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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre General Photography Talk 
Thread started 19 Dec 2016 (Monday) 04:18
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Getting bored of photography

 
EOS-Mike
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Dec 29, 2016 10:48 |  #121

I'm not sure I can add anything to the thread other than moral support. I was the same way (as the thread starter). I got pretty good and people I know began to notice. So I did a couple of free jobs to help a friend and it boosted my confidence. Then more began asking, and at first it was for a few dollars, followed by a couple hundred dollars per session, and then I went and did the same thing many others do: website, business cards, some promotion. It began to take off and was exciting for a bit. But it quickly became a drag as I stopped caring about all the portraits I was doing. Head shots for new actors, senior pictures, engagement photos, kids in ballet, yada yada.

I enjoyed meeting people. That was cool. And my skills improved, but it wasn't satisfying. Also, I have a high level of anxiety in general, and I was always worried about making a customer upset. It never happened, but it was always a worry.

I did shoot a wedding and it was pretty much the tipping point. A Facebook friend asked as a favor, and it paid a couple hundred bucks. It was supposed to be a very informal, one-hour session in a local city park. But when I showed up it was actually formal, with the groom in full military dress and the bride in an exquisite gown. They wanted a lot of shots and the whole thing took about three hours.

To make matters worse, the bride had (possibly literally) a photographic memory, and remembered every single shot I took. I spent a couple weeks processing images because I'm the kind of person who has a difficult time saying no. I wouldn't say she was a difficult bride in that she was very kind. But she nit picked everything. The fact that she was very dark skinned and he was extremely pale was a challenge I wasn't expecting (I only met the friend asking for the favor), and when processing she would say her skin was too light or two dark. I had to rework every image a few times.

In the end she was extremely satisfied, and my processing skills improved significantly, but I know I made about $2.00 an hour on that job and that was when I decided I didn't like professional photography.

So I started winding down slowly. I shelved the business cards, took down the website, and slowly began to turn down some jobs until I no longer shot for strangers.

This year (2016) I did two jobs, both for free. I didn't enjoy them (but I still enjoyed seeing their happiness). They were for friends. Even with friends I get requests for more after delivering plenty of photos or requests to erase wrinkles, thin arms, etc.

So in 2017 I won't be doing any jobs at all. I'm totally over it. I am not a good business person, and I'm okay with that. I have a great teaching career that pays well, has benefits, and provides for the family. My wife has a business that she runs from home and she knows how to do it right in terms of laying down ground rules for the client. Her pricing is relatively high for what she does, but her service is excellent and she knows how to say no. Nobody takes advantage of her more than once.

As for photography, sometimes I go days or weeks without taking pics. But I'll never stop. I just learned to not think about it too much. It's a hobby and I don't want to worry about how important it is to me right now. I don't have to make decisions about the future of my photography. For now I'm just relaxing.

For the OP: keep some kind of digital camera, even if it's a point and shoot. But don't think too much about it. Just enjoy life.


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Tom ­ Reichner
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Dec 29, 2016 11:08 |  #122

mcluckie wrote in post #18226498 (external link)
I realize the conversation was about some pre-conceived outcome from a shoot, but isn't the point of photo to create some super-special image?

No. At least I've never heard of such a goal for someone to have. The folks I know are trying to create a bunch of special images, so as to have a lot of variety in their body of work. One ultimate, super-special image that is akin to the Holy Grail, or The Great American Novel? I just don't know any photographers who think that way.

.


"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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Dec 29, 2016 11:13 |  #123

airfrogusmc wrote in post #18226547 (external link)
One image no more makes a great photographer than one great at bate make a hall of fame baseball player but yet the one image idea dominates forum land.

The idea of a single best whatever dominates American culture generally. (Other cultures, I don't know.) Rise to the top of the pyramid and become Number One, that's the ideal. I'd like to see it modified. There's room for many examples of excellence without having one "winner and world champion" who beats out the others.


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airfrogusmc
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Dec 29, 2016 11:19 |  #124

OhLook wrote in post #18226583 (external link)
The idea of a single best whatever dominates American culture generally. (Other cultures, I don't know.) Rise to the top of the pyramid and become Number One, that's the ideal. I'd like to see it modified. There's room for many examples of excellence without having one "winner and world champion" who beats out the others.

As a creative I am so glad that isn't the way it works in the real world outside forum land and you are right in that true creativity isn't a contest but should be about self expression and not about a suggestive what is the best. The perfect body of work has not been made though I think that some of the bodies of work from the likes of Weston, Adams, Bresson, Robert Frank, Winogrand have come extremely close.




  
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EOS-Mike
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Dec 29, 2016 11:23 |  #125

Tom Reichner wrote in post #18226578 (external link)
No. At least I've never heard of such a goal for someone to have. The folks I know are trying to create a bunch of special images, so as to have a lot of variety in their body of work. One ultimate, super-special image that is akin to the Holy Grail, or The Great American Novel? I just don't know any photographers who think that way.

.

Photojournalists think that way. Not all of them, but many. Take the Miracle on the Hudson (Sully) as an example. Not one single photo of that event in progress, even though eight million people were right there. The only pics taken were after the jet landed.

Had any of us been there, locked and loaded, and seen that thing coming, we would have earned a Pulitzer.

I'd venture to say that the most famous photographs in history are overwhelmingly from photojournalists. There are a few exceptions, of course, but it's the capturing of human events that are the Holy Grail, so-to-speak, or the great American novel.

Those type of pics are very hard to get. These journalists (and they are possibly the last true reporters) spend a lot of time in cars, tents, motels, fast food joints, and on the streets or next to radio scanners to get these shots. Some are even willing to step into war zones to bring us news. Remarkable people.

I don't assume that they are all aiming for that Pulitzer, as they are likely motivated intrinsically, but it's always a consideration. It's a Super Bowl ring.

Artistic photography rarely hits that iconic level.

I think I just motivated myself to try some of it. Haha.


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Jarvis ­ Creative ­ Studios
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Dec 29, 2016 11:41 |  #126

urbanfreestyle wrote in post #18217357 (external link)
Hi all,
sorry but this is going to be a bit of a negative thread.
Over the last few months i have started losing interest in photography. I feel like i have tried so hard and not acheived as much as i would like.

I started off shooting street and loved it, it was exciting and new to me. Then i moved into motorsport photography as i love cars.
This was even better as i got to combine my two passions.

Then i pushed to go pro. I started a page, got myself a website etc and started shooting all the events i could. pushed to get my name out there but found there was so much competition and so many people out there that would shoot for free it would under-mine me. People don't seem to want to pay for something they can get for free.

These days i have to force myself to go out and shoot. I get bored when on a shoot or at a meet so just wander round aimlessly taking photos that i don't feel passionate about.

I have a few people that really like my work and love the images i produce but the ones i love are few and far between. I almost feel like i have peaked.

I feel like the best thing for me to do is to sell all my photo kit (of value) and spend it on getting a nicer car as i have been running around in a shed due to lack of funds.

I will keep my 35mm film camera and one of my lenses so could use it as a 1 year 1 camera 1 lens project and then review how i feel after that time?

I will admit I have not read any of the responses in this thread, but I would still like to offer insight, as I was in the same boat as you beginning of 2015. I didn't feel like I had peaked but I did feel like I had hit a creative / professional wall in my photography, and could no longer move up. This was right after moving from a city of 250K where I was quickly advancing to a city of 2.5 million where the competition was much stiffer and the photography scene was much different and clients wanted a much different product. I was a wedding photographer and my career had completely stalled with the move. On top of that I felt I had lost my passion for photography.

So what did I do? I adapted. I marketed the hell out of myself, I went to every network event I could find, I put my name out there time and time again. For a few months nothing happened, and that was discouraging. Then I called a large privately owned park that holds a ton of events and offered to do a few for free. They agreed. I milked the relationship and pretty soon they were paying me. With that came other corporate jobs. Soon I got hooked up with the biggest university in the city, doing most of their events for their law school. All this while I had also been building relationships with other local wedding photographers and many of them now call me as a second shooter. In 2016 I more than quadrupled my jobs / income from 2015 just from selling myself and nurturing the relationships I made.

But after all this I still didn't have my passion for photography back. It's very difficult to do something as a job and have it as a passion as well. So lately to get that passion back I've once again turned photography into a hobby. While I do events for income, they are not my passion. They are a job that pays me, nothing more. But getting established in that has given me the opportunity to start shooting models and doing creative projects on the side that have helped bring back my love for photography. I have yet to do a model job that pays, and I don't know if I want to ever get paid for that type of work, because once there are strings attached it can no longer be as "fun" as it once was, because you will not just be chasing the passion but you'll also be chasing the money.

As far as you're concerned, have you considered getting into a different style of photography that could pay you as a job, and shooting cars, etc for fun until you can get enough skin in the game to start shooting for publications, etc? Are you wanting to get out of photography because you truly don't enjoy it anymore or because you feel like no one is interested in your work?


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Nathan
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Dec 29, 2016 13:31 |  #127

Interesting discussion about chasing "The Image." I think the best we can do is hone the craft of our photography and be ready with our cameras in hand for when the moment an image might present itself. We might be able to anticipate some images, but we won't always be able to chase it. With a bit of luck, we'll be in the right place. With a bit of skill, we can recognize the image and capture it.

That's not to say that planned shots cannot be great, either. Some images - portraits, landscapes, etc. - may be less photojournalistic, but not lacking in creativity and skill. But even in a planned image, it's about bringing all the components together to create that "moment". Whether it is bringing the right model with the right bone structure together with the right makeup, wardrobe, setting and lighting for a portrait or whether it is bringing yourself to a place and time with the right sky and sunlight and subject for a scene... it still requires a bit of luck that everything comes together into something great.


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WaltA
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Dec 29, 2016 14:27 |  #128

Tom Reichner wrote in post #18226578 (external link)
No. At least I've never heard of such a goal for someone to have. The folks I know are trying to create a bunch of special images, so as to have a lot of variety in their body of work. One ultimate, super-special image that is akin to the Holy Grail, or The Great American Novel? I just don't know any photographers who think that way.

.

My goal is to create "an ultimate, super special image" every time I pick up my camera.

Unfortunately, my work is more like Monty Python than the Holy Grail.


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airfrogusmc
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Dec 29, 2016 14:30 |  #129

EOS-Mike wrote in post #18226592 (external link)
Photojournalists think that way. Not all of them, but many. Take the Miracle on the Hudson (Sully) as an example. Not one single photo of that event in progress, even though eight million people were right there. The only pics taken were after the jet landed.

Had any of us been there, locked and loaded, and seen that thing coming, we would have earned a Pulitzer.

I'd venture to say that the most famous photographs in history are overwhelmingly from photojournalists. There are a few exceptions, of course, but it's the capturing of human events that are the Holy Grail, so-to-speak, or the great American novel.

Those type of pics are very hard to get. These journalists (and they are possibly the last true reporters) spend a lot of time in cars, tents, motels, fast food joints, and on the streets or next to radio scanners to get these shots. Some are even willing to step into war zones to bring us news. Remarkable people.

I don't assume that they are all aiming for that Pulitzer, as they are likely motivated intrinsically, but it's always a consideration. It's a Super Bowl ring.

Artistic photography rarely hits that iconic level.

I think I just motivated myself to try some of it. Haha.


Sorry but do you know anything about the history of photography?

I doubt any of those photographers you mentioned will ever be mentioned in the same sentence as Ansel Adams, Edward Weston, Robert Frank, Ralph Gibson, Garry Winogrand, William Eggelston, Jill Freedman, Mary Ellen Mark, Sally Mann, Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange this could go on a while and they are all artists and have made some of the most important and influential bodies of work period.

Look up The Americans by Robert Frank
https://www.youtube.co​m/watch?v=mHtRZBDOgag (external link)

Woman-Garry Winogrand

Ansel Adams- Yosemite and The Range of Light

Walkers Evans-America

Ralph Gibson-Days at Sea

Sally Mann-Immediate Family

Edward Weston. anything and everything by him

Henri Carier Bresson-The Dessine Moment

This could go on a while. All of these photographers will still be in the conversation about photograph as an art form for another 100 years. I doubt any of the photographers you mentioned will be still talked about in 10 years.




  
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Dec 29, 2016 15:00 as a reply to  @ airfrogusmc's post |  #130

To be fair, some of the people you mention in your list were also photojournalists - or at least street photographers (which, right or wrong, I consider a branch of photojournalism) - including Cartier-Bresson, Evans, Frank, Lange, Mark and Winogrand. Even if not all were known for that type of work, some are.


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airfrogusmc
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Dec 29, 2016 15:30 |  #131

Nathan wrote in post #18226841 (external link)
To be fair, some of the people you mention in your list were also photojournalists - or at least street photographers (which, right or wrong, I consider a branch of photojournalism) - including Cartier-Bresson, Evans, Frank, Lange, Mark and Winogrand. Even if not all were known for that type of work, some are.


Sorry not following your point?
They all still worked in bodies of work and were in the end artists though they might not have labeled themselves that. Winograd resented the term street photographer.




  
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Nathan
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Dec 29, 2016 15:57 as a reply to  @ airfrogusmc's post |  #132

My point is that EOS-Mike isn't completely wrong and I think your response was a bit derisive. In the broadest sense of the word, photojournalists have created some of most memorable images in photographic history and many of those may be considered art. Among them, are those greats that will be remembered throughout history 100 years from now, including some of the people you mentioned. EOS-Mike didn't name any of the photojournalists he was thinking of, in any case.

In the end... photojournalism, street photographers, whatever the term... those are just labels. What matters in the end, in your terms, are their bodies of work.


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airfrogusmc
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Dec 29, 2016 16:28 |  #133

Nathan wrote in post #18226894 (external link)
My point is that EOS-Mike isn't completely wrong and I think your response was a bit derisive. In the broadest sense of the word, photojournalists have created some of most memorable images in photographic history and many of those may be considered art. Among them, are those greats that will be remembered throughout history 100 years from now, including some of the people you mentioned. EOS-Mike didn't name any of the photojournalists he was thinking of, in any case.

In the end... photojournalism, street photographers, whatever the term... those are just labels. What matters in the end, in your terms, are their bodies of work.

This exactly is pretty much what history has shown.




  
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Dec 29, 2016 16:52 |  #134
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I actually try to create "the image". I shoot landscapes and have returned to the same location dozens of times awaiting for the right combination of weather, light and atmospheric conditions to allow me to create the vision I have in my head from this location. I am very happy if I return from an outing with one image I feel I can print...many times I come back empty handed.

So yes, there are some of us that do chase "the image". Many times my photography is about getting to my location, setting up the camera and composition and then waiting on the light...many times with a glass of wine. Shooting landscapes, I typically do not wander around hoping to stumble onto an image. I do go out with a compact camera on scouting hikes to locate potential compositions...but when it's serious photography, I will go directly to my location and know the vision I want to produce.




  
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Tom ­ Reichner
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Dec 29, 2016 16:53 |  #135

Nathan wrote in post #18226841 (external link)
To be fair, some of the people you mention in your list were also photojournalists - or at least street photographers

But the photoraphers that Allen mentioned are not really photojournalists, they are fine art and/or street photographers. Street photographers are attempting to create art. Photojournalists are attempting to document meaningful events. These are completely different objectives and have completely different emphasis. I see no way in which these two disciplines are similar, other than the fact that they each use camera gear to capture images and that their subject matter usually (but not always) includes humans.

.


"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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