Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2015/05/02

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Subject: [Leica] Street Photography: a meme created on the internet
From: mark at (Mark Rabiner)
Date: Sat, 02 May 2015 13:06:48 -0400

At the bottom you can click on this
List of street photographers.
Id like to suggest that on this list of a hundred or so names 99 of them had
never ever heard the term "street photography" in their life.
I don't think there is a difference between candid photography and/or
documentary photographer and this so called "street photography". Which
doesn't need an urban environment or even people according to this BS
article. And certainly not streets. I guess you can do street photography of
trees... As long as you don't pose the squirrels.
I think street photographers are photojournalist wanabee' s who can't find a
job or who have never had one in photography.  But they want to feel
important anyway. Hence the cool sounding title. "I am not just walking
around the block with a roll of tri x I am doing STREET PHOTOGRAPHY".
A few tats and a piercing and a beret and an olive army surplus bag to put
your camera in and you're a street photographer dreaming about the good old
tri x days.
Its time to start cutting out the BS. Photography is fun and meaningful
enough we don't need to just make stuff up and pretend we all belive in it.

On 5/2/15 12:46 PM, "Mark Rabiner" <mark at> wrote:

> I was just looking at the Wiki on "Street Photography."
> At the top of it is a box with words in it which says:
> "This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help 
> improve
> this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material 
> may
> be challenged and removed. (December 2013)"
> We see these a lot on Wiki it would seem to be a basic BS alert.
> In other words caution; what you are about to read was made up off the top 
> of
> the head of the person writing it. It's meme making.
> I started shooting Tri X in 1965 and doing and reading everything I could 
> get
> my hands on on photography and I'm trying to remember the first time I ever
> heard the term "Street Photography." as it was sure as heck not in the 
> 60's or
> 70's. And I'm not sure about the 80's or 90's either and my memory is 
> pretty
> good but I cant remember when I started thinking that.
> The internet has gotten photo enthusiasts and photographers talking on a 
> level
> we could not imagine in the Shutterbug 80's. I think the internet hit in 
> the
> mid 90's. Was that when AOL bit it and we didn't have to pay by the minute 
> any
> more?
> I think in the history of "Street Photography" most of the "Street
> Photographers if you told them they were doing "Street Photography." would
> look at you like you were nuts they had never heard the term.
> I think the term came out in the late 90's with chat lists on the internet 
> but
> I'm looking for other peoples recollection on it. As mine is clouded with
> decades of me being me.
> I'd heard of Atget as being the Bach or Shakespeare or Einstein or Freud of
> photographers in other words.... The Man. But just the other day I'd heard 
> of
> him as "the father of street photographers" and as he shot mainly lifeless
> facades of buildings as I mainly do I found that both invigorating and
> unnerving.
> He is mentioned as such in the Wiki thing on so called street photography.
> I think it may be about the time we draw back the certain on this so called
> street photography thing (meme) and find out what's really going on. Is it 
> for
> real or not? Because I think its a classic case of people making up stuff 
> as
> they go along and calling it history or reality. I'd call it meme making.
> I think we need to get in touch with what scientists call their "Baloney
> Detection kit". An idea I think put together by Carl Sagan.

Mark William Rabiner

Replies: Reply from lluisripollphotography at (Lluis Ripoll) ([Leica] Street Photography: a meme created on the internet)
In reply to: Message from mark at (Mark Rabiner) ([Leica] Street Photography: a meme created on the internet)