Thursday, August 20, 2009

Photography Peeves

I follow a lot of different photography blogs, and am constantly looking around at photos to continue to learn, glean, and feel inspired.

But, sometimes, I just plain get annoyed.
There are some trends in photography these days which just plain drive me crazy.
Especially when it not just hobby photographers committing these crimes!

Here is a small list of things that are making me nuts in the photo world, along with some tragic examples!

I'm so sorry if you are one of the photographers of these photos.
My opinion is just my opinion. . .
please don't take it too personally.

Peeve #1
The "Just slightly out of focus" Shot
When checking out fellow-Kat's fabulous new blonde do, I was shocked that the main image on her site was this blurred beauty. Not only is she out of focus, but she is overly pale faced, man-handed, with a strange Igor-like hunch. I honestly think Kat McPhee is one of the most beautiful woman of all time, and though from a distance this is a cute shot, I just don't get why this image is worthy of album cover status.
You tell me.

Peeve #2
The "doesn't this awesome texture make my photo look artistic?" shot
One of the big trends in photography right now is the use of textures. This is a thing that you do in Photoshop to make a photo seem aged, or "artistic." In some places, it can be very very effective. But most of the time it just makes a photographer look like they are trying way too hard to be cool. It especially drives me nuts when used on a portrait. . . often making a beautiful bride look like she has 80 year old pock-marked skin. If one is going to use a texture, at least have the courtesy of erasing it from any area of the face! Sadly, these example shots are taken from two of my favorite photographers out there. Truly truly tragic!

This poor girl. . . singing what is sure to be a lovely song, might as well as had mud on her face, right?

This fantastic shot just seems so overdone with all that texture, especially when it crosses onto her dress.

Here's a non-texturized shot from the same photo shoot. Absolutely stunning right?

Peeve #3
The "I shot this wedding in 1974" treatment
Yet another doozy of a photoshop trick is the aging and vintaging of a photo. Often times this involves Peeve #2, texture, but frequently involves nothing more than sapping the color, adding some tarnish and saying voila! In and of itself, not a bad look. . . What makes it bad is that everyone is doing it, and I think the trend has passed. It's one thing for a editorial photoshoot on Woodstock, it's another when it's used on a wedding shot in Connecticut last month.

Note, the blotchy looking skin & the awesome torn edge of the photo. Such a beautiful bride, well composed photo with great clarity in the eyes, and soft blur of the background. . . Wouldn't this just have been lovely in plain old sepia or black and white with out all that vintaging?

Peeves #4, 5, 6
Don't even get me started on Polaroids, Dianas, Holgas and other plastic toy cameras.
I said Don't!

Okay, that's all my ranting for now.
Please call me out on my incorrectness if you disagree.
For the record, I too have been a victim of these heinous photography crimes, though I am starting to see the light and learning the error of my ways! I hope you can forgive me. And I hope you if you are a photographer, you follow suit. I also want to reiterate that the photographers who took these photos are brilliantly talented and inspiring photographers, and I'm sorry that I had to make an example out of them. Really, I wish it weren't so.

What are your Photography Peeves?


jenn said...

hahahha you're right on kat! overdone photos are totally obnoxious. photographers need to let their light shine through.

shari berry bo-berry said...

i agree to an extent. photography is art...and therefore it is up to the artist to decide how they like to process their work...even if we don't like it or agree with what they've done. i am not a big fan of textures either...haven't found a single need for them yet! slightly out of focus definitely doesn't work for the kat mcphee pic, but i can see it working in SOME cases.

the thing I HATE HATE HATE HATE HATE! is when eyes are WAY over processed -- to the point that they look fake. i hate that. did I say I hate that? i mean come on, whose eyes are THAT shiny and THAT white? not very many people.

i also HATE over softened skin. portraiture is great...but come on, does a newborn baby really need it? they have perfect skin already. i hate plastic looking skin.

ok, there's my rant!

i too follow a ton of photo blogs and love learning more... it's so much more fun than using a book!!! although I do that too.

have you gone to any photography workshops? i would love to someday!

thanks for your opinions and insight! it was a fun post to read!

Oli said...

I agree with peeves #1-3. Totally annoying. But #'s 4-6 are something I think are great when done in the right way. What I don't like are when people take digital photos and process them to look like Polaroids/ Diana's/Holga's. If you don't have it, don't imitate it.