Subjects for Postcards...

Discussion in 'Postcard Exchange' started by tim_walls, Jun 3, 2017.

  1. tim_walls

    tim_walls Member

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    First of all, hope it's appropriate to start a thread here; somebody kill or move it if not :smile:.

    But, as I mentioned somewhere up there in the signup thread, it's about 10 years since I last participated, so naturally I'm overthinking things (and maybe a little overexcited). But, I thought there might be the seeds of an interesting discussion in there - in particular, what sort of subjects do we choose for our postcards?


    What I mean is, I guess by their nature postcards suggest a certain type of subject - landscapes, images that remind you of place, maybe even abstract images, but not - say - portraits. My favourite of my own photos are always portraits, because they speak to me personally about the person involved, but to send a portrait out as a postcard seems weird because who else is going to want to stick a photo of some random person they never met on the fridge.


    So, I'm curious - what do you folks do? Does the nature of it being a postcard influence your subject, or do you think of it more as a gallery that happens to use very small frames with a stamp on the back? And what do you hope to receive - little pieces of places you've never been and never may be (I love the international nature of the exercise), small pieces of art to keep forever, or just random insights into what some other guy thinks is a nice photo?



    Incidentally, I should say - I'm not asking for advice; this is not just so someone will say "sure, send a portrait, it's fine"; I've almost made up my mind about that (although I have 3 more days of long weekend and maybe the inspiration for something else that didn't arrive yesterday will pop up in the meantime). I just thought it might make an interesting talking point :smile:.
     
  2. mike c

    mike c Subscriber

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    I make the post cards from anything interesting that I photographed LATELY , do not have any preconceived notions of using the photo as a post card, just like doing photography, and I haven't mailed off any postcard portraits .
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2017
  3. mooseontheloose

    mooseontheloose Subscriber

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    For me it's not about what I photographed recently, but what I developed (sometimes it can be six months or more between taking and developing). So usually by that time I have a lot of images to choose from. It's not necessarily what's best, but, as you say, what will work will with the postcard size. For example, for the latest round I wanted to print an infrared image I took with HIE, but to have it looking decent, it needed both bleaching and toning to make it work. As I am extremely busy during the school year, I just didn't have time to do it, so worked with other images that were pretty much straight prints. Most of my images are from my travels (or Japan), so I guess no matter what, they always have an "international" feel.

    As for portraits, I like getting them. I don't shoot portraits, but it's nice to see what other people do - this was important for me today, as I had a chance to photograph maiko (apprentice geisha) in their okiya (geisha house) and I had a hard time keeping up with all the changes (poses and such). It made me realise that this is one aspect of my photography that I should make more of an effort with. Similarly, I've received cards from people of all kinds of different subjects that have been printed in different ways, and as a result, they've inspired me to try those very processes myself. If you like portraits, you should send them. You might become known for them. I like infrared, so I'm pretty sure most regulars in the exchange know that an infrared card is most likely from me before they even flip it to the back to check the details.
     
  4. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    To me, the fact that this is a postcard exchange (as compared to a print exchange) only influences my subject choice in one way - the result needs to look good in 4"x6".
    I'm most happy when I receive something that shows me what interests a photographer - portraits would certainly be welcome.
    I do find though that the postcard exchange is fun when it gives me a chance to try something that I generally wouldn't print larger.
    And extensive experience has taught me one practical lesson - look for something that can work well as a straight print or with very simple dodging and burning. After the first few prints, repetition of the same complex printing scenarios can get tiresome.
     
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