I love doing Street Photography but......

Discussion in 'Philosophy' started by reallife, Oct 19, 2018.

  1. The oldest and most ineffective trick in the Internet handbook. Like telling your wife she’s being defensive. I’m sure it works every time ... not! Talk about intellectual laziness.

    Meanwhile with all your reading between the lines, you still can’t give one example of my being a moral relativist, or even a post-modernist for that matter. Interesting you claim to be adept at reading it between the lines but are utterly impotent when it comes to an actual example, even a loose one. I promise, I won’t hold you to all the specific details of what I said. Just a general ballpark of a morally relative stance I’ve taken. You lose.
  2. Alan, my sincerest apologies. I wrote that in the heat of my anger at others here and it was a bad thing to say. I have many friends and family members who are religious and I really do respect their faith even if I don't share it and know them to be good, decent people. I'm comfortable questioning things you (or the Bible) say, but there's no excuse for making fun of or looking down on religion.
    This just makes me sad, as does so much of what you said about it all not mattering. There's so much purpose each man and woman can find and create for themselves in life. Putting that burden on God seems so unfair to God. My conception of a God would be one who's given man free will for a reason and that's to forge his own way and, in great part, to make sure he matters. The greatest religious figures through history mattered, from Martin Luther to Mother Teresa to Martin Luther King. They made sure their lives mattered. Regardless the source of their purpose and inspiration, they mattered. That we may come full circle, that we may return to dust doesn't negate our existence and importance and the imperative that we find purpose in our lives. We can't not.
  3. Be happy and enjoy the day.
  4. Spot on assessment. I've seen that in other photographers. It's a cop-out for lack of curiosity, imagination, and effort. And it very much shows in the photographs they make, or more accurately, "take." What's sad is they don't even realize it and instead rely on easy excuses.

    Locally, I've heard that in a slightly different form, that San Francisco has been photographed to death and there's nothing left (to shoot). That's just a different form of the same excuse, stemming from the same underlying personal limitations.

    Not surprisingly, I've never heard the above excuses from photographers with strong and compelling bodies of work.
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2018
  5. Good point. And it relates to “there’s nothing new under the sun” which I also can’t ever remember being spoken by a photographer with a strong and compelling body of work.
  6. Such events, beyond novelty, make valid important points about the fallacies of groupthink.

    Nothing is more anti intellectual than slavishly following an ideology. The nature of current technology is such that the necessity for deliberate critical thought is threatened by spreading “correct” adherence to soothe the emotion and atrophy the mind at a lighting pace across society.
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2018
  7. You keep getting this stuff wrong, and it’s not so much that that makes you anti-intellectual as much as it makes you appear unintelligent and foolish. You can’t seem to grasp the fact that it’s not your pointing this or that out that is problematic. It’s not. It’s your making claims without backing them up and without even fully understanding them that’s the problem. You toss around the term post-modernism and can’t explain it in your own words other than giving a few nonsensical talking points about it you’ve heard some charlatan speak. When asked to fill in any blanks, you change the subject or lash out at the questioner, always deflecting and NEVER responding by showing you have even the slightest familiarity with post-modernism as it was written but some familiarity with post-modernism as it’s been misinterpreted by other fools you read. Go to the source. Read a post modernist and then tell me what the issue is. Post-modernism is simply an “ism” du jour you’ve latched onto as a punching bag. It infiltrates so many of your posts much like roaches infiltrate NYC apartments. You label me a post modernist with no backup and no knowledge of what post modernism is. Do I have some sympathies with post modernism and do I recognize some important ideas it’s contributed? Yes. But no more so than I recognize the value of some of Plato’s ideas even though I’m pretty sure I’m not a Platonist or a Plato sympathizer. You’re so locked into black and white thinking and stereotyping others that you can’t imagine someone expressing a positive reaction to a post-modernist idea in a given conversation on a specific topic without forever pigeon-holing that person as a post-modernist or moral-relativist or what other stereotype you can easily and lazily reach for. Your dependence on this one consistent foil is what your intellectual problem is. Post-modernism, for the most part, has come and gone and has taken its place in history. It’s long past time for any sophisticated thinker to get over it. Your obsession with it gets in your way because that obsession filters and frames your thinking in an utterly fabricated and false context. If you at some point were able to get over your unhinged anger at post-modernism, which you show no understanding of to begin with, you’d open your mind to a more expansive context and way in which to think about important ideas.
  8. Your actions belie your words since you seem to consistently discuss these things with me. It’s intellectually lazy to rely only on secondary sources or analysis to gain a reasonable inight into a way of thinking or, more importantly, one of the actual post-modernist thinkers who vary individually anyway. Secondary sources are good ACCOMPANIMENTS to primary ones, and not substitutes for them. More than one secondary source is often required to get a balanced view and make sure you’re not relying on some academic quack for your info on another writer who you should have been reading yourself. And, even when you do read a few post-modernists, you’ll still sound foolish when you go around accusing people of being one without being able or willing to back it up with substantive reasons instead of standing there pouting and stamping your feet insisting over and over again that you can reduce someone’s thinking to an ism by just repeating it over and over again and supplying no reasons and no examples of what they said to lead to your conclusion. Next thing you know, you’ll be red faced and shouting’ “crooked Hillary” and pretending it means something or makes you intelligent.
  9. I have never expected than in the place you shoot (US, San Francisco), people are so agressive. This is a pure, absolute revelation to me.
    In my town I go with a camera and shoot what and where I need. Of course, I don't come up to drunken people and nor stroll in local "favelas" :eek:. Though, this also may be done by taking a guard (2-3 acquanted wrestlers ;)).
    In a city with population more than miilion people no one pays attention to you on central streets. There are 1000s people with cameras. Who cares?
    I used to hang my Olympus on my neck and press the button with my pinky. OK.
  10. " Great shot. What is that, a potato baby with forks as hands?! The smoke and the presence of the small black mirror sucking everything in" Phil.

    Well, thanks Phil. A thought from yourself is a compliment indeed.

    The photograph.

    Taken very quickly using the zone focus method which I use for street photography....auto focus so unreliable.. After taking the photo, I viewed it on my live view screen. which took a matter of seconds. The weird thing is when I looked up the smoke and subject was gone....I never noticed Phil's potato man when reviewing the shot.

    Could this be a photo of Alien abduction, or, just a photo of a bloke covered in smoke looked upon by a potato man? As the photographer, I just don't know....but what I do is the young man and smoke disappeared within seconds which is rather weird.

    I mean seconds.
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2018
  11. I've photographed in LA many moons ago.

    I found folks especially friendly with a kindness to them.

    Have things changed over the years?
  12. No. Haven’t you heard? There’s nothing new under the sun!!! :rolleyes: [sarcasm]
  13. Thats why I recommend shooting more moonscapes! :D
    The Shadow likes this.
  14. Monoscape works too!
  15. "No. Haven’t you heard? There’s nothing new under the sun!!! :rolleyes: [sarcasm]" Fred the shadow.

    Behave, Gentleman.

    Little naughty digs....I don't know. Tut tut..
    ruslan likes this.
  16. Without reading all 12 pages I'll add that a short while ago I joined a photography page on fac3b00k. First post on the day I was accepted to the group page, a person posted a "street photograph" of a pair of young folks. The male person in the shot had his back to the camera and was giving the shooter the finger. The other person in the photo was a woman who looked for all the world like a teenage runaway who wished she was anywhere but there.

    The shot was not particularly imaginative, nor was it great (by my perhaps rudimentary or uneducated) standards.

    Of course, a viewer of such an image has no way of knowing the full story, without having been there -but- I, for one, would never have posted that image (nor would I have shot it for that matter) on a hugely public forum page or anywhere else. Who's to say the girl was not a runaway? How could anyone know whether or not she wanted her face pasted onto a page where she'd be seen by possibly millions of people? Then again, what rights do people have, when it. comes to folks they don't know taking photos of them when they appear in public places? Or if they appear in public places that aren't really all that out in the open? What rights do photographers have under the same set of circumstances? What does the term "street photography" really mean, and do people with cameras have free range or carte blanche to shoot who and what they want no matter what?

    My first reaction to the image was not positive. Nor was my final impression positive, possibly fueled by the defiant poster changing and shifting the story of the people in the photo, how the photo came to be, and whether or not she engaged the subjects (positively or otherwise) before, during, or after snapping the shot.

    Eventually, whoever owns or moderates that page took the photo down along with the hundreds of comments. The poster's next post was a "selfie" featuring them flipping the finger with each hand, looking at the camera, seemingly aggressively posed in a definite statement of rebuke to the members of that page. Pretty sure that got booted eventually as well, for all I know the OP was banned from that group page, and Franky, I haven't really returned so I wouldn't know.

    I'd say this whole thing falls pretty solidly into the "but...." part of "I love street photography, but..."

    I, for one, am not comfortable randomly putting people on the street into my sights and snapping photos of them. Occasionally I see what might be termed "street photography" that I like but mostly it just seems to be folks snapping photos of anything with anything. No doubt there are amazing examples of this particular aspect of photography that are awesome...


    I rarely see it.

    Then again, if "art" is meant to evoke a reaction, mission accomplished.
  17. I might not have as well. Intruding on privacy, even if legal and in public, raises a red flag to ME. I can usually gauge more and less private moments and act accordingly. IMO. runaways and homeless people don't necessarily have private places where they can escape the public eye, so I tend to give them more privacy than others on the streets. I speak only for myself.
    A lot of photography, street and otherwise, is not so much about knowing the reality of the situation. It's what you get from seeing that situation photographed. It's usually as much or more the photograph than its origins.
    Unless they ask her, they couldn't know. It's ok to ask. Some think asking ruins the candidness. I've asked and often come away with good pictures as a result. Asking has never ruined anything for me.
    In general, with important exceptions, people don't have a LEGAL RIGHT to privacy when on a public street. Varies according to location and laws are in flux.
    Good luck defining that! :) "Street photography" is pretty open to interpretation. There are many restrictions to photograph taking, but it's also a free speech issue and laws have to take that into consideration.
    Sounds like she got defensive. Having not read the comments to her, I don't want to take sides, as people on the Internet can gang up on someone and it can get ugly quick. Then again, it might have been her photo and attitude that was asking for that kind of reaction. We have no way of knowing.
    A lot of photographers are not and no one who doesn't want to should do it. Some photographers are comfortable with various kinds of street photography and some do a great job of it. I'm glad street photography has been a force through history. It's also a good idea to note that, sometimes, doing things we're uncomfortable with at first can be eye-opening and important in the long run!
    This is true for all genres of photography. There's a lot of crap portraits, crap landscapes, crap nature stuff, crap fine art. Makes sense there's plenty of lousy street photography as well.
    That's a key. A lot of great art does evoke reaction, and the reaction isn't always positive. Artists are and should be free to provoke. They are well to consider wearing a thick skin when they do because when you do provocative work, people are likely to be provoked! Of course, some stuff simply is provocative for the sake of being provocative and doesn't have much substance behind it. And some stuff is really just pretending to be provocative when it's in fact no more thoughtful or deep than giving someone a finger.
  18. Fred the Shadow ,or, methinks a icon of Diplomacy; although some would argue with that thought.. Sorry, but I'm not a person of Diplomacy.

    If you have a problem with your personal morality to take photos on the street, then don't do it. Please do not project your individual morality on other photographers- rather boring.

    Much of the Art of photography, and the recording of History, has been done by those folk we loosely call "street/documentry photographers."

    Research and educate yourself not really that difficult. And understand it is not about pointing a camera in someone's face.
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2018

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