instant or instants

Discussion in 'Ethics and Philosophy' started by jnanian, Nov 25, 2017.

  1. winger

    winger Subscriber

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    There is (was?) a little camera called a Narrative that would shoot at predetermined intervals (every 30 seconds, 1 minute, or 2 minutes were the options, I think) and would shoot if you tapped the camera. It's about an inch and a half square and kinda low res. Sorta cool, but there's no more support because they went bankrupt.
     
  2. faberryman

    faberryman Subscriber

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    Each photograph is an instant in time, so "instants" as a image descriptor conveys nothing to me. I would have to view the portfolio to make a determination, and attempt to articulate, what makes the photographs cohesive, if they are. I suspect it is something else entirely, though I'm dubious it has any bearing on the lesbianism of Proust's Albertine, as Louise Hornsby seems to suggest. À la recherche du temps arrêté anyone? Sometimes it's best to leave the academics out of the conversation.
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2017
  3. Billy Axeman

    Billy Axeman Subscriber

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    It isn't religious, it is scientific language, meticulous and accepted in that environment. To me it seems a useful book because it tries to describe the essence of still photography.

    Many photographers are caught up in a race (with others and with themselves) to make photo's that are interesting and unique according to the 'rules'. When you can stop looking at others and take some distance and perhaps work more intuitively it's more fun.
     
  4. NedL

    NedL Subscriber

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    I don't know much about her, came across that quote in this article, because I'm interested in Gustave Le Gray, who famously made "instantaneous" photos of waves and the sea, but also made separate exposures to print in the skies. Which does strange things to time!
    John Dyllwyn Llewelyn also made a famous collodion exposure short enough to capture a wave...
     
  5. Andrew O'Neill

    Andrew O'Neill Subscriber

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    Sometimes I have a plan, and sometimes I don't. The don'ts are the instants... Either approach can be strong images or complete failures for me.
     
  6. Andrew O'Neill

    Andrew O'Neill Subscriber

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    Also... instants for me can be finding a new composition within a negative. I think that is also a good exercise for everyone to try, when your bored or have a creative block. Stick your negatives on a light table (or enlarged proofs on a table), grab some cropping L's, and look. Instant images abound, and perhaps fresh ideas!
     
  7. Billy Axeman

    Billy Axeman Subscriber

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    Thanks, some more reading ...
     
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    jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    i LOVE doing this too ! :smile:
     
  9. Andrew O'Neill

    Andrew O'Neill Subscriber

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    :smile:

    I truly regret tossing a bunch of negatives before I came back to Canada!! Everyone, do NOT do that!
     
  10. Lee Rust

    Lee Rust Subscriber

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    John, it seems you're an old pro at this sort of stuff. Using the self timer is a whole other level of semi-random. I went to the supermarket today and tried making 'instant' photos and had a very hard time not being deliberate about it, even though I never once looked through the finder. There were maybe three interesting pictures out of thirty frames. Too bad my camera doesn't have a timer.
     
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    jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    hi lee, thanks.
    i don't know if i am an old pro but i've goofed around a lot doing stuff ( and i set my "personal bar" low ) :smile:
    i think the hardest thing in the world is letting go
    and sharing responsibility with the camera.
    3 interesting out of 30 sounds good to me :smile:
    the other 27 are probably interesting too, but maybe you aren't "removed" from the situation enough :smile:
    to see with eyes that have set the bar low enough that even the biggest
    potenial failures could present something beautiful and unintended of epic proportions you might have missed :wink:
    i can't tell you how many negatives i have that 4 or 16 years later i looked at and was
    blown away and mystified at what a thing of amazement i had created. (this also
    happens with exposures where i used the eye piece and made exposure and focus controls/calculations
    and expressed complete intent/determination for every exposure, like a portrait session ).
    the self timer walks i think i chewed up 10 of 20 rolls of film
    to get a few interesting images. i eventually stopped when $$ got low.

    maybe the person i met has removed himself so far from the instants
    that the images magically have transcended from terrible to mccartur fellowship .
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2017
  12. Lee Rust

    Lee Rust Subscriber

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    My brother is an archaeologist who catalogues tiny pieces of pottery and specks of charcoal in order to study the past. Likewise our tiny photos are all fragments of a lifelong puzzle that may only be fully appreciated from the future.
     
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    jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    i like that lee, and it is very true
     
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  15. Ko.Fe.

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    I often finish shutter test films with instant instants instead of just rewinding. And getting something to print from, sometimes.
     
  16. michael_r

    michael_r Subscriber

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    My exposures are too long to record instants.
     
  17. cramej

    cramej Member

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    In that instance, I instantly knew I had to instantiate the instantness of the instantaneous instant.

    In other words, I had to take the shot as it would soon pass.:wink:


    Good ol' English for ya!
     
  18. cramej

    cramej Member

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    Instance stacking...
     
  19. jim10219

    jim10219 Member

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    I get the "what". The "who" is of course obfuscated. The "when" is immaterial, as is the "where". But it's the "why" that I can't get my head around.

    What's the point in shooting without purpose, and then trying to attach meaning to it afterward? It would seem to me, that if you wanted to illustrate the hidden beauty contained within everyday life's randomization, you'd want to keep your portfolio equally chaotic. Maybe just have disorganized stacks of contact sheets, or walls covered in mostly terrible photos. Let the viewer find the ones that appeal to them, and mentally discard the rest. It's the reward of effort that pleases, not the trophy presentation at the end. Otherwise it's like a "Where's Waldo" book where Waldo has been circled on every page. Consciously curating unconscious decisions sounds like self gratification to me. It feels like a readymade excuse to wash away the stain of failed effort and yet still maintain credit for serendipitous fortunes. You're not putting in the labor or forethought in the front end but still trying to reap the benefits on the back end while justifying the lack of intent and effort with sheer enthusiasm and doubletalk. It's almost like a Dadaist trick sans absurdity, or a surrealist's game corrupted by order and intent.

    It reminds me of an old friend of mine who sells terrible drip paintings to a real estate agent who uses them to sell homes. She tells him the colors of the room, he buys the paint and drips out some paintings which he then sells to her for a decent profit. He doesn't get it, she doesn't get it, the people who buy the houses don't get it, no one gets it. But he gets pocket money to buy video games, she has stuff to put on the walls so the houses don't look so bare and sterile, and the potential home buyers can better visualize how these walls can make a building a home. No one, not even my friend who paints them, thinks they're fine art or even good decoration, but everyone seems to agree they're a good thing and they serve their purpose. They don't care for or appreciate good art, so all art is the same to them.

    I need a good artist's statement on this to take it seriously. For now, it all feels like a child's attempt to play with the grown ups. Like they overheard some smart people say things that didn't make sense to them, so they thought that speaking nonsensical was just how smart people talk, unable to imagine a reality beyond their own perspective. Help me see what I'm missing here. Educate me on why this method is salient.
     
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    jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    hi jim

    i think the point is that there really is no point ?
    i looked for the photographer today but didn't see him
     
  21. jim10219

    jim10219 Member

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    I guess that's okay. If the point is just to have fun and do something different, then there's nothing wrong with that. Fun doesn't have to be meaningful, it just needs to be enjoyable. Still, if I walked into a gallery and saw that type of stuff on the wall without a convincing explanation, I'd probably demand the curator's resignation. But if a dude at a bar said we should go out and do that next weekend, I'd be willing to give it a try.
     
  22. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    Was his name Jerry?
     
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    jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    hi jim
    i think maybe that is the point that all too often people demand an all convincing explanation for why someone
    did something, or why photographs or paintings are on a wall somewhere, or in an online gallery or whatever
    and in the end, there really is no point. there really is no point in most things, other than to just do them ...
    except for procreation ( or so biology class and religion and primal urge suggests )
    .. that is the only reason we are here and everything else is the long wait until the dirt nap.

    ==
    im not sure brian, i didn't catch his name but i do know
    jerry man is the difference between a hackeysack and a grapefruit
     
  24. Billy Axeman

    Billy Axeman Subscriber

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    Yet some more clarification from this person would be nice. Perhaps we are all wrong with our interpretation of 'instant'.
    @jnanian can you ask if he has photos or a portfolio online, to get an impression what he actually makes.
     
  25. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

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    It's Zen photography, right here, right now, no thought, just press the shutter at an instant not decided by you.
     
  26. Craig75

    Craig75 Member

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    I like that explanation of a slippery concept