Stepping out of the box

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mark

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This thread was inspired by Grace's post about being tired of seeing things presented in the same old way. And her comment to me about staying in our comfort zones. She is not the only one to voice a distaste of the "boring, tired, cookie cutter" images in the gallery.(I did a little search for those words and they are not all grace's) Maybe they are right maybe they are wrong it does not matter. What does matter is that it IS important for us to step out of what we feel comfortable with and do something different.

So, those of you who feel this way and everyone else, how are you stepping out of your comfort zone?

I'll go first.
My motto for a number of years has been "I hate people". Lately I have been thinking that maybe I might be missing something by avoiding them unless absolutely necessary. Because of this I have been shooting a lot more people(with a camera of course) and actually talking to them. Not all of them are terrible.
 

David A. Goldfarb

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The Halloween Parade, Weegee style was definitely out of the box for me. I've done some street photography in the past, but always available light, and typically 35mm or 6x6. When I do use on-camera flash, it tends to be diffused. I'll even use a 12x16" softbox with the flash on a bracket.

For this I went for hard direct flash, 4x5" rangefinder. It was fun!

drag.jpg
 

TPPhotog

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I think I go out of my "comfort zone" whenever I do street shoots (for fun and not pay I consider them as different from reportage). They or rather people scare me as I have no control, have to explain myself which I hate and can spend a whole day out without a shot I really like.
 

rogueish

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I get out of my comfort zone evey morning when the alarm goes off...
Actually like TTPhotog and Mark, I have a tough time with people. I like urban landscape but not if anyone is near.
give me a city with few or no people and I'll show you boring shots...
actually i could do that without that :wink:
 

roteague

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mark said:
So, those of you who feel this way and everyone else, how are you stepping out of your comfort zone?

After shooting 35mm for 30 years, I gave it up for Large Format (4x5).
 

Jorge

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mark said:
My motto for a number of years has been "I hate people".

I bet you did not say that to those biker people in your book...:smile:

You dont hate people, you just hate people who dont agree with you. I understand I feel the same way.....lol...

Kidding mike....

I changed processes, and doing so forced me to "see" differently. I was bored with my silver prints and found them ordinary, even thought well printed. So changing process forced me to focus in different qualities of a subject.
 
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mark

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Jorge said:
I bet you did not say that to those biker people in your book...:smile:

You dont hate people, you just hate people who dont agree with you. I understand I feel the same way.....lol...

Kidding mike....

I changed processes, and doing so forced me to "see" differently. I was bored with my silver prints and found them ordinary, even thought well printed. So changing process forced me to focus in different qualities of a subject.

Biker people....Book....Huh?
 

anyte

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I guess I'm new enough to have not gotten myself into a box yet. I'm always trying new things and experimenting with ideas. My primary interest is in shooting birds - but who would know that from the images I've posted? I shoot primarily color but I do shoot b&w from time to time. I have little interest in shooting landscapes but I shoot them any way. The one thing I think I neglect that I shouldn't is still life. I'm not going to concern myself over not shooting portraits and nudes. I have a life time to work with, I don't need to do it all this year.
 

rbarker

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Venturing out of the box can be dangerous . . .

Dead Link Removed
 

papagene

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Ralph,
I am glad you are aboard. I really appreciate your warped sense of humor. I gotta get my "Clown/Politician" photos scanned! :wink:

gene
 

livemoa

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Well, interesting question and here is my comment, and I will not bring politics into this. But be warned, I am an artist so those who don't think photography is art or artists who question what they or others do should not post, be warned

I have recently had another exhibition. http://www.photospace.co.nz/expo085.htm

I had worked on this for some time and the theme was personal to me on several levels. I ended up hanging a large body of work that was to be viewed as one work. Of late much of the way I see has been influenced by Renaissance painters and the work of a New Zealand artist Colin McCahon. I wanted to look, like McCahon did, at the spiritual relationship that I have with the sea and the land. The show was successful on some levels, I got good feedback, sold the work to a collector and people told me they liked the show.

BUT.

I felt ambivalent when I hung it and each time I came back to it I looked at it and thought no, its not good enough, its too personal, too obvious and pretty. I had spent too much time when I was putting the show together thinking will it sell, not is it what I wanted to show and showed images to people to get their opinions.

Anyway what I am saying here is that I made a decision as the show came down that I must do what I want and have subsequently begun revisiting the idea and re-shooting and refining the idea without any outside input. This is way way outside my comfort zone but I think its going to work.

In this case my getting outside the box is going to be trusting, completely, my own judgement
 

joeyk49

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Ralph:

I hope that was an ANALOG shot of Mickey...You know that digital images of crime scenes are inadmissable in the court of APUG...
 

Tom Duffy

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For all the talk about thinking outside the box, there's a few people here I'd like to see think INSIDE the box... just once! :smile:
 

jimgalli

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Thinking out of the box for me would be waterfalls, landscapes, church interiors, dog portraits, and nudes. Now what the hell do I do?? Guess I'll stick to brightwork on '37 Plymouths.
 
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See what happens...you become famous...star in a few movies...then fame fades...you get older...next thing you know your found dead in your pool in Malibu with enough Valium in your system to take down Dumbo.....
 

Alex Hawley

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David A. Goldfarb said:
The Halloween Parade, Weegee style was definitely out of the box for me.

David, I think you've hit upon a niche. This and the other one you posted truly connect with the spirit of Weegee. When will we see a good crime scene shot? :surprised:
 

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Was that Eisner or Ovitz floating facedown??? :D
 

wfwhitaker

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I think I'm stuck inside the box.

And then someone comes along and finds one of my images disturbing. So to them, I guess I'm outside the box.

I'm still looking for the boundary of the f*****' box.

Guess it's better to be two places at once than nowhere at all.
 

Graeme Hird

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I don't understand.

I like my box, I'm good at working within my box. I enjoy the shots I get from my box.

Who says I have to get out of it? I'm doing this for myself, not to please someone who doesn't know which box they fit in.

I'm not stuck in it - I choose to be in it.
 

ThomHarrop

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I have to start reading more carefully. I have been running around barefoot for days because I thought we were supposed to think outside the socks.
 

Mateo

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"What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun."


I think the guy who wrote the following is on to something.
"For all the talk about thinking outside the box, there's a few people here I'd like to see think INSIDE the box... just once! "

What's wrong with a pretty picture of a waterfall? Or a sand dune or a nude? Name the subject of one of your favorite famous images; is it the only existing picture of that subject? Who are we trying to kid? Do we think that we can point a lens at something new or in a new way and give the whole world a new meaning? They're just pictures. Some of us make them because we like to make them. I only make them because I refuse to watch TV and so I have some extra time to kill.
 

wfwhitaker

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Mateo said:
I only make them because I refuse to watch TV and so I have some extra time to kill.

Having seen Mateo's prints, I don't believe that for a second!
 

noseoil

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Living in the desert here in Tucson, just once I'd like to actually SEE a waterfall. There is a narrow gorge near town which has a waterfall flowing once in a blue moon, which I would like to capture. It is incredible, with water flowing through the desert in a torrent, but alas, we don't normally get enough rain to make it run most years and the water is brown.

Last weekend I took MF shots of people photographing landscapes in a beautiful area. We've been there many times, but I wanted to see my friends doing what they enjoy most, not take more landscapes as I'd been doing for months. I showed the scan of the picture of "Rocky" to his wife last night and she really enjoyed my take on her husband's work, his intensity. Certainly not great art, but a decent image of a man whose company I've enjoyed for many years now and I look forward to sharing many more with, if time allows. It will be framed as a Christmas gift for them.

I think Grace has a valid observation, but alas, art is so elusive and I am a mechanic, not an artist. My photograps are more mechanical, while my mechanics are more my art (see the two mesquite cameras I built as an example of my "art").
 
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