<<< o >>>metal hand 13 comments + add yours

A little while ago I had a discussion regarding the value of running a commenting system, and it was pointed out to me that one of the major problems with them is that they can give you an impression of your work that may well be at odds with the value of that work. Or, less obscurely, that you can post something you like, that subsequently gets little or no feedback, and you are led to conclude that its value is less than you thought.

And while such a view is congruent with the idea of artistic integrity – post what you know is good and hang the critics – I don’t think I’ve reached such a lofty artistic position quite yet ;-)

All of which is a rather long-winded way of saying that perhaps yesterday’s entry wasn’t up to much. And I’m not convinced that today’s effort is massively better. This one is the result of experimenting with i) an embossed aluminium door, ii) the reflection of my hand, and iii) around five copies of the image set to overlay blend mode. And, as with yesterday’s entry, I don’t think this is a particularly wonderful image, but I did think it was sufficiently interesting to put up.

capture date
shutter speed
shooting mode
exposure bias
metering mode
focal length
image quality
white balance
optical filter
Canon G5
12.09am on 20/3/04
aperture priority
B+W UV 010
4x3 + self-portrait
comment by Mike Golding at 10:09 AM (GMT) on 28 March, 2004

I like it. Actually looks like amber glass with the hand underneath, and in fact to me actually looks more like child's hand than an adults ;-) (do you have small hands).

On the point of comments, I don't think you can dwell too much on that sort of thing, you shouldn't, sometimes people just don't have the time. If you dwell on it you'll end up only taking pictures of what you think other people will like rather than what you like.

comment by bsag at 10:47 AM (GMT) on 28 March, 2004

Whoa - this is stunning! I love the semi-abstract quality and the warm colour.

And I second what Mike Golding said: I've been amazed at the quality of your images for weeks, but I've been busy with a project and haven't had the time to comment, or I've felt that all I can say is "I love it", which others have already said. If I don't have something novel to say, I tend not to comment. So don't take silence for disapproval!

comment by Alan at 01:58 PM (GMT) on 28 March, 2004

Don't sweat it ... your illustrations are compelling, and shots like that on 26 March give you plenty of room for material that may not match your highest aspirations. And, as someone who's been working with blogs for a long time in many different forms, I'd remind you that the desire to post daily can push the creativity of those who simply blog in prose or links, let alone those who shoot and Photoshop.

So have a cup of coffee. Look outside. Consider the warm sunshine you hopefully see (as we do here in Pennsylvania), enjoy the beauty of your own work, and of the comments visitors care to leave.

Just my 2 cents ...

comment by pixpop at 02:32 PM (GMT) on 28 March, 2004

Dave, just as you sometimes don't get time to respond, others sometimes simply don't get time to leave a comment. I would rather leave no comment than a simple 'thumbs up'. Also, I feel uncomfortable saying how an image could be improved, because I would be just saying what would make _me_ like it more. I think the reason for putting these images up is to show us what _you_ like. I always begin with the assumption that everything in the image is there because that's how the photographer wants it. After all, they could have chosen not to post the image at all.

All that said, I like this image a lot. As with many of your images, I think it's primarily about color, by which I mean taking pleasure in the pure beauty of color, no matter how it's produced. After that, pattern and texture. Going beyond the formal, to me, it reads as a hand that a lot of little leaf-like objects have fallen on. But then you see that they form a pattern, which is unsettling. Unsettling is good.

BTW, I don't understand what the overlay blend thing does that's different from just increasing the contrast.

comment by Andrei Gurgel at 02:46 PM (GMT) on 28 March, 2004

Great shot.

comment by David at 02:59 PM (GMT) on 28 March, 2004

As most others have said, lack of comments has nothing to do with the quality of the image(s). I'm not quite sure why, but your picture yesterday was one of my favourites so far.

It's difficult to come up with novel things to say or explainations to comment with, so I usually don't.

Despite that, yours is one of my two or three favourite photoblogs and I look forward to visiting it each day.

comment by btezra at 10:06 PM (GMT) on 28 March, 2004

~XLNT...all around, color especially, display of form...top marks~

comment by djn1 at 10:17 PM (GMT) on 28 March, 2004

Wow, thanks - I feel quite guilty now about publically bemoaning the adsence of comments on yesterday's entry ;-) And I suppose that it isn't so much that I see an absence of comments as a criticism, more that the image in question didn't have quite enough about it to prompt people to forget that they don't have the time :-)

I guess this comes back to the quantity versus quality issue; i.e. the image-a-day thing. Some of the images I put up probably wouldn't be there if I decided to post less frequently, but I think that I've gained more by forcing myself to go down this route (in terms of experience) than if I were more selective.

Mike: medium sized rather than small. I think the apparent childlike look is a consequence of the perspective and the diffuse glow added by the overlay layers.

pixpop: I'm not sure of the difference either, but I can't seem to replicate using the overlay mode by any other technique. I'll look into it.

David: I know what you mean. I frequently find myself saying the same bland "excellent composition/colours/lighting etc" on other people's blogs and it rarely captures either what I want to say, or what it was that moved me to comment in the first place.

comment by jane at 10:29 PM (GMT) on 28 March, 2004

Honey....wheatgerm......sweet..... I like it. Enjoyed your thoughts on perceived value and doubts when no comments arrive. Art (whatever that is) requires courage if we require an audience and only use what we value ourselves. Yet many see their art as a reflection/expression of themselves and/or ideas and if you wanna be liked......Codependant photographers?????? Photoblog becomes support group??? Photographers Anonymous. We admitted we were powerless against our cameras......

comment by KB at 11:05 PM (GMT) on 28 March, 2004

Great work.

Consider submitting your images to HPS

Houseplant Picture Studio


comment by Matt at 09:21 PM (GMT) on 29 March, 2004

This image is petty cool. The embossed parts look like grains of rice to me. That's what it made me think of when I first saw it. It's a very interesting piece!

comment by Tom Brandt at 10:42 PM (GMT) on 29 March, 2004

I would tend to agree with several of the others about comments. I stop by your site as well as several others daily. I can't find something I like in virtually every one of your photos but I think you may get bored with my visits .

I like the abstract feel of this one with the hand visable enough that it can be recognized yet it leave the view not quite sure what they are looking at. I also really like the colour and the feel of the transparent surface.

Well done.

comment by Andrea at 03:56 PM (GMT) on 4 April, 2004

Very creative and colorful!