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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Critique Corner 
Thread started 01 Oct 2019 (Tuesday) 15:11
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How would you identify my style...if at all

 
Tom ­ Reichner
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Oct 03, 2019 21:57 as a reply to  @ post 18938046 |  #31

.
Steve, I am so glad that you wrote about this topic of personal style. . Your posts are always very insightful and spot-on.. You made several points that I had intended to make, but couldn't figure out how to word them.

If beautiful photos are eye candy, then your posts are "brain candy" :lol:

.


"Your" and "you're" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"They're", "their", and "there" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"Fare" and "fair" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one. The proper expression is "moot point", NOT "mute point".

  
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Tom ­ Reichner
"I am a little creepy"
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Joined Dec 2008
Location: Omak, in north-central Washington state, USA
     
Oct 04, 2019 20:16 |  #32

PJmak wrote in post #18936662 (external link)
How would you identify my style...if at all?

Can you critique my work and at the same time tell me if it would fall under a certain type of style?

I am looking for something consistent in your body of work; something that ties the different images together; something they all have in common. But I am not seeing it.

Some images are very carefully composed, with an aesthetically appealing degree of separation, or overlap, between the subject and the surrounding elements. Whereas other images have somewhat awkward overlap or "almost overlap" or "almost separation" between the subject and the supporting elements.

I am looking to see if you have a consistent way in which you like to align the various elements in your images, and I am not seeing this consistency. It almost seems as though you are primarily concerned with your subject, and sometimes don't even think about how precisely it lines up with what is in front of it or behind it.

One example of this would be the woman's hands holding the camera on the edge of the sofa. That is a well thought out concept and it is technically very solid, with excellent color rendering and very effective lighting that emphasizes the subject. Yet the bottom edge of the lens just barely overlaps the upper part of the beading in the sofa cushion's fabric. Was that intentional? DId you really want the bottom of the lens to come to exactly that point? It seems as though this calls attention to the lens/beading junction, and takes attention away from the lens and the fingers that are holding it. Wouldn't it be a more effective composition if the bottom of the lens overlapped the sofa cushion beading more? Like, if the very bottom of the lens were about a half inch below the beading, then the intersection of the two would not draw one's eye and be a distraction.

Another similar issue is evident in the photo of a woman sitting on the land and looking out over the ocean, which has some huge rocks protruding from the surface. The woman's hair appears to be blowing in the wind, and the hair that is to the left is overlapping a group of those distant rocks. And so a powerful element (her blowing hair) is visually lost because it overlaps something that is generally the same dark tone. If you had moved a bit to the left, you could have gotten separation between her hair and that group of rocks. Then her hair would stand out and not get lost in the background. It looks like you weren't even thinking about lining her hair up with the most favorable part of the background; like you just took the picture from wherever you were, regardless of how everything lined up.

Conversely, there are two images that exhibit very precise, pleasing placement of the compositional elements. One of these is the close-up of the front of the bicycle in motion, with the yellow line of the road being very nicely placed in relation to the bicycle's parts and the riders' forearm. Excellent and precise framing! Love it!

Another example of precise framing is the image of the backlit woman walking away from the camera on the beach. There are people in the near background, but none of them are overlapping her in a distracting way that would obscure the clean clear outline of her form. It looks as though you were conscious of everything in the background, and waited until she was "clear" of any overlapping that would undermine the visual statement that you intended to make.

So in your body of work I am seeing what appears to be very precise framing and placement of the compositional elements, and also seeing some cluttered compositions that look like the various alignment of things "just happened" by accident, instead of being carefully controlled.

This is the main reason why I think your images, collectively, look incongruous, and don't necessarily "belong with" each other. There is both haphazard placement of compositional elements, and appealing placement of compositional elements. This makes it look like two different photographers at very different levels took the photos.

.

PJmak wrote in post #18936662 (external link)
Friend asked an interesting question.

He said if you want to be successful in photography, you have to be able to tell the client what kind of style your work is.

I didn't really have an answer.

Apart from the few odd pictures that dont belong, I believe I am keeping some sort of consistency with my photos.

I am interested in knowing what consistency you think you are keeping. I'm sorry about how that sounds - as though I am being harshly critical. I do not mean it that way. If you think you are maintaining a form of consistency, I am truly interested in knowing what that is. What a photographer thinks about his work is very important, as it has a huge affect on what he will produce, moving forward.

.


"Your" and "you're" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"They're", "their", and "there" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"Fare" and "fair" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one. The proper expression is "moot point", NOT "mute point".

  
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PJmak
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Oct 07, 2019 09:54 |  #33

Tom Reichner wrote in post #18938619 (external link)
I am looking for something consistent in your body of work; something that ties the different images together; something they all have in common. But I am not seeing it.

Some images are very carefully composed, with an aesthetically appealing degree of separation, or overlap, between the subject and the surrounding elements. Whereas other images have somewhat awkward overlap or "almost overlap" or "almost separation" between the subject and the supporting elements.

I am looking to see if you have a consistent way in which you like to align the various elements in your images, and I am not seeing this consistency. It almost seems as though you are primarily concerned with your subject, and sometimes don't even think about how precisely it lines up with what is in front of it or behind it.

One example of this would be the woman's hands holding the camera on the edge of the sofa. That is a well thought out concept and it is technically very solid, with excellent color rendering and very effective lighting that emphasizes the subject. Yet the bottom edge of the lens just barely overlaps the upper part of the beading in the sofa cushion's fabric. Was that intentional? DId you really want the bottom of the lens to come to exactly that point? It seems as though this calls attention to the lens/beading junction, and takes attention away from the lens and the fingers that are holding it. Wouldn't it be a more effective composition if the bottom of the lens overlapped the sofa cushion beading more? Like, if the very bottom of the lens were about a half inch below the beading, then the intersection of the two would not draw one's eye and be a distraction.

Another similar issue is evident in the photo of a woman sitting on the land and looking out over the ocean, which has some huge rocks protruding from the surface. The woman's hair appears to be blowing in the wind, and the hair that is to the left is overlapping a group of those distant rocks. And so a powerful element (her blowing hair) is visually lost because it overlaps something that is generally the same dark tone. If you had moved a bit to the left, you could have gotten separation between her hair and that group of rocks. Then her hair would stand out and not get lost in the background. It looks like you weren't even thinking about lining her hair up with the most favorable part of the background; like you just took the picture from wherever you were, regardless of how everything lined up.

Conversely, there are two images that exhibit very precise, pleasing placement of the compositional elements. One of these is the close-up of the front of the bicycle in motion, with the yellow line of the road being very nicely placed in relation to the bicycle's parts and the riders' forearm. Excellent and precise framing! Love it!

Another example of precise framing is the image of the backlit woman walking away from the camera on the beach. There are people in the near background, but none of them are overlapping her in a distracting way that would obscure the clean clear outline of her form. It looks as though you were conscious of everything in the background, and waited until she was "clear" of any overlapping that would undermine the visual statement that you intended to make.

So in your body of work I am seeing what appears to be very precise framing and placement of the compositional elements, and also seeing some cluttered compositions that look like the various alignment of things "just happened" by accident, instead of being carefully controlled.

This is the main reason why I think your images, collectively, look incongruous, and don't necessarily "belong with" each other. There is both haphazard placement of compositional elements, and appealing placement of compositional elements. This makes it look like two different photographers at very different levels took the photos.

.

I am interested in knowing what consistency you think you are keeping. I'm sorry about how that sounds - as though I am being harshly critical. I do not mean it that way. If you think you are maintaining a form of consistency, I am truly interested in knowing what that is. What a photographer thinks about his work is very important, as it has a huge affect on what he will produce, moving forward.

.


Thank you for the constructive comment. It helps me a lot in realizing what kind of photographer I am.

I do sometimes carefully shoot and end up with perfectly composed and lined up subjects. Other times I shoot randomly and accidentally get same results. I guess thats a part of doing this as a hobby :). Honestly the beach picture and the bicycle pictures were carelessly shot and ended up perfect. The sofa picture of the camera I had no idea what I was doing and was shot a while back. I see what you mean and it makes sense. If I was to shoot it again now with acquired knowledge over the years, it would have been better.

The two pictures you talk about are actually my two most liked pictures on that website, the bicycle one was a contest finalist about six times.

Its crazy how sensitive photography is, every little aspect matters and can drastically improve or degrade your picture.

I guess the consistency I see is in colors, exposure, and contrast. Not so much in placement of composition and intention behind the shot.


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Tom ­ Reichner
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Oct 07, 2019 10:36 |  #34

PJmak wrote in post #18940029 (external link)
I do sometimes carefully shoot and end up with perfectly composed and lined up subjects. Other times I shoot randomly and accidentally get same results. Honestly the beach picture and the bicycle pictures were carelessly shot and ended up perfect. The sofa picture of the camera I had no idea what I was doing and was shot a while back.

Given these things that you've said above, can you see why people may have trouble identifying your style?
.

PJmak wrote in post #18940029 (external link)
The two pictures you talk about are actually my two most liked pictures on that website, the bicycle one was a contest finalist about six times.

That's awesome! . I can certainly see why it fared so well with the judges.

.

PJmak wrote in post #18940029 (external link)
Its crazy how sensitive photography is, every little aspect matters and can drastically improve or degrade your picture.

Very, very true.

I don't see how shooting carelessly will ever result in a well-defined, recognizable style. . Photographers who have an identifiable style shoot intentioanlly. . Everything they do has a reason behind it.

There's a saying that Allen (airfrogusmc) often quotes here on the forums. . It goes something like:

"Every single thing in the frame is either helping your image or hurting it."

.


"Your" and "you're" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"They're", "their", and "there" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"Fare" and "fair" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one. The proper expression is "moot point", NOT "mute point".

  
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Joe ­ Thibodeau
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Post edited 3 months ago by Joe Thibodeau. (2 edits in all)
     
Oct 07, 2019 14:58 |  #35

If I were to add anything to what has already been stated it would be to simplify your vision. The problem we all face with photography is anything can be photographed and if you are a visual junkie like most of us you will shoot a wild array of various subjects none of which when presented together appear to have a consistent theme. This is pretty much where most photographers begin. By picking one subject and going deep with it you will find that style will invent you rather then you inventing it. Some photographers pick one specific genre and spend an entire lifetime shooting it. Pick a theme or three and focus on producing images for a portfolio for each theme. Get really good at lighting, seeing, visualizing, planning a portfolio, and printing your images. Focused work will forever affect the way you shoot. Keep it simple. Go deep.


Joe Thibodeau - Amateur Photographer

  
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Tom ­ Reichner
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Oct 07, 2019 15:23 |  #36

.
There is a wonderful series of articles on the topic of Personal Style written by Alain Briot, and posted to the Luminous Landscape website.

Here is a link to one of the articles that appeared early in the series, entitled, "How to Establish a Personal Photographic Style"

https://luminous-landscape.com …sonal-photographic-style/ (external link)

To find other articles in the series on Personal Style, you can do a Google search for "personal style Luminous Landscape", or you can search within the Luminous Landscape website to find other articles by Alain Briot. . On Luminous Landscape, they may only let you read so many articles before they make you pay $1 a month for a membership. . If this is a problem, let me know and I will try to find a legal way that you can see them without joining.

.


"Your" and "you're" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"They're", "their", and "there" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"Fare" and "fair" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one. The proper expression is "moot point", NOT "mute point".

  
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AZGeorge
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Oct 10, 2019 20:00 |  #37

My commercial work is client focused.

Personal stuff is wildly eclectic.


George
Democracy Dies in Darkness

  
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How would you identify my style...if at all
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