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to hole:

i agree that some of the shots aren't technical masterpieces. but in some ways they don't have to be/cannot be. i feel that personal and portrait photography of the most candid sense is a difficult field that not many have mastered. i feel in some ways your criticisms may be valid if they were compared to photography similar to your own, but his work is different: apples to oranges. personally, i am a bit of a beginner to photography but i've experienced the stark difference in taking documentary photography and basing your series around people. lighting, movement, all of these things tend to work against you and you usually only get a few good shots of a night.

i have a few photos to show of the documentary series i took on the superbowl riots in Pittsburgh. the series was meant to show fervor and spirit everyone felt with the victory of Pittsburgh, a slowly dying, "forgotten" post-industrial city. the series isn't the best photography technically, but i'm proud of the portrayal for the most part of the night. the conditions were awful to, so rip on my lighting and camera work if you want, but i don't think there's too much that can be done when it's night, snowing, and thousands of students are decimating the downtown area.









also i've recently put a portfolio web page up. countless hours of work and 3 years (kinda, i gotta document more recent prints etc.) in the making. feel free to comment and criticize, as that's how my work is evaluated and bettered.


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Holeinthewall, your stuff looks good too.

For me in an image the most important part is the subject and if you have a good subject and framing you are halfway there.

Iit is like if you are a guitarist or a DJ, nobody in the audience will notice what snobby true-bypass effects pedal or cartridges you are using except for the actual preformer him/herself, but with out it the artist won't be compley satisfied and inspired.

my favourite things


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I really like the stuff that you did Carl.

I can appreciate how difficult it is to capture a moment, and the best advice anyone can give to those who want to start out in photography is to go out and take a lot of pictures, and then when you're done, go out and take some more.

Until you've picked up the instinct for the perfect shot, it's always really difficult to properly frame an image, and IMHO that's more important than being picky about lighting. It's not so bad when your targets are stationary, but when you're documenting a family that's going through the paces of living, you take whatever you can get.

That said, a lot can be done to a photograph after the fact. Carl's pix inspired me (not to take away from what he's done) so I went about tweaking the photos in ways that satisfied me. What do you think?

PIC1: Cropped the pic slightly here to bring the kids at the side more to the forefront, and adjusted the pic to bring details out of the shadows.


NOTE: Post Edited due to Original Photographer's disapproval. Left one on there to show that I was guilty of the dispicable deed of cropping and toning. Alas.

Edited by Kane on Apr 12, 2006 at 12:25 AM

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carl i really like your photos, particularly the fourth and ninth shots

holeinthewall, i agree that problematic lighting detracted from a few of carl's shots (notably third, sixth, and seventh), but in my opinion i think carl's framing for the most part accomplished a lot

in regards to your own pictures, though you acknowledge yourself as a minimalist, to me your framing is way oblique

crisp, well lit images with tastefully balanced colors

but it feels almost as if there is too little going on

or maybe more accurately, some frames include enough meaningless space to dilute the things that might otherwise capture your attention

most notably in the second, third, and sixth, there is simply too much room, too much wall, and no point of focus respectively

however i am not at all trained and this is just my candid aesthetic opinion

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you will excuse me if i will be frank.

holeinthewall, i like your work. i don't agree with the "too little going on" comment a few posts up, because the lack of movement shows me another aspect of your work, simply that you think intelligently about your subject matter. i like your use of colour and contrast, very stark pale colours punctuated by rust, vegetation, and decay.

i don't like your polaroids so much, however. they seem more arbitrary and less focused than your 35mm ones.


this is why i think the too little going on comment is false. this has everything going on--in fact this is a very busy photo, achieved with very few colours.

dystaind, i have to agree with your statement that often when so many things are happening, the photography is appallingly difficult. however that makes the gems that come out from it so much more valuable. your series is decent, but not outstanding, and i'm sure you know that yourself. there is a feeling of arbitrariness throughout the series, which i know well because all my own shots are terrible that way as well. it's a feeling of amateur photography, you know? i have to admit to that myself. but definitely your work is interesting. i liked the very first photo in your series.

carl, your set is much more mixed. i enjoyed the shots which were obviously not posed--the third one with the boy having the shave, the fourth, seventh and eighth display a depth of feeling that i like. there is something intangible in them, in the juxtaposition of actions within a single frame. i agree with holeinthewall's comment that you have too much in a shot only to a certain extent. sometimes you have this working well for you in fact. conversely your posed shots give me less pleasure. i don't like the second photo, i think it's very cliched. the first is interesting but doubtful. the last in your series sticks out, partly because it's still, and partly because at first sight it looks interesting. but i find there's little depth to your shot. while i like your colours in that photo, there's a sense of unplanned chaos in it that unsettles me.

but all in all i think you've got a decent eye for capturing life in motion.

greentalks43, while holeinthewall may come across as brusque, you can understand why he responds in this manner when the other comments seem only interested in providing fodder for our respective egos. i think he was merely being honest. and i think if we want to improve in our respective crafts (for me it's music), we have to see more mixed comments than wholly positive ones.

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So i guess i have alot to reply to in this thread, huh. Well here goes, ill try to address it in order...

holeinthewall - After reading your comments I have come to understand that you probably don't know the first thing about journalistic photography and thats ok because i dont pretend to know about the "art" photography you posted. That saying your photos do present a very "minimalistic" approach and I guess our styles just vary that way.

I consider photojournalism, and in particular street photography, to be the penultimate in photography and in art itself. Taking whats given to you right infront of your eyes and being able to turn that, in a split second, into something that speaks volumes about people, life, culture, and art. Not to sound to conceded but i really think all other forms of photography take a backseat to photojournalism.

Nachtwey, Cartier-Bresson, Stieglitz, Webb, Allard, Alan-Harvey, Manos, Burrows...i consider these people in the same artistic genius as Picasso, Monet, and DaVinci. In fact in most regards i consider what they do to be of more artistic merit then anything else.

The issue i have with the type of photography you do is that the picture always says more about the photographer then the subject. A photograph should always express your personally point of view but it should never be a self serving thing. This is most evident in your Katrina photos. Why were you there? Where are the people who suffered? Where is the story in your photos?

That being said i did enjoy most of your 35mm work. While im out shooting people I almost always take the time to shoot visually interesing stuff such as that, I just always try to include a human element to it.

Kane - I know you didnt do this on purpose but please don't ever crop or manipulate my photos ever again (and by the way, your toning needs a little work...most of my untoned images looked better before you attempted to tone them). As far as cropping goes i beleive that it is an unethical process. There are certainly two sides to the arguement but i believe that it comes down to this, 1) If your going to crop why didnt you just get closer? 2) If your going to crop why did you shoot the picture in the first place?

tweedlesinpink -

Quote: i enjoyed the shots which were obviously not posed

None of the pictures, with the exception of the first one (which i was taking upon there request and the kids coming out the side of the frame was just a lucky accident), were "posed". I do agree that the second picture is slightly cliched in that is a technique being over used recently by photographers within the last 10 years.

Ill post some work from this past week later tonight.

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Its true. then they all post them on their blogs. Everybody these days is a photogrpher, owns a clothing label, is a DJ and a model.

--- Original message by SENDkylHISPASSWORD on Apr 10, 2006 07:16 PM


this is so true.


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I know plenty about Cartier Bresson thank you very much, but this is distracting from my point.

I wouldn't compare your work to his because of the aforementioned reasons.

Also, if you must know, my aunts lived in the neighborhood literally yards from where the levy broke. They invited me to see the damage to give me a real life sense. The photos are intentionally of only the damage and should be prefaced with a note about how it has been almost eight months (!) since the hurricane and this is the rate at which repair has taken place. That's the message because I'm not going to photograph the victims and pretend to be a part of something I'm not.

--- Original message by holeinthewall on Apr 10, 2006 07:51 PM

Well, its good to know you can present a convincing arguement...

And the katrina photos? Damage photos, ok, great...what makes them look any different then the ones i could shoot 45 minutes away in Tennessee as a result of the recent hurricanes? Like i said earlier, your photos say more about you then they do what your photography. Which is not always neccessarily a bad thing, just something to chew on.

Some stuff from last week...

Crazy preacher guy who caused quite a stir on campus last week:


A family i met:



Baseball warm-ups:


A local Bowling Green buisness:


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Yeah will_i_am, some of those are SO vivid. Really nice, how do you get them so vivid?

i used a tripod for the night ones and the lowest ISO setting my camera has then adjusted the curves a little in ps. i have a fujifilm finepix s5200. it's not a d-slr but it has manual control and focus so i'm kinda happy with it. i dont have d-slr money haha oh and for the record the playboy tissue was i blew my nose then just put it next to the magazine. pervs.

Edited by will_i_am on Apr 11, 2006 at 06:11 PM

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Yeah will_i_am, some of those are SO vivid. Really nice, how do you get them so vivid?

--- Original message by SENDkylHISPASSWORD on Apr 11, 2006 05:48 PM


--- Original message by will_i_am on Apr 11, 2006 06:02 PM

the sign, the two above the sign...

my favourite things


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ha i guess i'll keep going until someone tells me to stop. to loop: thanks a lot. i like the one of your gear where only the middle part is in focus, i still don't know how to do that, i can get a side in focus and the other side blurry but not the middle haha.





Edited by will_i_am on Apr 11, 2006 at 06:19 PM

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