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Photo of the Week - #52 9/12/22


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  • Photo of the Week is a member-run feature.
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0F12A112-3C5C-46F3-A0A8-E15EC7E6A586.jpeg.2ec199b99cdca6578317bcfb7b3d8905.jpeg

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"You talkin' to me?"

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I don't understand this shot. It is a picture of a plaque, You can't read the full text and it has no other items in the shot that are intriguing, unless you find not being able to read the full text mysterious. Is it mean to be a comment on the demise of the American Elm? (which we can't read about, nor see).
Robin Smith
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Some photos benefit from background knowledge, but I feel the onus is on the viewer to look it up. In this case, the clue is the phrase “survivor tree”, which refers to an elm tree in the parking lot of the Oklahoma Federal building that nearly died from the 1995 terrorist bombing, but came back an year later. So, on an anniversary of 9/11, this is quite a relevant topic for a picture.

 

I think, the shadows of the tree branches and leaves juxtaposed over the plaque make us feel the presence of a living breathing entity, remind us of the terrible tragedy that once unfolded, and the exceptional resilience of this elm tree.

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Poignant, powerful, and timely. I followed the same path that Supriyo did to decode the photo. I'm very impressed by how the photographer managed to capture the scene with the shadows revealing just enough information to allow the viewer to figure out what's going on. The shadows of living leaves are evidence of survival in the face of brutal terrorism, and, to me, add a message of hope.
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Poignant, powerful, and timely. I followed the same path that Supriyo did to decode the photo. I'm very impressed by how the photographer managed to capture the scene with the shadows revealing just enough information to allow the viewer to figure out what's going on. The shadows of living leaves are evidence of survival in the face of brutal terrorism, and, to me, add a message of hope.

Interestingly, I see the shadows as dense, dark, and foreboding … possibly mirroring my own pessimism about rising domestic terrorism in the U.S. The shadows, it would seem, are what the photographer offers the viewers to enable us to imprint on the image a more personal experience of it and responses that will naturally vary.

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"You talkin' to me?"

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I think viewers should do what they want … but also remember Mick Jagger’s advice about not always getting what you want.

 

Sometimes, in art as in life, you get out of it what you put into it.

 

No photographer owes anyone a title or explanation and sometimes a viewer will want to do a little research to “get it,” sometimes not.

 

There’s plenty in art not to understand until you look things up. And understanding is but one faculty to use in approaching art.

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"You talkin' to me?"

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There is also virtue in not having to look anything up at all.

 

That's an impossible standard to meet, in the context of the current discussion. Art can also start a dialogue, make the viewer interested or aware of a certain topic, so that he/she can pursue it further. Art doesn't always have to be an end-all destination for information.

Edited by Supriyo
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If I recall it was a Canon 20D. Yes I spent some time on the dark side due to evil influence . This was made the way most of mine are. I saw it and shot immediately with no real attempt at setting up or any implied meaning. It simply looked right the way I saw it. This is the site of the Federal Building in Oklahoma City. If I have any attachment to the place it is because a family member by marriage was one of the first responders there.

 

Rick H.

Edited by Rick Helmke
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I saw it and shot immediately with no real attempt at setting up or any implied meaning.

Amazing that with no intent or consciousness, the key words “Survivor Tree” as well as the date are so well highlighted and framed, allowing a meaning to emerge where none was considered. A happy accident?

"You talkin' to me?"

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