Through the years, I’ve collected a lot of quotes that were said by an artist of some measure and how the quote relates to my way of thinking; especially how the quote fits in to my three online class with the PPSOP, and in my “Stretching Your Frame of Mind” workshops I conduct around the planet.
“ I always thought good photos were like good jokes. If you have to explain it, it just isn’t that good.” – Anonymous
One of the many discussions I have at least once if not a hundred times in my four week classes with my fellow photographers is about making sure you’ve left the viewer with a clear understanding of what message you were trying to get across. I call it a “quick read”, and unless you’re image is an abstract, in which case you’re leaving the viewer to decide on what the photo is saying. You don’t want him/her walking away scratching their heads.
There’s always the possibility you’ll be standing next to your print at some exhibit or maybe even your camera club’s annual show where you’ll be able to talk about it. Sometimes it’s interesting to hear the story behind the photo and you see the photo in a new light. But in most cases a photo shouldn’t need a story to back it up. It has to speak for itself….as I said, a quick read.
Right before I click the shutter I always ask myself if the viewer is going to see and feel it the way I was experiencing it when I finished my composition and ready to pull the trigger…Texas talk for clicking the shutter release!!! It’s like taking an out of body experience and putting your mind in the mind of the viewer. Then I can step back and see if I’m getting my message across.
In the above photo, not very long after 9/11, I did a photo story on rural Texas, and how these people showed support for our country. In context with the other photos and subsequent text, I think the message came across as clear as day.
Visit my website at: www.joebaraban.com, and check out my 2015 workshop schedule at the top of this blog. come shoot with me sometime.
This coming July 26th I’ll be at the Maine Media Workshop for the 27th year, and I always look forward to returning. It’s the granddaddy of them all and a great place to immerse yourself in photography. I always pick this same week as it’s the week of the Lobster Festival down the road in Rockland. It offers you a completely different set of photo opts that the beautiful Maine coastline one would expect to see and photograph. People watching and portraits, energy, color, and all the elements of Visual Design one would find on my “Artist Palette”.
Don’t forget to send me a photo and question to: AskJoeB@gmail.com, and I’ll create a video critique for you.