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kevinos 07-03-2006 05:08 PM

A visit to limbo
I found two new interesting places on the TE today, which I would like to recommend. One was the welcome section, where the postings of new members are shown. This was very interesting and full of hope.
The other was a sad place: the limbo, where un-critiqued pictures are confined to the deep. I spent a long time wondering through here and I learned a lot. More, I think, than from anywhere else on the site. Down there the names of the superstars are unknown. Here our photographic failures are mock by silence and neglect. It aroused in me feeling such as I had experienced while visiting war cemeteries and I intend to visit often now that I have found it.
I was sad, however, to find none of my own pictures there, but that was only because I have deleted those that had been thus ignored. I did leave a couple on, as a kind of gesture of defiance; like shaking my fist in the face of TE orthodoxy and saying “I refuse to delete this even though you despise it” But when I revisited them, after so long, I discovered that even they had picked up the odd critique. How did anyone find them, right down there, and after so long? It seems almost a shame to have their virginity or rejection sullied. Like the wreck of a sunken battleship, perhaps, they should acquire the status of war memorials, secure from disturbance for all time.

However, many of my pictures had been spared from confinement here, by a compassionate crony, or by a newcomer, too inexperienced in the ways of TE to know that the picture was crap, who had administered the sacrament of the last rites by awarding a single smiley.

I did think it would be interesting to arrange an exhibition of pictures from among the un-critiqued. They are publishing a book, I understand, of some of the best of TE. Why not, I thought, publish a book of pictures from the rejects? But, however amusing, this idea seemed doomed to failure.

I would suggest, however, that the doors of limbo be opened just a little so that pictures that collect only one or two point could end up there. After all, almost any of my pictures, however mediocre, might pick up two points, if only by accident.

I would recommend a visit to this section to any member; it’s a very interesting and moving experience. After all, the answer to the question “why was this a failure?’ is just as informative as “why is this a success?

Homerhomer 07-03-2006 05:43 PM

Re: A visit to limbo
I see where you are coming from Kevin, not that it's going to make me go there since time is of essence my internet time is already streching as it is.

However I want to address the following:
"I did think it would be interesting to arrange an exhibition of pictures from among the un-critiqued. They are publishing a book, I understand, of some of the best of TE. Why not, I thought, publish a book of pictures from the rejects? But, however amusing, this idea seemed doomed to failure."

The best of TE has already failed as far as I know, any other book, including the "most unpopular" will do the same.

If someone is really interested in doing something like that why not follow pbase format where they have a downloadible pdf, still a hell of a project for anyone who is willing to undertake, but way more within a reach than a book.

You could have the best of TE, the worst of TE, periodical, any other theme, let's say soccer since it's a world cup time.

kinginexile 07-03-2006 09:10 PM

Re: A visit to limbo
You had me smile, Kevin, cool post, with refined irony. TE is not really based on critical analysis of a shot, be it good or bad. Time and time again, people have made a point that they are only interested in the subjects they "like", and favor for themselves. To add to the fact that there is too little time in one day to be interested in anyone but their favorites, who day after day, post superlative shots deserving of nothing shorter than the greatest accolade. And this, day after day. In face of such luminaries, how dare you bring the limbo-ites! (smirk...)

We just have to get used to it, some people need no retouching, no improvement, and others better get used to the "oubliettes", or write their 20 "sharing critiques" a day (at least), to become, finally, unfallible photographers too.


jrj 07-03-2006 09:39 PM

Re: A visit to limbo
Kevin: More than 1 year of membership to find a welcome section and an uncritqed
They are publishing a book, I understand
..asking me.. they are not

greg 07-03-2006 10:56 PM

Re: A visit to limbo
Also interesting is that after 40 days in limbo, you slip beyond the limit of redemption into the inaccessible page 101. Without any link to find you, you're doomed to an eternity of nothingness...

AdrianW 07-04-2006 02:38 AM

Re: A visit to limbo
Thanks Greg, I'd never noticed the 100 page limit before - it appears that room 101 really does exist, Orwell would be so proud ;)

simonekarl 07-04-2006 03:53 PM

Re: A visit to limbo
I have one posting in the uncritiqued section.

I took it, I still think that it's a good image, in my taste, and I will continue to share it with whoever wants to look at it, so far 409 of you have visited it.....

Many thanks to the 409 of you who visited.

kajenn 07-05-2006 04:06 AM

Re: A visit to limbo
I have one there too, which I think is rather good. I'll leave it in, mainly because I worked with the note.

So far it's been visited by 969 - hopefully some of them read the note...

kevinos 07-05-2006 03:09 PM

Re:Thought from limbo
Well Simone! I just had to look for your exhibit in limbo and was able to find “Land of Puppets and Dreams,” Since it made me think. I hope you don’t mind me sharing my thoughts. They relate to one of the reasons why a picture may fail to get a rating and are, no more, than the musings of a well intentioned and ignorant wanderer in the land of TE.
I must say that it is a challenging picture and one that I can understand why it ended up in limbo. Firstly, the color is far too sharp for my taste. Secondly, the color and incident are distributed too randomly around the frame. No single object (or set of objects) presents itself as a focus of interest (no duality is created) and the eye has no path through the picture (i.e. there is no perceptible composition) and the eye and the brain need to make order from an image in order to enjoy it.
What the photographer does is, I believe, to perceive an order, a sense, and a path, in the scene before him and tries to reveal this to the viewer. This is what we mean by composition and what makes an image, not just random objects, but ‘art’ Photography is, I suspect, is the art of seeing the meaning, or order or sequence and composing the picture in such a way as to present what he sees and what he feels to the viewer.

The little puppets, which could have formed the focus of interest and too randomly distributed to create a duality and, because the picture was shot through glass, there is a refraction, which presents them as vague and confusing (worrying) to the eye.

I see that your picture ‘We are Sailing’ got one critique. However, this one critique seems to me, to be very useful and similar to be reactions above. One perceptive critique is worth a thousand “good shots!” My feeling is that, this lack of order, or duality or path is a feature of a number of your pictures and so I am unable to connect with them. I was impressed, however, with pictures like your “Walk up to the light” which I see got good approval rating. Here, there is a clear composition. The eye follows a path through the picture and is not distracted by irrelevant objects. The eye and the brain are able to enjoy the picture.

Some pictures don’t have a path, of course, like all the pictures that follow on from Claude Monet’s water lily pictures for the later Giverny period. (Which, I suppose, comprises most of modern art!)? But here the surface must be covered with fascinating and enjoyable detail, over which the eye can wander and create it own path. Even in this seeming randomness, there is order.

I hope you don’t mind my thoughts from limbo.

oochappan 07-05-2006 04:06 PM

Re: Re:Thought from limbo
Kevin, there are so many techniques on the level of shooting and on the level of postprocessing .... it would be nice to build out an example gallery of all differant techniques .... sometimes very old techniques are digged up and spot on as new or others introduced from contempory photographers.

With a good data-base of explicit techniques in mind, the most appropriate technique is to be creative at the spot that could result in a refined compilation of known techniques mixed with your creative mind.

What you talk about mainly is the technique of eye-travelling that can be invoked by several other techniques like perspective, light managing, geometrical structures, gradiants, colorcontrasts and so on ....

Short, the more techniques you are aware of in the back of your mind, the more creative and various your shots will become, tuned to the moment itself with a strong personal creative mind to enhance your target. It will create diversity in your shooting from the most simple structures to the most complicated each with their most specifique personal handeling to reproduce your most inner impression to convey and share this message or statement to ohters.

So be creative at the moment, don't pin yourself up to a few techniques you know but enlarge this techniques in the back of your mind to be functional to your creativity.

Most shots in the so called 'limbo' lacks a creative explicit technique that often still can enhanced by postprocessing, that will be done by your personal interpretation to enhance elements to a better readable structure, simple or complicated, as long it enhance some message.

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