DPChallenge: A Digital Photography Contest You are not logged in. (log in or register
 

DPChallenge Forums >> Photography Discussion >> The Great Snappers and the Great Contrivers
Pages:  
Showing posts 1 - 25 of 119, (reverse)
AuthorThread
12/16/2013 05:26:14 PM · #1
There's more than one way to make art.

To springboard from recent discussions, I'd like to talk about two ways:

1. The Snapshot Artists. These are the people who rely almost completely on the spontaneous capture. Their boldness is an improvisational one. They depend utterly on their environment providing inspiration, and they risk not finding it and coming back empty.

21.gif bvy is the supreme example, imho. As I've told him before, his is the art of artlessness. Nothing stands between the viewer and the snap.

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1094556.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1093181.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1092720.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1087630.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1081670.jpg and on and on and on

21_F.gif PennyStreet is a great street photographer, seeking out the serendipity of stunning alignments. She, too, rules the snapshot.

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_925725.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1080788.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_990893.jpg

21.gif tvsometime takes some crazy snapshots, finding beauty in the surprise.

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_987949.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_928700.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_976987.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1033229.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1090951.jpg

21_F.gif Melethia is another dedicated example of the form. Unlike 21.gif bvy, the viewer can sense someone behind the camera, thinking, "yes this is beautiful and I want to capture it."

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_973111.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_973113.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1089828.jpg

2. The Great Contrivers. These people have a different kind of boldness. They risk someone saying "your ideas are stupid." They contrive something into being before they shoot it, thereby putting themselves into the same boat as most artists... how do I contrive something that doesn't seem contrived?

The ultimate example is 21.gif cutout, the mad studio scientist.

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_591590.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_926846.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_933031.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1009513.jpg and on and on and on and on

Then there is 21.gif daisydavid who contrives things to look serendipitous, and fools me every time.

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1075953.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1002281.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1071938.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1021195.jpg

And 21_F.gif mariuca who captures three-dimensional collage. Even her candids feel stitched together. And her still lifes are what still lifes are supposed to be.

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_925959.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1073788.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1075022.jpg

Another master of the still life, 21_F.gif RKT is someone who can save time in a bottle, or a genie in a lamp.

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1034309.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1001679.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1040453.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_989578.jpg Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1028310.jpg

I was hoping to show something helpful by providing examples of the two types... mostly by helping you question the validity of these categories. All of my artists above have counterexamples. 21_F.gif RKT has plenty of great candids. And what is the categorical difference between 21_F.gif mariuca going to the museum to get a good candid and 21_F.gif PennyStreet hitting the street for a good candid? It's a blurry line at best. And speaking of blurry, I left out a lot of the blur gods, like 21_N.gif jmritz, 21_N.gif ubique and 21_N.gif bspurgeon, for whom in-camera effects are just as important to their art as serendipity. Notice how effortlessly 21_N.gif jmritz slips into Expert Editing. 21_F.gif tnun seeks serendipity in processing as well as capture. The line between snap and contrivance is a complete enigma in many photographers, like 21.gif rooum and 21_F.gif LoVi.

Don't feel bad if I've left you out. I'm making a point about categories, not trying to name every artist here.

Message edited by author 2013-12-17 12:52:39.
12/16/2013 05:41:19 PM · #2
I LOVE THIS THREAD!!!!! Thank you for creating a space where all forms of creativity are honored.
12/16/2013 05:41:30 PM · #3
I think you forgot a name, not only a fantastic snapper as you call it, but the person most responsible for recognition of the names above.
Just saying..

Message edited by author 2013-12-16 17:42:19.
12/16/2013 05:47:18 PM · #4
Several of my photography heroes. Each is an inspiration in their own way. Thanks for the post, Don.
12/16/2013 05:55:48 PM · #5
Great stuff Don! Thanks for your contributions and persistence.

I can truly relate to this line "They depend utterly on their environment providing inspiration, and they risk not finding it and coming back empty."
12/16/2013 05:59:09 PM · #6
So, to confirm: pop culture art or mainstream art isn't 'real' art.

Just checking.
12/16/2013 06:00:28 PM · #7
Thanks for posting Don :)

My favorites among the ones you mentioned are 21.gif rooum, 21_F.gif PennyStreet and 21.gif cutout, but I can find interesting stuff in everyone's portolios.

I'd like to see you opening threads like that for other categories of DPCers, it would be funny :)
12/16/2013 07:15:02 PM · #8
Originally posted by Alexkc:

I'd like to see you opening threads like that for other categories of DPCers, it would be funny :)


I'd love to see more forums like this for all forms of photography. I'm not sure Don should be responsible for starting them all. He's proved to be sincere and doesn't hide his feelings about what he likes. After all these are his opinions. I don't see the harm in recognizing a few members and styles that don't make the front page very often.
12/16/2013 07:31:15 PM · #9
Originally posted by pamb:

So, to confirm: pop culture art or mainstream art isn't 'real' art.

Just checking.
that isn't what I said. My point is that being mainstream or popular doesn't earn it the title of art. It has to get in the same line as everybody else. I'm interested in discussing what does make something art.
12/16/2013 07:36:32 PM · #10
Originally posted by posthumous:

There's more than one way to make art. And I don't mean pop culture or mainstream art, I mean real art.

But that's exactly what you said... word for word. By placing the words in this order, the inference is that pop culture or mainstream art isn't real art.

And, just to confirm, I'm by no means suggesting that ALL pop culture or mainstream 'art' is 'art' either.

Eta: By the same token, not ALL alternative 'art' is 'art' either.

In my opinion.

Message edited by author 2013-12-16 19:40:40.
12/16/2013 07:41:16 PM · #11
Ah, DPC's favorite unanswerable question "what is art?"

Which by the way is different than "where is 21.gif art roflmao?" which is always answered the same way "follow the smell"

Message edited by author 2013-12-16 19:42:25.
12/16/2013 07:44:00 PM · #12
Originally posted by pamb:

Originally posted by posthumous:

There's more than one way to make art. And I don't mean pop culture or mainstream art, I mean real art.

But that's exactly what you said... word for word. By placing the words in this order, the inference is that pop culture or mainstream art isn't real art.

And, just to confirm, I'm by no means suggesting that ALL pop culture or mainstream 'art' is 'art' either.
so we agree except for the quotation marks.
12/16/2013 07:47:07 PM · #13
I most emphatically do NOT agree that pop culture art or mainstream art isn't real art.
12/16/2013 07:52:52 PM · #14
Oscar Wilde.
12/16/2013 09:54:01 PM · #15
thiiird base!
12/16/2013 10:11:49 PM · #16
This is insane. Don starts with an incredibly insightful discussion of what he calls "The Snapshot Artists" and "The Great Contrivers", exactly the kind of meaningful discussion the place is crying out for, and literally MINUTES after the post the thread's being derailed because of some sort of perceived slight of another category of work altogether, and it degenerates into another "what is the definition of art" morass?

Jaysus wept :-(

Message edited by author 2013-12-16 22:13:00.
12/16/2013 10:12:41 PM · #17
All I know is that participating in the photo a week side challenge this past year with 21.gif daisydavid, 21.gif tvsometime, 21_F.gif mariuca, 21.gif mitalapo, and 21_F.gif PennyStreet (for part of the year, anyway) changed how I look at photos. And probably permanently lowered my challenge scores.
12/16/2013 10:44:59 PM · #18
I want to take lessons from the contrivers.
12/16/2013 11:06:07 PM · #19
Well Jaysus! Sooooo--rrry! Ever thought that some people are a tad over being told that blurry contrivances that feature two frigging blobs and a squiggly friggin line are f**king "ART"!?

Ever thought that the 'mainstream' people are continuously shouted down for not f**king 'appreciating' said blurry contrivances? The minute someone defends 'polished' images - how dare they?! - they're told they're not 'seeing the art form' or some other such bullshit.

I for one have had an absolute gutful of being told that I'm not 'appreciative' enough of 'alternative' works. I've viewed, I've appreciated, I've looked and I've even liked some of it. And right up until this friggin rant, I've been far more f**king open minded about 'alternative art' than the 'alternative fans' have been of crisp, focussed, mainstream images that actually have a friggin subject that the majority of people can actually recognise.

\endf**kingrant
12/16/2013 11:12:10 PM · #20
I enjoy taking candid and spontaneous images but appreciate the contrivers too. I'm drawn to moment and often come home empty handed but if it was easy I probably wouldn't do it.

Message edited by author 2013-12-16 23:13:11.
12/16/2013 11:22:01 PM · #21
They depend utterly on their environment providing inspiration, and they risk not finding it and coming back empty.

So very true in my case! I enjoy going out to see what I can find. I also greatly admire the contrivers, especially 21_F.gif RKT who makes it all look so effortless. And while she rarely has people in her contrivances, they're always there - just off the screen - or so it seems.

Thanks for the thread, Don, and for the mention. I'm very, very flattered!
12/16/2013 11:30:43 PM · #22
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

... the thread's being derailed because of some sort of perceived slight of another category of work altogether, and it degenerates into another "what is the definition of art" morass? ...

Inevitable. The OP begins with a reference to real art versus popular art. Who can resist that? Not me.

In my opinion, popular art is precluded from being real art by virtue of its popularity. This is not an elitist view. It's not an art snob point of view. It's simply an artistic point of view. Real art, or at least real contemporary art, does nothing if it's not confrontational in some way. It need not shock, but it ought to at least challenge something; ought to make the viewer feel uncomfortable, uncertain and disoriented. It ought to dare to explore beyond the comfortable and familiar boundaries of expectation. All of the pictures thumbed in the OP do that.

Another way to look at it is that if a picture is universally satisfying and celebrated, it's not art. It may be a beautiful picture, crafted with immense care, precision and skill, and thousands of people may want a print for their wall, but that doesn't make it art. In my opinion, of course.

But the value of the OP is not is saying what's art and what's not (and indeed it doesn't try to say that); it's value as a seminal forum post here is to showcase and contrast some examples of spontaneous versus deliberate photographic art. I see now that my statements in the other thread about spontaneous versus deliberate were ill considered, and far too simplistic.

This thread is almost certainly best taken as an intimate lecture (like a TED talk), rather than a discussion. Frisca the Locksmith should have locked it immediately after Don's first post.

Message edited by author 2013-12-17 02:19:53.
12/16/2013 11:30:51 PM · #23
I know this thread is not meant to be a popularity contest, but I just have to come out to 21_F.gif RKT, because I've had SUCH a photo crush on her since forever. Her work somehow bridges both the snapper/contrived divide because her images really feel like she turned around and THERE it is. THE image. All perfect and mysterious and profound and sudden. And unplanned. In the most intimate way. And for some reason, they make me supremely happy and unbearably sad, at the same time.
12/16/2013 11:58:15 PM · #24
Originally posted by ubique:

Real art, or at least real contemporary art, does nothing if it's not confrontational in some way. It need not shock, but it ought to at least challenge something; ought to make the viewer feel uncomfortable, uncertain and disorientated. It ought to dare to explore beyond the comfortable boundaries of expectation.


Why? Why does Real Art have to be confrontational? Why does it need to challenge something? Why ought it make the viewer feel uncomfortable, uncertain and disorientated? Why?
12/17/2013 12:03:00 AM · #25
Originally posted by pamb:

Originally posted by ubique:

Real art, or at least real contemporary art, does nothing if it's not confrontational in some way. It need not shock, but it ought to at least challenge something; ought to make the viewer feel uncomfortable, uncertain and disorientated. It ought to dare to explore beyond the comfortable boundaries of expectation.


Why? Why does Real Art have to be confrontational? Why does it need to challenge something? Why ought it make the viewer feel uncomfortable, uncertain and disorientated? Why?

Please, can we have this argument in a different thread? Can we devote THIS thread to exploring the nuances of the snapshotters and the contrivers for what they are, without worrying about all the OTHER kinds of art for once? Thanks :-)
Pages:  
Current Server Time: 03/25/2017 12:32:09 AM

Please log in or register to post to the forums.


Home - Challenges - Community - League - Photos - Cameras - Lenses - Learn - Prints! - Help - Terms of Use - Privacy - Top ^
DPChallenge, and website content and design, Copyright © 2001-2017 Challenging Technologies, LLC.
All digital photo copyrights belong to the photographers and may not be used without permission.
Proudly hosted by Sargasso Networks. Current Server Time: 03/25/2017 12:32:09 AM EDT.