Ansel Adams - Whats so great?

Photogirl007

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I love his work- they may not be as brilliant as photos now but you have to remember his photos were taken a very long time ago. For their time, they were works of art. To me, I still love them and appreciate the beauty in them.
 

Hertz van Rental

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Just like I don't get Picasso! I wouldn't pay a $1 for any of his work. But people drop millions on him as investment or other wise, because of his percieved greatness.

Clearly you know nothing about the History of Art (and I'm talking painting here).
Picasso was personally responsible for starting at least three distinct and important movements in Art. His unfinished painting Demoiselles d'Avignon is arguably the single most important painting of the last three hundred years - it changed the whole direction of painting.
This is not personal opinion but verifiable fact.
Adams, it could be argued, has done something similar but to a much lesser extent for Landscape Photography. But where Picasso gave the artist more freedom, Adams put the photographer into a straight-jacket - the pursuit of technical perfection at the cost of emotion.
If you care to read my previous posts in this resurrected thread you will see that I advise people to learn the difference between Art and personal opinion - the two things are not the same. Believing something is 'Art' does not make it Art, or even make it good. And by the same token, not understanding something does not stop it from being Art.
But I'm probably just banging my head against a wall.


"It's just not as much fun without Hertz around, is it?"

Thank you, fans. I am still around (far too much a round at the moment) but just not here.
A quick look at the humorous and intellectually stimulating posts in OT should explain why. That place makes me lose the will to live.
 

table1349

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Hi Guys,

I have heard the name Ansel Adams appear on here a bit lately, he seems to be described as the be all and end all of photography.

But to be honest, I have looked at some of his images (Only on the internet admittedly) and dont really see whats so special about them. Yes there are some great shots, but there seems to be a lot of overly dark shots that in my opinion are terrible, the Nevada Desert Road photo being a prime example.

Am I missing something or does the computer simply not do this man the justice he deserves?

Thanks,
Steve.

Can you take the equipment he used, processes like he did and get the results he produced? He was a master at his craft. Have you mastered the craft
of photography?

Hertz mentioned Picaso. Personally, if some one gave me a work by Picaso I would sell it and purchase something I do like. Why? I'm not a fan of Picaso's style. That still does not mean he is not one of the great masters, it just means personally I don't appreciate his style. Perhaps it is just a mattress of taste or a lack on my part in the appreciation of his art. Bottom line is he is still a great master who had a profound influence on painting.
 

Chamelion 6

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Just wondering what Picasso discovered that the average 7 year old with a box of crayons didn't already know instinctively? And does that make them master artists or does that make Picasso a sham? Something to think about...

If I send out 10 people with a camera to shoot a given tree, what are the odds that I'm gonna get 10 of exactly the same shot? Let's try it with a 100 people.

Suggesting any type of photography isn't art because you simply point it and click the shutter at the view in front them and that view is immutable by the photographer inability to control the lighting or the composition is silly.

From the time the photographer is setting up his shot he's making decisions on how to capture the image that the scene in front of them conjured. Subtle things, how much, how little, even how best to use the light available to them. Once that button is clicked, that image is committed to pixels, film, or whatever, it is now a REPRESENTATION of what the photographer saw. That's art. period.

Some art tries to see the world as it is, some how it should be, and other art is a vision unto itself, but all of it is a representation of what the artist saw at the moment the shutter clicked, the brush hit the canvas, the pencil touched paper.

Why try to qualify or disqualify it, like it or don't and move on. Seriously, I think some people over-think this stuff. I just follow the muse. 90% may be crap, but that golden 10% makes it all worth it.

Ansel and Pablo did their thing, had their following, but even if nobody ever hear of either of them, both men were artists.
 

c.cloudwalker

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Just wondering what Picasso discovered that the average 7 year old with a box of crayons didn't already know instinctively? And does that make them master artists or does that make Picasso a sham? Something to think about...

Makes me wonder what gallery those 7 y.o. wonders are showing in... :lmao:


And if you want to see what happens when an actually/maybe talented kid comes along, watch "My Kid Could Paint That." Fascinating documentary.
 

Chamelion 6

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Just wondering what Picasso discovered that the average 7 year old with a box of crayons didn't already know instinctively? And does that make them master artists or does that make Picasso a sham? Something to think about...

Makes me wonder what gallery those 7 y.o. wonders are showing in... :lmao:


And if you want to see what happens when an actually/maybe talented kid comes along, watch "My Kid Could Paint That." Fascinating documentary.
It was really a question... Not to take Picasso down, but to get people to really think about what makes something brilliant.

And I wasn't talking about talented 7 year olds, I'm talking about average 7year olds... so if you want a fine exhibit of some wonderful art check out almost any refrigerator or elementary artroom bulliten board around you. Shapes, over-simplification, rudamentary and conceptual visual elements. It's all there.... Ask the artist what it is. You're gonna find it's not an image of something, it's a story. There is action there... It's an idea distilled down into it's most basic and important elements.

Wanna really learn about art? Talk to a kid.

;)
 

Chamelion 6

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Not to take Picasso down, but to get people to really think about what makes something brilliant.

Wanna really learn about art? Talk to a kid.

;)

Trying to make people think was also my point. Did you see my signature?


Yep. ;) I almost commented on it too since it pretty much is where I'm coming from. I suspected we were dancing around the same point, that's why I put the wink at the end.
 

c.cloudwalker

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I don't put a wink in mine because, even though I truly believe kids are naturally creative and that tends to be taken away by the way we raise/educate kids, they unfortunately don't have any technique and, personally, I want to see a combination of both.

I have boxes and boxes of my own kids art work. Some of them are very reminiscent of Dali with melting things even though they had no knowledge of Dali then. But I'd rather look at a Dali canvas. Great memories and they were quite talented, but I wouldn't take them to a gallery, lol. Some of them do hang on my walls though.
 

Chamelion 6

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I don't put a wink in mine because, even though I truly believe kids are naturally creative and that tends to be taken away by the way we raise/educate kids, they unfortunately don't have any technique and, personally, I want to see a combination of both.

I have boxes and boxes of my own kids art work. Some of them are very reminiscent of Dali with melting things even though they had no knowledge of Dali then. But I'd rather look at a Dali canvas. Great memories and they were quite talented, but I wouldn't take them to a gallery, lol. Some of them do hang on my walls though.

I was really responding to the statements that somehow things like landscape photography didn't really rise to the definition of true art because it was just an imitation of what was already there. That same standard could apply to candid photography, most essays and so on... I think that idea dismisses too much too easily and misses the point.

Even on the most simplistic level a photographer is making decisions that effect the final outcome and therefore they are creating art. They are rendering their idea of what they saw... They attempted to emphasize the elements they saw as most important. That's even true of a common snapshot. I completely reject that and image, regardless of complexity, technique, or anything else has to rise to some idealistic lever to be considered "art."

Beyond that we get into things like experience, vision, technique, composition, and so on and begin to try to qualify why some art rises and some doesn't. Why some art motivates, strikes us, revolts us, and why some is just bland...

Me personally, I find most studio stuff very contrived and plastic... Fashion photography especially... It's still art, it just fails to strike any kind of emotional response from me....
 

djacobox372

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Just wondering what Picasso discovered that the average 7 year old with a box of crayons didn't already know instinctively? And does that make them master artists or does that make Picasso a sham? Something to think about...

If I send out 10 people with a camera to shoot a given tree, what are the odds that I'm gonna get 10 of exactly the same shot? Let's try it with a 100 people.

Suggesting any type of photography isn't art because you simply point it and click the shutter at the view in front them and that view is immutable by the photographer inability to control the lighting or the composition is silly.

From the time the photographer is setting up his shot he's making decisions on how to capture the image that the scene in front of them conjured. Subtle things, how much, how little, even how best to use the light available to them. Once that button is clicked, that image is committed to pixels, film, or whatever, it is now a REPRESENTATION of what the photographer saw. That's art. period.

Some art tries to see the world as it is, some how it should be, and other art is a vision unto itself, but all of it is a representation of what the artist saw at the moment the shutter clicked, the brush hit the canvas, the pencil touched paper.

Why try to qualify or disqualify it, like it or don't and move on. Seriously, I think some people over-think this stuff. I just follow the muse. 90% may be crap, but that golden 10% makes it all worth it.

Ansel and Pablo did their thing, had their following, but even if nobody ever hear of either of them, both men were artists.

An adult with the painting skill and knowledge of picasso being able to adapt the creative mind of a 7 year old is absolute genius. It's next to impossible to achieve the two together in one mind in a pure fashion. It's a compliment of the highest order to be compared to a child creatively.
 

JohnMF

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I remember this thread the first time around. It's probably one of the most interesting ones on here. No doubt because Hertz put forward such a solid, well thought out argument, and then defended it brilliantly.

Not sure if Hertz realised how provocative his opinion would be perceived at the time?

It was kind of like calling John Wayne a draft dodger on a cowboy forum or something..
 

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