Study Photography at the OCA?


Link Posted 18/01/2013 - 10:48
Thanks for the Vivian Maier link. Fantastic. Do you have anymore like this?
As for me, all I know is that I know nothing.

ronniemac

Link Posted 18/01/2013 - 17:56
I like your idea about working with a point and shoot, or just setting the K-5 to 'green' and clicking away. It will certainly be more relaxing and often more fun, so I'll do that for a while. Maybe for much longer than a while.

Photographic technique, of course, depends on the subject matter. Architecture and landscape, for example, aren't going anywhere being most often static and allowing time for consideration of d.o.f. or whatever, street photography, people, animals, action and the like often require an instant response. I take your point about the critical eye getting in the way of the 'unrestrained and free spirited eye' - I guess the best time for critical analysis is after uploading the photos.

Yeah, OK, I may need therapy, no actually, I definitely do; but I do find the camera is a form of therapy because I'm looking so much more than I did before this recent awakening of interest in photography. Are more self portraits in order???

I recently bought an Optio 750z and an I-10 for the times when I leave the K-5 at home or want to be less conspicuous. Whenever I am without a camera I see something or someone that needs to be photographed. It's this seeing thing which makes life so enriching - and therapeutic; noticing the stuff that previously went unseen.

As for embarking on a course on photography, I am still of the belief that learning about something can do more good than harm, but your input has been good; I take it to mean that fretting about technical aspects of photography can obstruct creativity. It's a thought I will keep in mind.
Last Edited by ronniemac on 18/01/2013 - 17:59

Haworth

Link Posted 18/01/2013 - 18:40
This has turned into a very interesting discussion since I last checked it.

Thanks for the Vivian Maier link Smeggy, I'd not been familiar with her work before either.

Even though her work was no doubt spontaneous and unstructured, looking through the images there does seem to be some sort of cohesiveness which holds them together as a set and which have her own style about them, though I would struggle to put into words exactly what that was. This is indeed a good example of someone who has a natural eye and doesn't have to make conscious extended decisions about how the image will look before they press the button.

Smeggy's interpretation of 'shooting willy-nilly' is at a bit at a tangent as to what I was getting at. Perhaps I should have phrased it more along the lines of "my best shots up to that point were a disparate bunch which all looked like they had been taken by different people, a bit like a crap version of a 'post your best photo' competition."

Don't get we wrong, I think shooting spontaneously using gut instinct is fine, and a very liberated way to make images, but not being a Usain Bolt or Jimmy Hendrix, I felt a structured course of study would help my development as a photographer, and it has.

I agree photography courses are not for everyone or the answer to everything, some of the greatest 'togs are / were self taught; but for some people such as myself, the benefit of taking the course far outweighs the cost in time and money. To have made so much headway under my own steam could have taken half a lifetime!
'The RAW is the score and the print is the performance' - Apologies to Ansel Adams

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Smeggypants

Link Posted 18/01/2013 - 22:59
ronniemac wrote:
I like your idea about working with a point and shoot, or just setting the K-5 to 'green' and clicking away. It will certainly be more relaxing and often more fun, so I'll do that for a while. Maybe for much longer than a while.

Photographic technique, of course, depends on the subject matter. Architecture and landscape, for example, aren't going anywhere being most often static and allowing time for consideration of d.o.f. or whatever, street photography, people, animals, action and the like often require an instant response. I take your point about the critical eye getting in the way of the 'unrestrained and free spirited eye' - I guess the best time for critical analysis is after uploading the photos.

Yup, spot on. And even then gut feeling should take precedence IMO. Even though I keep most stuff I've very nearly pressed delete on something which was OOF or had camera shake when in fact on a purely artistic basis it had something. Plus alogrithms will get better at removing blur in the futue.



Quote:

Yeah, OK, I may need therapy, no actually, I definitely do; but I do find the camera is a form of therapy because I'm looking so much more than I did before this recent awakening of interest in photography. Are more self portraits in order???

I recently bought an Optio 750z and an I-10 for the times when I leave the K-5 at home or want to be less conspicuous. Whenever I am without a camera I see something or someone that needs to be photographed. It's this seeing thing which makes life so enriching - and therapeutic; noticing the stuff that previously went unseen.

Indeed since getting back into photography in 2009 I find myself ALWAYS consciously and sub-consiously scanning for photographic opportunities, as as you say it's frustrating when you haven't got a camera with you or worse you're in some location where the Hi-Vis borgmen will quickly apprehend you for being an Al-Qaeda Terrorist Peadophile if you were to whip out your deadly weapon.

To address both those issues, I bought a Nokia 808 phone. The IQ is superb for a phone cam and not only do I carry it everywhere I can take pics right beside the Hi-Viz borgmen without any worry of being thrown in the gulag and waterboarded.

Vivian Maier had it lucky in that she was snapping in an era when, although there were the bogey men Communist reds in your bed stuff, you weren't suddenly accused of being one for waving a camera about in certain places



Quote:

As for embarking on a course on photography, I am still of the belief that learning about something can do more good than harm, but your input has been good; I take it to mean that fretting about technical aspects of photography can obstruct creativity. It's a thought I will keep in mind.

I also mean fretting about the artistic side. Indeed Fretting about ANYTHING can handicap the process
[i]Bodies: 1x K-5IIs, 2x K-5, Sony TX-5, Nokia 808
Lenses: Pentax DA 10-17mm ED(IF) Fish Eye, Pentax DA 14mm f/2.8, Sigma 17-70mm f/2.8, Pentax-A 28mm f/2.8, Sigma 30mm F1.4 EX DC, Pentax-A 50mm f/1.2, Pentax-A 50mm f/1.4, Pentax-FA 50mm f/1.4, Pentax-A 50mm f/1.7, Pentax DA* 50-135mm f/2.8, Sigma 135-400mm APO DG, and more ..
Flash: AF-540FGZ, Vivitar 283

moose

Link Posted 18/01/2013 - 23:50
Quote:
I find myself ALWAYS consciously and sub-consiously scanning for photographic opportunities

I can't help wondering if this is the 'critical eye' that ronniemac is referring to, at least in part? Not an academic assessment of a shot, but an eye that is artistically discerning.

Is 'gut feeling' another name for a swiftly critical eye that assesses in an instant, without much conscious thought? Is this what ronniemac is striving towards, to be able to shoot freely because a critical eye has become instinctive?

As I first read through this thread, I felt I had most in common with smeggy's arguement ( at least aspirationally), however on re-reading the posts again, I think you both might be close to saying the same thing.

ronniemac

Link Posted 20/01/2013 - 15:27
This responses on thread have given much to think about, and helped get things in perspective. I am particularly appreciative of insightful comments on the OCA and massively indebted to Smeggy for the Vivian Maier link, as well as his thought provoking input. Perhaps the OCA will help me find direction or help me to develop into the particular creative photographer that I am trying to find in myself. If I have learned something it is that photographers develop best through looking, photographing, and looking again at their's and other's photographs - then with a critical eye.

I also like the thread stopping link to that mobile 'phone' which I had already clocked in a previous post. (link ) I did enjoy - it makes big images!

Hate to go one better, but if you are into big images, have a look at this: link Listen as well as look, this guy makes some very stimulating comments. I guess he has found himself.

Think of it as my thank you to you all for your influence.

Best wishes, Ronnie.
Last Edited by ronniemac on 20/01/2013 - 15:30

Frogherder

Link Posted 20/01/2013 - 16:19
Quote:
have a look at this: link Listen as well as look

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Regards
Bernard

ronniemac

Link Posted 20/01/2013 - 17:50
Sorry the link didn't work. I should be:

http://vimeo.com/39578584

If that does not work try going to https://vimeo.com , log on and search "silver & light" or "ian ruhter" His other movies are also interesting.

Let me know if it's not ok.

ronniemac

Link Posted 20/01/2013 - 18:06
"I think as photographers we get in a rhythm of playing by rules that were written by others. I feel this applies to life as well. To live by rules that were created by others we may never find out who we really are." : Ian Ruhter - (speaking for Smeggy?)
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