How to Deal with People who say “I could do that”

PBS Digital Studios have put together a short segment discussing how to approach the age old layman saying “I could do that.” It’s a phrase that photographers and artists alike often run in to when looking at what looks like unskilled art in the modern era.

The traditional answer of you didn’t, and they did didn’t quite cut it for one PBS viewer so Sarah Green got down to business. In this lovely little video, Sarah discusses several art pieces we may be familiar with and touches also on the implications the dawn of photography had.

So next time you unintentionally insult a photographer, artist or museum curator with your witty remark, take a closer look at the artwork and ask yourself what you’re looking for.

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Related: Can You Tell the Difference Between Modern Art and Paintings by Toddlers. (I scored 4 out of 11.)

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The Monk in my Phone

Losing a phone can be a devastating time for even the most technology inept of us. We use the little electronic-laden bricks to connect us to the world, record our memories and share experiences with friends and family. However when Scott Herder lost his iPod touch during his travels someone else was going to take him on a different kind of journey. A Monk in his Phone.

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Herder says that after losing his iPod Touch earlier this year he felt like kicking things and was furious with the world, but managed to accept it and move on. The reason he took the iPod instead of his iPhone on his eight month excursion to South East Asia was exactly in case something unfortunate like this happened. It wasn’t until a month later that strange photographs started appearing in his iCloud camera roll. Continue reading

Virginia Police Officers Demand BBC Reporter “Delete Evidence”

During yesterday’s appalling incident in Virginia, one police officer attending the scene of Vester Flanagan’s detainment ordered a BBC reporter to delete footage he had taken or have their car and camera confiscated.

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Franz Strasser who is employed by BBC News US alleged that a single police officer gave him the ultimatum while they were covering the story. Unusually as he points out in his Tweets the choice he was given was to delete the evidence or have it confiscated.

Strasser shared the experience via his Twitter account. Continue reading

The Last Thing WDBCJ7 Photographer Adam Ward did was Capture his Killer on Camera.

Tragic news just out of Virginia. A reporter and cameraman were both brutally slain in what appears an unprovoked attack during a LIVE broadcast. The last piece of footage Adam Ward captured, we hope knowingly was the gunman’s identity.

These are the images we should be sharing on social media.

Virginia Gunman

In the immediate aftermath, images were circulating on social media of the attack as it happened, including one individual who uploaded footage of the attack on to Youtube. It is from this footage we can garner an image of the gunman.

Rest in peace Alison Parker & Adam Ward.

Alison Parker Adam Ward

Victorian Photographers “Photoshopped” too!

Image manipulation has always been rife in photography. The airbrush tool is more than a whimsical reference to the past, an actual airbrush was commonly used on prints long before digital photography was even a glint in our eye. Welsh photographer Tony Richards recently shared with us some close up scans of old plates from his collector’s archive that reveal just that – the retouching of skin on portrait photographs.

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However, as Tony points out on his blog the manipulation has taken place using a pencil rather than an airbrush. On first glance it is difficult to discern any type of editing from the negative or resulting CDV cards but when scanned in high resolution it reveals a whole swathe of strokes. Continue reading

How to Silence Simpletons who Doubt the Mars Curiosity Selfie Image

NASA just released another ‘selfie’ image taken by the onboard AI on the Curiosity rover currently exploring the red planet. As usual though a plethora of social media cretins logged on to denounce the photograph and raise suspicions of its authenticity.

However one response so far has pretty much manage to silence the critics and I like it.

If the scientists at NASA are clever enough to send a robot to Mars, I’m pretty sure they can get it to take a selfie without the arm in the image.

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Exactly.

If you’re still not absolutely convinced, or would like a brief explanation of how it’s taken you should watch this short animation.


Via NASA.gov

The Camera Phone: A Little Empathy Making Machine

Yesterday evening I was lucky enough to catch the tail end of BBC Radio 4’s Four Thought featuring Charles Leadbeater, British author of We Think and former political advisor to Tony Blair. The episode on a whole addressed the struggle we all have with ‘The Whirlpool Economy’ and how we can come to terms with working longer hours and achieving less.

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Image by Madmoo / Fiverr

Towards the end of the monologue Leadbeater uses an analogy we are all very familiar with by now and relates the ubiquitous use of camera phones to the devaluation of photography as a whole. However somewhat refreshingly he flips the thought on its head and ends up calling the camera phone “A little empathy making machine.” Continue reading

Creative Idea: Stepping Inside a Light Box.

Here’s a fun creative idea to try out at home or in your own studios. Scottish photographer Kim Ayres has taken the unusual step of turning his camera around to face a light box for a striking set of abstract portraits.

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Ayres had been photographing fellow Scottish artist Isabell Buenz when the thought occurred to her. Ayres, who has a keen sense of creativity willingly obliged and Isabell jumped in to the 6 foot high soft box and let her silhouette take place. Continue reading

The Making of Alex Timmermans’ Stunning ‘Swan Lake’

It’s a cry photographers know all to well, “the final shot of the day was the one, I’d finally cracked it” and that rings true for Alex Timmermans’ most recent wet plate collodion creation ‘Swan Lake’. A man who strives in meeting a bar of perfection set so high he’s known to keep working on a set until sheer beauty is realised. Just take a look at the final plate.
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Swan Lake by Alex Timmermans, 2015

What is so striking about this image alters depending on your perspective. Initially, the swan, which we know as a beautiful but fierce creature is mid-dynamic, calling upon a dancer somehow floating on water in a self embrace. The stage looks incredibly dangerous however Continue reading

Space Odyssey 2015: Yep, this is a real photograph taken by astronaut Scott Kelly.

Two hundred and fifty miles above the Earth, a group of astronauts are orbiting our planet conducting experiments on the International Space Station. Occasionally they get to relax and have some down time and take photographs. Commander Scott Kelly, like one of his predecessors uses those precious moments in Space to take awesome photographs.

ScottKelly-conjunction

What you’re looking at is a photograph of (top to bottom) Earth, Jupiter, Venus and the Moon all lined up in the same image. The photograph was taken from the ISS on the 19th July this year and retweeted almost 10,000 times. Frankly I’m appalled at myself for not picking this up earlier, but better late than never.

The image strikes an uncanny resemblance to Stanley Kubrik’s opening title’s sequence to the 1968 film Space Odyssey 2001 or more likely, later in the film when we’re treated to a stunning view of the Jupiter & its moons suddenly aligning.

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Kubrik’s Space Odyssey 2001 (1968)

Don’t be fooled either into thinking Kelly’s image is anything more than a beautiful photograph of a conjunction of Solar System from his vantage point. This alignment has absolutely no effect on us, planets, our gravity whatsoever. In fact they happen quite frequently. If you’re interested in finding out more about our place in the cosmos and planning your next starry night photoshoot, check out Stellarium.org, a great tool for tracking objects in the night sky.


Via PetaPixel.