Sharpness is a bourgeois concept?

Discussion in 'Ethics and Philosophy' started by gzhuang, Jan 17, 2016.

  1. blockend

    blockend Member

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    Bokeh is a hipster concept.
     
  2. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    +1,000
     
  3. Mainecoonmaniac

    Mainecoonmaniac Subscriber

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    I really don't know. One of the first users of photography were the well to do during the beginning of the 20th century. They made their photos soft and painterly. The Pictorialist were pretty bourgeois.
     
  4. jtk

    jtk Subscriber

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    I've just finished inkjet printing from an extremely "sharp" Nikonscan...I knew there was a lot of potential in that image and have printed it handsomely in color....however I'm much happier with today's B&W process, which began with several Nik operations beginning with single image B&W HDR. I think the new version is better than earlier "sharp" versions because the odd HDR effect was faintly ghostly, which is more like "reality" in this case than is ultra sharpness.
     
  5. jtk

    jtk Subscriber

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    It's true that Pictorialists weren't into sharpness, but neither were the millions of snapshooters and minilab customers that followed. Darkroom enthusiasts who enlarge(d) with Schneider Componars or the lesser f/4 Nikon lenses because they couldn't afford the "sharper" versions of the same brands weren't even aware of that sharpness potential, nor were cold-light enlarger users.
     
  6. Helios 1984

    Helios 1984 Member

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    These days it's tilt-shift.
     
  7. Bokeh predates hipsters. By the way hipsters think that they invented sex and anyone before them never knew about it.
     
  8. Mainecoonmaniac

    Mainecoonmaniac Subscriber

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    What's really ironic is that some rich cats in the 80's would buy the sharpest hassy lenses and then spend tons of money to put a Softar filter in front of it. I think what really is a bourgeois concept is thinking that buying expensive gear will make one a photographer or better gear results in better photos.
     
  9. blockend

    blockend Member

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    Shallow focus as an end in itself is a new phenomenon. In the 1960s Japanese photographers of the Provoke school valorised 'are-bure-boke', translated as 'grainy/rough, blurry, out-of-focus', but that was a complete look. Now people seem to think a sliver of focus at 1.2 or 0.95 or whatever denotes artistry. Portraitists (I worked for one as a young'un) often stopped their f1.2 lenses down to f2 to sharpen the image and ensure all the facial features were in focus.

    Very wide aperture lenses were seen as a get-out-of-jail optic for extreme low light. Now they're trophies. It's true that out of focus artefacts can solidify, if they're out of focus enough, leading to some interesting visual imagery. I did a lot of such work 25 years ago, and it was about the unfocused area, not fall off or the quality of specular highlights. For me bokeh is as tedious as the injudicious use of a fisheye, but people have to realise that for themselves.
     
  10. No, my friends and I were using it extensively in 1965.
     
  11. blockend

    blockend Member

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    You have my sympathy.
     
  12. I will consider the source, especially since were were experimenting pushing the limits in many ways. What did your buttered toast tell you today?
     
  13. blockend

    blockend Member

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    If you can show me a serious artistic or commercial genre that was about sharpness combined with bokeh, I'll take your witticisms seriously. It wasn't pictorialism, it wasn't portraiture, it wasn't political photography. Commercially it's a millennial advertising look. If you can find sharpness and out of focus highlights in a serious context, I'm interested.
     
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  15. faberryman

    faberryman Subscriber

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    An argument about bokeh? Seriously? Nothing better to do today?
     
  16. Helios 1984

    Helios 1984 Member

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    Wouldn't be APUG Photrio without a daily argument. :smile:
     
  17. blockend

    blockend Member

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    Where's the argument? I made a statement which someone challenged with sarcasm. That hardly denotes an argument.
     
  18. chip j

    chip j Member

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    I've been doing it since 1973, w/marvelous results. And my pictures are so serious that hardly anyone understands them
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2018
  19. Chuckwade87

    Chuckwade87 Member

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    Bourgeois is an outdated term I prefer Evil American Imperialist
     
  20. That does not work because while an American can be bourgeois, there are bourgeois who are not American.
     
  21. Tony Egan

    Tony Egan Subscriber

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    http://georgehurrell.com/gallery/

    Been around since last century, I tell ya!
     
  22. David T T

    David T T Subscriber

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    I like the contrast between sharpness and softness. Its a silly argument that only exists because of who is being quoted. How funny would it be if he were being facetious? Or just trying to get attention like a certain K Rockwell? ("The 1.8 version is actually better than the more expensive 1.2 version, which is really only for astronomers." :D )
     
  23. blockend

    blockend Member

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    That isn't what's understood by bokeh. Hurrell's work is large format portraiture using tilt shift, three point lighting and most aren't shot open. Some are shot with a Petzval lens, some are pictorialist, which puts everything out of focus by intervening with the lens, negative or print. Bokeh as currently understood is about a sharp subject surrounded by out of focus areas, the more out of focus, the better. I suspect much of it is based on a misunderstanding of tilt-shift, and is an attempt to emulate lens movement on 35mm cameras, and the look of (some) cinema.
     
  24. Tony Egan

    Tony Egan Subscriber

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    Precisely!
     
  25. blockend

    blockend Member

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    But your example doesn't demonstrate "bokeh" as currently described. It shows the movement of large format cameras in a studio setting, combined with specialised lenses and lighting. You won't get that look if you stick a 50mm f1.2 on your DSLR, which is what people assume off the shelf bokeh comprises of.
     
  26. CMoore

    CMoore Subscriber

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    I think, perhaps, some of you guys are conflating Bourgeois with Bourgeoisie.
    The latter, usually, referred to a group of people in an economic system.
    The former, usually, was a reference of Slight or Insult about a person or group of persons that were overtly concerned with Wealth/Material possessions.....especially their own. :smile: