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Girl and her dog
  
 
dmacmillan
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p.2 #1 · p.2 #1 · Girl and her dog


When opening a thread like this, there are a couple of good ways to respond if a photo does not speak to you.

The first and usually the best way is to pass it by, especially when you have nothing constructive to add.

The second is to offer genuine help, something positive that will help the photographer the next time they go out shooting. This can be tricky because it is easy to wander into a grey area of intent and interpretation. Allen's link does a hilarious job of pointing out the pitfall.

For the life of me, I cannot see how Andre's response furthered the conversation or in any way offered anything positive or constructive to Bill. But Andre's critical remarks on posted photographs rarely if ever do so, therefore it does not come as a surprise.



Oct 13, 2017 at 02:07 PM
anthonysemone
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p.2 #2 · p.2 #2 · Girl and her dog


Bill, the advantage to me of my being a photography hack is that I approach someone else’s work without the constraints imposed by parochial arrogance, born of who knows what. When I first looked at your photo, I noticed the dogs ears elevated as they are, its neck position and its posture, at “attention,” as it were: at the least, each a sign to me of paying VERY careful attention to what it sees. The woman has her phone in hand as she as well looks to discern the import to what they are observing: notice that she has both thumbs on her phone, suggesting to me that she is in the “typing” position. Is she preparing to speed dial a number? That damn tree in the foreground pisses me off , blocking my view and keeping me from answering the question “what the hell is it they are paying such fixed attention to?” Notice that the leash is not tightly constrained, suggesting to me that neither she nor the dog has “decided” what it is they are viewing, especially as to its personal import for each ot them.

They are in the very early stages of what John Boyd has named the “OODA Loop.” Google it. They observed “something” secondary or in juxtaposition to having oriented to “something.” Falling tree? Animal out of place in the context? A shadowy figure? Who knows? I sure as hell don’t, though I can impress upon the ambiguity of your photo my own projections, fantasies, imaginations. (I of course am always on alert for danger, having spent countless hours accompanying my fellow officers on patrol in both rural and urban areas.) So on your tabula rasa I’m impresssing my own projections. For those reasons, Sir, I regard what you’ve done as personally provocative and that’s why it is that I’ve voted your photo on the featured thread. Keep it up



Oct 13, 2017 at 02:17 PM
Danpbphoto
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p.2 #3 · p.2 #3 · Girl and her dog


^^^^^Well stated as a few others are! ^^^^



Oct 15, 2017 at 01:13 PM
airfrogusmc
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p.2 #4 · p.2 #4 · Girl and her dog


My biggest negative about the photograph is the OOF branch that just hovers by the dogs head. Other than that the fellow jarheads comments above (S/F btw) I find extremely interesting as Dan indicated in his post.



Oct 15, 2017 at 01:51 PM
kwbarnes
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p.2 #5 · p.2 #5 · Girl and her dog


I am curious about your choice of title. The use of "girl" implies someone much younger with much less life experience. I'm sure that the woman in the photograph has earned through experience, every one of her grey hairs.

Would you consider using Photoshop to make her appear younger? If not, why do it with the photographs title?



Oct 15, 2017 at 05:46 PM
Charles Loy
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p.2 #6 · p.2 #6 · Girl and her dog


First I noticed was the distracting factors of the photo.


Oct 15, 2017 at 10:41 PM
pasblues
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p.2 #7 · p.2 #7 · Girl and her dog


Lots of us have taken photographs that we look at and want them to be what we feel like we saw - but we didn't get that result - and therefore we have to look at the missed marks critically and improve our captures for next time.

This is more about what can you do to get the vision of the image that you saw in your mind's eye. I take pictures everyday that miss the mark - they are culled.

However, I still look at the ones that missed the mark and critically consider what is wrong with them - what I should have done - what would make them better.

In this one, there are a lot of patterns that distract from what you were seeing. I think you saw the woman with her pony tail and the dog with its pony-tail-like ears and both of them looking the same direction, the dog behind the woman like its got her back, etc. I get that. I'm just guessing, though. I comment here in order to evolve your thoughts, not to be critical. Like I said, everyone has images they take that don't work out the way their minds' eye saw them.

Anyway, pardon my imperfect edits - but I was hoping these would illustrate how the mind focuses on what it wants to see vs. the reality of what is included in the frames. In my internships back in the day, I got bashed by many great seasoned pros - and it made me much more aware of what I thought I saw vs. what I actually captured. Not everyone was kind in their critiques but I learned from all of them regardless.



















Oct 17, 2017 at 05:58 PM
friscoron
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p.2 #8 · p.2 #8 · Girl and her dog


pasblues wrote:
Lots of us have taken photographs that we look at and want them to be what we feel like we saw - but we didn't get that result - and therefore we have to look at the missed marks critically and improve our captures for next time.



It seems that you're thinking the OP is not happy with this image, but I think he's happy with it and that's why he shared it. Also, based on his only response in this hearty discussion, a rebuttal to Andre's critique, again, I think he's happy with it.



Oct 18, 2017 at 12:02 AM
airfrogusmc
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p.2 #9 · p.2 #9 · Girl and her dog


Ron I'm not sure that this statement is a critique.
"The back of people's and animal's heads are never very interesting."

I think that it is just a statement and a not very thoughtful informed one at that and as I and pointed out not accurate either.



Oct 18, 2017 at 12:33 AM
Andre Labonte
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p.2 #10 · p.2 #10 · Girl and her dog


airfrogusmc wrote:
Ron I'm not sure that this statement is a critique.
"The back of people's and animal's heads are never very interesting."

I think that it is just a statement and a not very thoughtful informed one at that and as I and pointed out not accurate either.


**********************

Oh get off your high horse ... it was a critique and I already indicated a better way I could have said it and proceeded to explain why I gave the critique I did. The fact of the matter is, that particular image sucks, as do most images that are limited to the back of someone's head without proper context. On the other hand, you provided some great examples of some good exceptions ... but they are just that, exceptions.

I'm not a big fan of "rules" or "guidelines" for the sake of themselves, but I find the best photographers do not ignore that there are certain norms that drive a compelling image. Master the norms first, then when you do break the norms, you do so with a compelling reason.

Trust me, I have moved away from the norms with many of my images, including having the backs of peoples heads in my images, but I did so with a compelling reason, i.e. context, that makes the choice logical ... just like in all the images you showed as examples.

So I made a "mistake" in the way I made my initial critique and for some odd reason you can't let it go or even acknowledge a correction or gentler tone. Are you still sore about the fact that I have had some validly harsh criticism of your own work? Get over it! It's an internet forum and most-times typed words do not portray the full thoughts in the writer's mind.

Hey, you never know, maybe if we met face to face we might like each other.

Cheers,
Andre




Oct 18, 2017 at 02:21 AM
 

Search in Used Dept. 



airfrogusmc
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p.2 #11 · p.2 #11 · Girl and her dog


I wasn't the one on a high horse.


Oct 18, 2017 at 02:26 AM
Andre Labonte
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p.2 #12 · p.2 #12 · Girl and her dog


airfrogusmc wrote:
I wasn't the one on a high horse.


OK, if you say so.

Instead of arguing with each other, or bashing each other, how about we both turn over a new leaf and have discourses with each other? Or at the very least, we can try civility.



Oct 18, 2017 at 02:42 AM
airfrogusmc
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p.2 #13 · p.2 #13 · Girl and her dog


I wasn't bashing you. It wasn't personal.


Oct 18, 2017 at 02:45 AM
friscoron
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p.2 #14 · p.2 #14 · Girl and her dog


airfrogusmc wrote:
Ron I'm not sure that this statement is a critique.
"The back of people's and animal's heads are never very interesting."

I think that it is just a statement and a not very thoughtful informed one at that and as I and pointed out not accurate either.


You are correct. He was just making a statement. And there are exceptions to his statement, and the images you posted are some notable exceptions. But the statement is a critique, whether you agree with it or not. I agree with it. I don't know why they're looking at what they're looking at. But for me, it's just not interesting. For someone else, it could be very compelling, and that's the way art works. It's subjective. I'm not wrong for feeling the way I do about that image, and neither are you or the OP.

I don't have a problem with Andre's statement, even if he says he could have worded it differently. He was making a point, and there are a number of us in this discussion that agree with him. But even that doesn't matter. He was really trying to be helpful to the OP by providing feedback of his experience of viewing the image. If the OP doesn't like it, or decides to not consider it, that's his option. I can guarantee you that I've not agreed with critiques of my images, whether in this forum or elsewhere. And I've also agreed with a lot. And a lot of times, people catch things that I've missed.

We're not all going to agree on our assessments of an image, or even how that assessment is delivered. That's life. Some people who talk to me on the street annoy me, and sometimes I have a fun conversation. Sometimes my clients annoy me, and sometimes I want to take them out for a beer! That's life. And it's even more so when our comments are veiled by our anonymity within the internet.

So having said all that, nothing much has changed here about my opinion of the image. If I understand correctly, it's going to win Featured Thread of the Week. I'm sorry, but that makes a travesty out of the FTOW. But it also goes to show how much this forum has dried up. We have to face that fact. I don't even know if we're getting 5 images a week posted on the People forum anymore. It's sad. And before you blame comments like what Andre said, I'd say that's rubbish. There used to be a lot more people being complete @$$holes in here back in the day when we'd get 20 images a day on the People forum.




Oct 18, 2017 at 02:56 AM
airfrogusmc
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p.2 #15 · p.2 #15 · Girl and her dog


Ron I do have a problem especially when young photographers might take absolute words like what was stated as what is. I gave what I thought was a constructive comment about the OOF branch. I showed examples of interesting photographs that were shot from behind. Absolutes when being applied to creativity should always be challenged. I challenged that and I stand by that challenge.

If people would just take the time to really learn about the history of this wonderful art form before they speak with such authority this would be a much better place. Knowledge has never been easier to obtain.

I hope that the OP has learned form this and takes a lot of positive from this. One thing he should take is be very careful who you listen to.

"No man has the right to dictate what other men should perceive, create or produce, but all should be encouraged to reveal themselves, their perceptions and emotions, and build confidence in the creative spirit."-Ansel Adams




Oct 18, 2017 at 03:20 AM
friscoron
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p.2 #16 · p.2 #16 · Girl and her dog


And Andre has agreed that he could have stated it better. But for me, that statement was simply making a point, and a very valid point in the context of that photograph. I don't see anyone disagreeing with you, Andre included, that there are very compelling images in the world of photography with the image showing backs of people's heads.

No one is disagreeing with you. Andre admits he could have said it differently. But Andre's point is valid, even if you and the OP doesn't agree with it. No one should listen to everyone. Just as we shouldn't always follow the rules of photography.

For some reason, that statement has really gotten under your skin, or maybe's just Andre.

At least we've had something to talk about here in People. That I like, even if we're not agreeing with each other.



Oct 18, 2017 at 03:34 AM
airfrogusmc
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p.2 #17 · p.2 #17 · Girl and her dog


Ron takes a lot more than that to get under my skin. I made remarks about his statement. A real critique would have a addressed valid issues like the OOF branch. And there should usually be positives which also were not offered. If his statement was valid, what about all the photographs that I posted that showed that it wasn't? The reason the photograph succeeds or fails will not be on the fact is was taken from the back.


Oct 18, 2017 at 03:46 AM
friscoron
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p.2 #18 · p.2 #18 · Girl and her dog



I said his statement was valid in the context of THAT photograph, not all of photography.

By the way, since we're nitpicking here, you didn't offer a positive note about the photograph when you did give your critique about the OOF branch. You simply praised a fellow usmc's comments.



Oct 18, 2017 at 01:08 PM
airfrogusmc
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p.2 #19 · p.2 #19 · Girl and her dog


Didn't I address the positives in post pg2 #4 right after addressing the OOF branch?


Oct 18, 2017 at 02:27 PM
friscoron
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p.2 #20 · p.2 #20 · Girl and her dog


Nope. You just said you found someone else's comments "interesting". You didn't say anything about the OP's picture aside from your critique. (which i think was helpful!)


Oct 18, 2017 at 02:31 PM
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