I'm curious

Discussion in 'Photo.net Site Help' started by lauriee, Oct 7, 2005.

  1. Hi!
    Someone mentioned in another thread that they were glad to have been
    given a break from the usual ratings complaints that are posted here
    and given something else to discuss. SOOOOO that got my mind "To
    thinkin'" and I thought I'd pose a question.

    We all rate photos and sometimes it's on quality of the photo and if
    the photo is origial and interesting. However there are times I'm
    sure that we rate photos based on our personal taste and likes and
    dislikes...(Ok here's the question finally!) When you come to
    photo.net what type of photos do you enjoy viewing. OR what types of
    photos really turn you off? Why? Also when you come across photos
    that are not pleasing to you..do you rate them or do you skip?

    Ok so I'll start...I love to look at photos with LOTS of color! So
    pictures from India and the Asian countries catch my eye first. I
    also like nature. Ecspecially skies and weather photos. Children
    usually grab my attention to.

    What I don't like...Well obviously as many of you know. Photographs
    of dead people ecspecially children and to be honest. I'm not too
    crazy about really "dark" photography. I enjoy looking at tasteful
    nudes but sometimes I look and I'm shocked about how the degree
    of "tasteful" can vary! LOL

    If I run across photos that are not appealing to me because of
    subject matter...I just skip them. I realize that it isn't because
    they are of poor quality or not origianl..It's because I personally
    don't care for the style. So I don't rate.

    YOUR TURN! :)
  2. EricM

    EricM Planet Eric

    what does your question(s) have to do with feedback on how PN is run? it's nice to know you like tasteful nudes, but,...
  3. hmmmm well maybe I posted it in the wrong place...I guess I thought by posing a question I was asking for "feedback"...from the forum. Wrong? Give me another option instead of being so sarcastic. I am truly amazed by the lack of manners here sometimes! LOL

  4. Ohh and in answer to how does my question relate to how the site it run...I thought maybe it would give us all some insight on what makes us tick when we rate...Thanks for your support though! haha
  5. mbb


    Thank you for giving me name: someone :).

    I like to look at photos taken for reasons. So, I rather like looking at folders and find out what is a photographer's goal. Single good photo is too often a product of luck or skilful manipulation. From good series I can usually learn something new: about the subject and techniques used to make those photographs.

    Question fits little better in Philosophy of Photography forum.
  6. When someone posts a photograph, I assume they want to know not just how you react to it, but more importantly, if they were able to communicate to you why they took the picture. As fellow photographers, we are also being asked to evaluate technique, mostly lighting and composition, taking into account the limitations of jpeg compression and monitor calibration. Using the ratings queue to express your personal preferences for photographic styles is a good way to determine popular preferences, but a lousy way to find interesting images worthy of discussion that will help you learn more about photography. When I rate from the RFC queue, I try to balance original view point and technique.

    . . . and I don't skip. I don't think it should be permitted, the reason being that it would slow you down so you have to think about all the image you're looking at, as opposed to looking for those that are in your comfort zone.
  7. Ok! Well if a mod wants to move me or delete this I'll post it there! NO problem! :) Thanks for letting me know in a respectful and mature way!

  8. Very good point...When I choose to skip it's usually because I'm stumped or I just don't like the photo at all. I understand your point but there are times that when I look at a photo there might be something about it that just doesn't feel right...It might be clear as a bell and VERY original...but for me to give it a 7/7 would just feel wrong. For example a racially offensive photo. I in good conscience couldn't give such a photo a good rating even IF it was VERY original and Extremely well done.
  9. "...However there are times I'm sure that we rate photos based on our personal taste and likes and dislikes..."

    Isn't it ALWAYS based on one's personal likes?
  10. EricM

    EricM Planet Eric

    "Give me another option instead of being so sarcastic. I am truly amazed by the lack of manners here sometimes! LOL"

    excuse me? because my writing style doesn't contain an explanation mark every sentence and filled silly "LOL"'s, I'm rude? it was a simple direct question. a suggestion? start a blog.
  11. Rating using like or dislike is for kindergarten kids. This site is intended for people with some knowledge. We were given a scale from 1 to 7 to rationaly express our subjective opinion on other people point of view. Many times we encounter ratings from members that are still at kindergarden level, therefore it will be very difficult for one to measure ther true performance.

    Tip to less enlighted members: if you don't understand the image it does not mean it is automaticaly 1/1 or 2/2, therfor if you have dilemma just give it an average 4/4 which does not hurt anyone either way.
  12. "Isn't it ALWAYS based on one's personal likes?"

    I suppose that's what I'm asking? In my case no. I try to rate according to the two choices I have Asthetics and Originality. Asthetics to me means is it pleasing to the eye? AND is it a quality photo to look at. Originality means (to me) Wheather or not it is something I'll see a million more times this week or is it something special. With that being said. The delima for me comes when I look at a photo and it doesn't please MY eye but it is still a well done photo. OR if it is a a well done photo but carries a message that goes against my personal beliefs or feelings. In the first case I usually rate it with fours. In the second I skip it...That is just my personal way of being fair. I don't think there are any right or wrong answers here and that wasn't my intention for this thread. I acatually was just curious as to what others enjoyed looking at and what others were bothered by.

    As for Eric..Well my LOL's and exclamation marks are a personal style of typing and if enough people were offended by them I would take their feelings into consideration rather than lash out with more LOL's and !'s. That is what being polite is all about.

    Laurie...Oh and just for Eric :)
  13. EricM

    EricM Planet Eric

    can you pinch my cheek and pat me on the head too?
  14. Derek Golak , oct 07, 2005; 10:12 p.m.
    Rating using like or dislike is for kindergarten kids. This site is intended for people with
    some knowledge. end quote ---
    OH REALLY DEREK? I thought this site was intended for anyone interested in photography.
    And it surely appears to me that it is MOSTLY intended for those who know very little
    about photography.

    That is of course, just my own opinion, from my own point of view; and judging from not
    just images which appear here - but from many of the opinions of those who seem most
    willing to accept that the ratings are simply used only for those unseen forces in control of
    this site as an aid to choose which images should appear most prominently, the only
    experts are the moderators. Phew...

    Nevertheless - I dig what Laurie is saying/ asking.

    Laurie -when I have time, occasionally, I'll slog through the request for critique images and
    rate and comment on those that grab me as being something worth seeing again. If, in my
    opinion, an image sucks and needs to be rated thusly, I'll give it what I believe it deserves
    - be it a 3 or 4 or even very rarely a 2. I TRY to comment on any picture that is worth the
    time it takes to do so. If I don't comment, that is why ... it just wasn't worth the time - (as
    most do not want to hear criticism despite those who say otherwise here.)

    I learned photography the way most photographers learn: by having my lousy pictures
    thrown out, put down, and generally stomped on. Reasons given in class - in front of the
    ENTIRE class. But when one is in an early photography course, those rules apply to
    everyone in the class the same. Good stuff is praised and reasons given, lousy pictures are
    not praised and reasons given.
    In a classroom, one generally accepts the teacher/ professor to be knowledgeable enough
    to do it this way. As I see it, p.net will NEVER work this way as there is NO ONE who can be
    considered THE expert.

    What I WISH we could do is post pictures WITHOUT ANYONE KNOWING THE
    PHOTOGRAPHER'S NAME (anonymously) and RECEIVE RATINGS (also anonymously.) The
    heck with comments, at least for the FIRST THREE DAYS after a picture is posted. No one is
    HONESTLY interested in WHO rated their picture. Surely no one would be were their image
    to end up as one of the most highly rated that week. Were top images chosen this way, it
    would be a simple thing for EVERYONE TO KNOW which pictures are most liked by the
    majority of users. There would be less reason to beeotch about ratings as well, as there
    would be much less cheating. The world-wide majority would speak with simple straight
    ratings. The most popular would be rated on top as #1, etc...

    Knowing which pictures are most popular, IN MY OPINION, is all anyone really cares about
    DESPITE what they say here!

    So Laurie - you go girl. No matter what anyone here says, most of the time it will be either
    sarcastic or worse, politically correct (for this site) - the truth is:
  15. mbb


    And this suppose to be thread not about ratings :):):) Funny how many people cannot have a normal life and just enjoy photography. Even if asked what they like they start shouting about their rules to be forced on rating. Trust me, there is a lot of more interesting things besides rates on PN :):):) If one cannot live without getting one's photo rated, at least do not take them seriously. If one have to get only 6s or 7s one have to call for professional help before is too late.
  16. wow Laurie, You have knack for posting these threads. :) I am lucky if I get A response.
  17. I'll take this discussion for what it is; an attempt to fill the gap until PN is up and running again and the TRP gallery is open for business in full.

    I seldom rate, and although I sometimes rate by looking at the Request for Critique photos, I almost never enter the queue, so my ratings are known -- the very few photos I've rated.

    And I've rated fewer then 325 photos in 18 months, not because it's 'beneath me' but because for me rating is a more sacred thing -- I prefer to leave comments. And when I comment, it's not just 'nice photo 6/6' sort of thing, but something that is personal to the photographer, after a view of the photo, the photographer's gallery and his/her biography.

    I understand my 'highest rated' photos of others gallery gets a fairly large amount of traffic because it has a certain 'style' -- which is to say, photos to my own taste, with particular emphasis on 'design' and/or composition. Classiclly trained artists were the pool of most early famous photographers, and they had a natural bent toward strong design elements in their photographs. That has diminished markedly today, but I think 'design' can be very important to photographs and in my ratings, I place strong emphasis on 'design elements'.

    I divine that gallery has strong viewership because one prominent critic refers his viewers to my gallery with a link, and because I have a large number of viewers (now) and presuppose that many will do as I do, and look often to the photogapher's 'highest rated' of others photo gallery.

    And looking at others' highest-rated photos is where I get a great many of my highest-rated photos, rather than from happening to be in the queue, viewing the Request for Critique photos, or being a slave to opening the TRP engine every day.

    There's just too much chance for missing wonderful photos if one relies on 'chance' to catch the best.

    And I regard my highest rated gallery of others' photos to be an element of my own 'art' (if I have any). It tells others what I regard as being the best, and it has a decided bent toward 'street' photography, albeit with strong design elements.

    I try not to avoid my responsibilities; I've prepared a 240+ or so 'presentation' about the 'subject' and the 'background', in my photographs meant to be a 'teaching device', and that contribution certainly took as great an amount of time as sitting in 'rate recent queue' dishing out numbers.

    If someone gets a rating from me, it's heartfelt, not just the result of some drive-by rating, and it likely comes with a comment. It seemed less necessary to leave comments when the ratings were not (semi)-anonymous as they are now.

    I DO want to know about the photography of those who rate my photos, but I do not really fear those 3s and 4s that sometimes seem to hit my photos -- sometimes photos I regard as real 'catches', while other less inspired photos may get far higher numbers. I post not to ever gain 'top rated photo' because I simply do not take photos that are so good or so popular. I post for myself. I look to find the relative popularity of certain images, and often I am surprised.

    Sometimes an image will draw fewer then 11 ratings, but may (for me) go over the top in views, even with low rating numbers -- which for me indicates an anomaly in the system, which I won't attempt to explain, but just remark that in such cases the 'popularity' of a photo may be independent of how it is 'rated' for originality' and 'aesthetics' in spite of the bias of the rating system which generates views mainly for 'highest-rated' photos.

    (As one example of anomalous rating behavior, I recently posted a photo that drew three to five times the number of views my photos normally do, yet it rated in the high 4s, basically. The views on that photo continue to mount -- photo of three people slumped over each other, fatigued, in an airport terminal in Ukraine.)

    Sometimes I will be overwhelmed by the success of a photo that has really no photographic merit from a technical or artistic viewpoint yet goes over the top in views -- a recent photo of a heart-shaped hole in a windshield with the taped words 'I' and 'U' separated by the heart for the statement 'I (love) U' was enormously popular, drawing both high ratings and a high viewership, but almost any member of Photo.net could have taken that photo, and thus its only connection to me was my ability both to 'see' it and to 'post' it.

    Sometimes I have taken wonderful photos (to my mind) and nobody will 'get' them, sometimes because the photo is idiosyncratic to my way of thinking or because the viewership is too inconvenienced by having to view small, important details shown in the small 'thumbnail' presentation.

    I have a wonderful photo in my early B & W folder that languishes because the subjects are in the rear of a room, (two men and a mannequin's head) in the rear of a thrift shop.

    Photo.net caters first to high-contrast, high saturation photos that show well in a thumbnail presentation. I deliberately posted a low-contrast photo of a seaside -- which I considered quite good -- but deliberately didn't boost either the contrast or saturation for that seaside photo and watched the ratings languish. I know that if I had boosted saturation and/or contrast, it would have scored much higher. That was not to my taste, however. So what if it got 3s and 4s.

    Sometimes the ratings, it appears, are a function of how the photo is first presented.

    For instance, if a photo with small detail is blown up large and exhibited on a wall of a gallery or museum room, one will 'see' the detail and not have to work to understand that photo.

    Such photos will usually go unrecognized on Photo.net. It's just a function of first presentation in thumbnail and final presentation limited by the size of the viewers' computer screens.

    Many photos cannot be presented well in such a format and photographers should know that such photos will languish on Photo.net just for technical reasons other than their artistry and technical mastery.

    So, I continue to post photos that I know in advance will rate 3s and 4s, sometimes, just because it suits me. Sometimes I do that just for photos that help make up a folder to fill out a theme.

    In previous times I just didn't submit those 'folder' photos to ratings, but the 'views' were much slower in mounting because of that (although those folders now get tremendous traffic and the folders are very high rated, even though they decidedly have my 'lesser' work.

    I post things that I hope will be 'interesting', knowing that viewers such as myself get tired of looking at the same subject 35 times in one folder, so I try to vary what I post. Is that pandering to 'popular tastes'? Probably, and I'm not ashamed of it. Viewers want to be interested when they open a folder, and I try to cater to that. Few of my photos look anything like any other photo I've taken, though my viewers often can recognize my 'work' by its design elements or its subjects.

    Finally, I cherish the wonderful comments that so many viewers leave; they come to comment on my photos, I think, expecting they will be well received, and I try not to disappoint them. I extend the welcome mat to commentators, and get an extraordinary number of them.

    Those commentators are the light of my life on Photo.net, even when they come to pan an image. They give the feedback that is why I post photos. I do so more for the critique than the rating.

    But I'm far from immune from the ratings. Some day I may want to turn professional or feed a stock agency once again, and ratings help to judge to popular taste.

    Just for that alone, ratings are wonderful, even if they sometimes seem 'idiotic' or 'stupid' as some of you think. There's really no arguing with popular taste if one seeks to present one's photos to the people. It's just idiotic or stupid to get upset about ratings (unless you have a side bet going with someone for big money on how high your photo will rate).

    There, that was my turn for a long time, and I'll bow out with the wish that after Brian gets some sleep the PN functions will be restored; I have many photos to post.


    John (Crosley)

  18. Laurie,

    The one from Eric here

    http://www.photo.net/bboard/q-and-a-fetch-msg?msg_id=00DmAu did make me

  19. Too funny! (insert at least three exclamation points here)

    Not only did it make me LOL Eric but it made me ROFL! (instert another four exclamation points here)

    As for pinching his cheeks..Only if he is the nice male butt way in the back of his photo! Patting his head? nahhhhhhh...

  20. Laurie,

    I totally see your point and I invoke the same rule for myself as well. I tend to lean towards landscapes/seascapes/sunsets/sunrises, and anything with vibrant colors. I rate a lot of photos in these categories. Although I do rate some photos ouside of my prefered genre, I tend not to rate photos that I normally would not take myself. BTW, I saw your portofolio and ...quite impressive.

    Will King
  21. EricM

    EricM Planet Eric

    My butt's nicer than that Laurie, wanna see a tasteful nude? :)
  22. Hmmmmmm...Now, Eric that brings up another point. Is your idea of a tasteful butt the same as mine? You are welcome to share it with us but are your ready to recieve the ratings? :)
  23. if you examin the machanics so many things are involved with the eye of the beholder, first of all, we don,t all see the same photo the same way, color and sharpness are efected by our vision, next are own personal life experances and mind set effect how we absorb a photo, do we relate to the photo thru are life experances,can be cultrally can be religious, our minds take in the information then makes a jugement based on all these things, and if nothing else tells us something about ourselfs jbaker0213@frontiernet.net
  24. There's an old cliche that goes something like this....."If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all"....And that's how I view, rate, and comment on the images I see on PN. I love color, lot's of color especailly the color red, but I'm also impressed by good use of B&W and Sepia with graphic detail. I love honesty, integrity, and courage in people. I admire someone for trying to be creative and artistic even when they lack the technical skills and or the education to fulfill their vision, they're trying to find something within themselves they need to express. Creativity is subjective to the viewer and therefore will always elicit a variety of responses pursuant to a person's likes and dislikes. I'm aware of the continual discussions about ratings, empathetically the low ones, but generally I think the people who are responsible for the majority of the ratings are doing a good job, if one looks at the top rated photos every day most of us will agree that the first 50 or so images are very well done; they usually show good technical skills, they are often graphically interesting or do a good job of capturing the essence of the subject, and just as importantly they often "tell a story", some are culturally fascinating, and many elicit an emotional response. I've enjoyed my experience here on PN and I have learned a lot, most everyone has been kind and helpful, it makes me want to be a better photographer but the bottom line is that I shoot what pleases me and I'm my own critic first and foremost. If a thumbnail image looks like something I might find offensive or doesn't appeal to my tastes I don't bother to enlarge it for a closer look and I'm sure I've missed hundreds of images that I would of found very much to my liking, but I only have so much time to devote to my PN experience and so I choose to spend that time enjoying the images I find appealing and help to broaden my own vision. As humans, we're by nature competitive, and of course we all want our photos to be well received, but variety is the spice of life and I'm thankful for that. Let's all just keep on keepin' on and let the chips fall where they may. Here's a quote to live by....."Happiness is not a state to arrive at, but a manner of traveling". May you all travel well.
  25. mg


    1) My favorite genres are: beautiful moody studio portraits, street photography, candid portraits, fashion photos, still life photography, clever humorous images, great Photoshop montages - like Dominic Rousse used to post on this site for example -, abstract phgotography, moody B&W landscape photos.

    2) Genres I do not have much interest in: nudes or color landscape photos - unless they are outstanding, and if they are, I love them.

    3) Genres that tend to bore me: photos of birds, bugs, sunsets, and flowers.

    In short, most of what you'll find in the long term TRPs isn't exactly my taste. :)

    4) How do I rate ? Here you go: When I rate through the rate recent - which I rarely did before, and do a bit more often nowadays, although I might quit doing that - I make a point to: A) rate all pictures about which I have a clear opinion, and B) rate all genres fairly, leaving my own genre preferences completely aside. I like to say that I rate images according to THEIR MERIT WITHIN THEIR GENRE.

    I have rated 7s a few pictures that I admired very much, although they didn't interest me all that much - color landscapes or nudes for example. Surprise me with a brilliant idea and execute it very well, and there, you get 7s - even though I dislike the genre this picture belongs to.

    I don't think it makes any sense to rate images based on genre preferences. All the folks I see around here who will rate a 7/7 virtually any colorful landscape are actually rating people and rating genres - not rating photos. The same goes for people who low-rate certain genres systematically. All these folks have managed to polute and control entirely the TRPs for ages on Photo.net, and the result is this: unoriginal, sometimes poorly composed and often badly manipulated color landscapes are all over the place in the TRPs. As a result, it has become increasingly difficult to find interesting portraits and great fashion pictures...

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