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

DPChallenge Forums >> General Discussion >> photographic style
Pages:  
Showing posts 1 - 25 of 75, (reverse)
AuthorThread
03/28/2013 09:05:03 AM · #1
I have a bit of a photographically-oriented pseudo-philosophical question, that I'd like to pose. And that is the importance, or lack thereof, of developing a style as a photographer.

If you look at members such as ' . substr('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21.gif', strrpos('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21.gif', '/') + 1) . ' gyaban ' . substr('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21_N.gif', strrpos('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21_N.gif', '/') + 1) . ' jagar ' . substr('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21.gif', strrpos('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21.gif', '/') + 1) . ' h2 ' . substr('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21.gif', strrpos('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21.gif', '/') + 1) . ' LVicari ' . substr('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21_F.gif', strrpos('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21_F.gif', '/') + 1) . ' neat ' . substr('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21.gif', strrpos('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21.gif', '/') + 1) . ' minsophoto to name a few, they have very distinct styles that are immediately recognizable as being theirs. As soon as you see their entry, you know it's them.

In contrast, when I look at my "portfolio", its all over the place. There's no underlying thread that connects them or identifies them as mine. Nobody would ever see an entry of mine and say that's a ' . substr('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21.gif', strrpos('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21.gif', '/') + 1) . ' gcoulson image".

So my question is how important do you feel it is to have a "style" that defines you and identifies you in a crowd?
03/28/2013 09:25:01 AM · #2
so you want to get your yourself stuck in the same rut?

03/28/2013 09:26:51 AM · #3
I think depending on your goals in photography, being recognizable can mean a many different things.

However, for me, having a recognizable style is more an indication of focus and vision. When you can narrow the image-making options to shoot for certain specific elements because you know exactly what you want to do with it and how the edited photo will look, then I think you're on to something.

But I'm just like you. Nothing ties my photos together. I've always attributed it to not really knowing what I'm doing or what I'm after, which is a pretty apt description of me in general.
03/28/2013 09:32:07 AM · #4
Originally posted by mike_311:

so you want to get your yourself stuck in the same rut?

I would hardly call having a style as being stuck in a rut.
03/28/2013 09:37:36 AM · #5
Great question...I've often wondered about this same thing. Curious to see what everyone has to say on this.
03/28/2013 09:45:32 AM · #6
We all see and imagine things differently, photography is just an extension of that, I didn't and i don't try to have a style but I also don't try to copy anybody else's either, a style just happens I think.
03/28/2013 09:47:48 AM · #7
Originally posted by bohemka:


However, for me, having a recognizable style is more an indication of focus and vision. When you can narrow the image-making options to shoot for certain specific elements because you know exactly what you want to do with it and how the edited photo will look, then I think you're on to something.

But I'm just like you. Nothing ties my photos together. I've always attributed it to not really knowing what I'm doing or what I'm after, which is a pretty apt description of me in general.

Focus and vision are good choices of words, Scott. When I have a challenge I often stumble across an idea by accident, rather than thinking about it and having a clear idea in my head and how im going to execute it within my limited skillset. It's clear from the examples above that the authors know exactly what they want to do and how they want it to turn out to meet their vision. So perhaps, a style requires a defined vision of self and what would take to make an image meet that vision?
03/28/2013 09:49:15 AM · #8
Originally posted by gcoulson:

Originally posted by mike_311:

so you want to get your yourself stuck in the same rut?

I would hardly call having a style as being stuck in a rut.


my images outside DPC all pretty much look the same, they have a style to them, its not a earth changing style , but its a style and its works for me and my clients.

lately i have been experimenting with different subjects and styles and its much more fun, i may settle on a style for a while but then i'm sure i'll tire of it and then move onto the next thing.

its all about the journey.

03/28/2013 09:54:45 AM · #9
i've been doing this full time for nearly eight years and i'm clueless...

people tell me they can immediately recognize my photos, which is cool, but i don't think that it's a style in terms of post-production. i think it's more a style of composition, perspectives, and moments, especially in terms of having a pre-vision of what i'm looking for and then the patience to wait for it (since i don't typically have the luxury of setting things up).
03/28/2013 09:57:58 AM · #10
Originally posted by jagar:

We all see and imagine things differently, photography is just an extension of that, I didn't and i don't try to have a style but I also don't try to copy anybody else's either, a style just happens I think.

perhaps your style arose out of shooting for yourself rather than for others? Something that I have yet to grow the courage to do consistently.
03/28/2013 10:00:04 AM · #11
Originally posted by jagar:

We all see and imagine things differently, photography is just an extension of that, I didn't and i don't try to have a style but I also don't try to copy anybody else's either, a style just happens I think.


+1

As for me, I never searched for a style. What I constantly look for is a way to experiment and improveand if it leads towards a style, as Jagar said, it just happened.
03/28/2013 10:00:48 AM · #12
you will notice that everyone you listed pretty much has a definitive subject matter as well.
03/28/2013 10:03:36 AM · #13
...once you spend an extended amount of time on anything creative.... *A* style does emerge.....you may not be aware of it as the criteria and bias towards or against one's work is skewed in one direction or another....... if you seek clarity in needing to know or label or identify "what" type of style you may possess or display it may be helpful to put a full representation of your work out into a trusted audience where you can get some feedback.....then take it or leave it as you like....(their criticisms/opinions)

the beauty of becoming immersed in one's work is to be pleased with one's results (at least I choose this route - )

and then again, in photography especially, there are certain genres which may reflect personal preferences....... some choose to photograph birds...beaches...mountains..... some choose b&w....blur.....hdr etc...

ask point blank, a trusted friend.....what they "see" in your work... strong composition?....lighting?....subject?...then do a 30 day self challenge concentrating on one particular aspect of what you ADORE in your work........ by the end of the month you will be clearly able to identify *A* style.

SO EXCITING!!!!!! then ......... step outside yourself and look back......your style will be right there ;-)
03/28/2013 10:05:01 AM · #14
oh .....I will look at your portfolio when I make time in the next couple of days.....I am quite SURE I will notice some elements of your "style"!!! :-)
03/28/2013 12:24:34 PM · #15
Originally posted by Alexkc:

Originally posted by jagar:

We all see and imagine things differently, photography is just an extension of that, I didn't and i don't try to have a style but I also don't try to copy anybody else's either, a style just happens I think.


+1

As for me, I never searched for a style. What I constantly look for is a way to experiment and improveand if it leads towards a style, as Jagar said, it just happened.

so a "style" is something you arrive at over time as a product of your experiences, be it intentional or not?
03/28/2013 12:36:47 PM · #16
Originally posted by gcoulson:

Originally posted by Alexkc:

Originally posted by jagar:

We all see and imagine things differently, photography is just an extension of that, I didn't and i don't try to have a style but I also don't try to copy anybody else's either, a style just happens I think.


+1

As for me, I never searched for a style. What I constantly look for is a way to experiment and improveand if it leads towards a style, as Jagar said, it just happened.

so a "style" is something you arrive at over time as a product of your experiences, be it intentional or not?


Yes, as we are all different, being able to portray what you see and how you feel in a photograph will necessarily lead to a style and not being influenced too much by how others would portray a scene will get you there quicker.
03/28/2013 12:42:12 PM · #17
Originally posted by gcoulson:

Originally posted by Alexkc:

Originally posted by jagar:

We all see and imagine things differently, photography is just an extension of that, I didn't and i don't try to have a style but I also don't try to copy anybody else's either, a style just happens I think.


+1

As for me, I never searched for a style. What I constantly look for is a way to experiment and improveand if it leads towards a style, as Jagar said, it just happened.

so a "style" is something you arrive at over time as a product of your experiences, be it intentional or not?


All of us have different things available to us. As much as I love Jagars style I don't have the wonderful old world looking streets to photograph. Actually I don't even have city streets to photograph so I have never entered a street photography challenge. But I've got kids and mountains and a studio readily available. So my style reflects my surroundings. Basically my style is a veiw into what I see everyday, my interpretation of what my life is and what is meaningful to me.

Message edited by author 2013-03-28 12:43:22.
03/28/2013 12:44:24 PM · #18
Originally posted by gcoulson:

Originally posted by Alexkc:

Originally posted by jagar:

We all see and imagine things differently, photography is just an extension of that, I didn't and i don't try to have a style but I also don't try to copy anybody else's either, a style just happens I think.


+1

As for me, I never searched for a style. What I constantly look for is a way to experiment and improveand if it leads towards a style, as Jagar said, it just happened.

so a "style" is something you arrive at over time as a product of your experiences, be it intentional or not?


That's what I think, yes :)

The question I answered a couple of years ago was: what are you searching for from photography. It's a sort of what do you like more? The answers was: I'd like to tell stories and portraits were the way to do it (before that moment I mostly shot landscapes). Another way to tell stories are artworks where I can imagine something that I can't represent from real life. Now landscapes are my escape from everyday life. There's no goal in it, but I still have fun going in the mountains to capture a beautiful dawn/sunset. If there's a style in all I said now it's mostly because the style gathers everything, it's a mix of all your experiences and sensitivity.
03/28/2013 12:59:10 PM · #19
I wish I had a style -- I don't think I do. I have subjects.

You are definitely more noticed and more successful if you have a style, however.


03/28/2013 01:09:55 PM · #20
Originally posted by vawendy:

I wish I had a style -- I don't think I do. I have subjects.

You are definitely more noticed and more successful if you have a style, however.


Thats just it though, your subjects help define your style.
03/28/2013 01:19:55 PM · #21
Ran across this recently:

"The proof of any artís lasting value is a comprehensive emotional necessity: itís something that a person needed to do and which awakens and satisfies corresponding needs in us." - Peter Schjeldahl, in The New Yorker, Jan. 13.

feeling our way in the dark

03/28/2013 01:26:18 PM · #22
Originally posted by vawendy:

I wish I had a style -- I don't think I do. I have subjects.

You are definitely more noticed and more successful if you have a style, however.


You totally have a style, Wendy. I can pick your shots out every time.

People tell me I have a style, but I don't see it. Unless printing a snail on 17x22" paper and hanging it on a wall is a style.
03/28/2013 01:29:12 PM · #23
I agree that we are attracted to or surrounded by certain subjects but i think there is much more to a style than that, I would love to shoot in America for some time or even back in England, I don't think that where I shoot would change my style too much, I maybe wrong though.

03/28/2013 01:36:38 PM · #24
If you have a recognizable style, if your work has applicable keywords, if it can be categorized/indexed, you can be found in a search. Nobody's going to ask for that wonderful photographer whose work is all over the place, you know, whatshisname? The marketplace wants predictability. The more specific the category is, the more idiosyncratic it is, the easier it is to come up first in the results of a search. Search for 'crying children photography' & Jill Greenberg comes up on top. Search 'landscape photography' & nobody comes up on top, it's too general a category.

So...if you are wondering what is your style, spend some time finding keywords for your work. Do some searches on those keywords to see what you get. Sensational or scandalous categories make you famous faster. Just ask Jill Greenberg.
03/28/2013 01:38:58 PM · #25
Originally posted by Ann:

Originally posted by vawendy:

I wish I had a style -- I don't think I do. I have subjects.

You are definitely more noticed and more successful if you have a style, however.


You totally have a style, Wendy. I can pick your shots out every time.

People tell me I have a style, but I don't see it. Unless printing a snail on 17x22" paper and hanging it on a wall is a style.


My first thought was: Thanks!! What an incredibly nice thing to hear!!

My second thought was... I wonder if she could pick out my sugar shot. :)
Pages:  
Current Server Time: 08/04/2021 10:11:09 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 © 2001-2021 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: 08/04/2021 10:11:09 AM EDT.