Photographs/ Photographers that make it
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23-03-11, 10:37 PM
Join Date: Mar 2011
yes, you are missing a whole lot, Drew. But don't worry about it. There are as many perspectives on photography as there are perspectives in taking them. I could write forever on the subject and a lot of people have. For starters, might I suggest having a look at 'Criticizing Photographs' by Terry Barrett, 'How to Read a Photograph' by Ian Jeffrey and 'Looking at Photographs' by John Szarkowski fo starters. They will each provide you with different perspectives on the function of photographs as well as an insight into the development of photographic composition.
To give you a head start, when you look at a photograph for the first time, the photograph belongs to you, not the photographer. It is your interpretation that matters at that point and there is nothing any of us can do about that. Yo may have some incling as to the photographers purpose but that is only a mere consideration. You bring with your perspective a vast history of social and historical culture, personal feelings and preferences and an array of experiences, knowledge and skills that infuence your view. That's a very personal and particular thing you have. But it changes. As you know more, have different experiences, develop new skills, your perspective changes. You may very well return to that same image in years to come and have a differnt view of it. Allow that to happen. That's call growth.
A lot of photrography is basic recording of what we see. Sometimes we endeavour to include in that image another layer of aethetics, evaluation and interpretation. As we develop our skills we experiment with different ways of doing this. One way of testing the product is to show others, as we do. We watch their reactions. Is it the one we sought? No? Try again. Maybe the photographer you mentioned wanted you to feel that way about the images and their content. Not every image has to appeal to your sense of beauty; sometimes it is targeted at what you aluded to here; you sense of what is 'right' and 'wrong', even in a photograph.
The history of photography is thick on the ground with people who have experimented. Some have succeeded and others have failed. Its also thick on the ground with critics. Some have got the point and some have not. Irrespective of which is which, photography would not be where it is today if it were not for the experimenters and the critics.
Every image ever taken is astonishing for the fact that we can do it. Imagine a world where you couldn't go down to a gallery and look at photos of people putting rubbish in a bin and feel disappointed when you left.
Last edited by tomdinning; 23-03-11 at
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