Prediction: RAW is going to eventually be a deprecated file format

Discussion in 'Casual Photo Conversations' started by Karim Ghantous, Oct 18, 2019.

  1. After reading the comments here, it is becoming clear to me that the distinction between painting and photo - that photo cannot do this and that, painting can - resides more in the personal, preconceived baggage of the viewer than in the content itself. A photo cannot show narrative because it has shutter speed, it was snapped in a fraction of a sec - whaat! I am sorry. Cannot view artwork with that much baggage.

    What’s next? A novel that was written over an year narrating the events spanning a week is unauthentic,
  2. I shall call it Policewoman Looking for Antifa Thug Who Stole Her Uniform.
  3. Narrative has a specific meaning in the visual arts. You can view art without learning this "baggage", make vague noises about snapshots that "tell a story" even, but you won't fully understand what you're looking at. There's a dearth of narrative in photography. That's a fact. Henry Robinson and Oscar Rejlander in the 19th century, when photographers were trading unsuccessfully in the prestige of painting, then a whole lot of nothing, and now today maybe someone like Crewdsen, whose work is "cinematic". That's about it.
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2019
  4. To me, that sounds like vague noise.
  5. I take a small solace in the fact I, at least, can still recognize people in their photos.
  6. Photography as Narrative Art

    I'm not going argue that traditional photography provides the same kind of flexibility in achieving an end result that painting does. A photograph starts with something that exists, - at least for an instant. A painting doesn't have that limitation. But I don't think photography belongs in the small box you're trying to place it in.

    And the level of flexibility of photography is only increasing as we move further into the digital world. The end result may only bear the tiniest resemblance to what was in front of the camera when the shutter was clicked. Modern photographers with all the emphasis on post processing may be becoming more like painters than the photographers of decades past were.
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2019
  7. "Photographs can be the most powerful storytellers: 1 picture = 1000 words, as is often said."

    This is a cliche (the element of truth is that photographs can suggest a narrative), you won't find it in a formal art history or theory text. Compare the featured works in that article with something like this. I'm not boxing photography in, I'm reminding you it has a structure, if you care, because people nowadays are used to digital, which has infinite degrees of freedom (can simulate anything).
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2019
    tomspielman likes this.
  8. which one? storytelling. connecting events. evoking emotion, suggesting meaning, posing question ......

    No it is not a fact. Many photographs care nothing for narrative, sure. But so many do. A quick google will present many fine narrative photographers. both single image and series.
    It’s best to think of narrative as a potential element of all photography. Many photographs lead the viewer beyond the frame. and/or A photo may pose a question leaving the viewer to ponder the answer. That is motion, that is narrative creating connected events, forward or backward. an opening of connected space beyond the frame. That is Storytelling with viewer as a participant. What the viewer brings to the photograph is part of the narrative potential. as it is with other mediums.
  9. That is a fantastic picture, but is photography limited to a single photo? I don't think so.

    I'm not sure I know what you mean by structure. Photography involves a means of capturing light to produce an image. It could be glass and sensors or a hole in the side of box and some film. But I contend that the process of photography starts well before the light hits the sensor or the film and continues until the photographer is satisfied with the image(s), - or gives up.
  10. It isn't limited to a single photo. I think single-image masterpieces are overrated and anyway history. Over a billion photos are posted daily. A few will be as good as any Bresson. it's just statistics. Sequences are the future, in photobooks. They can tell a story. They are more authorial.
  11. I can give an example when you can not say if it is a painting or a photo.
  12. Structure arises from selection You can only select facts (details of the world) and discrete time intervals. A selection may lead the viewer's imagination outside the rectangular frame (another structural element), as inoneeye points out, but its edges and the passage of time eliminate everything but the selected facts. 1000 words, but which ones? If you're interested in this topic I recommend the terrific Believing is Seeing (Observations on the Mysteries of Photography), by the director Errol Morris.
  13. so this means what? That there is no narrative? or limited? no storytelling or connection be it inside or outside the frame -
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2019
  14. With photography, with the passage of time and the existence of a frame we are left with facts.
    But not so with painting because of structure and selection is less restrictive because it unfolds over time.
  15. *shrug* back in the days of photo story magazines editors had to caption everything because photos don't explain (cf Sontag quote above.).
  16. Now adding to my understanding. Paintings are better at creating narrative because they are presented without captions in magazines.
  17. I'd rather learn why people visit portrait studios. What's that all about?
  18. What all this musings have to do with topic of this tread?
  19. I think that is but one way to look at photography. And it is a way that suggests limitations that don't really exist, - especially in the digital age.

    A photographer is using light to form an image. That image may be left more or less as is, combined with other images and/or molded into something very different.
  20. A painting is what the artist perceived of the subject over a long period of time. A photograph is what the photographer saw in an instant.

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