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Archive 2012 · Your Best Image this Week Thread
  
 
RustyBug
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p.11 #1 · p.11 #1 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


They are only a hindrance if you subscribe to them to the point that they hinder you.


Edited on Jul 17, 2012 at 02:53 PM · View previous versions



Jul 17, 2012 at 02:30 PM
Bifurcator
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p.11 #2 · p.11 #2 · Your Best Image this Week Thread






Jul 17, 2012 at 02:31 PM
RustyBug
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p.11 #3 · p.11 #3 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


Most driving enthusiasts have been taught the rules of the road, understand a little about the technical chemistry & physics involved (i.e. contact patch, tire composition @ soft = sticky) and yet drive much more viscerally after having learned "out-in-out" technique.

Personally, I've taught my kids how & why the lines are painted on the road ... but moreover, I want them to understand how to remain in control, regardless of whether they are inside or outside the lines. Beyond that ... it's their call @ driving like grandma or a professor or taking it to a passionate art form of Mario Andretti (socially responsibe of course) down a twisty mountain road. No different @ camera, paint brush or chisel ... where you take it is up to you.

Rules are tools to help you achieve your goals, they aren't restrictions ... unless you allow them to be.



Jul 17, 2012 at 02:53 PM
tunak
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p.11 #4 · p.11 #4 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


(Forgive me my english language skills please)

Hello,

really interesting discussion. In my high school years I too used to believe there are no rules in the land of art. I had been kind of romantizating the romanticism, if you know what I mean. Then I came across E.A. Poe's Philosophy of Composition. I was quite furious at Poe - he simply denied the "divine inspiration" of the artist and harshly but reasonably described his perfectly rational composition of The Raven. (It was probably quite exagerrated, but nevertheless really enlightening.)

I think we simply cannot deny that there are inherent structures in every piece of art. (Even in artefacts that aims to deny the existence of these structures, for example Warhol's movie about sleeping. Or even over-exposed all-white picture on the wall of a gallery.) Since the beginning of reflection of art people tend to try to find and understand these formal principles and to describe them or use them in their own work.

So-called rules are therefore of empiric origin and it would be hard to deny that they really work. Nevertheless you can be of course perfectly ignorant of these rules and still "use" them. In fact I think Makten himself sometimes "use" for example the principle of golden equation. (Even if he may claim that he dont know what it is.) On the other hand if one simply blindly obey rules, he simply can not make a piece of art. (But he still is able to make a nice picture - maybe kitsch. There are many photographical genres that could be hardly considered art. Wedding photography for example tends to be simply craft, doesn't it?)

But than again - what it is what we call art? Ancient Greeks wouldn't probably consider photography an art, because they distinguished between arts - musical arts of divine inspiration - and "techné", "craft" and every form of visual arts was "only" craft for them.

Your are right, Makten - even if you are not educated you are perfectly able to like an image or not. But I frankly doubt you can appreciate the art in it and/or understand it. Because art is an act of communication and if you are ignorant of the language of art...

I apologize for interrupting your discussion and for off-topic.




Jul 17, 2012 at 03:27 PM
Makten
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p.11 #5 · p.11 #5 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


RustyBug wrote:
Most driving enthusiasts have been taught the rules of the road...


I honestly don't understand the connection between driving safely and making a good looking picture. The rules of the road are only there for safety, while you don't need to protect anyone from seeing a picture if it doesn't follow the rules. It's not gonna hurt.


tunak wrote:
Nevertheless you can be of course perfectly ignorant of these rules and still "use" them. In fact I think Makten himself sometimes "use" for example the principle of golden equation. (Even if he may claim that he dont know what it is.)


Exactly. I know what it is but I never think about it, because I don't see the point and I trust my own mind. I would never, ever "check" if my pictures fit the rules or not. If they do, who cares? If they don't, who cares?



Jul 17, 2012 at 04:05 PM
sebboh
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p.11 #6 · p.11 #6 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


Makten wrote:
I would never, ever "check" if my pictures fit the rules or not. If they do, who cares? If they don't, who cares?


this is my problem with calling them rules. you should never "check" if your pictures fit the rules or not. you can use them to guide in building your composition if you like, but if you have the composition you want why would you go through a list of rules and make sure you have all your boxes checked? the point of the the "rules" is not that pictures should conform to these guidelines, it's that we know something about how the mind works and you can choose to take advantage of that if you like.



Jul 17, 2012 at 04:14 PM
RustyBug
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p.11 #7 · p.11 #7 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


Makten wrote:
I honestly don't understand the connection between driving safely and making a good looking picture. The rules of the road are only there for safety, while you don't need to protect anyone from seeing a picture if it doesn't follow the rules. It's not gonna hurt.



Yeah, I get that it's a "strectch" in some regard, but ...

If it is your GOAL to drive safely, the rules are there to help you do so.
If it is your GOAL to make aesthetically pleasing pictures, the rules are also there to help you do so.

In neither case does following the rules guarantee/ensure that you'll achieve your goal ... nor does a departure from the rules necessarily prevent you from achieving your goal.

Besides ... I've seen some really "painful" pics that I wish someone would have "protected" me from.


One thing that I find interesting @ "rules of composition" ranging from Rule Of Thirds to Golden Mean to Golden Spiral to Fibonacci and even more ... is that the rules are kind of a "chicken & egg" reverse engineering for explaining what "looks good". I can apply a ROT or Golden Mean to a scene and totally ruin it because it can be incongruous with the other elments (i.e. scale, color, tonal value, etc.) involved ... i.e. rules are tools ... you decide which tools you want to use, be that a lens, a hammer or a composition as it pertains to your goals.

I often don't set out to crop to a given comp ... but after getting a crop/comp that I like, I will reflect a bit on if it "matches up" with ROT or Golden Mean, etc.as an intrigue ... but I don't use them as "driving" forces to dictate what I do.



Jul 17, 2012 at 04:36 PM
Bifurcator
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p.11 #8 · p.11 #8 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


Nice first post tunak! Welcome to the forum and to the discussion!


_____________________

It sounds to me like the discussion here has now bent over to meet Mak's original meaning. Hehehe... I guess we'll have to wait for Brian, Frank and PenFly to see if everyone is on board with that now.




Jul 17, 2012 at 05:03 PM
Makten
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p.11 #9 · p.11 #9 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


RustyBug wrote:
If it is your GOAL to make aesthetically pleasing pictures, the rules are also there to help you do so.


The problem is, that the rules most people here are thinking of, are NOT the same in all cultures. It's something you learn, but if you refuse to do so, you might not even feel that they are "right". Get it?
The same goes for music. For example, arabic music has quarternotes that sound false in a westerners ears, before he learns to like them. They are "rules" that only applies if one likes these rules.

If you follow the rules, your work will fit better in the culture they belong to. In some countries they drive on the "wrong" side of the road. Your rules are not much worth there.



Jul 17, 2012 at 05:08 PM
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p.11 #10 · p.11 #10 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


An excellant example of that is in page layout! I did the owner's manuals for Toyota's "small cars and trucks" for a few years - in 13 different languages. Almost every culture has different layout rules! Some completely different. And each looks weird or just wrong to another culture.




Jul 17, 2012 at 05:13 PM
 

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RustyBug
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p.11 #11 · p.11 #11 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


They are "rules" that only applies if one likes these rules.
I'd suggest they are "rules" that only apply if those are your goals.

+1 @ Audobon rules are different from Italy vs. LA vs. HK vs. Montana vs. London vs. Perth vs. Trinidad.

Rules @ tools to help you achieve your goal ... i.e. if your goal is to drive safely in THAT LOCATION where you are driving ...

If your goal is to appeal to Japanese art genre ... that is a different goal (and thus different "rules") than Carribean or African art.

The "rules" of religous art from centuries ago were vastly different as well ... they had different goals and used different rules to aid in achieving those goals.

I guess we are kinda saying the same thing owing to a degree of relativity rather than absoluteness in the development and application of "rules". I just tend to think of it in terms of relativity to your goals rather than a "must be" because ...



Jul 17, 2012 at 05:17 PM
carstenw
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p.11 #12 · p.11 #12 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


Makten wrote:
Do you really need rules for that? I would guess that you could tell him what looks good and bad without mentioning a single rule. I mean, the rules come from feelings, not the other way around.


Well, try it The first step is probably to say "try not to put the subject smack in the middle". Where to put it? On a third, or golden cut, or whatever, right? So there is the first rule. Most of these people do not really care enough about photography to experiment with placement, they just want to know some easy way to improve the photos.

And IMO, those are exactly the kinds of people who rules are perfect for. I don't care about rules, although I of course know them. Mostly I just read them, shrug my shoulders and keep doing whatever I am doing. Once a year I try one, and usually give it up again.



Jul 17, 2012 at 05:49 PM
carstenw
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p.11 #13 · p.11 #13 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


briantho wrote:
To get back on topic, here is my best shot this week. And yes, it follows the golden equation


Pretty cool shot.

But it not only places the subject around the 1.618:1 spot, but it equally well sits on 3:2, 4:3 and loads of other ratios, because it is so big starting 585 and ending at 857 of 1024. The placement on the golden cut is pretty approximate at best. These rules are just guidelines and there are so many great shots which ignore them that in the end one cannot take them too seriously.

As Martin says, I feel how I want my composition, I don't measure anything.



Jul 17, 2012 at 06:24 PM
carstenw
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p.11 #14 · p.11 #14 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


http://herestothecrazyones.com/


Jul 17, 2012 at 06:26 PM
Makten
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p.11 #15 · p.11 #15 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


RustyBug wrote:
I guess we are kinda saying the same thing...


Indeed we do. Now for the $10000 question: why would you want to do things according to the rules, if you don't have to? Because it satisfies other people and the "common taste"?


carstenw wrote:
Well, try it The first step is probably to say "try not to put the subject smack in the middle". Where to put it? On a third, or golden cut, or whatever, right? So there is the first rule.


I object! Why can't the subject be in the middle? Because you've learned it shouldn't, of course.

Most of these people do not really care enough about photography to experiment with placement, they just want to know some easy way to improve the photos.

Well, why not just make him think for himself by suggesting different placings? "Have you though of that the subject must not be in the middle?" might be a better approach, in my opinion.

And IMO, those are exactly the kinds of people who rules are perfect for. I don't care about rules, although I of course know them. Mostly I just read them, shrug my shoulders and keep doing whatever I am doing. Once a year I try one, and usually give it up again.

Me to. But it's easy to underrate even a beginners own will. I still don't believe in rules for any sort of art. Rules are for the uncertain, and anyone can become certain if they learn to trust their own thoughts.



Jul 17, 2012 at 06:31 PM
FlyPenFly
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p.11 #16 · p.11 #16 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


I think people are under the mistaken impression that just because you learn a rule and use it a few times means that you become brainwashed and have to do it every time.


Jul 17, 2012 at 07:23 PM
carstenw
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p.11 #17 · p.11 #17 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


Well, if you don't use it every time, what is the difference between you and us? Practically nothing, I would say. The main difference is (apparently) that you every once in a while think "I will use a rule". I don't, that's for sure. I move my camera around until I like it, press the shutter, the end.


Jul 17, 2012 at 07:34 PM
carstenw
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p.11 #18 · p.11 #18 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


Makten wrote:
I object! Why can't the subject be in the middle? Because you've learned it shouldn't, of course.


No, not at all. Sometimes things look good in the middle, but often, it just removes any semblance of tension in the photo, leaving it flat. It tends to emphasize the foreground (if there is one) at the cost of the background. Anyway, I would not usually say "don't put things in the middle", but rather show them one of their photos, a similar one of mine (or someone else's who has a better photo) and then ask why the one is better than the other. People tend to come up with ideas when you do that, and if they do, actually I need to say nothing at all, other than "try your ideas".



Jul 17, 2012 at 07:37 PM
FlyPenFly
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p.11 #19 · p.11 #19 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


They're just approaches, it seems some of you have a sense of a false dilemma that using it makes you such a square. It's something that can help you more than hurt you. Just surprising to see something so basic is so controversial.


Jul 17, 2012 at 07:50 PM
Makten
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p.11 #20 · p.11 #20 · Your Best Image this Week Thread


If you don't obey the rules, they are not rules.


Jul 17, 2012 at 08:01 PM
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