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Greed
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Photograph Information Photographer's Comments
Challenge: Horror (Expert Editing)
Collection: Portfolio
Camera: Canon EOS-5D Mark II
Lens: Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM
Date: Jul 3, 2014
Date Uploaded: Jul 3, 2014



[Jul. 10th, 2014 01:13:52 AM]

Money has an incredibly high attraction power. Of course, since it is the most obvious key to a comfortable life, it is no wonder that (almost) everyone wants a slice of the pie. However, when we attain that goal, when we virtually have enough to live decently and secure a roof over our heads, we often want more and more, with no substantial reason.

I often hear many sentences about those hypothetical reasons, things like "Winners always want more", "Money shows your success, your ambition" or "Why not take it if you can". I understand that to some point. I must confess that it can give an exhilarating feeling, like being an eagle overflying the crowd ; not necessarily with any disdain, but with some self-satisfaction flowing through the veins, in the Freudian meaning of the term.

Then you switch your giant TV set on, read some of the newspapers you receive every morning, or talk to relatives and slowly realize that the pie is not infinite. Taking more implies leaving less. Leaving less means some won't have enough for their own direct survival. It is very tempting to ignore that, or even pretend it is false, or "more complicated than that", in order to go on stacking bigger numbers on bank accounts with a light mind.

It is always easy to talk, of course. "Share it fairly but don't take a slice of my pie", as said Pink Floyd. I believe greed is one of the most (if not the most) fundamental problem of Humanity, which could cause its loss, or at least dramatically slow its evolution. Greed causes largely unbalanced resource sharing, causes envy, causes war, and death. And when direct war is avoided, poverty still forces people to buy the cheapest goods or food, which forces companies to find ways of producing those low-cost goods, and exploiting workers (sometimes abroad in the poorest countries), also killing them in the process, or dramatically reducing their life length. It would be easy to go on blaming on the system, but most people actually support it... even poor ones. We want money, and when we have some, we keep wanting more and more, perpetuating the whole process. No easy solution. Greed is powerful.

Ironically, even the richer persons in the world die. I personally refuse to spend the short amount of time I have on this world running after money. Granted, some is necessary, but I hope I can handle (more or less) my appetite, and avoid dying like the guy on my photo. I like the fact I actually posed for it: it will act like a little self-reminder when choices will come up, either to give up the race when it is time, or either as a consolation when I'm broken!

Some technical facts about the image:
- I shot my auto-portrait in my home studio. I had to cover myself with mud, then my wife help me with some barbecue sauce. By the way, I recommend to NOT use barbecue sauce on the skin, I discovered it irritates it... I had big red marks on the face for a day!
- The money is of course fake. I simply printed some one hundred dollars bills for those that were visible, then used newspapers to make the stacks bigger. My wife was very kind and cut hundreds of those: as usual her help was invaluable.
- A few bills were shot separately (for example, those in my eyes or in my belly).
- The ground was photographed on an empty parking
- The branch comes from my garden
- The processing was rather straightforward: of course, I had to mask and assemble the various photos together, create some shadows here and there, but aside of that, no deformation nor any tricky part.

Statistics
Place: 1 out of 59
Avg (all users): 7.0119
Avg (commenters): 8.0000
Avg (participants): 7.1176
Avg (non-participants): 6.9400
Views since voting: 1998
Views during voting: 295
Votes: 84
Comments: 29
Favorites: 3 (view)


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AuthorThread
07/16/2014 10:49:27 AM
Greed so well depicted. Thanks for sharing the image and the notes.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/13/2014 07:56:39 PM
Fantastic as usual Christophe; it all looks very tricky to me. Congratulations on the ribbon.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/13/2014 01:16:17 PM
Just wow! Strong image!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/13/2014 01:30:04 AM
Fantastic image Christophe....undoubtedly the best in the contest IMO!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/12/2014 09:35:55 PM
BBQ sauce!!

Congrats, Christophe. Yes, the concept is truly horrific.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/12/2014 06:26:51 AM
Congratulations, great image and comments.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/11/2014 07:24:56 PM
Bravo!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/11/2014 11:15:12 AM
The lengths you go to on your photography just AMAZES me!! You are not just a photographer but a true Artist who spends love and time developing his piece of work! You should be Hung.... As in an Art gallery!! ( LOL )

Seriously I can see a whole show just of your work. You have a style that reminds me of Andy Warhol. Not so much in the look of the piece, but in the fact that your works are Oh so Unique only to you and almost certainly instantly recognizable as a Christophe Original!

Carry on Master
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/11/2014 09:20:43 AM
So glad this ribboned! Very well done on the red. This overall was my favorite image in the challenge.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/11/2014 09:16:53 AM
Outstanding image, Christophe! Your attention to detail never fails to amaze! Congrats on the red!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/11/2014 07:22:03 AM
Congrats on the red, Christophe! And barbecue sauce...wow, you're one brave guy! (FWIW I find either fake blood or some ketchup mixed with soya sauce looks pretty convincing) And yeah also lol'd at the American money. Great work as always.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/11/2014 06:45:39 AM
Well done Christophe - and thanks as always for the great background info.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/11/2014 01:12:09 AM
I'll like your comment more than the photo :)

Congratulations!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/11/2014 01:10:32 AM
Interesting that you used American money!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/11/2014 12:20:50 AM
You are the MASTER, Christophe! Great work.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
 Comments Made During the Challenge
07/10/2014 11:34:18 PM
One of the seven deadly sins.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/10/2014 11:19:15 PM
Definitely horrible, great composition and capture on the subject.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/10/2014 10:51:37 PM
Voted earlier coming back to comment.

Yes, greed can indeed be horrific - but it is the effect of what it does to others, the wake of destruction left behind by those who have money and use it destructively that is what is most horrible. The story of Midas for example- one feels more sorry for those who he 'hurt' (turning his daughter to gold for example) rather than Midas himself. The individual can be misguided by greed - but I feel the true horror lies more in the damage an individual with money and power can do to the community at large. While this piece is top notch work, I feel that this piece is a bit 'incomplete'. You have effectively captured the individual who covets money but I feel it is lacking the other half of what makes greed so horrible - a visual showing the greedy individual willing to step on and push whomever and whatever gets in their way would have made this a 'complete picture'. It is the damage to people and the environment that a greedy individual can and does leave in their wake that shows the horror of what man can do.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/10/2014 05:03:45 PM
Wonderful idea and beautifully (or should i say horribly) executed. Curious to see how you did the money.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/10/2014 06:45:49 AM
Top three for me.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/04/2014 07:51:54 PM
I love this photo. Very big implications and very well done. One of my favorites in this challenge.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/04/2014 07:28:06 PM
Not sensing HORROR here. In the words of the Wolf of Wall Street, "Greed is good." Not yet voting.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/04/2014 04:50:59 PM
I'll tell you what...I have such an elevated admiration for your work....I'd love to know how you make this sooooooo "seamless"
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/04/2014 03:50:25 PM
Oh, Christophe. Look at where all that money has gotten you! (actually I would have used piles of ribbons instead of money but it works too ;-) 8
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/04/2014 01:23:06 PM
Oh the horror. Not Leonardo DiCaprio, but well played.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/04/2014 12:09:29 PM
Impressive PS work
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/04/2014 10:39:38 AM
Simply amazing. By far the clear winner
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/04/2014 09:27:17 AM
A masterpiece as expected from the master himself. You have a lot of French money - you must be rich! This is definitely a horrific scene
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/04/2014 12:53:38 AM
Fantastic
  Photographer found comment helpful.


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