The idea of using equipment.

Discussion in 'Accessories' started by raymondc, Jul 11, 2006.

  1. Hi, I have a fair knowledge of photog theory. I am interested to know why some
    pple go via so much length in perfecting their craft.

    Sometimes you read that some pple use particular focal lengths on their lenses,
    particular f stops. Or avoiding partiuclar ones they supplement it with another
    lens such as a prime lens.

    To me is if a person is not going to compare them but look at a photograph as a
    photograph does it matter and most pple probably are not going to print huge.
    If they were it probably make more sense to go towards larger format does not
    it. Is this passion in photography or perfection? I personally just get a nice
    photo with good exposure and good scene and composition and timing (of the sky)
    and if I did used a setting on a lens that was relatively less ideal I would
    just live with that and accept the composition of its frame. In addition there
    is the rest of the workflow to deal with that can also influence the product
    such as lab services or self digital services.

  2. "I am interested to know why some pple go via so much length in perfecting their craft."

    Is it really that much harder to type "people" instead of "pple"?

    "I personally just get a nice photo with good exposure and good scene and composition
    and timing and if I did used a setting on a lens that was relatively less ideal I would just
    live with that."

    I think that as with any "craft," you either get it or you don't.

    Personally, I'm glad that there
    are those in every field -- from surgery to auto mechanics -- who really care about what
    they're doing. To me, art is no exception; I wouldn't frequent great art museums if they
    showed only art by those who said, "Whatever comes easily is good enough for me."
  3. Ray,

    You ask 'passion or perfection'.

    Well, at what point does the picture go from 'passion' to just 'downright blurred and poor'?

    A photo should be taken with care (passion) and with this care usually comes a smattering of perfection. Striking the balance is the key.

    If you are feeling passionate about a subject, it is well worth taking a little care with the settings as often you will not get a second chance to take it.

    If you really don't care about the settings, then a point and shoot compact will help, as it does all the settings itself, and leaves you to deal with the passion side of things.

    Go with what makes you happy, but don't expect everyone to agree with you - we are all so very different after all...

  4. Ray, your post is not perfectly clear but it sounds like you are struggling with the idea that some people are very particular about the way they take their pictures. Why this should be a hard concept I don't know, but I suggest you just accept it and move on.
  5. Why do some women own 50 pairs of shoes? Why does anyone waste half a day at Home Depot? Beats the heck outta me.
  6. The spirit of your question points to the typical design goal of automatic cameras, and the marketplace shows that it is what most people want.

    Regarding passion or perfection - well, why not both?
  7. "Regarding passion or perfection - well, why not both?"

    Yes, why not both? For me, there are days when I spend all my time walking, looking, setting up and "fiddling", or reading and talking --exercising my passion. Other days it is all about bringing home the perfect shot. Everything is right-- the light, location, subject--often a once-in-a-lifetime event--these days it is all about perfection.

    It's rather like fishing--some days you get the fish, on others the fish gets you--but the worse day of fishing is better than the best day at the office!

  8. I think I often feel the same way you do at times. I think there is so much talk about technique but not enough talk about art. It makes me laugh to see a collector rambling on about one version of a 50mm or 85mm lens being better than another. You go to look at their online portfolio and there is nothing there, or worse yet, the images are nothing more than snapshots.

    On the other hand, artistic excellence must be founded on technique. Imagine a newbie artist trying to thin oil paint with water. By knowing that a lens is better at a certain f/stop, it provides a base level of knowledge to start working from artistically.

    I find myself more burdened with the more equipment I buy and take with me. Anymore, I often shoot with a single camera and lens. I am forced to work within that single system to produce the best combination of artistic and technical outcome.
  9. I sense that some people are equating "technique" with pointless encyclopedic technical knowledge and "passion" with the creation of artwork. Consider, for instance, the expert architectural photographer: A man who is tasked with taking technically perfect shots of landmark buildings for a book. Such a book isn't fine art, but the photographer must utilize perfect technique (Large format isn't point and shoot) to capture such subjects and must be passionate enough to strive for such perfection.
  10. I think the craft of photography is very important. Without an excellent command of the
    technical side of any art form, consistent results are nearly impossible. A person who has
    not mastered the craft can get great results sometimes, but without much consistency.

    Bullshitting about the technical side can be fun, too. I think it 'seems' to be so popular
    here on because this is a perfect incubation chamber for such conversation. If it
    bothers you feel free to skip down to the next thread when you see it. I would remind
    people that the technical, 'gearhead' side of it all is important to a lot of people for many
  11. I personally just get a nice photo with good exposure and good scene and composition and timing (of the sky) and if I did used a setting on a lens that was relatively less ideal I would just live with that and accept the composition of its frame.
    I think the people you are talking about, if they are fortunate enough to take "a nice photo," would prefer to have to "live with" as few technical deficiencies as possible and to have the maximum range of possible uses for the image. Unless you are using a camera phone or the cheapest expired film available, you are making choices comparable to the ones you single out.
  12. It doesn't matter much to me if 10,000 people look at my pictures and never see the flaws...what matters is that I see the flaws and I they bother me. So, if during the course of setting up a shot, I conclude that I should use a specific lens of focal length then that is what I will choose. It is an artistic decision rather than a mere technical one. Modern cameras are pretty good at making the average technical decisions but they are lousy at making artistic decisions.

    I have a vision in my mind of what I want that photo to look like when it is done. The degree to which my decisions lead to that vision being transferred to paper is how successful I will judge that shot. It may look great to the unwashed masses (or my mother who loves EVERYTHING I do) but it isn't what I had in my mind so it isn't acceptable.
  13. Feeling a little bit cranky tonight, I have a suspicion that someone who writes as lazily as Ray does, referring to "photog" and "pple," probably will not entirely understand people who take pains with their craft, and strive to go beyond work that is just good enough to live with.
  14. Knowledge of technical details can help you get a shot when a point a shoot methodology may fail. A particular focal length may yield a specific relationship between the subject and background and/or foreground. A particular f/stop may yield a specific DoF to give what you want and knowing your lens is blurry in the corners at f/3.5 can force you to change your composition and get the shot.

    And the whole point of technical skill is to get the shot rather than delete yet another failure. It is about realizing your vision and not merely accepting what you get in your snapshot.

    And for a working pro: they must get the shot as trying next month is not always possible on a deadline.

    some thoughts,

  15. What's the old adage?

    "A job worth doing is worth doing well"
  16. Ray, Not all people are like you, Satisfied with thier camera set in the AUTO MODE all the time. Your camera must have A great AUTO MODE that it enables you to forget about everything and concentrate with your composition. What you are doing and thinking is actually the opposite of what you are meaning. You must be depressed or bored when you wrote this post that you lost the energy for creativity. Or to say it frankly, you must be out of your mind.
  17. An artist can take many great pictures with no knowledge of the nuts and bolts, he will fail many frames.
    A technician will take a great picture from time to time but all his frames will be flawless.
    An artist who masters the nuts and bolts will take very few images but they will all be worth looking at.
    I went to a Martin Parr expo and it is evident that he is an artist. What can be noticed is that his work goes from snapshot to controlled photography. His progresion was technical, his artistic eye remains. He just took/takes less views because he knows what they will produce.

    So what does this mean? Take a lot of pictures, I mean a will in the course of that after paying attention to the results see what your style/taste is. Then deepen your knowledge of that area of a vast subject like photography so that you can master it. Go to photo galleries real and virtual ones.

    Example: Painting with light attached, this is not my frame as not my taste yet the artist needs some technical knowledge to master such a view.

    Take care

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