Thursday, November 4, 2010


... but do you really?

Why art books won't become e-books anytime soon, amongst a few other things, really got me thinking about how I look at photos.

Let me ask you: Do you blitz through photos online, taking barely a fraction of a second for each, or perhaps not even bothering unless some 'thumbnail' draws you in?

Have you ever bought a photo-book or spent some time looking at one? How much time did you spend with each image. Did you stop to really see what is there?

What about when you are looking at framed photographs. Perhaps in an exhibition. Does it change your behaviour? Do you move back and forth perhaps, trying to find the right viewing distance, especially for some larger framed art? Does the physical interaction with the image change your approach or appreciation?

Perhaps these are odd thoughts for a blog which I use primarily for sharing photos online.

But recently I found myself revisiting The Portfolios of Ansel Adams and noticed that I really looked. I mean I didn't just flip the pages. I stopped and allowed my eyes to really start to take in the image. Even ones that I'd normally wouldn't spend much time on.

Of course, it's easy to argue that the what what you see today online is mostly junk and not worth looking at. But I disagree. I think there are tremendous numbers of amazing images online. Perhaps we are all just tired of sifting through so much crap to get to them. Or maybe it's the fact that a computer just doesn't give you the same feel as something printed.

Does it matter? I'm not sure. I guess if your someone who takes snapshots, probably not. If you're someone who is passionate about creating photographs ...

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