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Out of the box or in the trash? | Jun 26th, 2005
26 | June
"Out of the box or in the trash?"

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General: 7:26 PM on 6/25/05 | Canon 300D
Technical: 1/80sec | f/4.5 | 18mm (29mm) | ISO-100
Lens: EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6
Exposure Mode: Av (Aperture Priority)
Exposure Bias: -1
Flash: No

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General: 7:23 PM on 6/25/05 | Canon 300D
Technical: 1/50 sec | f/4.5 | 18mm (29mm) | ISO-100
Lens: EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6
Exposure Mode: Av (Aperture Priority)
Exposure Bias: -1/3
Flash: No

I took a few more pictures yesterday evening; mostly of the sunset, but a few of the house. Hopefully my panoramics will turn out this time.

This is the front of our house (obviously). I like the lighting in both, but the reflection in the top especially. Here I go again with my orange/blue obsession! The bottom photo is more about lighting/shadow/texture as well as maybe some lines/perspective. My brother (who is quite artistic) tells me I shouldn't post boring pictures of the front of the house, but I guess it's just what you see when you look at them.

I could post more nature/flower shots, but I already post way too many (boring) nature photos and feel like shooting "out of the box" sometimes. Anyways, are these shots any good or should I have continued to dig through the archives and come up with something else? Is my brother right? Honest answers, please. :) Also keep in mind today is a Sunday, my lowest average site traffic day of the week.

Another question I have is: Do I tend to focus too much on photographic quality and too little on subject matter?

...More phillosophical photography discussion to come.

categories: architecture sunrise/sunset

Thoughts of: Ian
June 26th, 2005 at 2:10 AM

I think your brother is mistaken on a number of grounds

1) It is your blog - tou should post what you want.

2) Any subject can make a great photo if taken well - photography should not always be of the pretty, the obvious and the accepted.

3) I rather like thes - especially the top one whih has a beautiful reflection.


Thoughts of: Ryan
June 26th, 2005 at 2:20 AM

You are quite right, Ian. I did ask for his opinion though. ;)

Thanks for your analysis.

Thoughts of: Nik
June 26th, 2005 at 9:17 AM

Ok, The first picture is georgous! That reflection in the window is phenomial! And I don't get where your brother comes off saying that this is boring... oh well, to each his own right?

There is nothing wrong with shooting "out of the box" (although your nature photo's are by far my favorites) just don't get tooo obsessed with "out of the box" that you forget your signature... cuz lets face it, you have a nack for capturing nature at it's best. Keep up the good work!!!

(btw- the colors in these are perfect!)

Thoughts of: Mark
June 26th, 2005 at 11:14 AM

Ryan, love the top one. The bottom one doesn't work for me, can't tell you why though.

You asked opinions: I like your work. I'd post only what I like and not worry about the subject matter or what others think, that's the only way that you expand yourself through self-critique (more important than comments, IMHO) and technique improvement. No matter what the picture looks like, every posted picture adds a feather to your education hat.

(Self-disclosure: if you view my archives, you'll see that I had the very same feelings as you at one point)

It is a worthy worry, though, when you yourself discover that your photography has a definite boundary outside of which you don't know how to operate. In my circumstance, even with decades of family photographs, I don't see my portraits as being very good or satisfying to my, as a photographer. I've resolved to work on this during the year and I've identified a number of problems and studied a number of other portrait photographers to understand just exactly what it is that I like and dislike.

You asked about photographic quality vs subject matter. The subject matter is everything, in my opinion. But the subject of photography has to include lighting, colors, texture, but that's not all. I have a very powerful picture of a confrontation between mother & son that tells a strong story, enough that you just sit and stare at it. But it's technically a very bad picture. Still one of the best that I have. Then, I have some technically good pictures that I simply love, but they most certainly aren't great. View my capitol steps picture reposted a few days ago to see what I mean on this. It's a complex subject, similar to politics. What's the difference between goodness and greatness? Sometimes difficult to be both.

Sorry for the rambling, but you said your Sunday traffic was light. (smile).

Thoughts of: potty
June 26th, 2005 at 1:41 PM

hi ryan, i can understand where you're coming from. i think the most amazing thing about photography is the infinite number of ways one can view and project a subject. i think it's up to oneself to go and explore them and expand horizons. look, you've inspired someone as anti-nature as me to start shooting macros of plants! so yes, step out of the box but do what pleases you and don't worry about others.

the top picture is prety good. i like the rich tones and the reflection.

Thoughts of: Jeremy
June 26th, 2005 at 5:12 PM

I Like both of the Pictures, but I think the top one is the best. Keep up the good work.

Thoughts of: pilgrim
June 27th, 2005 at 3:51 PM

Your site has top quality photos and varied subjects. I don't find anything boring about. It's indeed one of my faves. The top picture in this series is captivating, with that beautiful reflections, the rough texture of the wall and the interaction between warm and cold tones.

Thoughts of: Mom
June 28th, 2005 at 12:51 PM

Great reflection of the sky in the window.

Thoughts of: alexandra
June 28th, 2005 at 12:54 PM

I think your brother is blind missing the point, and, as far as I am concerned, there are never enough nature shots, of which, out there in a sea of blogs, yours are some of the best.

You have the quality and as for subject matter? It's what moves us at that moment of clicking the button that counts.

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