DP2M In Perspective

Started Jan 23, 2013 | Discussions thread
Laurence Matson
Laurence Matson Forum Pro • Posts: 11,969


Raist3d wrote:

Laurence Matson wrote:

A gear head in my mind has less or nothing to do with brand loyalty or squabbles and much more to do with collecting, tinkering with, valuing and improving their gear collection.

Ok, if you are talking from the camera collector point of view, cool. I can see that. Camera/equipment collecting and appreciation is not photography but something else though. Not knocking it down but it's good to know it's not the same.

Feininger's point you cite goes in that direction. But, he too, very much valued his Leica as did others of his generation.

Actually not at all. He spoke for himself and spoke his opinion on what many photographers do- to think that it is a particular camera that will "get you to the next level, " that will "make you a good photographer" which is absurd. The quote is pretty darn clear and so is the context of when he said that while he was being interviewed. There is simply no room for any other interpretation here because that is *exactly* what he was talking about.

He was precisely referring to people who think the equipment will make them a better photographer and that they need to somehow "wait until..." they get "good equipment" (whatever that means). His point is- it's the photographer who creates the photograph and the important skills involved in doing so.

That tool shaped an entire generation of photography, and very few of them even picked up the very fine Zeiss Ikon equivalent for more than a second. I know why, because we had both in our family.

Yet if that tool didn't exist, you would still see compelling photographs picking the other tool. Or compelling photographs from people who did not or could afford those. And that's hist point- pointing out the absurdity that it's the equipment that makes you a photographer, or better, or to wait for it when you don't.

If you really read about how much emphasis and effort these guys and gals put into their gear, you might understand better the distinction I am trying to make.

Please don't give me that. I believe I have read and heard quite a bit myself. Your sentence comes from a "I am already right" point of view and I am giving you a radar concrete example of someone saying something in the opposite direction.

Do keep in mind I am not talking about collecting/pushing particular tools, exploring a particular tool. That is different. I am talking about the thought that a particular camera will make you better as a photographer or you need a certain camera to reach a certain level- that's exactly the absurdity (idiocy in his word) Andreas is pointing out.

For instance, read River of Shadows. Muybridge worked hard at his craft and on his gear to develop stop-action photography and become one of the first great panorama photographers.

Working on your gear and pushing your tools is not the same as thinking that the camera takes the shots for you. But to be clear: if you are referring just to what you said in the first paragraph, I can see that. But I do not believe that's the context of the subthread.

Otherwise, nice other thread.

Thanks for the compliment though I do not understand the otherwise comment. Don't see the relation with what is being said.

- Raist

Raist3d wrote:

They were not gear heads. They cared insofar as picking the tool for their need and done. None of that endless brand or tool bickering (I am talking about the real good photographers, not the film equivalents of digital gear heads)

Almost every good photographer I have seen interviewed or the like tends to say the same thing- it's not the camera nut the photographer that matters

Andreas Feininger (1906-1999) 'Photographers — idiots, of which there are
so many — say, “Oh, if only I had a Nikon or a Leica, I could make great
photographs.” That’s the dumbest thing I ever heard in my life. It’s
nothing but a matter of seeing, and thinking, and interest. That’s what
makes a good photograph.'
spot on

Raist3d/Ricardo (Photographer, software dev.)- I photograph black cats in coal mines at night...
“The further a society drifts from truth the more it will hate those who speak it.” - George Orwell

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laurence at appledore-farm dot com
Sometimes, life is going to hit you with a brick. Don't lose faith.
Steve Jobs

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