Author Topic: Toward a Personal Style - Assignment for 26 Jan through 12 February  (Read 1859 times)

prairiedust

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Most of the regular contributors here have unusually strong ties to photography. They have stayed with it for years, spent large sums of money on equipment or processing, have struggled to improve in both skill and art. At the core is some type of magnetic attraction which is unique to each of us.

This assignment is an invitation to explore that and share it with the rest of us.

There are some dimensions you can explore here, for example:

  • What style of photography do I most admire and wish to do myself?
  • What have I done, so far, that is the most satisfying?


Personal style is a mix of all of these facets playing out - our preferred type of equipment, personal taste, favorite subject matter, how we see color, how we see our world, our limitations as well as our areas of expertise, our sense of artfulness... Lars' images on this site are great examples, and always express a unique style.  Do you admire and wish to express technical expertise with careful attention to composition, or do you prefer a very loose approach?  There is no One Right Path in photography, you blaze your own.

I like things that feel more casual, almost accidental, with some randomness (or weediness) to them. My own attraction to photography was sparked by simple black and white snapshots taken with a Brownie. On a family trip to California, when I was very young, I carried with me a little black snapshot camera, and scoured beach and tide pools. After the pictures were developed one my favorite images was taken near the steps at the front of our cabin, with a starfish on one of the concrete steps, and a couple legs dangling in space (I suppose the person was hanging over the porch railing).  I thought it was one of the most beautiful things I've ever seen, though it would have seemed a failure to anyone else.  To this day, a half century later, that image still haunts and guides my sense of what photography should be for me, as has the work of many of my favorite photographers and artists.   So, I often have to look at what I do and ask if I am doing what I find meaningful or do I, too often, just do what comes easily?  What can I do to keep photography rewarding, and arising out of an authentic personal style?

For the next two weeks, think deeply about what photography means to you, about your favorite style, create an image or two to express that, then share it with us.


Barn Dissolving - Dave Leiker
« Last Edit: January 26, 2012, 10:47:36 AM by prairiedust »
Dave Leiker (PrairieDust)
Exploring the Rural Midwest

keithsnell

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Re: Toward a Personal Style - Assignment for 26 Jan through 12 February
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2012, 09:15:24 AM »
Awesome assignment Dave.  Thank you.

Michele

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Re: Toward a Personal Style - Assignment for 26 Jan through 12 February
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2012, 10:38:21 AM »
Although it's going to have to wait until next week, I am looking forward to doing it.  Thank you, Dave, for the personal story that goes along with the assignment too.

prairiedust

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Re: Toward a Personal Style - Assignment for 26 Jan through 12 February
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2012, 10:51:51 AM »
Great!  I was hoping it wasn't too nebulous.  It's good to hear from you Keith, and we really miss your input when you're away.  Now, when you name pops up here it brings a special excitement, like when Tarzan bursts out of the trees to save the jungle.
Dave Leiker (PrairieDust)
Exploring the Rural Midwest

sue.pepin

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Re: Toward a Personal Style - Assignment for 26 Jan through 12 February
« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2012, 03:22:09 PM »
Dave, that is a great picture of the barn.  It brings to mind kreppy things inside, like spiders and zombies.  Would be a perfect settting for a horror movie.

prairiedust

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Re: Toward a Personal Style - Assignment for 26 Jan through 12 February
« Reply #5 on: January 26, 2012, 03:57:54 PM »
Thanks Sue, the barn is totally flat now.  It was just on the edge of town so it was easy to watch it over the years as it gradually "dissolved".  It was (still is) a creepy place, especially when I'm out there in the woods alone.
Dave Leiker (PrairieDust)
Exploring the Rural Midwest

prairiedust

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Re: Toward a Personal Style - Assignment for 26 Jan through 12 February
« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2012, 03:16:55 PM »
I enjoyed everyone's entries in the "Toward a Personal Style" assignment.  It isn't one that lends itself to judging a "best of", rather it was opportunity to freely share more of our personal vision and aspirations. So I'm not intending to put up a poll this time. You were all winners. Wonderful, everyone.  
Dave Leiker (PrairieDust)
Exploring the Rural Midwest