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DPChallenge Forums >> General Discussion >> Art photography [is a joke]
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01/12/2008 05:13:09 PM · #1
Ok, so here's the deal. I go to an art district today, hoping to see come crazy photographs. But when I get inside, I see DPC brown ribbons hanging all over the wall. Out of focus, red eye in some of the portraits, just general sloppiness. The thing is, some of these were selling for thousands of dollars.

Do people really buy these? How the heck do these artists end up selling junk for so much?
01/12/2008 05:18:35 PM · #2
Good promotion.
01/12/2008 05:22:45 PM · #3
I'm gonna have to say that I agree this happens quite a bit. I went to The International Museum of Photography (it's in Oklahoma City) and hanging my stuff on the walls would have been better. I'd like to say that I'm good enough for my photography to hang there, but I don't think I am...but, apparently.....

haha
01/12/2008 05:38:57 PM · #4
Where was this again... I could use a few grand.
01/12/2008 06:27:50 PM · #5
Originally posted by fotomann_forever:

Where was this again... I could use a few grand.


Just at the gallery's around the distillery district, in Toronto.
01/12/2008 06:33:38 PM · #6
You know I see a lot of "art" that is just bad photography desaturated. I can't stand it.
01/12/2008 07:49:07 PM · #7
Originally posted by fotomann_forever:

You know I see a lot of "art" that is just bad photography desaturated. I can't stand it.


It's true though, how black and white shots are easier than colour shots. I guess that's why a lot of art photography is black and white.

Lazy artists.
01/12/2008 07:53:37 PM · #8
do you have any names of the artists you saw?
01/12/2008 07:57:46 PM · #9
Well... as far as film is concerned. B&W is MUCH easier, quite a bit less expensive and less stinky to develop and print in one's own darkroom. Also, it focuses more attention on composition and detail by excluding unnecessary color, but yeah... most of the time (especially in digital) it boils down to a lazy or bad photographer.

Most of it I wouldn't even call black and white, because that would imply it had black and white in the photo, not just a big gray blob. :-D
01/12/2008 07:59:16 PM · #10
Frank Madler (sp) was featured at the corkin gallery. Ok I admit I did like one of his shots- the other ones were extremely "overproccessed" and contrived.

Now I don't know anything about his technique- he may very well be using film, in which case the processing would seem impressive. But for digital, they were hoaky and over analyzed.
01/12/2008 08:09:18 PM · #11
I was going to try and see some of his images, but couldn't find much. Here is his Artist's statement though.

November 14 2002 - May 8 2003

Artist Statement
English Translation

My photographic style aims to produce images with a heightened degree of abstract reality, through the specific use of the photographic medium. Colour, texture, the relationship between focus and out-of-focus, choice of subject and picture format are some of the classic methods I employ to formulate photography in that border-realm between illustration and creative imaging.

I concentrate on large monochromatic areas, deliberately selected colour dominances, minimalist compositions and picture themes which are inspired by the discourses of painting. From the genre of landscape representation emerge “non-landscapes”, in which the qualities of place, situation and “real stories” are overlaid with a formal picture action that variegates between abstraction and narrative text. Distance and monumentality of landscape are represented (sometimes replaced) by the monumental moments of composition and format.

I work out individual images, which I then usually arrange into ensembles. The resulting correspondence through the act of creation and calculation is an integral part of my artistic endeavour.

Frank Mädler has participated in major museum exhibitions since 1994 in Brussels, Berlin, Leipzig and Dresden. His work is part of the American Bank Collection, the Antoine de Jalbert Foundation, Paris, and private collections in Geneva and Toronto.
01/12/2008 08:37:53 PM · #12
From what I could find of Madler's work, I'm not really very impressed by the photographic skill presented. But that's the thing of it, art doesn't require skill any more (if it ever did), simply interpretation.

You can complain all day about what others do with their skill (or apparent lack thereof), or you can just get over it and make your own way in life. Nuff said.

Message edited by author 2008-01-12 20:38:14.
01/12/2008 08:42:46 PM · #13
Thank you for introducing me to Frank Madler! I just Googled him and found some great pictures.

Art giggles at the people who giggle at Art.
01/12/2008 08:54:16 PM · #14
It's all in the presentation. Stick a brown ribbon in a cool gallery, talk up the artist and there will always be someone who appreciates it and is willing to spend big money on it. The key is to find a way in to the galleries imho...

N
01/12/2008 09:09:15 PM · #15
I don't think that a photo deemed a "brown ribbon" on DPC would constitute "bad art" in any sense. The photograpic formula created by the voters and submitters on this site does not reflect, represent or mirror the same criteria used in other photographic mediums or still image artwork.

Eye of the beholder...
01/12/2008 09:20:50 PM · #16
Originally posted by jdannels:

do you have any names of the artists you saw?


I think one of them was Joe Dannels, you've probably never heard of him. lol, just kiddin, I always love your work.
01/12/2008 09:25:17 PM · #17
Originally posted by ryand:

Originally posted by jdannels:

do you have any names of the artists you saw?


I think one of them was Joe Dannels, you've probably never heard of him. lol, just kiddin, I always love your work.

Lol, thanks. But no art gallery for me yet, but I am pretty sure some think of my photos as "extremely overprocessed and contrived." :P
01/12/2008 09:33:00 PM · #18
Originally posted by jdannels:

Originally posted by ryand:

Originally posted by jdannels:

do you have any names of the artists you saw?


I think one of them was Joe Dannels, you've probably never heard of him. lol, just kiddin, I always love your work.

Lol, thanks. But no art gallery for me yet, but I am pretty sure some think of my photos as "extremely overprocessed and contrived." :P

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Very contrived ;)
01/12/2008 09:36:50 PM · #19
Originally posted by jdannels:

Originally posted by ryand:

Originally posted by jdannels:

do you have any names of the artists you saw?


I think one of them was Joe Dannels, you've probably never heard of him. lol, just kiddin, I always love your work.

Lol, thanks. But no art gallery for me yet, but I am pretty sure some think of my photos as "extremely overprocessed and contrived." :P


well I am not one of the people that thinks they are "extremely overprocessed and contrived." I am quite fond of your work.
01/12/2008 09:39:45 PM · #20
What most people don't often realize is that much of what DPC exhorts, congradulates, and lauds with ribbons can usually go down in the books as commercial photography.

Whether it's still life, a great macro, a great landscape, or a great concept, what we aggrandize here is not going to be considered "art" in many circles. Much of what comes across the front pages serves no other purpose than to be a slick presentation of beauty of visualization, and it does it well.

The artistic community, particularly that of a more bohemian bent such as the stuff you saw in the art disrict (so it seems, I've never been there of course) will be more tilted to those extremes that speak to a different crowd than what you find everyday here.

This is not to say that ALL DPCers follow this pattern, many do not. But the great ones seem to be coming less and less often. Those photos that transcend the artistic, the commercial, the slick, and go straight to the heart of any viewer seem to come less and less these days. (I do not even pretend to think that I am one of them)

So, the saying still goes: ones man garbage, is another mans treasure.
01/12/2008 10:00:36 PM · #21
Originally posted by wavelength:

From what I could find of Madler's work, I'm not really very impressed by the photographic skill presented. But that's the thing of it, art doesn't require skill any more (if it ever did), simply interpretation.

You can complain all day about what others do with their skill (or apparent lack thereof), or you can just get over it and make your own way in life. Nuff said.


Why do you feel his photographic skill isn't good? I can understand maybe not liking the style or subject matter but skill? I think it takes great skill to execute your vision/concept, which is much more than being able to operate equipment. Anybody can do that.

Message edited by author 2008-01-12 22:02:42.
01/12/2008 10:09:10 PM · #22
Originally posted by LanndonKane:

Ok, so here's the deal. I go to an art district today, hoping to see come crazy photographs. But when I get inside, I see DPC brown ribbons hanging all over the wall. Out of focus, red eye in some of the portraits, just general sloppiness. The thing is, some of these were selling for thousands of dollars.

Do people really buy these? How the heck do these artists end up selling junk for so much?


So, let's see you do better without it looking like it came off an art director's table. People here (on DPC) wonder how they can make a buck with photography all the time; here's your answer. I win ribbons in photo competitions with stuff that doesn't rate a 5.5 here. Here I get told I over process, should crop like this or that, and it's too dark, too light, looks too much like a painting or not enough like one. Oh, I also sell prints.

It sounds to me as though your definition of photography needs to be widened. DPC is a great sameness generator; if you stick around long enough, everyone will produce the same photographs. All the great ones can be identified by their individuality, not conformity.


01/12/2008 10:13:00 PM · #23
Originally posted by signal2noise:

I don't think that a photo deemed a "brown ribbon" on DPC would constitute "bad art" in any sense. The photograpic formula created by the voters and submitters on this site does not reflect, represent or mirror the same criteria used in other photographic mediums or still image artwork.

Eye of the beholder...


For instance, while the following image received the Brown ribbon recently, I think it's art. I'll give DPC members a chance to purchase it at a discount before the gallery showing.

' . substr('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_challenge/0-999/789/120/625027.jpg', strrpos('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_challenge/0-999/789/120/625027.jpg', '/') + 1) . '

01/12/2008 10:35:36 PM · #24
We probably shouldn't be naming names... people do web searches, ya know.I'd hate more competition for the brown :-D
01/12/2008 10:54:08 PM · #25
Originally posted by yanko:

Originally posted by wavelength:

From what I could find of Madler's work, I'm not really very impressed by the photographic skill presented.


Why do you feel his photographic skill isn't good? I can understand maybe not liking the style or subject matter but skill? I think it takes great skill to execute your vision/concept, which is much more than being able to operate equipment. Anybody can do that.


I was simply saying that slick nuance of photographic production does not make an artist, in my bass-ackwards way.
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