Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2002/12/02

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Subject: RE: [Leica] What Makes a good Picture?
From: "bdcolen" <>
Date: Mon, 2 Dec 2002 15:59:00 -0500

Hi, Steve - I think there are two things going on here, in terms of the
acceptance and admiration of the artist with the sketch pad, versus the
artist with the camera. First, the sketch pad is less obviously
intrusive: someone who is sketching you from across the dinner table, or
living room, can hold the pad in her lap, or flat on the table, and
quietly sketch; someone photographing you must hold up the camera, and
point it at you - or she may even move close to you, sticking the camera
'in your face.' As to the question of why photos are undervalued...I
believe they are undervalued for the simple reason that "anyone" can
take a "good" photograph. Point the camera. Push the button. Kodak spent
an enormous amount of money convincing the public that anyone could be a
photographer. And the vast majority of people are unable to tell the
difference between a family snap shot and a good photograph.

As to digital - I don't think that will devalue photography any further,
any more than the advent of the Polaroid has devalued it further.....

B. D.

- -----Original Message-----
[] On Behalf Of Steve
Sent: Monday, December 02, 2002 3:34 PM
Subject: RE: [Leica] What Makes a good Picture?

Your accurate point raises for me the question... why are photos so 
often undervalued, and beyond this... what will be  the impact of the 
digital  camera image on this devaluation.  I have a concern that the 
value of a fine photograph may be further undermined by the 
attractiveness of the digital  process, whereby you can shoot away 
and immediately discard the vast  majority of the images. Perhaps
unfair, but an valid analogy nonetheless... is the vision of 
the blind  person swinging a butterfly net. If you swing it long 

you get the idea.

Seems to me it can seriously devalue the process, even for the 

>The drawing comparison doesn't quite work, Martin - People tend to be 
>intrigued, captivated, etc., by someone who can do a life-like 
>sketch...But they often tend to be annoyed by someone who photographs 
>them at a time when they don't expect to be photographed.

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