Are we ashamed of ourselves?

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  • Re: That's what TrekLens is for
    Mark, I don't understand this approach, if I understand you correctly since I am in Canada my Canadian photos should be on another side but when I travel to India then I should post them here?

    Then I guess Sohrab wouldn't post his images from India here, but when he travels to Canada he would?

    I think this site isn't called Trek Travel for a reason.
    just my 2 cents
  • Re: That's what TrekLens is for
    You make a very good point, but South America is severely under represented compared to North America, Europe, and Asia. I feel that that I should show as much of S.America here on TE as possible before posting street photography from the United States. It's a personal preference of mine, and I am not pushing it on anyone else. There are many photos that I take here in the states that I am very proud of, more so than some of the shots I have taken overseas, but I feel that in the spirit of TE: "Learning about the world through photography," there is still a great deal more to learn about S.America on TrekEarth. Not a lot of people go to Colombia or Venezuela let along walk around with their cameras due to the high crime rates. I thought that if I can bring home some photos from there that people have never seen before then I did something good for the community.

    I an not ashamed of my town/city by any means, but given the one photo a day limit, I think I can do more good by posting S.America photos. This certainly doesn't apply to everyone. Personally if you had shots of an African tribe compared to shots of the downtown big city, I would like to see the Africa photo for the simple fact that we don't see enough of those here. There are nearly 600 pages of photos from each Canada and the United States, and only 300 pages from the one dozen countries in S.America combined. When I run out of TE worthy photos from my last trip, I will be more than willing to share my street photography taken right here in my town.

    As far as Sohrab goes, his particular brand of photography is sorely lacking here on TE. Now with Simon gone, the numbers of street/PJ style photographers are getting smaller and smaller. I appreciate your steet photography work in your own city and I gave you praise for it in a post above. If I had to choose between posting my photo of a church in Europe or street photography here in the states, I would clearly choose my street photography, but since almost all my photos are from a under-represented region, I think I am a special excpetion to this case ;)

    p.s. Sorry about the length read
  • Re: Are we ashamed of ourselves?
    Let's be brutally frank here. You remember those old moies from the 50s and 60s, like "Invasion of the body snatchers?" You open one of our N America pages or even Europe and you see deserted streets, villages shot from a distance, the odd church steeple. And I ask myself "What terrible thing happened in this town? Where did all the people go?"
    300 million or so folks in the USA, eating hamburgers, playing rock and roll, flirting, fighting, getting arrested, shooting up in public, exulting, hanging out in gangs, graduating, and what do we see? The Brooklyn Bridge (again!) from a particularly jaunty angle.
    Clearly it's to do with an insane expansion in how Westerners see "human rights". Luko nailed that point. You shoot a little league game, someone calls the cops, they treat you like a pedophile. Ridiculous!
    Now I was a little bit in that Asian exotic "wait till I go to laos again so can shoot some cute monks!" type of mood when I first joined. then, almost by chance I uploaded a couple of funky shots of people working on a railway line here in Japan. The recation they sparked convinced me right then and there that there was intense interest in modern Japan, NOT in kimonos and Mt Fuji but in how people actually live and dreamed over here. And I had a mission.
    Look, if TE is about "exploring culture through photography", then I'm sorry but we've got to get some people in the frame. Steel girders, fluffy trees and stones alone will not suffice!
    SIncerely, Francis
  • Re: People, form and photo
    I believe there´s a clear distinction about infomative photography and, let´s say, the other photography. What makes one interested in showing his work to other people, as we do here, is the will to go beyond the information: to show an image with interesting forms, colours and themes. I live in Rio, and I have seen Corcovado´s pictures endlessly. But once I saw a picture of Cristo Redentor against dark clouds, a strong rain and a lightning falling over his hand. That is some. Or I have seen many beggars and street children, but once I made this picture and I´m proud of it.

    This is to say forms are quite uneasy to be seen, and they depend on antecipation, a good point of view, and, of course, luck. But when you get it, you have something. As many people said, it is harder to notice the unusual or the interesting in our place, but it is there, and we should not wait for an Indonesian to shoot it. As much as we can´t think sunsets are the photographic situation par excellence, and carnival is the best thing to see in Rio.

    I was very glad to see this forum. And if so many people are discussing about showing their own cities or shooting less popular scenes, there´s room for this kind of thing in TE. I´ve been here for about two years, although not posting photos for a long time. But I see how TE is changing in its growth. And the themes, the scenes and the photographic quality are up to everybody who is posting. Why not change it?

    Keep shooting, folks.

  • Re: People, form and photo
    very interesting what has been written so far here, I continue my fight against repetition, or at least I try not to fall into this...

    but again pictures of people from the west do not attract to people as the ones coming from the east

  • Re: Are we ashamed of ourselves?
    In my opinion, landscapes do not give grief, they don't talk back, and they do not pose. I am a geographer and cartographer and have spent my career studying topography so to photograph landscapes is a natural fit for me. I try, whenever I travel, to do cultural and human events photography but the results are less that satisfactory. Sometimes these results are attributed to me but in many cases as lot of people, especially in N.A., do not like to be the center of attention or have a camera aimed in their direction. North Americans I feel believe that I will make a significant financial reward from their image and want compensation. On the other hand, my experiences in Europe is that in public events people are more accepting of the camera and a photograhers desire to document the people and places of Europe. If the image taking is in a public event, i.e. market day, festival, etc., they ignore the camera and continue with their activity.

    Just my 2-cents for what it's worth.
  • Re: People, form and photo
    This thread is definitively very interesting to read and to follow. In the background, there are still some guys that do not post very often but keep an eye on the trend TE is following.
    Those people are saying that TE is changing, that TE doesn't have the same spirit than the begining.
    Those people are saying that she should post better photographies, better composition, no flower, no butterfly,... And I agree with them with lot of their arguments but what are they offering to TE? Do they open a photo and start to write a comment or a critique to find what can be improved?

    To be honnest with you before writing in the forum saying that TE is dead or TE is now poor quality, please, browse the photograhs and write comments and critiques and try to help people to be as good as you are (hum, I don't want to be tough buf they think that they have talent but they should try to stay humble...).
    Santi, take your keyboard and give some of your time if you want TE to be changed. You are part of it and you are part of the trend..Do

  • Re: Are we ashamed of ourselves?
    Naxius, you´re right. It would be more nice to write comments than this forum, as long as I would be doing something about the pictures. I´ll try to follow your advice.

    About the fact I don´t upload pictures anymore, I must say about the frustrating fact I can´t buy a neg scanner now, no matter what I do. Then, sometimes it can make me a little, uhn, disagreeable. Sorry.

    Munro, landscapes are beautiful, there´s no doubt, and if they´re part of your life, shoot them, please. But they´re not the only way to make an interesting photo, like easterners aren´t the only way to shoot interesting portraits. It´s a matter of language: yours is the landscape. Great!
  • Re: Are we ashamed of ourselves?
    That's a good initiative Santi to start writing comments on the other pictures.
    I had a look to your gallery and the critiques you wrote and it seems that you are very focused on B&W composition. Great ;o But I am still trying to understand why those people like you are saying that TE is changing.
    And each time someone like you said that, its composition and its "style" was amost the same: mainly based on B&W composition. Funny, don't you think?

    I do not want to start a polemic thread and analyse these behaviors but from my point of view, this is not an open mind behavior. I think that this is very elitist I mean that if someone wants to make good photographs, with style let's say, then he has to follow Henri Cartier-Brsson steps of someone as famous as him.
    Don't you think that you can find lot of inspiration within a diversified community? A community is made by its members, because they are sharing a main passion of main interest but with their own eye and feeling.
    If someone is trying to reach the utlimate style without any personnal touch, or personnal feeling then what? Yes, that's beautiful, the rules are repected but it's probably overseen.

    So Santi, don't focus on the same style (B&W or HCB trends), try to find your own style, with your own eyes. Share your point of view, grab feelings from others. Do not stay within
    your too limited circle, it's constraining you...

    You can teach others but you can learn from others and more than you think ;o

  • Re: Are we ashamed of ourselves?
    I have not read all the posts, but i must say at first, beginning on TE, I thought there was a bias against anything US-american, sort of the backlash related to the political backlash quite audible in europe and some places right now. It may not be after all, but I must admit that shots i post from the Bay area and France do not interest people (including US members) as much as the ones from Asia. i deleted quite a bit already. So, taking in context I am not a superlative photographer, but that there is a reasonable # of members who check my shots and are writing me a critique, rain or shine, it's an opinion easily quantifiable, by comparing the shots appraisal next to them from Asia. that's for the interest from members.

    as for my own interest, it is easy to click away, but hard work to bring out meaningful shots of one's home. It's about making the familiar inspiring and standing out in a crowd of shots from countless other destinations (that goes for France too, which is my birthplace). At the stage where I am, I am still learning to exercice my eyes to see the detail, the compo that is speaking, out of the familiar, or the trivial, for which some are great and made a career of. Not to speak of the light, which is also different from tropical places, therefore asks for a totally different intuition on what could work as well as handling it. That too, is to be learnt and mastered, shooting in color.

    the difficulty of shooting people back home has been touched upon in another thread. But that's what it is, a difficulty, not an excuse not to shoot, IMO, if we wish to get passed it.