APUG book of photos

Discussion in 'Book, Magazine, Gallery Reviews, Shows & Contests' started by guitstik, Jul 16, 2011.

  1. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    Not to derail this thread, but... you went to some length to explain what you would charge to furnish critique. Okay, so let's suppose that you won't charge to critique contributions to this book. Then why did you add all that about charging (a lot) to critique photographs for a few minutes? Sounds an awful lot like an advertisement to me. That is what probably rubs people (like me) the wrong way.
     
  2. Ian David

    Ian David Subscriber

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    Thanks for the info Rachelle.

    Are you able please to let the wider APUG membership know who is on your steering committee?

    Ian
     
  3. bill spears

    bill spears Member

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    Rachelle makes a very valid point in her last post (#278)

    $20,000 top estimate from Lodima for 1000 books sounds like a no brainer. I'd guess 2000 books could be printed for only a few dollars more.... making the unit cost even lower. Have you read the survey results though Michael....... there are only just over 100 replies ?

    Where IS Guitstik ?
     
  4. Michael A. Smith

    Michael A. Smith Subscriber

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    To keithwms re: charge for critique: As I wrote, this would be something optional after the photographs for the book was selected and put together.

    Why I put it in there is that it occurred to me that some people might want some serious feedback. Giving a serious critique is no small thing. It requires a lot of effort. Paula and I teach occasional weekend Vision and Technique Workshops and giving a deep and serious helpful critique is a large part of it. We have been told repeatedly that in all of the other workshops that people had taken that they had never had anyone give them such a useful critique. So I thought that it would be a nice thing to offer if someone were interested--to offer it as a service--for less than 1/10 of our workshop fees. Of course, it is not a full workshop, but I know it would be valuable to anyone who was interested. If no one were interested, that would be fine, as I have too much to do as it is. Unfortunately, because of my limited time and the effort required, I cannot offer to give a serious critique for nothing.

    We have found, in our workshops, that if people put up 10 or 20 or 30 or 40 photographs for us to critique and we ask them to tell us which they think are the best, and why, it is extremely rare that anyone picks the right ones. And their reasons for their selections usually have nothing to do with the photograph, but with some combination of their experience of making the photograph and what it means to them. In other words, they are not looking at their photographs the way a curator would look at them--look at them objectively without knowing (or caring), how or why they were made (although the "why" is usually evident from the photograph itself).

    Thanks for explaining more precisely what you were objecting to and for giving me the opportunity to make clear what I was offering. Your first response to my long posting implied that I was charging for my time to select the photographs for the book, which I most definitely am not doing.

    Michael A. Smith
     
  5. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    thanks rachelle !

    i am also looking forward to what you all come up with ..


    - john
     
  6. michael_r

    michael_r Subscriber

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    For what it is worth, I'd still feel much more comfortable submitting work to M. A. Smith than the APUG inner circle. And I still don't understand the over-the-top objections Ian Grant and others have to that idea. They must be truly afraid of, or insulted by the prospect of their respective submissions being annonymously subject to review along side "amateur" work. If all the submissions are from APUG, how is it any less an APUG book if Michael Smith makes the selections versus some APUG panel of "prolific posters"?
     
  7. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Michael the majority don't want MAS to select work, so I'm just one of that MAJORITY so please don't get personal. My reasons for objecting to MAS being the selector are my own business and based on my own opinions, which ironically I have alluded to in the past in other threads.

    It's time you made some positive suggestions, instead of snide comments, no-one has suggested that "some APUG panel of "prolific posters" is going to do the selection except you more than once.

    You were asked if you'd help towards this project, because it's based on a broad consensus and also takes into account the Poll that was conducted, and you said no, so please don't go making false statements about this project or peoples motives.

    It's about a book that represents APUG in the best possible way, that's inclusive, gives every one a chance of having an image selected while being a true representation of the 10 years of APUG.

    Finally Michael don't assume that what I might have suggested in the early parts of these threads is what will happen, there's been a lot of thought and discussion to ensure that all interests are catered for. All any of us want is a book that's for all of us not an exclusive publication of a few prolific posters, that would actually be a very much easier project :D

    Ian
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 13, 2011
  8. coigach

    coigach Member

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    Have been on holiday for a week without internet access (imagine!) and have just been catching up on new posts.

    Thanks Michael for your quote, look forward to reading about the alternative option too.
     
  9. Michael A. Smith

    Michael A. Smith Subscriber

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    I really don't get it. In my first long posting on this thread I predicated that some would take offense at my suggestions and indeed they have.

    Anyone who has read my postings to this thread can clearly see that they are thoughtful.

    I have made many positive suggestions and specific proposals. How Mr. Grant can say that I have not is a mystery to me.

    Grant: "It's about a book that represents APUG in the best possible way, that's inclusive, gives every one a chance of having an image selected while being a true representation of the 10 years of APUG."

    Well, duh. Of course it is. Nothing I have ever written would imply anything different.

    Grant: "All any of us want is a book that's for all of us not an exclusive publication of a few prolific posters."

    Well, duh again. All my suggestions and efforts have gone exactly to that end.

    Since I have clearly explained that I am open to all types of photography (see previous posts for details), perhaps Mr. Grant or some of the others can tell me why they object to my making the selections--anonymously. Is it that they are prolific posters and are afraid their work would not be included? Or is it something else? And if something else, what?

    I would think that if a group of "prolific posters" got together and made the selection not anonymously that favoritism would come into play. And even if the selections were ostensibly anonymous there would still be favoritism as these folks have looked at the APUG galleries and already know some of the work. Seems profoundly undemocratic to me, despite seeming more democratic than having one person make the selection who is previously unfamiliar with all of the work that would be submitted.

    Michael A. Smith
     
  10. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Smith, it's so simple the MAJORITY don't want you involved in any editing. If you really want to know why then you need to ask people individually and that will take you quite a time.

    Aside from that there's NO disagreement between us on a board or personal level. I'm not the majority I just happen to agree with them and perhaps you should consider the majority's views.

    Please don't get personal in your attacks. And what on earth are you on about in that last paragraph only you and MichaelR1974 have suggested such a stupid way of selecting images

    Ian
     
  11. Sean

    Sean Admin Staff Member Admin

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    The project is likely a bit ahead of itself in that numbers are the key aspect before getting too involved. Not to be negative, but 500-1000 books seems highly unlikely to me. Based on the activity I have seen in this thread and survey I would realistically put the purchase range of an APUG book to 50-150 books max. That would leave a huge burden on those involved and those who have submitted work to offset the cost. That in itself would drive costs further up reducing submissions, purchases. Having people responsible for their own scans could be very risky and costly to them further reducing submissions and be a logistical nightmare of sorts. I would say get a solid 500 willing to buy a book, then work out the logistics of how to proceed from there. I don't think it will be anywhere near 500 (especially in this economy), but would love to be proven wrong. I am happy to run a "Would you pre-purchase an APUG Book?" type of notice in all forum headers for a week or so to finally get some figures if you want..
     
  12. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    Get Freestyle involved. Have them sponsor, carry, and push the book. And have their board of photographic professionals jury the show (anonymously). Accompany the book release with a gallery show at Freestyle. That keeps APUG folks out of the selection process, but ensures that it is in the hands of dedicated analog photo folk. And it helps out financially, and opens up the product to a much wider group of potential purchasers. If prolific posters are not included, that's just how the cookie crumbles. You take that risk when submitting work to a selection board. This is not about WHO gets in; it's about WHAT gets in. It is about putting together a bunch of fine work that will promote analog photography and APUG, not about inflating egos or granting rewards for contribution.

    That is exactly it, Mr. Smith. It is fear of a bruised ego. Balls to that. If you ain't gettin' yer ego bruised on a daily basis, you ain't livin'!
     
  13. Michael A. Smith

    Michael A. Smith Subscriber

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    I think it is very revealing the Mr. Grant, who is foremost among those objecting to my making the selections refuses to answer the question of why he so objects.

    Michael A. Smith
     
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  15. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    Well, I agree with him, as do many others who are simply too polite to say so, or who have simply resigned from the thread.

    After a year inside the beltway, I can now scare the dutch with my directness, so I'll go ahead and say it on behalf of those who are unwilling: I really dislike the idea of you... or any single individual... reviewing images for this project and thus accomplishing nothing more than a compilation of personal opinions. Which of course would then be sold.

    P.S. If you do wish to review one of my images, I will charge $50 for 15 minutes.
     
  16. tkamiya

    tkamiya Member

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    I think it's time to decouple this project from any individual. We are no longer talking about a book for the group we call APUG. We are now talking about who gets to do what and who object to whom. It's more of individual vs individual fight than anything else. We are no longer talking objectively. This project is causing more conflict than unity among the membership.

    I'd say let Sean run "who would buy the book" thread and poll if it's even feasible to run such a project. It may very well be, with the level of disconnect among membership, it's not even worth pursuing any further.
     
  17. michael_r

    michael_r Subscriber

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    Sorry about that I didn't mean to be snide or offend people. And you are correct I have been complaining from the beginning about the potential for this to be a showcase for the more popular or prolific posters rather than an APUG book, so point taken. But you have to admit, you made the point several times early on in the thread that the most prolic posters (your own words) we not commenting. That's part of what got me going on this issue. From the beginning your view seems to have been that this cannot happen without the participation of certain people, and that we need to make sure they are not offended etc. You were also the first, I believe, to inform us of side conversations taking place behind the scenes, and have been most adamant in your objection to Michael Smith's participation in anything other than the book printing. Maybe your worry is this would end up being more of a MAS book than an APUG book. Not sure. Anyhow I guess I'm just overly suspicious of egos and such. Sorry again if my posts have been offensive.

    Also regarding my refusal to participate at the steering level, there are simple pragmatic reasons for that, most importantly, I have zero experience with publication, books etc. I don't even know the intricacies of the various printing methods. I've never even entered my work in competitions or juried contests. So I'm not sure what real value I could have added.

    Anyhow no hard feelings I hope.
    Michael
     
  18. Michael A. Smith

    Michael A. Smith Subscriber

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    Sold?? I would receive zero money from any sale. it would be an APUG book, with APUG ISBN, etc. not a Lodima Press book.

    Re: the $50 for fifteen minutes that you object to for a critique. Since you are inside the beltway you probably are fairly intelligent. Therefore, I cannot understand why you cannot read that there is NO CHARGE for looking at work. For an in-depth critique, which would be ONLY if someone wanted it--NOT REQUIRED, $50 for 15 minutes is a bargain.

    if that figure sounds high to you, consider what a lawyer charges for 15 minutes, to deal with something that most be probably prefer not to have to deal with. I assume that anyone who would be interested in a serious and deep critique considers photography to be something central to their lives. $50 for 15 minutes for something central to ones life is indeed a bargain. Photographers pay a lot more than that to get portfolio reviews at conferences, which usually last 20 minutes. I know. I have done that at those kinds of events. I also know that many of the reviewers are not helpful to the photographers.

    I may have written this previously: In all workshops most have a good time and learn from a little to a lot, but afterward they do not necessarily make better pictures. After our workshop almost everyone make better pictures. And that is due in large part to our critiques.

    Michael A. Smith
     
  19. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    Oh, I can assure you that there is very little intelligence inside the beltway. Which is why I am soon taking a 1 year mental health break from it :cool:

    [For non-US readers: the beltway is the road encircling Washington D.C.]

    As for the $50 comment, it was a mere jab at your prior soliloquy. It was a joke at your expense. Pun intended.

    My objection to any single-person review is not a joke. Under no circumstances would I submit an image for such a thing. Regardless of who the ordained reviewer might be. You are of course free to pursue whatever you wish and see what materializes.... who knows, maybe some will like it. Will it represent APUG, though? No, it'll represent your opinion. Is it not clear why some object to that?

    ~~~

    As I posted quite some time ago in this and other threads and brought up in chatroom discussions, there is a very nice, tidy democratic way to accomplish what most of us want. It involves simply putting a nomination button beside all threads, comments, blog posts, and most importantly gallery content.

    People would simply click the button beside content they'd like to see in a journal or book. If particular content received a certain number of "votes" (ah, there's the democracy) from subscribers (hey, even ideal democracy costs money) then that content would be automatically piped to a rotating editorial panel and prepped for inclusion in an APUG journal with minimal amendment.

    There you have it, a self-populating periodical publication.

    My proposal interests several people but it would require a wee bit of coding and I am simply too busy to make it happen. I was hoping Sean could but he is also very busy, of course. Perhaps some other coders might share my vision and have more time...?
     
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  20. michael_r

    michael_r Subscriber

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  21. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

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    The problem with a popularity vote would be that you'd end up with a book of sunsets, kittens and the hottest busty bra-less babes on APUG, without critical regard for technical or artistic quality. Just as there are many people here who would not submit work to any publication that is un-juried/edited/critiqued, there are an equal number who would not submit to anything that ISN'T juried/edited/critiqued. Not to fault either side, but quite frankly, I don't think there has ever been a successful, long-lasting art publication that has not had a discreet vision, well articulated, guiding and shaping the final product. Would any of you out there look at Vogue (or GQ, or LIFE) if they did not have a strong editorial vision controlling content? Producing a book is not a democratic exercise- there are too many moving parts that need coordination, and authors (or photographers, or any other producers of intellectual content) are always their own worst editors. Yes, it does mean that the final product is highly reflective of the vision of the editor, and may include or exclude content based upon that person's taste, but I'd rather have that than unintelligible chaos. I can use my own brain to perceive and filter the biases of the editor - if for example, they choose not to include any nudes in a volume of photos, I can deduce that they have a personal bias against such work, and would not assume that they did not find any quality work of that category to include.
     
  22. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    Michael, Scott, hence the role of the editorial panel. I see the need for some limited editing, but I do not like the idea of one person making these calls.

    My proposal allows for a wide spectrum of refereeing. There could be, for example, "Michael's pick" and there could be "politburo pick" and there could be "vox populi." All are possible within the framework I described. And all could delivered almost automatically without fuss.

    (Some seem to be forgetting how much time goes into piping content into a magazine or book, never mind the time it takes for editors and critics to bicker among themselves; I once saw a fairly large photo forum literally implode over this very issue)

    If people want to get fancy then there could be contributed editorials, $50 critiques, and, heaven forbid, even revenue generating ads (gasp)....

    I don't think I understand the comment that democracy equals kittens and breasts. Between kittens and breasts and somebody foisting his or her vision of what photography should be upon us simple folk... between those extremes overrepresented in this thread is something reasonable. If you re-read what I proposed, you will see that it is more of a representative democracy than a free for all.
     
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  23. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    i don't see how this is a low priced offset printed book and it can cost 20$
    100 people participated in the survey and most of them weren't interested
    in submitting work to 1 person to be juried/curated.
    then ... out of that small pool of apug talent who ARE interested ...
    they will buy 500-1000 of these books ?
     
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  24. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

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    Given the economics of this, there is no way this effort is going to succeed without the final product being POD. Frankly, I've seen some pretty damned nice books lately coming out of the POD process. The folks over on LF Info did a self-published book that way and while not the paragon of printing perfection that is 600 lpi quadtone offset printing, it looked pretty damned good, and nobody got left holding the bag with a capital investment tied up in hundreds of copies of a book that would never sell. The remaining question is, WHICH POD service provides the best book, at the most reasonable cost? That is being investigated now, and a statement from the organizers (myself, Joel, Rachelle and Ian) will be forthcoming shortly along with a statement of purpose and submission guidelines.
     
  25. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    Magnachrom was POD right? I liked it.

    I also see real value in a POD journal that at least strives to pull some wonderful pieces from the torrent of content that runs by us all too quickly. I refer not only to images but also beautiful comments or insights (all of which could be nominated per my hypothetical button, ahem).

    The great thing about an internet forum like this is that it delivers so much content. But that is the bad thing too, of course... so much fine work gets buried. A journal might at least elevate some representative items from the blur.

    And there is a pride aspect too, let's be honest. Some apuggers would be really tickled to have an image in a journal or book. I like that thought. Let this cultivate the egos of those people, rather than those of any single editor.
     
  26. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    vive la différence !
     
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