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Like so many discussions it comes down to how someone defines a word, in this case art.

In my world photography can be art; and in some ways it is also real. Which is something else, but not lesser.

I graduated with distinction and a bachelor of fine arts in photography. At our graduation the valedictorian, who was a painter, referred to us as and the design students as prostitutes, and her own group as serious artists.

They were serious because they smoked more pot then we did. We didn't have all the spare time they had, we had to produce actual and consistent quality work.

Edited by canuckamuck
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I think that in order to determine whether photography is art, we have to define art. As I see it, Art is emotional communication. Art strives to make one feel. It does not necessarily strive to ma

There may very well be individuals who wish to create art on this forum but unless someone states that desire explicitly I would not make that assumption. The notion of becoming better is also quite subjective.

How about, happier with the outcome, more pleased with the result or perhaps less confused about, what does what, on the camera or in the software. Some want to learn through study, while others want to learn through experiment, trial and error. Some may not be as interested in learning, as in the joy of doing.
I say it is up to the photographer to choose what they want and it is up to the viewer to decide what they like. Some things in life are complicated, for me, this is not one of them.

VF,

I hope that my question did not appear to complicate what all of us on here enjoy doing. I was really curious how many have felt an artistic itch that needed to be scratched or an artistic bent that they wished to satisfy. Are there folks here that feel that taking photographs is an artistic outlet.

I think Tywais has presented some interesting points that help to position photography as a valid art form. Speaking for myself, I have often felt the desire to express myself in an artistic way. Long ago I tried painting in oils but discovered that I was in WAY over my head. I've tried writing and felt some measure of satisfaction. But it wasn't until I began to study the works of some of the accomplished photographers, I saw an outlet for my creativity that appealed to me like no other.

So, are there others on this forum that feel that photography is a form of artistic expression and who look at their own photography in this way?

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I'll go with what Goshawk posted on #12.

I reckon photography is both science & art however

whenever I think of "performance art" I can't figure out

what art has to do with living in a box naked in public

for a month of Sunday's.

Hell...what IS art anyway? A pile of AK's welded together

to form tables & chairs? The Mona Lisa was just a fat broad

with a cute smile & 1000 mile stare eyes...there's still many

women like her around today! Da Vinci was an engineer

with a hobby...painting what his head thought up...there

was no CAD/CAM software back then & he liked fat girls.

Luck plays an important role in both "art" & photography;

have a look at some of Dali's or Picasso's "art"...tell me

luck had nothing to do with them selling it...at least their

first bunch of paintings...hah! Or Bresson's first bunch

of "streets"....luck or a great gift of gab to the right people

at the right time & place. Things were slower then....and

perhaps the competition was less too....just speculation

there...none of us were around.

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I have never been arty crafty in any way and the Photos I take are mainly for me, selfish that I am.

But since posting here I have looked for things that I think may interest others on here and taken photos of them to post.

However that's not the thought that prompted me to get involved in this one.

The title is "Photography and the arts" but it has evolved, degenerated (take your pick) into photography only.

I note Fiddlesticks and others have mentioned writing and painting and I have also written a whole heap of stories, long and short, over time.

So how about broadening things to include topics like "Short stories", "paintings", "Sculpture" or whatever art forms you all out there have had a go at ?

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I think it can be art, (or form there of) or a recording of "a moment in time" , which is not necessarily art!

Have ran out of likes sad.png ... but I would agree with posts #2 and 3.... by VF and FF! to start with! thumbsup.gif

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For me a really good photograph is as equally good as a master painting or sculpture.....if it can draw me in, hold me and touch my emotions.

One particular photo that did this to me was FracturedRabbits photo of an old beggar lady on the streets of Pattaya.No joking, it put a lump in my throat.....partly because of the

pity I felt for the old lady but mostly because it made me feel like is was next to him when the photo was taken.....can't explain it really,but it always stayed in my mind,if that's not art then I don't know what is.

I have never been able to find that photo again,if you still have it FracturedRabbit could you repost it or even send me a PM with the photo.

Thanks

Shaggy

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The definition suggests it can be an art, process or practise.

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/photography

pho·tog·ra·phy (fschwa.gif-tobreve.gifgprime.gifrschwa.gif-femacr.gif)

n.
1. The art or process of producing images of objects on photosensitive surfaces.
2. The art, practice, or occupation of taking and printing photographs.
3. A body of photographs.
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Art is a tricky word which means different things to different people. It is open for interpretation.

Whether or not photography qualifies as art to the stuffy hoi poloy (spelling?) of society means very little to me. Photography in this age is infinitely more valuable to society than any of the other high arts. Although Facebook would be quite interesting if we could only upload sketches.

Photography is something attainable to all (perhaps why it is gets less respect) but in the hands of a few it can reach much greater heights. There are other life examples, like golf for instance. Nearly anyone can swing a club and some even get a hole in one, but it would be mad to put that person on tour, because it is very unlikely that they could do it again. A remarkable photograph is also possible, even in the hands of a monkey. But unless that monkey can produce consistently remarkable and thought provoking images, he is not officially an artist.

I like golf because every time I swing the club there is a potential I may achieve perfection. you get just enough of a taste every time that you are compelled to return. And I think photography is like that for many people. Everyday it is possible you might take that career defining image. And every once in a while you get a shot that compels you do do it again. Despite the great cost in time and equipment.

However, for the main body of shooters, photography is just this technical pursuit. Even the multitude of books that teach us how to make a better photographs have very little to say about bearing your soul. Also the majority of shooters set out on a safari to find an image, imagining that out there somewhere is the right combination of light and subject matter that can be funneled down a lens and become a great treasure on an SD card. This is a noble pursuit, but in this instance the art is God's and the photographer is the agent with the eye for discovery. Discovery and capture is a type of art too, some are infinitely better at this than the masses. But I can also see why it is disregarded in comparison to older forms of art.

Generally the people who get their work hung in Moma and such places, are photographers who assemble all of the elements (create the scene) and have a great deal of art speak to accompany their work. But is that high art or a pretentious boho game? Up to you

At this stage, perhaps I am bitter, I no longer care about whether or not something is accepted as art or if someone is an artist. I care only about the image itself, The internet and technology has brought us such a fantastic array of incredible images; the mind is overloaded. Most of these remarkable images are at least partially, the product of a newer art (post processing) rather than a traditional photo. Does that matter? Yes, it helps to define what type of an achievement it is. But it does not diminish it to me in greatness. The image is the thing now, Photography is just part of the process. There is room enough for everyone, even the purists.

canuckamuck - this is perhaps the most thoughtful and thought-provoking response I have heard to date. I can appreciate all that you had to say here. I too love my golf though I will never truly excel at it. Yes I did get the once-in-a-lifetime hole in one but that is likely never to be repeated. crying.gif

I think that for many, photography begins as a technical pursuit as does anything we hope to excel at. At some point, after years of practice, the technical aspect becomes muscle (and brain) memory and we free ourselves to focus on the art.

I think the 'art' of photography comes when the photographer can imbue a two-dimensional image with a feeling or emotion. No one would argue that the Mona Lisa is art. Why is that? Is it because it is a technically good image of a woman or is it because when we look at it we are struck with the feelings of what is that faint smile about? What are those eyes trying to convey? I have the same reaction to Steve McCurry's Afghan Girl. The depth of feeling in her eyes and her expression simply captures your interest and emotions. Why is this not art simply because it is a photograph. Was McCurry just lucky? Some would say yes but it is the skill of the artist that recognized the potential of this moment and was able to capture the emotions so forcefully and complete the depth of the image in PP by adding those little touches which focus our attention where the artist intends. I am sure I will get flack for this next comment from many art purists but I can see a argument for hanging these two images side by side in the same gallery as a testimony to the artistry of both artists.

I find that today there are many many technically beautiful images being produced but there are few that have the emotional impact that elevates them to art. I believe that as the number of photographers continues to grow that we will see more and more true artists emerge and elevate this art form to the level that oils or sculptures have enjoyed for so long.

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Art is a tricky word which means different things to different people. It is open for interpretation.

Whether or not photography qualifies as art to the stuffy hoi poloy (spelling?) of society means very little to me. Photography in this age is infinitely more valuable to society than any of the other high arts. Although Facebook would be quite interesting if we could only upload sketches.

Photography is something attainable to all (perhaps why it is gets less respect) but in the hands of a few it can reach much greater heights. There are other life examples, like golf for instance. Nearly anyone can swing a club and some even get a hole in one, but it would be mad to put that person on tour, because it is very unlikely that they could do it again. A remarkable photograph is also possible, even in the hands of a monkey. But unless that monkey can produce consistently remarkable and thought provoking images, he is not officially an artist.

I like golf because every time I swing the club there is a potential I may achieve perfection. you get just enough of a taste every time that you are compelled to return. And I think photography is like that for many people. Everyday it is possible you might take that career defining image. And every once in a while you get a shot that compels you do do it again. Despite the great cost in time and equipment.

However, for the main body of shooters, photography is just this technical pursuit. Even the multitude of books that teach us how to make a better photographs have very little to say about bearing your soul. Also the majority of shooters set out on a safari to find an image, imagining that out there somewhere is the right combination of light and subject matter that can be funneled down a lens and become a great treasure on an SD card. This is a noble pursuit, but in this instance the art is God's and the photographer is the agent with the eye for discovery. Discovery and capture is a type of art too, some are infinitely better at this than the masses. But I can also see why it is disregarded in comparison to older forms of art.

Generally the people who get their work hung in Moma and such places, are photographers who assemble all of the elements (create the scene) and have a great deal of art speak to accompany their work. But is that high art or a pretentious boho game? Up to you

At this stage, perhaps I am bitter, I no longer care about whether or not something is accepted as art or if someone is an artist. I care only about the image itself, The internet and technology has brought us such a fantastic array of incredible images; the mind is overloaded. Most of these remarkable images are at least partially, the product of a newer art (post processing) rather than a traditional photo. Does that matter? Yes, it helps to define what type of an achievement it is. But it does not diminish it to me in greatness. The image is the thing now, Photography is just part of the process. There is room enough for everyone, even the purists.

Excellent and heart felt post. thumbsup.gif

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some people take picture,

others make photographs

To me photography is an art

PS: i also hold a BFA in Photography (lot of good that did me ) :-)

In a lavatory cubicle at our art college, someone had written "Bfa degree, take one" with an arrow pointing to the toilet paper dispenser.

We all knew there was some truth to it.

Edited by canuckamuck
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