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Keith_A_Howe
08-31-2010, 01:50 AM
"Creativity is the original, fresh, and external expression of the imagination of the maker by using the medium to convey an idea, message or thought"

Ok, the more who contribute to this discussion the more valuable it will be for everyone. So questions, comments, examples of creativity.


Keith

GregYager
08-31-2010, 04:26 AM
I'm glad you started here because this is where I seem to struggle the most.

When you are judging prints and looking for creativity are you looking more at composition or technique?

Rick_Massarini
08-31-2010, 04:38 AM
It's been my observation that judges love to see something totally new and different. A lot of people send in the same kind of images all the time, some because that is their style, and some because that what they think that the judges want to see. I see it all the time at the national judging - something new, different and creative spins around, the judges go "wow" and it goes into the Loan !!

Todd_Reichman
08-31-2010, 04:39 AM
How does an entrant know what is new or different to a judge? Can past judges point to an example that struck them as new when it came up?

- trr

Joe_Campanellie
08-31-2010, 04:46 AM
I'm certainly not the expert Keith is when it comes to judging but when I consider creativity I think mostly of technique. But creativity can certainly enter into the process with an unusual approach to composition as well as presentation. Like most of the 12 elements they are not comprised of just one thing but a variety of things that are used in conjunction with one another that make each element successful in a print.

When I first started to enter print competitions I was always looking for some creative approach that would catch the judges eye and make them take a second look.

Rick_Massarini
08-31-2010, 04:54 AM
One example of a creative composition that immediately pops into my mind was an image from the Loan Collection several years ago of a close up of a frog taken at waters level right into his nose with kind of a double image reflection effect - it made you stop and try to figure out just exactly what it was that you were seeing...

GregYager
08-31-2010, 05:02 AM
Does someone have a sample of a merit image we can go by to discuss it's creative element?

Tss1203
08-31-2010, 05:07 AM
what is considered new, fresh and original when photographing people? I feel like there are only so many poses you can use w/a person. Something might be new, original and different for me and the person I'm photographing, but in reality I would bet I've probably been inspired by something I already saw.

I don't struggle w/being creative or feeling creative for myself.

Is it sorta like the right combination of things? Such as, the unique combo of posing/lighting/subject/background/editing/title? Where each thing on its own would be ordinary but combined its unique?

So is creativity the culmination of all the elements?

Keith_A_Howe
08-31-2010, 05:21 AM
How does an entrant know what is new or different to a judge? Can past judges point to an example that struck them as new when it came up?

- trr

Original and fresh -could be a different subject matter, like when we first statrted seeing images of pregnant women. Years ago boudoir was new.

It could be the technique. I was in the audience the first time a poloroid manipulation spun around. You could see the judges shuffle in their seats. Lucius filter was new and fresh at one time. Spot color is another example of a technique that once was fresh.

Original and fresh can be composition. An example that comes to mind is an image Jeff Dachowski entered a few years ago of his mother in law. She is facing into almost tight against the right hand side of the image. She was posed seated on a stack of suitcases with her body position slanted toward the right. If I remember correctly Holly gave him a title of "Going Places" So the different and rule beaking composition was original and fresh - especially for a mature woman and the the title added to the story of her being always on the move so much she was almost headed right out of the image. At one time long skinny prints were new and fresh.

Another example I can think of is a very unique or different viewpoint of a subject. Sometime in the last few years I saw a wonderful image of the bride and her dad entering the ceremony - something that's been photographed a million times. But this image was taken almost straight down from above, probably the photographer hung over the balcony rail. It was a new angle on an image that every judge had probably done hundreds of times themselves.

I find it ineresting that some people accuse PPA judges of to "in the box" type of thinking and yet one of the main elements we consider is creativity. Enter something that is truly creative or unique and assuming that there are not a lot of other flaws like techical issues and it will go far.
Keith

Keith_A_Howe
08-31-2010, 05:36 AM
Is it sorta like the right combination of things? Such as, the unique combo of posing/lighting/subject/background/editing/title? Where each thing on its own would be ordinary but combined its unique?
I was composing my response while you were posting yours. To answer your question, yes it can be the unique combination of everything but it can also be just one of the things you have mentioned but done in an original and fresh way AND done well.


So is creativity the culmination of all the elements?

Could be - or again it could be one element that is new and different. Another example that I didn't mention in my post above is presentation. Watercolor paper was a fresh and original presentation when it first started showing up in print competition. I have a traditional studio head and shoulders portrait of a brother and sister that went loan a couple years ago, but it was printed on watercolor paper. At the time, we had seen lots of wc paper for fine art images but not so much on portraits. That choice of presentation made a rather ordinary image be fresh and original. Of course it was technically well done also or it wouldn't have made it into loan. Impact is what is truly - at least IMO - the culmination of all the elements. But I think as we all progress through these 12 elements it will beome obvious how interwoven they all are. There really isn't any element that is not effected by the other 11.

Keith

Todd_Reichman
08-31-2010, 05:39 AM
I'd like to see some examples if possible.

Thanks

- trr

GregYager
08-31-2010, 05:59 AM
I'm currently looking through the first PPA Showcase book and I see a lot of images that are what many would consider to be regular portraits. Great images but nothing new or creative about them. Am I getting the right impression when I see that it can lack creativity but it really has to make up for it in overall quality?

These are images I would be proud to call my own and I'm not looking for a shortcut around the creative element. Creativity is actually my goal. I just don't want to withhold an image from competition because I think it lacks creativity when I see many getting merits without it.

Keith_A_Howe
08-31-2010, 06:03 AM
I'd like to see some examples if possible.

Thanks

- trr

Todd, Invest in a Loan book or Showcase book. I am not going to just post a bunch of my own prints and I don't have other peoples prints to post.
Plus what may have been original and fresh at the time I entered it may be passe now.

Keith

Rick_Massarini
08-31-2010, 06:13 AM
I agree with Keith - the Loan and Showcase albums are great sources of inspiration. The Loan is what "popped" that year. The Showcase contains the images that the judges fell in love with that didn't quite make it into the Loan - so in my opinion, it's a huge honor even if it didn't get the extra merit of the Loan Collection. There are always impressive examples of creativity in those books. I bought every one that they've published - even before I had an image included in any one of them - unfortunately, Hurricane Katrina stole a lot of my precious older copies - lost most of them in the flood and the mildew and mold that followed... All I have left are the recent ones - after 2005 ...

Keith_A_Howe
08-31-2010, 06:14 AM
I'm currently looking through the first PPA Showcase book and I see a lot of images that are what many would consider to be regular portraits. Great images but nothing new or creative about them. Am I getting the right impression when I see that it can lack creativity but it really has to make up for it in overall quality?

These are images I would be proud to call my own and I'm not looking for a shortcut around the creative element. Creativity is actually my goal. I just don't want to withhold an image from competition because I think it lacks creativity when I see many getting merits without it.

You are somewhat right. In order to get a merit, a print does not have to be at the top of creativity, but it can't be a stale trite image , poorly executed, poorly presented etc etc and merit. If we demanded perfection on every element then only 100 scoring prints would merit. You can pass a class without a perfect score. A merit image does not have to be perfect. A loan image does not have to be perfect either. What does need to happen is the strengths need to combine to create an overall successful image. the weaknesses need to be minor enough that they do not outweigh the strengths. But we are getting off the topic of creativity here.

It's funny that you say you are seeing many images in the Showcase book that would be considered regular portraits because we hear a complaint over and over that a regular portrait won't do well in competition. Just goes to show that everybody is going to find images in the print show that support their own preconcieved notion as to how the competition is slanted.

Keith

Rick_Massarini
08-31-2010, 06:26 AM
I'm currently looking through the first PPA Showcase book and I see a lot of images that are what many would consider to be regular portraits. Great images but nothing new or creative about them. Am I getting the right impression when I see that it can lack creativity but it really has to make up for it in overall quality?

The key word here, Greg, is that you are looking through the FIRST Showcase book. What was creative five years ago might be considered mundane and trite today - and what is creative today might not be considered creative two or three years from now when everyone has copied the image and there are a hundred similar images in the competition (like the pregnant mother belly photo). What is creative today might be trite next year or the year after. The main thing about creativity is to try to do something that has not been done before - and that's difficult - but that is what the basis of creativity is all about - being creative - not copying what was done in the previous years publications. That is what makes the judges sit up and say "WOW"...
And WOW equals LOAN !!

GregYager
08-31-2010, 06:32 AM
Now my brain is spinning trying to think of a new and creative way to create a portrait. This is a good thing btw.

GregYager
08-31-2010, 06:55 AM
I shot this image of my grandson recently when I was starting to feel burned out. He gets a kick out of feeling like a "giant" when I use the wide angle lens. I'm simply posting it so we can use it to either show creativity or the lack thereof.
It's full of technical flaws and I don't mind them being pointed out so feel free to use it in describing good or bad points.

Rick_Massarini
08-31-2010, 07:10 AM
Dude (yeah, I'm havin' a Doug Gifford moment here) - you can't possibly be old enough to have a grandson ...or maybe you married when you were 13... So anyway, consider this your official welcome to the fraternity of the old farts... (just you, me and Joe - because everyone else is obviously much younger...)

Anyway - very creative image - nice lighting - nice use of the wide angle for a different look in a portrait image.. The arm positions are kind of strange, but that goes along with the unusual lighting and lens choice...

Marc_Benjamin
08-31-2010, 07:11 AM
The Creativity element is probably one of the last elements that someone understands. The only real way to know if your work is indeed original and fresh is if you've been exposed to whats already been entered. Even so, chances are someone else had already done whatever you think is new in the past. I think that people who succeed in the creativity portion not only remembers what's been entered but develops a feel of the patterns of what's being entered and what's not.

Now on the flipside, there are some people who's work has not been tainted and corrupted by all the cookie cutting / this is how you light/pose workshops and the likes. While they are rare, people who do truly unique and creative work (without having to actually think about it) do exist.


Does someone have a sample of a merit image we can go by to discuss it's creative element?


Ok, I'll bite,

http://www.kickstep.com/marcssamples/05printcomp/16x20BenchedBride.jpg
"Benched"

Here's an image that was the top wedding image at State and then the Western states Region during the 04/05 competition cycles. In addition, it also went Loan and (if anyone cares) scored high at WPPI as well.

While not truly groundbreaking, one of the re-occurring comments was that of the images creative use of a simple bench for a bridal image.

Now when I look at this, I suppose it was creative enough during the 04/05 competition cycles but I don't think it will get to loan at next years comp.

GregYager
08-31-2010, 07:19 AM
I'm 46yo Rick. I credit the pose to him because all i did was tell him to be a rock star and he started striking poses while I shot. I do this on occasion as a stress reliever.

I've been working with wide angle lately and trying to come up with different ways to use bold colors is some of my work. That image is SOOC so I'm sure some digital enhancements would give it more "pop".

Thanks for the compliment btw...I'm truly honored. :cool:

Rick_Massarini
08-31-2010, 07:28 AM
46! - heck, you're just a kid ! ...you still have 13 good years until you get to my age ... so maybe you aren't really an old fart after all... you Lucky Guy... you've still got a lot of great years ahead of you !!! Anyway, my opinion sill stands... nice stuff...

I just wish that PPA had this forum 13 years ago for me to learn from. I could have been a whole lot better than I am now, with 13 years of picking the brains of the forum members in my basket...

Misty_Cromer
08-31-2010, 07:35 AM
Creativity is using your imagination to come up with something different but who is to say you will like my work or I will like your work? So how do we get people to like our creativity? Can we? Do you have to see your subject or thing before you are creative? Do you have to have a feeling for your subject?

GregYager
08-31-2010, 07:44 AM
That's a great image Marc. Love the angles, cropping, simple bench(the straight element that make the angles work even better), the subtle border and overall quality. I can see why that one went Loan.

Rick_Massarini
08-31-2010, 07:49 AM
Creativity is Creativity - and there is no guarantee that what you have created has not been created before by someone else... It all depends on how it hits the judge when they first view the image...

Which kind of points us back to another of the 12 Elements - Impact - but we're not on that element yet - but in reality, all of the 12 0f the points do kind of all run together at some point or another... But right now, we're talking about Creativity....

Marc_Benjamin
08-31-2010, 07:54 AM
Creativity is Creativity - and there is no guarantee that what you have created has not been created before by someone else... It all depends on how it hits the judge when they first view the image...


Actually, there are some guarantees. Example, I imagine the day when the first portrait of a bride/groom or senior on the lunar landscape will come. Whoever get's to turn that in (granted all the other elements are in play) would likely get a corner.

Rick_Massarini
08-31-2010, 08:30 AM
OK - I guess that if I were the first photographer to cover a lunar wedding (talk about opportunistic creativity) I would assume that those images would quite definitelty hang - but what about the second one - the creativity would no longer be a factor in those images since they had been done before.....
In the words of my all time favorite rock group - The Bare Naked Ladies... (A Canadian Rock Band...)
It's all been done... It's all been done... It's all been done before...
So ...Just because it's been done before doesn't mean that outstanding execution of that image NOW doesn't demand recognition...
Even if it's been done before, if it's done exceptionally well, it sill demands recognition...

Marc_Benjamin
08-31-2010, 08:39 AM
So ...Just because it's been done before doesn't mean that outstanding execution of that image NOW doesn't demand recognition...

We're still exploring the Creativity (original/fresh) element. Outstanding execution I believe falls in within the Technique element.

Another example of what could be high in the creativity element: You've been in print comp for what 30 years now right? Have you ever seen an image of b/g...

Rick_Massarini
08-31-2010, 08:43 AM
Still in creativity original/fresh. Outstanding execution I believe falls in within the Technique criteria.

Another example of what could be high in the creativity element: You've been in print comp for what 30 years now right? Have you ever seen an image of b/g
I don't quite understand the question - please restate it ...

Marc_Benjamin
08-31-2010, 08:59 AM
I don't quite understand the question - please restate it ...

I wasn't done typing (hit submit by accident) then all of the sudden it occurred to me that the idea is actually doable so I'm keeping that one to myself for the time being. lol

Rick_Massarini
08-31-2010, 10:12 AM
OK, Marc, so let's keep this conversation going by saying how would you put a creative spin on it if you were to be the second photographer to cover a lunar wedding....now that's a location job I would love to book - heck, I'd even pay the bride to let me shoot it !!!

Marc_Benjamin
08-31-2010, 10:19 AM
OK, Marc, so let's keep this conversation going by saying how would you put a creative spin on it if you were to be the second photographer to cover a lunar wedding....

I got dibs on the first Lunar Dove Release.

Rick_Massarini
08-31-2010, 10:23 AM
awwww... I really wanted to shoot that one...

OK - back to Creativity - we've taken it too far off topic...

Hey, Doves are really good in a Sauce picante" with some bell peppers and Vidalia Onions... oh sorry, I digress

GregYager
08-31-2010, 02:06 PM
Just to give you guys some feedback because I think I'm one of the greenest here when it comes to competition here is the interpretation of what I see creativity as based on what I've been reading here.

Creativity isn't necessarily what you see but rather how you see it.

Creativity can play a key role in several elements and still not be the main element of an image.

Creativity can also be the use of many basic elements in an image in a way that is not normally seen such as the image Marc shared that used a simple bench to create a stunning result.

As for the first wedding image on the moon...well I would have to credit that creativity to the wedding planner that got you there. What you did to utilize the new elements would be a sign of your creativity. B/G standing on the moon....well the only thing new is location. B/G jumping for joy 30 feet above the crowd, creative.

Am I on track here?

Tss1203
08-31-2010, 02:35 PM
Okay, it's making a little bit more sense now!

Not to say that I don't know how to be creative ;)

Misty_Cromer
08-31-2010, 03:27 PM
This is some of my creativity.

http://i592.photobucket.com/albums/tt6/cherishedphotos/six-1.jpg


http://i592.photobucket.com/albums/tt6/cherishedphotos/three-1.jpg



http://i592.photobucket.com/albums/tt6/cherishedphotos/two-1.jpg


http://i592.photobucket.com/albums/tt6/cherishedphotos/one-2.jpg

Joe_Campanellie
08-31-2010, 03:33 PM
That's the beauty of competition though...it is always changing and evolving as techniques and styles come and go. And as such...it forces you to evolve and change also as a photographer. What we did three or four years ago may not even merit now.

Misty_Cromer
08-31-2010, 03:33 PM
My son I had him pose for me.

http://i592.photobucket.com/albums/tt6/cherishedphotos/eight.jpg

My oldest daughter posed for me.
http://i592.photobucket.com/albums/tt6/cherishedphotos/nine.jpg


My youngest girl posing.
http://i592.photobucket.com/albums/tt6/cherishedphotos/ten.jpg


I love these portraits. Its so hard to take portraits of your own children.

Marc_Benjamin
08-31-2010, 07:37 PM
This is some of my creativity.


I love these portraits. Its so hard to take portraits of your own children.

Ok, now using these as examples for the Creativity Element at print competition, can you elaborate on how a judge can see that these are Creative, Original and/or Fresh?

GregYager
09-01-2010, 12:45 AM
I'm thinking maybe she's gonna do that at a later time.

Misty_Cromer
09-01-2010, 05:04 AM
Marc,
No way I would put these portraits in print competiton. I have a long was to go I thought I would just share my photos. :)

Tss1203
09-01-2010, 10:44 PM
Ok, now using these as examples for the Creativity Element at print competition, can you elaborate on how a judge can see that these are Creative, Original and/or Fresh?

and this is where I struggle. Maybe I under estimate my work, or over analyze print comp. But finding stuff that is competition worthy creatively I really have a hard time with. I feel like everything falls short in one way or another.

Marc_Benjamin
09-01-2010, 10:51 PM
and this is where I struggle. Maybe I under estimate my work, or over analyze print comp. But finding stuff that is competition worthy creatively I really have a hard time with. I feel like everything falls short in one way or another.

This is why I mentioned earlier that the creativity element is one of the last ones that a contestant is likely to get a good handle on. Bringing something unique and fresh to the comp is very different to doing something unique and fresh for ourselves.

Tss1203
09-01-2010, 11:20 PM
This is why I mentioned earlier that the creativity element is one of the last ones that a contestant is likely to get a good handle on. Bringing something unique and fresh to the comp is very different to doing something unique and fresh for ourselves.

I would agree Marc.....
How creative is considered "good enough"? Should we just try our best? I know there is no easy answer...but it would make it easier if there was ;)

GregYager
09-01-2010, 11:58 PM
Amy,

Try stepping outside of your comfort zone. By this I mean shoot in places you normally wouldn't shoot. Shoot things you normally wouldn't shoot. Look for new ways to capture an image, feeling or thought. Stick to the basics of quality but let your imagination run.

Marc_Benjamin
09-02-2010, 12:15 AM
How about making the mount a hexagon instead of the normal square or rectangle.

GregYager
09-02-2010, 01:19 AM
You know what Marc... I really like the way you think.

Rick_Massarini
09-02-2010, 01:27 AM
How about making the mount a hexagon instead of the normal square or rectangle.

...never seen a hexagonal mount - but from a handling point of view - those round ones are killers - they just keep rolling out onto the floors...

GregYager
09-02-2010, 01:33 AM
Are you telling me round has already been done Rick? If so then it's back to the drawing board.

GregYager
09-02-2010, 01:53 AM
This may be a dumb question but are the images from this year's IPC posted anywhere online?

Rick_Massarini
09-02-2010, 02:22 AM
Yep - round has been done before - ovals too. I've seen just about every shape you can imagine - except a hexagon - can't say I ever remember seeing one of those - the real interesting ones are the triangular ones with the point at the bottom - try putting one of those on a judging rack - and try hanging one for exhibition on a Walker Rod. Those really odd size ones aren't usually exhibited since they get damaged when they fall out of the racks and get the corners all bent up...

Rick_Massarini
09-02-2010, 02:33 AM
This may be a dumb question but are the images from this year's IPC posted anywhere online?

Nope, the PPA General Exhibit is not posted on line. The Loan Collection and the Showcase Book Collection are available in book form from PPA through Marathon Press.

If you want to see a part of the Loan Collection, you can go to the ASP website and look at the ASP Masters Loan Collection slide show. This is a part of the Loan Collection that is comprised of images whose makers are both Masters and members of the ASP. The link below will bring you to the ASP portfolio page - then you can click on which year's slide show you want to watch...

http://www.asofp-online.com/portfolio.asp

GregYager
09-02-2010, 02:46 AM
Thanks Rick. That's exactly what I was looking for. I'm a visual person so I need things like that to get me thinking. I don't look to shoot the things I see but rather get a feel for where others have found inspiration.

Joe_Campanellie
09-02-2010, 03:33 AM
Amy,

Try stepping outside of your comfort zone. By this I mean shoot in places you normally wouldn't shoot. Shoot things you normally wouldn't shoot. Look for new ways to capture an image, feeling or thought. Stick to the basics of quality but let your imagination run.

And that is exactly how I discovered my avian and nature photography. By stepping way out of my comfort zone and forcing myself out of my box. I was pretty burned out with my portrait work. Just about ready to pack it in when my wife sent me to a class in Florida. Boy...did my creativity and passion get a shot in the arm.

You know that old saying...when the student is ready...the teacher will appear. And that sure was the case for me.

Now I don't consider myself a creative genius by any means. I'm sure that a lot of people look at my images and say..."it's just birds". But it sure got me excited about photography again. Besides my wife loves it when I drag her along to the Florida swamps and Alaska when it's 30 degrees below zero and you spend the week dodging volcanoes and volcanic ash.

Now that's just plain fun...at least for me!

Rick_Massarini
09-02-2010, 04:05 AM
I've been thinking about doing some wildlilfe photography - maybe I'll go down to the French Quarter this weekend...

Missy50
09-02-2010, 04:18 AM
I've been thinking about doing some wildlilfe photography - maybe I'll go down to the French Quarter this weekend...

That is about as wild as it gets.

Rick_Massarini
09-02-2010, 04:33 AM
That is about as wild as it gets.

If you knew what was going on down in the French Quarter THIS weekend, you'd know what I mean. It just doesn't get any wilder...
But now... back to Creativity...

Keith_A_Howe
09-02-2010, 04:46 AM
Maybe a little explanation of how a print is judged will help explain how creativity (and the other 11 elements) fit into the final score.

When a print spins around, the first thing a judge does is decide which catergory they want to place an image in. FYI the catergories are

Exceptional 100-95
Superior 94-90
Excellant 89-85
Deserving of a merit 84-80
Deserving of Review 79-78
Above average 77-76
Average 75-74
Acceptable 73-70
Below exhibition standards 69-00

Once we select a catergory, then we decide where in that catergory we want it to fall. For example, we may feel it is deserving of a merit, so then we consider if it is strongly deserving of a merit and should be 84 or just barely a merit at 80 or somewhere in the middle at 82 or 83. That's the score we enter.

We DO NOT add up points or subtract points to arrive at a score. The number refers to a position on a scale not a total if that makes sense. So we never look at a print and say xx points for composition plus xx points for technical excellance plus xx and so on. So as this applies to creativity, you do not "lose" points for presenting an image in a timeless or common way - you just don't help yourself either. Each element is a tool you can use to create the final total image. Using an element poorly may effect the overall score because it will position the print in a lower catergory. But not being new or not being fresh is not a detriment. Being stale or trite or contrived won't hold a print down, it just won't lift a print up. If an image has been done before a million times in the same way, you have to rely on other elements to do the job of raising the print to a higher level.

I hope this helps.
Keith

Keith_A_Howe
09-02-2010, 04:47 AM
If you knew what was going on down in the French Quarter THIS weekend, you'd know what I mean.

So????? will there be some creating going on? Or just some creative thinking?

Keith

Tss1203
09-02-2010, 04:56 AM
Amy,

Try stepping outside of your comfort zone. By this I mean shoot in places you normally wouldn't shoot. Shoot things you normally wouldn't shoot. Look for new ways to capture an image, feeling or thought. Stick to the basics of quality but let your imagination run.

lol, actually this is how I shoot all the time :) I get bored very easily so I'm always looking for new poses, locations, techniques, etc. What I have trouble w/is creating something new and fresh that hasn't been done before.

Tss1203
09-02-2010, 05:03 AM
Maybe a little explanation of how a print is judged will help explain how creativity (and the other 11 elements) fit into the final score.

When a print spins around, the first thing a judge does is decide which catergory they want to place an image in. FYI the catergories are


We DO NOT add up points or subtract points to arrive at a score. The number refers to a position on a scale not a total if that makes sense. So we never look at a print and say xx points for composition plus xx points for technical excellance plus xx and so on. So as this applies to creativity, you do not "lose" points for presenting an image in a timeless or common way - you just don't help yourself either. Each element is a tool you can use to create the final total image. Using an element poorly may effect the overall score because it will position the print in a lower catergory. But not being new or not being fresh is not a detriment. Being stale or trite or contrived won't hold a print down, it just won't lift a print up. If an image has been done before a million times in the same way, you have to rely on other elements to do the job of raising the print to a higher level.

I hope this helps.
Keith

Thank you Keith. That totally helps me understand much, much better!


I get all these elaborate creative ideas in my mind, but it can never translate into real life shooting for me. I would need the right models, the right days, the right locations, etc. It just never seems to culminate into anything.

Maybe I need a personal assignment.

Missy50
09-02-2010, 05:04 AM
If you knew what was going on down in the French Quarter THIS weekend, you'd know what I mean. It just doesn't get any wilder...

When I was 8 or 9 I was w/my aunt and uncle on some street (I will not tell my age, but this was a long time ago, pre camille). I looked in a window (it was evening, the streets were crowded) and there was a nekkid painted lady dancing on the bar. My aunt and uncle became seeing eye dogs to my sister and I at that point until we got to a safer viewing area. So I can only imagine.
When I told my mom about it, she was so mad at my aunt.

Missy50
09-02-2010, 05:09 AM
So????? will there be some creating going on? Or just some creative thinking?

Keith

Keith, uhh.... I will scan a photo I took down there about 20-25 years ago and email it to you. It was in the middle of the day, and about this time of year. I would post it publicly, but I did not get a model release. :D

Missy50
09-02-2010, 05:12 AM
lol, actually this is how I shoot all the time :) I get bored very easily so I'm always looking for new poses, locations, techniques, etc. What I have trouble w/is creating something new and fresh that hasn't been done before.

Love the new avatar.

Rick_Massarini
09-02-2010, 05:21 AM
So????? will there be some creating going on? Or just some creative thinking?

Keith

Keith - PM...

Keith_A_Howe
09-02-2010, 05:42 AM
Keith, uhh.... I will scan a photo I took down there about 20-25 years ago and email it to you. It was in the middle of the day, and about this time of year. I would post it publicly, but I did not get a model release. :D


Keith - PM...

I've been there guys, I know what goes on. I was trying to be funny and I guess I wasn't.

Keith

Rick_Massarini
09-02-2010, 06:24 AM
Hey, I asked if I could get stupid and have fun with it.. you didn't tell me no - so hey, I'm gonna run with it from time to time... ya' gotta' have fun somewhere - and I'm stuck in this boring town !!!
OK - sorry about the diversion of the thread - now - back to creativity -

GregYager
09-02-2010, 07:46 AM
Actually Rick you may be on to something. Humor that is. That's one thing I noticed that seemed to be missing from the Loan Collection prints I've been viewing. I'm sure humorous images have made the collection before but I'm thinking there's not nearly enough.

They say laughter is the best medicine so I say let's stick an IV in this thing and fill-r-up!

Rick_Massarini
09-02-2010, 07:59 AM
Greg, you'll soon find out that I have the absolute lamest sense of humor of anyone on the forum - I'll make a joke out of just about ANYTHING - or at least I'll try - and if I can make you groan - just because the pun was soooooo bad, then I feel that I've succeeded !!! I guess it's just from living down here in N'Awlins for so long...

Rick_Massarini
09-02-2010, 08:17 AM
Actually Rick you may be on to something. Humor that is. That's one thing I noticed that seemed to be missing from the Loan Collection prints I've been viewing. I'm sure humorous images have made the collection before but I'm thinking there's not nearly enough.

Actually, thee have been a few that I can remember from past loan collections -curiously, most of them include animals -

one of a dog bobsledding (by Shirlene Higbie)
one of a dog on a toilet (by David Wacker)
and one of a dog taking a portrait of another dog (by Paul Tsang)
and one of two turtles on a rock (by Peter Dyer)

Stephanie_Millner
09-02-2010, 08:34 AM
Actually Rick you may be on to something. Humor that is. That's one thing I noticed that seemed to be missing from the Loan Collection prints I've been viewing. I'm sure humorous images have made the collection before but I'm thinking there's not nearly enough.

They say laughter is the best medicine so I say let's stick an IV in this thing and fill-r-up!

:( My rat in a glass (entitled "Healthcode Violation") I thought was pretty humorous!

GregYager
09-02-2010, 01:58 PM
Was that in this year's IPC Steff?

Keith_A_Howe
09-02-2010, 04:18 PM
"original, fresh"

How many close ups of flowers have we all seen in print competition? So here is an example of a different ( creative?) close up of a flower. This was a loan print for me in 2002. FWIW this was done in camera, the only PS work was adjusting color balance and maybe I tweaked exposure a little - don't remember that for sure. It is not a montage or composite.

http://i131.photobucket.com/albums/p308/imager410/InFocus.jpg

If I can think of any more examples of common subjects potrayed in original ways I'll post them. Te challenge is I don't have access to any images but my own.

Keith

ChontelleBrown
09-02-2010, 04:59 PM
Here is one of my images from this year. It merited, but did not go loan.

Keith told me at print mentoring that he had not seen this in competition previously. So, perhaps it falls under creativity?? I try to shoot 'something different' at each session, usually different angles.

Here is a quote from Sam Gardner that I have printed and carry with me. I try to remember to read it before my sessions.

"Art is almost never an image of something extraordinary, but rather it is almost always an image of something quite common, yet seen with extraordinary vision or captured at a time of extraordinary light" Sam Gardner adapted from James Wood

Chontelle

http://www.cottonblossoms.net/comp_laughlin_final.jpg

Missy50
09-02-2010, 05:01 PM
I thought it was funny. My humor is dry.

And you can get very creative w/photography in the quarters. Always something interesting.

Keith_A_Howe
09-02-2010, 05:29 PM
Keith told me at print mentoring that he had not seen this in competition previously. So, perhaps it falls under creativity?? I try to shoot 'something different' at each session, usually different angles.


Yes, I would say that falls under creativity. So my flower and your baby are both examples of somewhat common subjects looked at in a different way. Anybody have an example of original subject matter? Or original technique. To get you thinking here are some subjects and techniques that were fresh and original when they first started popping up in competition

Subject matter
pregnant women
wrinkled old men
boudoir ( going back 25 years there!)
trash the dress sessions

Technique
Lucuis filter
poloroid manipulation
texture screens sandwiched with the negative
Betrami effect
spot color

Keith

GregYager
09-02-2010, 05:32 PM
The flower image really rocks Keith! Was this a shot you set out to capture or did you come across it while shooting?

Angela_Lawson
09-02-2010, 05:43 PM
I was going to mention Steff's images from this year, but she beat me to it. :)

Keith, I absolutely love that image. My question is this...Did you see that in your mind's eye first and then create it, or did you actually see the image first, and go from there? That's where I seem to be struggling right now. Lack of ideas that haven't already been done a thousand times, AND really not seeing anything new to create. Having been on hiatus from the back surgeries last year and the move in May, I'm struggling to get my creativity back. But for Print Comp. I'm not even sure of whether I should be "trying to create" or "watching for something to create"? Does that make sense?

Oh, and for what it's worth, I do think that educational workshops and seminars definitely help with one's creativity. Before Imaging USA in Tampa, I had never considered Newborns or Infant/Toddler programs. Now newborns/ Babies are one of my favorite things to photograph.

Stephanie_Millner
09-02-2010, 05:56 PM
love Love LOVE both those images! Chontelle, consider that image copied the next time I have a white pug in here. :) Keith, I'd copy yours too, but that technique is far beyond me.

Since Greg asked, here's the rat I was talking about. I guess she would also qualify as creative subject matter, but moreso for conceptual impact. Or I'm talking out of my you know where...

http://www.stephaniemillner.net/blogimages/5124643_healthcode_violation.jpg

Angela_Lawson
09-02-2010, 06:13 PM
So, Steff, what made you think to create this image? Did the client come to you with this idea, or did you think it up yourself? If you thought it up yourself, how did you come up with the idea to say, "you know, I think it would look great to put a rat in a glass, amongst a bunch of other glasses"? This is where I really struggle. That initial stage of coming up with a "Gotcha" moment of creative thinking.

BTW - I love this image. I wish I had thought of it, but since it's already been done, can we use your image as the "FIRST", and try to come up with creative ideas to make it new and fresh the next time someone/you does it again. Example: Use colored pieces of glass and a colored background, and shoot him from a different angle such as above. Just throwing it out there. Anyone else want to try?

Keith_A_Howe
09-02-2010, 06:16 PM
The flower image really rocks Keith! Was this a shot you set out to capture or did you come across it while shooting?



I was going to mention Steff's images from this year, but she beat me to it. :)

Keith, I absolutely love that image. My question is this...Did you see that in your mind's eye first and then create it, or did you actually see the image first, and go from there?

It was created in the camera room. I saw a different image that inspired this. It's not a copy of that other image, more like an "hey, I could use that idea to do this. So the answer is yes, I saw it in my head first and then set out to make it happen. There is no right or wrong way to go about it. Either you stumble across an opportunity and you can "see" it for what it can be. Or you imagine something in your head and make it happen. Whichever way you go, it's all good.



That's where I seem to be struggling right now. Lack of ideas that haven't already been done a thousand times, AND really not seeing anything new to create. Having been on hiatus from the back surgeries last year and the move in May, I'm struggling to get my creativity back. But for Print Comp. I'm not even sure of whether I should be "trying to create" or "watching for something to create"? Does that make sense?.

Angela, you've seen that aconym GIGO meaning garbage in=garbage out. I prefer to think of it as good in=good out. The more you look at stuff, the more images you put in your head the more inspiration will come out. Feed your brain just like you feed your stomach.


Oh, and for what it's worth, I do think that educational workshops and seminars definitely help with one's creativity. Before Imaging USA in Tampa, I had never considered Newborns or Infant/Toddler programs. Now newborns/ Babies are one of my favorite things to photograph.

You know what works for me? I clean out my camera room. I never fail to find some background or piece of fabric or a small prop that got lost in the clutter. When I get reminded of what I have to work with, it gets me started thinking about what I could do with it.

Keith_A_Howe
09-02-2010, 06:19 PM
BTW - I love this image. I wish I had thought of it,

Anybody want to bet how many rats we will see entered next year?

keith

GregYager
09-02-2010, 06:57 PM
Steff,

Love the rat girl!!! I didn't realize you had posted it til I saw Keith comment on it so I went back through the thread. You nailed it on that one. I love the way the only color in the image is the rat.

Missy50
09-02-2010, 07:33 PM
Steff, the placement of the glasses are so important as well. In other words, your photograph is not just a "rat in a glass", but a thought out, well designed photograph, or rather, portrait of a pet for a pet owner.

Rick_Massarini
09-02-2010, 07:33 PM
Mnay years ago, I entered a similar image - a high key of a White Himalayan Kitten in a white coffee mug with a decidedly feminine tilt to her head - I titled it "Coffee, Tea or Me-ow... the judges didn't hang it and the critique came back that it was a beautiful creative image, but was "too contrived", Steff's image is a good example of how the perspective has changed over time - an obviously contrived image, but creativity won out and it went Loan. In reality, most creative images are contrived since they were not just merely captured, they were created. I'd post it, but it's a 25+ year old print that I would have to copy first... maybe I'll take a quick snapshot of it tonight and post it later...

Missy50
09-02-2010, 07:34 PM
Keith, That is a beautiful flower photograph.

Tss1203
09-02-2010, 09:29 PM
Keith, that image is truly inspiring. Thank you for sharing it!

Tss1203
09-02-2010, 09:43 PM
thank you Missy :)

Joe_Campanellie
09-02-2010, 11:40 PM
Years ago when my wife first started working on her Master Artist Degree she used a technique for some loan prints that she learned from Joyce Wilson. Kind of like Polaroid manipulation but with a whole different spin.

The short version was that she would make a colored zerox of an image...transfer it to water color paper... and then go in and hand color the image the old fashioned way with dyes and pencils.

I think these images did very well for her because it was something different that had not been in front of the artist judges. Wish I had a sample but they are all original works and would probably scan pretty awful.

Joe_Campanellie
09-02-2010, 11:44 PM
Keith...love your flower image but...are you actually telling me you can get loan prints without heavy PS manipulation. I thought that was impossible...!

Keith knows I'm kidding...I hope! I get accused of that all the time (digital manipulation) of my avian images when all I have done is tweak the exposure.

As a friend of mine told me...I didn't put the fish in the birds mouth...the fish was already there. The really hard part was putting the bird in there...!

Joe_Campanellie
09-02-2010, 11:49 PM
Anybody want to bet how many rats we will see entered next year?

keith

Probably quite a few...probably a few eagles here and there too...!

Tss1203
09-02-2010, 11:55 PM
so this is what I'm realizing-
1. don't over analyze each element. Sometimes a great image is not a perfect image :)

2. shoot for yourself sometimes. We've been really busy this summer (yahoo!) but it's burned me out from wanting to pick up the camera and take photos just for me. Not to say client images won't merit or go loan, sometimes we have to photograph "just for us" to keep creative (at least I do!).


I appreciate everyone sharing their images. It helps me get a handle on what to strive for creatively in terms of print comp. I'll look around and see if I have any rough images I feel would demonstrate 'creativity'.

Actually, what I have a hard time with is having enough time/and or situations on my shoots to really execute my visions perfectly. For example we have this arrangement we've done only once for a wedding of the whole wedding party. It requires all the stars to be aligned to get exactly what I'm looking for. While the one time we tried the pose it turned out okay, I'm really striving for it to be perfect, lol! Hopefully soon the God's will smile on us and we'll be able to accomplish it the way I want! We shall see ;)

Keith_A_Howe
09-03-2010, 12:30 AM
As a friend of mine told me...I didn't put the fish in the birds mouth...the fish was already there. The really hard part was putting the bird in there...!

Sounds like something Randy McNeilly would say! He still accuses me of carting a stuffed mountain lion all the way to the top of the mountain.

Keith

Rick_Massarini
09-03-2010, 02:30 AM
Sounds like something Randy McNeilly would say! He still accuses me of carting a stuffed mountain lion all the way to the top of the mountain.

Keith

I think that Jeff spilled the beans on you at the Judging class when Randy was sitting in on the panel... (yeah - just me trying to start some s---).

And I bet he was stuffed after you finished feeding him all those steaks... at least you didn't get eaten...

Joe_Campanellie
09-03-2010, 05:11 AM
Sounds like something Randy McNeilly would say! He still accuses me of carting a stuffed mountain lion all the way to the top of the mountain.

Keith

Actually it was Jim Chagares in my case.

That's funny about the stuffed mountain lion though...! Sounds like something Randy would say knowing his humor. Never used a stuffed bird but sure have been accused of it a few times.

Stephanie_Millner
09-03-2010, 07:47 AM
Wow, a girl goes to sleep for a few hours...

Angela, it kind of came from another rat image in a martini glass I had laying around the studio. Then I ran out to the kitchen and bought in a bunch of other glasses, and had one I really liked from that. But John Metcalfe pointed out that the rat wasn't looking straight at camera (rather, up his nose), so at the second shoot for this client (she has like a billion rats, and it was split up over 4 days), I redid the same concept. She didn't buy it. Sigh. She didn't buy the other one either, but that rat was kind of a jerk and she had to give him away. He was attacking his other cage-mates.

As for initial moment of thinking... There are only so many small clear restraining devices you can put a rat in to impede running into your air conditioning vents... so it was kind of out of necessity.

Keith_A_Howe
09-03-2010, 02:47 PM
Actually Steff, it was me who told you to reshoot it because the rat was looking up. John might have said something too.

Keith

Stephanie_Millner
09-03-2010, 03:11 PM
Oh yeah. That's right - yeah, I think both of you did. Anyway, glad I listened. :)

GregYager
09-05-2010, 05:54 PM
So what's our next element?

Keith_A_Howe
09-05-2010, 06:47 PM
I was waiting to get through the holiday weekend to start the next one. But beings you are eager I will do it now.

Keith