11 thoughts on “Tutor Feedback – Assignment 3

  1. I think that’s great feedback Archna. For what it’s worth I think you made the right decision with monochrome, indeed if I was being picky with the tutor I’d argue he’s possibly being slightly disingenuous suggesting colour in the style of Godfather on one hand and “moving away from a reference” on the other. But what do I know and he comes across as very supportive and knowledgable.

    I agree the lighting was stunning.

    You know my thoughts on your assignment Archna as I posted them at the time; it was fun, clever, creative and very well executed. I loved it.

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    1. Thanks, Andy. I am sure Robert has a good reason to suggest color in this. I still think that monochrome appeared better to me as well hence the decision to keep them that way, but again, I think what he is trying to make me realize is when to make the correct decision about it, like also in the previous assignment – painting with light. I need to pay more attention to detailing and the final output.
      I think perhaps am not able to still do too much post processing in my images as for years I have been so against too much post processing on my images as I hated to see unrealistic colors of Tigers and forests that others created. My thing was why buy such an expensive camera when you need to spend an hour in post-processing? I always attempted to create my images within the camera itself. this is the first time I am doing stuff like this – and he is right to say- for example with the photo cropping to give it a cinematic effect and I think it looks great. I have thought over it and my biggest challenge lies in accepting that post-processing, cropping is acceptable and maybe in many cases can enhance the visual to another level. I should not be closed to experimenting. My fixation with cropping, keeping the original frame in mind always, is maybe restricting me. I don’t know, it’s a hard habit to break. I just want to present my work as I take it in the camera – I do not remove things, do not crop if it’s not in proportionate to the original framing.
      So as you see, I am struggling with some mental presets. Now to convince myself how much is acceptable to me on a personal level is a challenge that I have to find a way out. Any thoughts/ feedback/ arguments/debate is welcome.

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      1. Interesting topic Archna and perhaps not so dissimilar one we had the other day about preconceptions and personal biases (you may recall my “banker / skateboarder” pal).

        We have ideas about what it “right” or “wrong” because our brains are built to be efficient. These preconceptions are defined by our personal experiences and social norms (which could be other photographers’ ideas about whether post-processing is proper photography or whether it’s artificial). The same argument goes for music made by a wooden instrument or programmed on a computer.

        What I’m learning as much as anything on this course is that there is no right or wrong, that creativity is sometimes spawned from things that may go wrong, and indeed to challenge our own preconceptions as well as constructively critique others’.

        I think I’m starting to learn to go with my gut feel more. Sure, for me, I get more of a kick out of a well-exposed landscape in camera because I’ve used a ND filter in front of the lens, but that doesn’t mean I won’t use Lightroom to tidy up what the filter maybe missed when I was kneedeep in a Scottish peat bog in January, or indeed a rogue telephone cable that ruins an otherwise lovely image 🙂

        We’re on a creativity course; it’s really challenging for me as I’m very analytical (which is a social norm for me because that’s what I’ve done for a job for 40 years). So as much as 2 and 2 usually make 4, sometimes it’s fine if they don’t … although don’t ask me to try and explain that one! Haha!

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    2. Thanks, Andy, I think you have summed it up pretty well. I agree with you in creating a balance between the captured image and the final result. I agree I need to be more receptive to changes. Middle age does make you a bit stubborn doing that. I am learning so much in this course also – things that I would have never dreamt of doing and it’s a beautiful course. The best thing that happened to me when it did. Ad to have fellow students like all of you helping out at every stage – it is a blessing. So yes, thank you for your inputs, I will keep all of that in mind and embark upon the next part of the journey. Am so blessed to have such great and wonderful friends like you guys. 🙂 Thank you!!

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  2. I think it’s very interesting feedback. What I’m thinking, based upon what I know about you and trying to relate that to the feedback is this. And please correct me if I’m wrong.

    Your big cat photography, and the commissioned work that you do is spotless, perfect. You don’t get to be a National Geographic photographer unless you are outstanding. The commissioned work you do like for Ranthambore is classy, element, crisp and clean.

    I think Roberts trying to say let go of the perfection where it’s right to do so, and he references this in his comments about the women in Sari’s and the outdoor photography, where the narrative is just there. It’s hard to know when to be crisp and when to let go and be a bit rougher. i.e your formal portrait absolutely needed that controlled quality.

    I really like the feedback. I think they are good points to consider, but like Andy I liked your assignment and think black and white worked well.

    That he commented upon the amount of effort you are putting in and how much you are getting out of the course is wonderful. You put so much in.

    I’m going to take some time to consider how much effort I put in to cleaning and tidying my images, and question when and where I need to do so. On one of my snowy Whitby photos I removed two street signs in Photoshop so they didn’t ruin the view.

    From your feedback i’m also taking away the idea of focusing on a couple of photographers who I find inspiring.

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    1. Thanks, Richard. I agree its a great feedback and like I have mentioned in reply to Andy above, I need to get rid of some mental blocks. Now Ranthambhore and my wildlife is totally personal work and not commissioned by anyone. Therefore its never post processed, never cleaned up and is presented like I have shot. I have self trained myself over several years to gain mastery over my camera and what I visualize is what I shoot. So my images are just the way my camera has taken them. Because I have trained myself to do that, now I am finding it difficult to do otherwise. For e.g, even in the staged photograph I haven’t done any post processing except maybe a little brightness contrast. Now when Robert points it out, It appears to be a glaring oversight as far as the location is concerned. I should have scrouged for a more realistic location. All his remarks make so much sense.

      Yes I agree taht focusing on a couple of photographers is a great idea. Gregory Crewdson is my number one as of now. i relate to him on so many levels but most impotantly the magnitude and scale of his productions. I love that larger than life vision that he has and i share that with him. So he is going to be quite inspirational for me. Trent Parke is more my stle. It will be interesting to see with two totally opposite inspirations, how do I create a balance with my approach.

      I have taken a lot of good points from Robert and will incorporate them into my work.

      Thank you Richard, am thankful to each one of you who have taken the time out to discuss and comment. Truly grateful. It means a lot.

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  3. Dear Archna,
    Andy and Richard have already made so many good points about your stunning work. This is a formative course and I agree with Richard that Robert is suggesting experimentation. You will find this in section four as well as the need to concentrate on emulation in one of the exercises. Robert is giving you a good signpost I think.
    The colour/monochrome issue can be revealing and frustrating …. as I have been discovering today. So much is a matter of personal taste. Your work is always stunning. Enjoy the next stage of the course.

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    1. Thank you, Sarah!! Yes, am truly getting so much with the combined feedback of Robert and all of you. There is so much to learn and experiment and as Robert points it out so correctly, this will come with time and experience. And my obsession with perfection needs to be loosened a bit.

      Am already stalking your blog for understanding part 4. I am happy to be here and with the help of all of you and your generosity with taking the time out and providing feedback, suggestions, and points of views, I am learning so much. Thank you for taking the time out.

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  4. Thanks Archna. Look at other blogs too! I am bogged down a bit at present with my self imposed exploration of hands. But I know that if I keep going something will emerge.

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  5. Archna, I agree with pretty much all of the comments above. It is good feedback from your tutor and personally I thought it was a very good assignment and I also do prefer the monochrome images.

    I think photography like other art forms is very subjective, what one person likes another doesn’t, who is to say what is right or wrong? Of course there are some objective things like if highlights are blown or the image is out of focus etc. that are easy to comment on but apart from that it and even including that, it is down to taste and opinion.

    Personally I often prefer monochrome pictures, I think it usually shows the subject, form and tones of light better but again it is just my preference. I also do not think there is anything wrong with post processing, I like to try to produce images that reflect what I felt when I was taking the picture rather than just a factual representation of what was there, having said that I don’t often achieve that goal and hence the reason for me being on this course!

    I think that as one gets older you tend to be limited by your experience and, I often don’t try things because I “know” it will not work, when I was younger I just did it and I think this limits my creativity,

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