|Jan 25, 2013, 12:11 PM||#26|
And by conceptual I meant mostly in technique, not message. Like exploring the simple geometric shapes in nature on a grand scale. Or something like what Georgia O'Keeffe did with flowers. Im sure all of this has been done and it may not be the answer, it takes the right movement to capture the art world and become a new style and its usually totally unexpected.
Last edited by zombiecakes; Jan 25, 2013 at 12:27 PM.
|Feb 5, 2013, 08:27 AM||#27|
Now it may be that you're quite familiar with those sites and ones like them, and that you still look at landscapes done in the "Grand Manner" these days and see them as a rather homogeneous lot based on content alone. After all, nature doesn't keep up with the latest fashions and technology, and even architecture changes rather slowly. So, unlike other genres of photography where people and objects caught in the frame help to keep things perpetually updated, landscape photography features environments that don't necessarily capture a particular era (and that's often the whole point of them).
Nonetheless, there is a growing trend in landscape photography right now that is embracing an approach that stands apart from the film era; the discerning eye won't mistake such images as products of an earlier time. Some people may dismiss them as merely looking "processed," but the end result often depends upon specialized capture techniques, many of which enable photographers to work with very challenging light and from unusual vantage points. A new school of landscape photography is emerging with a distinctive aesthetic, even if the content is essentially the same as what came before. I should add, however, that I don't think it's an entirely superficial development. The overarching message as I see it embodies a sort of ironic humanist mentality--a rejection of the cold objectivity often ascribed to the photographic process, in favor of emphasizing the human experience. It's ironic because of the high technology necessary to achieve the desired results and because of the about-face it makes with regards to the age-old tension between photography and painting. Ansel Adams famously shunned the 'lo-fi' techniques of the Pictorialist movement (which saw photographers purposefully smudging and blurring photos to imitate impasto) and embraced the potential of photographs to render a scene with prickly sharpness. Now we have photographers combining that sense of "photorealism" with colors, tonality, and selective editing (cloning, vignetting, etc.) borrowed from landscape painting of previous centuries. Even intentional blurriness has been reincarnated via very long exposures, rendering seas as flat expanses and clouds as sharp spikes in the sky--extreme stylizations that are not typical of the film era (though I know of several photographers working in this style today who are actually using film). There is a huge range of quality across the lot of course, but the cream that's rising to the top is plotting a good distance between now and the age of Galen Rowell.
Pasting some examples here would probably make my points clearer, but I don't want to turn this thread into a referendum on certain photographers. And I certainly don't want to discuss my own output, since these threads are never fun for me when they get personal. I'll just drop a few links and step away slowly: A, B, C, D. At any rate, I would just encourage anyone who is interested in this topic to think about the extent to which content can define a genre and how landscapes may present a unique case.
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