradition" which i have already shot and got handed back to me because it "wasn't good enough" so if any one has any quick ideas that would be awesome and greatly appreciated!!!! Thank you!!

Back in my student days I studied photography under an ex life mag photo editor and for the first year he refused every piece of work I handed in with no explanation and not even a grin.  This didn't bother me that much because I was going to be taking shots anyway and I didn't mind having the projects to shoot.  End of the year I got perfect marks with the explanation that at that level he felt he had nothing to teach me visually other than to keep coming back and keep working and that he was impressed with how I was un-phased by the rejection.  It was the most useful thing I brought out of my student experience.  At the same time that he was doing this to me he was doing the same to another student who spat the dummy about six months in and quit the course.

As far as ideas about culture and tradition, it all depends on what cultures and traditions you have access to doesn't it.  I would go for a source that doesn't scream out as obvious and try to pull something visually impressive out of it to shift the definition of the subject matter away from the expected.  You know your own work.  You must know why the work you handed in wasn't good enough.  Try to cold view it as another would.  What is lacking, what is working and what can you add to it?

Rule one:  Make it personal but don't take it personally.

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It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain an idea without necessarily accepting it. -Aristotle
..oh, and I see by the lack of responses that I am right yet again.

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Leonard Migliore
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In reply to Roger99, Mar 12, 2013

Roger99 wrote:

 At the same time that he was doing this to me he was doing the same to another student who spat the dummy about six months in and quit the course.

"Spat the dummy"? A new one on me. Is this current slang somewhere?

I looked it up. Australian. Ooh. I'm going to have to visit there to hear all the good stuff.

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edispics
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Re: Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)
In reply to Roger99, Mar 12, 2013

Now that you have explained to the OP why it IS a good idea that HE keep trying. Now that you have given him some ideas for his next try. I submit that if he uses your ideas to pass the course, then you should receive the course credit.

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OpticsEngineer
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Re: Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)
In reply to JoeBrautigam, Mar 12, 2013

A few culture and tradition ideas.

Mom teaching kids to cook.  Kids love to decorate cookies by the way.

If you could wait till Easter, families dressed up for church, going to church , or painting Easter eggs, or hunting easter eggs.

I am bringing up kids because culture and tradition is something that parents teach their kids.

But another idea in my city would be lowriders cruising down the street, or washing their cars.

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Mike Chase
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Re: Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)
In reply to OpticsEngineer, Mar 12, 2013

I think it would be cool if you have another theme added to culture and tradition, like a common focal point or a common subject. If you don't want to throw "culture and tradition" in an obvious way with your pictures, it can be in the background. Get creative! For more tips, visit my blog:http://shootdigitalpicslikethepros.com/blog/photography-forum-support

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ARShutterbug
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What examples do you have?
In reply to JoeBrautigam, Mar 12, 2013

Perhaps a culture of mediocrity?  To photograph culture, you do need examples of it.  No, you can't just find some nearby objects to photograph.  You need people and places of interest, which you probably didn't do, which is why your client is mad at you.

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Dan Marchant
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Re: Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)
In reply to JoeBrautigam, Mar 12, 2013

Did you get feedback on exactly what it was about the submission that wasn't good enough? Was it the subject or the execution?

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apaflo
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Re: Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)
In reply to JoeBrautigam, Mar 12, 2013

JoeBrautigam wrote:

Hi,

I have a photography project that i have to do and the topic is "culture and tradition" which i have already shot and got handed back to me because it "wasn't good enough" so if any one has any quick ideas that would be awesome and greatly appreciated!!!! Thank you!!

Find a tradition that is universally interesting as opposed to one that you care about. It can be just so different that it causes interest or it can be something that inherently results in beauty when photographed. Virtually any celebration is likely to at least cause beauty, and most are different enough in some way to cause interest. Children, young people and old people are all "beautiful" on their own, so anything they do that can easily be identified as participation in a tradition is likely to make a good photograph. And to be most interesting the tradition needs to be the most different from what the viewer might ordinarily see absent your photography.

Don't just take pictures of people, and instead take pictures of people very visibly engaged in unique, interesting, traditional cultural activities. Keep in mind that the people are not the subject, but the tradition and culture are.

Beyond that, because it is a "project" and I assume that means it is actually in some way a photo essay, you can include not just the bold attention grabbing photographs, but also an occasional bit of more subtle education too.

Here is an example of cultural tradition that by itself draws attention. It has a lot of "strange" detail that raises many questions. If text is allowed with your photography, an image like this can be explained in some detail. And if only a title is possible then a well chosen few words can add at least some understanding.

An "Eskimo Dance" which is part of a Nalukataq (Blanket Toss Celebration), Barrow Alaska.

And as opposed to the above image, here is something a bit more subtle...

(The editor deleted the title to the below image.  "This is a real Eskimo Kiss...")

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happysnapper64
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Re: Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)
In reply to JoeBrautigam, Mar 12, 2013

JoeBrautigam wrote:

Hi,

I have a photography project that i have to do and the topic is "culture and tradition" which i have already shot and got handed back to me because it "wasn't good enough" so if any one has any quick ideas that would be awesome and greatly appreciated!!!! Thank you!!

Culture & tradition? In what respect? Are you talking of traditions within a certain culture, or the concept of culture as depicted by its traditions? With one you would be talking about today, with the other you would possibly have to go back hundreds, even thousands of years to find the origins. It very much depends from which angle you are going to, or are supposed to, view it.

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johnznyc
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Re: Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)
In reply to Roger99, Mar 12, 2013

Roger99 wrote:

JoeBrautigam wrote:

Hi,

I have a photography project that i have to do and the topic is "culture and tradition" which i have already shot and got handed back to me because it "wasn't good enough" so if any one has any quick ideas that would be awesome and greatly appreciated!!!! Thank you!!

Back in my student days I studied photography under an ex life mag photo editor and for the first year he refused every piece of work I handed in with no explanation and not even a grin. This didn't bother me that much because I was going to be taking shots anyway and I didn't mind having the projects to shoot. End of the year I got perfect marks with the explanation that at that level he felt he had nothing to teach me visually other than to keep coming back and keep working and that he was impressed with how I was un-phased by the rejection. It was the most useful thing I brought out of my student experience. At the same time that he was doing this to me he was doing the same to another student who spat the dummy about six months in and quit the course.

As far as ideas about culture and tradition, it all depends on what cultures and traditions you have access to doesn't it. I would go for a source that doesn't scream out as obvious and try to pull something visually impressive out of it to shift the definition of the subject matter away from the expected. You know your own work. You must know why the work you handed in wasn't good enough. Try to cold view it as another would. What is lacking, what is working and what can you add to it?

Rule one: Make it personal but don't take it personally.

-- hide signature --

The one serious conviction one should hold is that nothing should be taken too seriously.
It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain an idea without necessarily accepting it. -Aristotle
..oh, and I see by the lack of responses that I am right yet again.

Not in a photography class but I had a similar experience when studying Biomedical Engineering, when I received what I considered to be a poor grade on a mid-term paper.

The professor was just challenging me...

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ClickBoom
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Re: Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)
In reply to JoeBrautigam, Mar 12, 2013

JoeBrautigam wrote:

Hi,

I have a photography project that i have to do and the topic is "culture and tradition" which i have already shot and got handed back to me because it "wasn't good enough" so if any one has any quick ideas that would be awesome and greatly appreciated!!!! Thank you!!

Your dog in a green hat for St Patrick’s day is quite weak. Your Irish background must mean more to you than that. Think of what your Irish heritage means to you what did you do that is uniquely Irish not just a green hat on a dog.

Did your grandfather put a green hat on his dog, then your father and now you? If this is the case then you should stand up for your original photograph, saying that it is a family tradition.

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Yousuf Adam
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Re: Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)
In reply to JoeBrautigam, Mar 12, 2013

I will suggest you to shot dirty places in your region and can tell the human beings why we need to keep our places neat and clean.

JoeBrautigam wrote:

Hi,

I have a photography project that i have to do and the topic is "culture and tradition" which i have already shot and got handed back to me because it "wasn't good enough" so if any one has any quick ideas that would be awesome and greatly appreciated!!!! Thank you!!

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Roger99
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Re: Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)
In reply to edispics, Mar 12, 2013

edispics wrote:

Now that you have explained to the OP why it IS a good idea that HE keep trying. Now that you have given him some ideas for his next try. I submit that if he uses your ideas to pass the course, then you should receive the course credit.

I can't pick his shot and I can't press his shutter but what the heck, I'll take the credit. 

-- hide signature --

The one serious conviction one should hold is that nothing should be taken too seriously.
It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain an idea without necessarily accepting it. -Aristotle
..oh, and I see by the lack of responses that I am right yet again.

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Roger99
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Re: Photography project ideas (seriously need help!!!)
In reply to johnznyc, Mar 12, 2013

johnznyc wrote:


Not in a photography class but I had a similar experience when studying Biomedical Engineering, when I received what I considered to be a poor grade on a mid-term paper.

The professor was just challenging me...

Exactly, nothing more useless than being carried through a course.

-- hide signature --

The one serious conviction one should hold is that nothing should be taken too seriously.
It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain an idea without necessarily accepting it. -Aristotle
..oh, and I see by the lack of responses that I am right yet again.

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