"Conventional Wisdom"

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by Torus34, Nov 2, 2006.

  1. Torus34

    Torus34 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Years ago, the Canadian John Kenneth Galbraith made popular the phrase 'conventional wisdom.' It signified ideas which were accepted as true by the general population without rigorous examination. The 'wisdom', when subjected to close scrutiny, was often found to be unsupported by the facts. [Trivial example: a mixed drink is less intoxicating than the same amount of alcohol served neat.]

    While Galbraith was writing about concepts in the field of economics, 'conventional wisdom' can be found in many fields.

    Some examples in photography are:

    Taking lots of shots and discarding the 'bad' ones will result in an improvement, with time, in the picture-taking ability of the photographer. [A close equivalent, in manufacturing, is that you can cull 'quality' into a product.]

    Digital photography is 'cheaper' than film photography.

    B&W is inherently more of an art form than color photography.

    A 'better' camera will take 'better' pictures. [This implies that writers may have fierce discussions on the merits of various word processing programs and that painters argue interminably about which brush or brand of pigment is 'best.']

    Manipulation of an image in the darkroom is in some way different, aesthetically, from digital manipulation.

    These five examples are given as just that: examples.

    Rather than discussing any one of them, please try to add to their number with some concepts you think fall into the 'conventional wisdom' category in photography.
     
  2. Tiberius

    Tiberius TPF Noob!

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    I would disagree with the first - I've yet to meet anyone who thinks that simply taking lots of pictures and throwing out bad ones without looking at why they were bad makes you a better photographer.

    Past that, however, I'd add the Megapixel myth: The more pixels it's got, the better it is.
     
  3. Torus34

    Torus34 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Thank you for the addition! The film version would be that fine grain films are superior.
     
  4. toastydeath

    toastydeath TPF Noob!

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    My personal favorite "conventional wisdom:"

    "Conventional wisdom isn't."

    Naturally, I forget who said this.
     
  5. Torus34

    Torus34 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Thank you for the addition, Toasty -- I think.
     

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