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© © 2016 John Crosley/Crosley Trust, All rights reserved, No reproduction or other use without express prior written permission from copyright holder

'Why Learn to Take a Good Photograph When . . . ?


Software: Adobe Photoshop CC 2015.5 (Windows)


© © 2016 John Crosley/Crosley Trust, All rights reserved, No reproduction or other use without express prior written permission from copyright holder

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Why learn to take a good photograph when you can just copy the good work you

find in galleries, exhibitions, or museums with your little point and shoot, or perhaps

put another way, why even bother to go on expensive vacations like Yellowstone

National Park, depicted, when in fact you can just appropriate someone else's very

good photo? A web service has audited the web and reported to me that they

have identified well over 10,000 of my own photos that have been 'appropriated' and

web published without permission and without notice or remuneration dispute my

prominent copyright notification and warning not to reproducer or otherwise use. 'It's

the land of the 'free if you can get away with it', and soon time to pay the piper, for

that unlawful misuse think. If you rate harshly, very critically, or wish to make a

remark, please submit a helpful and constructive comment; please share your

photographic knowledge to help improve my photography. Thanks! Enjoy! john

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Well said John, this is the epitome of what's wrong with some of todays "got to have it now" society, not willing to learn or appreciate what goes into most of the images posted here by people actually willing to go out on vacation or location and get images like that. I could go on but your picture speaks volumes more than I could ever convey. Take care.

Best Regards, Holger

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Thanks first of all for getting my point.


Second, for letting me know your feelings, and going to effort to do so; that's an investment you didn't have to go to.  I appreciate it.


For me, choosing a photo for critique is often a difficult process, as I often have thousands of photos from which to choose.


Often in the scanning of my files, I'll suddenly see relevance or worth in a photo I took 8 or 12 years ago or maybe yesterday, post it, and then it may soar in ratings and critiques, or maybe not, but I'll be proud nevertheless, because the photo 'means something' to the most important critic of all -- me.


I troll the 'critique' requests and look at all the pretty pictures and wonder if I devoted my photography just to taking 'pretty pictures' if I'd be famous for that, but I prefer a photo to 'say something', like this one does aided by the critique request, and believe it or not, the point of it all only occurred to me at the last minute, and the moment it did,I posted it instead of far prettier and even more intricate and/or complex photos.


However, this photo also has some interesting geometry (composition) that may be overlooked by those who rush by looking for 'pretty photos' or disdaining a photo with 'meaning'.  It's also a 'rare bird' - a picture within a picture, which is a distinct classification of photos that's fairly rare.


I shoot for myself, and often, like you, there are a select number of wonderful critics who happen along to validate my choices, and Holger, your response is wonderful icing on the cake.


Again, thank you and best wishes.




John (Crosley)

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That sounds very antisocial, like the man in New York City, fed up with selfie sticks who's targeted those using selfie sticks to take individual and group photos who attacks the selfie stick with a branch cutter (lopper), cuts the selfie stick in two, and lets the selfie stick and the camera phone/and/or camera fall to the ground, while his cohort makes (in my opinion) obscene videos that they post -- ruining the fun of people who don't 'get the point.


I'd never do that.


And besides, maybe this guy is a purchaser trying to keep everything straight in his mind so he can remember which exhibit to return to so he can consummate a purchase, or he's a gallery rep from far away who also wants to rep the artist and not compete with a local gallery.


There'd be no point in making a fuss, and worse making a tragic mistake that hurts the photographer and/or the gallery.  My critique was purely speculative and meant to 'make a point', but there are more innocent points that are not at all culpable and also quite possible, and it would be horrible to screw up.

Besides, I NEVER assault anybody for anything short of stopping a crime in progress (which I've done and been shot for my reward).  Almost lost my leg and had to drop out of university and lost five years before I could return and finish my degree.  That's the price of what newspapers called being a 'good Samaritan'.  


It all worked out in the end; I had  a pretty good life, just different than if I hadn't been shot.


I went into an 'alternate universe' of possibilities, and recognize that every once in a while a situation develops that is life altering -- no use complaining, because that's just how it is.


I never even wonder 'what if'.  I once had a woman friend who got stuck suddenly wondering 'what if' she had done things differently with her life, and she literally went crazy, and became disabled for life after living a relatively happy and carefree existence.


That's a road best not explored.


Thanks Jim.  Perhaps you were being facetious?  I'll bet you were.




John (Crosley)








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Good one, John. I like the odd composition and the contrast between the bluntly dominating head and shoulders of the man and the crisp details of the picture he is photographing. Just a bit of a halo around his head.
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Thanks for the compliment and analysis.  


If you analyse this photo, actually, it has a great deal of balance, with the 'dark' and the 'light' I think.


Any 'halo' comes from Adobe contrast adjustment artifacts and/or sharpening, so small I hadn't even noticed it and even at first look I couldn't find but now I can zero in on it, but find it hardly detracts if at all.  -1 if this were a diving competition, but this is a gestaltist presentation and the right of the man's head is the last place an eye should be looking.

I did not 'select' this man or his head, as I recall, or cut and paste or any of that, as that's beyond my skill set and why not just take another photo rather than go to such troubles unless one is on assignment and has an 'emergency' with the client liking a photo 'IF . . . . ' certain adjustments are made or certain 'flaws' disappear.  I'm not in that category of photographers, though.


I always appreciate your eagle eye and good taste.




John (Crosley)

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I'm somewhat of a 'futurist', and I believe that someone in private industry, the Russians and the US (and probably the British and other governments) are funding research on predictive mind control; reading thoughts with an idea to figuring out who is disposed to acting on those thoughts.


Imagine the lines at immigration then, coming into the US, especially for those with fertile imaginations who otherwise are timid, and people paid to 'think of ideas' such as authors, screenwriters, and just people who like to let their imaginations run wild.  


I'd love to kill him' is a phrase uttered by some, and other threats and epithets and some people think such thoughts without actually voicing them, and now imagine the government armed with poorly calibrated thought probes able to 'penetrate' such thoughts without the use of mind altering drugs just by putting each airline passenger into a scanning booth much as they do now in a search for foreign objects such as explosives or firearms -- imagine the havoc, and of course, then the terrorists win.


Spouses sometimes voice such thoughts and even think them but seldom act on them and various other threatening ideas, but imagine a machine that can literally 'read' such thoughts and memories of such thought and/or utterances being used by our (the US) government, or even the Russians (you'd expect that of them, right?)


And oh, the mistakes that would  be made like putting the wrong prisoners into Guantanamo has apparently happened -- 'set up' bystanders who were 'told on' to distract the American intelligence from getting to the real bad guys . . . . taxi drivers, etc., who never did anything though they may have wished harm and been devout.


So, no harm if not acted on; well that's for today, and outside of the Guantanamo context, but if Orson Welles had lived he'd have written more and scarier books than '1984'.


It's already getting pretty scary out there, all in the name of security, but then security is very, very important, and I can't sell it short, and am no civil libertarian ideologue when the going gets tough -- I'd have to be a pragmatist and examine the situation and hope that Trump is not president --- and someone as preternaturally cool as Obama is in charge.   


Compare Obama and Trump, the target and the racist who challenged the birth in some sort of claim that Obama was 'set up' as an African Muslim to run our country - something that 75% of hard core Republicans believe, thanks mostly to the press of Trump in years past.


I don't write about Eastern European politics; I'm an American, and seldom write about US politics, and I think this is it for the year.  (unless Trump were to win).


Best wishes to you (hope I didn't offend a candidate you're pinning your hopes on.)




John (Crosley)

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That is one of the most thoughtful and flattering critiques I have ever received.


Thank you so much.


Best wishes (thanks again).




John (Crosley)

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There is no such 'machine' but algorithms about 'thoughts' and 'inclination to act criminally' already are embedded in programs used by a huge number of courts nationwide to help them make the decision whether to release prisoners pretrial or release them on promise they would appear at time of trial.


And reporters for ProPubica (I think) the investigative reporting organization, has determined that the algorithms were highly biased against blacks, Hispanics and the poor, and judges were relying on programs in which the algorithms were implanted without knowing it and indiscriminately keeping in jail people jailed for minor offenses, often just for failure to make a fine payment on time or other economic failure stemming from poverty.


So, I was not actually so prescient; such algorithms rely on biased data and biased data processing (garbage in -- garbage out, I think) and it had never been known by the public before last month or the month before.

More to come in the field of 'prescience' in the vein I was writing of above.


And there will (and i think have been) films and maybe TV programs based on the idea that one can predict behavior (and go back in time and 'fix' it).


One can just think 'balderdash, except it's going to become prevalent (and already has in criminal court), and since it 'sounds' scientific, people will give it extra wide berth.

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