Alternative weekly thread in Nature forum

Discussion in 'Nature' started by Laura Weishaupt, Jan 23, 2018.

  1. Thanx JDMvW. Your advice on how to make this thread successful would be appreciated.
  2. The alternative thread is going well. It's been fun seeing the contributions.

    Can someone give me an idea of the group's rule of thumb for the difference between landscape and nature? Are all landscapes considered nature? Does there have to be a non-human animal present to qualify as a nature photo for the purposes of this forum or a focus on particular vegetation? Certainly, all nature photos would not be landscape photos. But what, if anything (aside from a human element), would disqualify a landscape photo from being considered a nature photo?
  3. I have seen landscapes in MiN before, and grumbling about a vehicle path in one being a 'hand of man' element.
  4. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Fred, we always defer to Photographic Society of America's (PSA) definition of nature photography: Definition of Nature | Photographic Society of America

    The key is that there shouldn't be any human-made objects in the image. Within the context of this forum, landscape photography is just one type of nature photography, as long as there is no human-made objects inside, such as bridges, lighthouses (or any house), roads, boats .... If one wants to be picky, there shouldn't be any jet trails in the sky .... But at least I sometimes have difficulty telling clouds and jet trails apart after it has disperse a bit.

    Nowhere in the definition specifies that there must be some animal or vegetation to be qualified as nature photography. You can take a picture of a clear blue sky, and that all-blue image would meet the guideline for nature photography, although not an interesting image. Or there could be some very interesting cloud formation under great light.

    In my mind, the proposed alternative thread should still meet most of PSA's definition for nature photography, but it may show some small signs of human activities such as a bird standing on barbwire, a bridge in the background ... so that some otherwise excellent images displaying the beauty of nature don't get disqualified for trivial reasons. Domesticated animals such as dogs, cats, horses, cows are still off limits, and there shouldn't be any buildings, ships .... prominently on display in the image. This new thread is not meant to open the floodgate so that anything goes. We have many image threads on for those other topics.

    As I mentioned earlier, it is actually more difficult to define the guidelines for the new thread. It is going to be highly subjective. If it evolves such that we have to keep flagging posts as non-compliant and debating on why some images are acceptable or not, it won't be fun any more and we might as well just go back to having only the original Monday in Nature thread where the stricter guidelines makes it easier to distinguish whether an image is nature or not.
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2018
  5. Thanks, Shun. Just wanted to make sure. I get the human element stuff. Believe me, it's been made quite clear! And I had read the PSA guidelines which, oddly enough, are mostly about what a nature shot cannot be but not what a nature shot actually is, which is why I was having trouble distinguishing it from a landscape shot. But you've confirmed what I suspected, which is that a landscape photo is simply a subset of nature photos, and that's basically what I wanted to know. Thanks again.
    That's an interesting way to put it and it seems I agree, but such is life under the hammer of the PSA. :)
  6. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Nobody is forced to participate in Monday in Nature or this forum. If you don't like the PSA's guidelines, find a different thread or forum whose guidelines you agree to. From my point of view, I would rather use their guidelines than coming up with my own. It is obvious that coming up with the looser guidelines for the new image thread is not simple.
  7. Shun, the smiley face was supposed to let you know that I was saying that in a lighthearted and tongue-in-cheek manner. I do not feel “forced” into participating here. I do not feel welcome either. If one can’t even voice an opinion on or make a joke about rules without being basically told to go away, then one knows exactly what he’s dealing with. And it isn’t pretty. It’s consistent, though. Purge nature of what you find distracting in order to keep it pure and purge the forum of alternative voices in order to keep it pure as well. Mission accomplished. Bye.
  8. Domesticated animals such as dogs, cats, horses, cows are still off limits, and there shouldn't be any buildings, ships .... prominently on display in the image

    Got to say I don't agree with this. There could be great shots of wildlife with buildings etc as prominent parts of the image. While I also tend to agree about domesticated animals, I would not make it a rule, unless the thread became a cat and dog heaven.
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2018
  9. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Domesticated animals are not nature. It should be pretty obvious that we shouldn't allow them in the Nature Forum. The issue is that if one person is allowed to post them, it will be difficult to argue why that is ok but someone else is not. I already know that we are not always consistent with our rules, but we definitely don't to make them really inconsistent.
    Mary Doo likes this.
  10. Are trees planted by Man natural?
    Norma Desmond likes this.
  11. Gup

    Gup Gup

    After an almost daily presence here for over 15 years I decided to take a few months off, but after reading these last four pages it feels like I never left.
    At first read I thought a new thread to accommodate those who have been complaining about the strict guidelines for MIN should be a fresh and welcome addition to this forum. I understand getting out into the field is not always possible for some and not even a welcome choice for others so the new suggested thread would accommodate that segment of the membership here and also those who balk at 'rules' in general to display their otherwise interesting nature shots. Why some of you have to make that a difficult concept, I don't know.
    I strive for my nature shots to fall within the acceptable MIN guidelines as part of the enjoyment I experience taking the actual shot. Sometimes I have to crop out an element or frame for it not to be visible. Other times the bird feeder can't be ignored! Or the window frame I shot through. Or the fence post the owl chose to rest upon. For these I would now have a weekly thread to post in. Fabulous! It's still the Nature forum so the initial guidelines must still exist. But, now you can post your best shots from the zoo and Marineland. What is so difficult to understand about that?
    My vote would be for one image per member per week, the same as MIN, because I'm most interested in seeing someone's best effort, and words to be completely optional because I enjoy learning as much as I can regarding the photographer's technique, equipment used, and any other information they are willing to share about the image.
    Would, 'Interacting With Nature' be a sufficient title?

    squirrel in feeder 900 wm gup 7347.jpg
  12. How about feral dogs (as we have possibly seen already)? Or the wild horses of Sable Island? Or pythons in the FLA everglades? I want to see nature photos and won't get hung up on a few debatable interpretations. How deeply could one be offended by them? That is why the the guideline I suggested states " ‘Likes’, ‘Replies’ and comments from other PNet members will help to guide you for your future posts."
    Norma Desmond likes this.
  13. "Again, as far as I am concerned, the purpose for this thread is to promote nature photography and have some fun. It is not my objective, and I am sure it is not Bob Atkins' either, to tightly police every entry. As long as we use common sense, anything reasonable is fine. If we can see some out-of-focus house in the background, it is not going to be an issue. However, I hope people won't post an image of their dog on a leash waking in the park ..."

    A quote from Shun Cheung in October 2013 on the Monday in Nature POTW thread (one of the first I posted to).

    So; what has changed?
  14. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Dawson Pointers, I still have a private e-mail from Bob Atkins in 2014. He told me not to rely on common sense, since many people lack it. In other words, I have learned a little more and hopefully have gotten wiser.
  15. Think this is the summary? - The subject is "nature" but "hand-of-man" element is allowed if it happens to be relevant and salient to the story - such as Gup's humorous image/story of the squirrel?
    DawsonPointers and Bill J Boyd like this.
  16. Sorry for my ignorance Shun, but who is Bob Atkins? I looked for his profile on PNet and came up with very little. Is he the guy that used to review Canon stuff?
  17. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    I think that I mentioned earlier Bob Atkins created this forum over 20 years ago. started with only one general photography forum, and the Nature Forum was the second forum (and first forum with a specific theme). Bob was a moderator on for years and indeed reviewed a lot of Canon equipment. We were casual friends back in the 1990’s and he invited me to join here.

    Bob has faded away from in the last year and I haven’t heard from him recently.
  18. Googled Bob Atkins. The info he provides seems current.

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