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This thread was locked on 2013-05-21 05:43:46. Reason: Enough. Learn how to disagree without taking so many cheap personal swipes at each other.
Forums > Digital Art and Retouching > TALENT is BS Search   Reply
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Photographer
IMnPhoto
Posts: 2,171
New York, New York, US


How ironic that this thread was started four weeks short of the anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo.

Such an assertion was doomed from the start.
May 19 13 08:18 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Jim Lafferty
Posts: 1,839
Brooklyn, New York, US


Classic nature vs. nurture debate. If you think only one determines success, have fun peddling that.
May 19 13 08:24 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Guss W
Posts: 10,538
Clearwater, Florida, US


Natalia_Taffarel wrote:
...

Exceptions are not evidence  smile
...

So if we disregard the upper and lower ends of a bell curve sampling, calling them "exceptions", only the average are left.

May 19 13 08:34 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Faze1 photography
Posts: 554
Lawndale, California, US


I tried to stay out of this because I was confused with the comment. In fact talent is something your born with or you learn and develop a skill which turns into a talent.

tal·ent  /ˈtalənt/

Noun
Natural aptitude or skill.
A person or people possessing such aptitude or skill: "the talent in their Toledo clubhouse".

Synonyms
gift-aptitude - ability - faculty - genius - capability

Shit! Maybe I'm still confused. Like someone said above, until OP meaning of talent is clear I think we all remain confused. Whatever! I'll just walk away. People are entitled to believe what they want.
May 19 13 09:11 pm  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
The Invisible Touch
Posts: 705
Tarragona, Catalonia, Spain


Natalia_Taffarel wrote:
I don't believe in talent I believe in being intelligent, HARD WORK and dedication.

So you think that by being intelligent, working really hard and have a ridiculous amount of dedication at something you will become amazing at it?? Really??

Ok, why don't you get a trumpet or piano and start proving it??

I think being born in a family of printers, musicians or whatever doesn't make you better than the rest, it gives you an advantage of your starting point, as Peano stated, there are a lot of examples out there of really incredible talented people that haven't had a music/printing/whatever background and they were/are amazing at what they do. That's in my opinion a talent!!

Why does somebody paint/run/write/talk better than others?? I can spend my whole life running and training and trust me I come from a family of runners... but truste me... I will never be at the Olympics or faster than most people.. why? because I don't have that talent!! Simple!!

May 20 13 01:28 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
Robert Lang
Posts: 35
Newport, Wales, United Kingdom


Wow Natalia, talent turns out to be quite a hot topic!

A few weeks ago I watched a workshop by a Mexican/american photographer Roberto Valenzuela. The jist of his story, as I remember, was that when he was younger (and poorer), he couldnt afford his college fees, he had 3 months before the course began so he had to get the money together somehow. His friend suggested that by teaching guitar he could earn a decent hourly rate. Problem was that he had never touched a guitar or any instrument but decided that it was worth giving it a go out of desperation. He bought a cheap guitar and practiced for 12hrs a day, within 2 months he got a job teaching at a music store and because he only had a month left, he started charging double the going rate for guitar lessons. He paid for college and went on to become a professional concert guitarist within one year or so. Later in life he picked up a camera for the first time and within a few years became one of the top wedding photographers earning serious bucks.

Interestingly, he too asserted that he doesn't believe in luck or talent. He just simply has the mindset - a future-oriented thinker perhaps (associated with high intelligence) - to work hard and believe that the hard work pays off.
May 20 13 03:49 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
The Invisible Touch
Posts: 705
Tarragona, Catalonia, Spain


Robert Lang  wrote:
Interestingly, he too asserted that he doesn't believe in luck or talent. He just simply has the mindset - a future-oriented thinker perhaps (associated with high intelligence) - to work hard and believe that the hard work pays off.

Great read! But can you tell me how many hours of hard work could do the tiny Akim Camara just being only 2 when he started playing?? Well it was twice a week 45 minutes... not really hard work is it?? :-)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akim_Camara

May 20 13 04:38 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Amul La La
Posts: 708
Plymouth, England, United Kingdom


Working really hard.


vs


Working really hard, and knowing what you want is even better.



In the end it's not about how much or how little you have of anything, if you know what you want, I feel 9 times out of 10, you will attain what you desire.


Everyone possesses a degree of intelligence, I do not equate intelligence and your chosen subject in the same way you do, yes I feel the more you learn about the technical side of something will equip you with more tools, but just because you are technically gifted, doesn't mean your creatively gifted.

To me re-touching for instants is much more creative than it ever is intelligence based, how much intelligence do you need to be proficient at PS. I suspect there are thousands of people who are amazing at photoshop, who failed there maths and science exams, vice verse.

I do not believe intelligence has substantial baring on vision, I believe vision// how you see is 99% organic and perhaps 1% intelligence, it is the way we see and how we individually interpret-ate what we see from within, if you equate intelligence with vision then I believe you are sorely misguided.

I do believe there's such a thing as talent, why else would it be in the dictionary,

+ how much intelligence does someone who plays basketball have to have to dunk a ball ?

Or football player have to have to kick a ball into a net ?

Lionel messi, on average scores 40+ goals in all competitions for Barcelona, he is proficient, but he has superior natural ability, in running fast, dribbling faster, close control, awareness, off the ball movement = timing his runs, and scoring goals, which yes requires a little intelligence, but over time just becomes natural and he no longer has to really think about it, it's just natural, his obvious talent shines through, his team mates work as hard as him in training he says, they are as focused as him on and off the field with regards to dedication and hard work, they are still not as good as him.

Someone with great intelligence could possibly become an astronaut, someone with great creativity could possibly become a painter.

As for hard work, I work hard in my garden, does that make me a better gardener than you.

to me dedication is more or less hard work, you work hard at what your dedicated to, your dedicated to what you work hard at, they go hand in hand, it is still not a complete guarantee you'll succeed, or get the success you want.

How do....

Loads of people study hard for weeks, months, years for exams and fail, and some others study for a couple of hours and pass, who's more intelligent.., the one who studied and dedicated hours to pure study? or the one who barely did any revision....
May 20 13 04:53 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Fred Ackerman
Posts: 240
Fort Lauderdale, Florida, US


Ruben Vasquez wrote:
What a strange quote. I wonder, of all the people who have ever looked into all the work and effort that Einstein put into his studies such as the mass-energy equivalence equation, special relativity and general relativity, the photoelectric effect, wave/particle duality and so on, how many of those people would be foolish enough not to consider Einstein a genius?

Looking up the word "talent" in a thesaurus gave the following: skill, ability, proficiency, expertise, knack, aptitude, flair and competence. These are all words that can swapped with the word talent so to say that "talent is overrated" is equivalent to saying that skill is overrated, or that competency is overrated. Likewise, to say that "talent is BS", or that you "don't believe in talent" is the same as saying that proficiency is BS or that you don't believe in expertise. This position doesn't make any sense.

I think what you and Natalia are getting hung up on is the term, "born with." As in static or unchanging. But it doesn't mean that talent is born in a vacuum or will always remain the same. We're each born quite small but grow over time and in much the same way, talent can be nurtured to grow and expand beyond what it originally once was. It need only be given the proper attention.

Yes! Ruben definitely has.. Talent.

May 20 13 05:10 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
Peano
Posts: 4,106
Lynchburg, Virginia, US


Robert Lang  wrote:
Wow Natalia, talent turns out to be quite a hot topic!

There are two topics being debated: whether talent (=innate aptitude for one thing or another) exists, and how reasonable people debate that question or any other.

I think this thread has been fueled more by the second question, and in particular, the attitude conveyed by the thread's title ("TALENT is BS") and statements like this:

Natalia_Taffarel wrote:
I mantin that [talent] doesn't exist, not only that, I DARE someone to give me empirical evidence supporting the assertion that it does

There's a big difference between raising a question for serious discussion, and daring others to knock a chip off your shoulder. To my mind, that's about the only point worth carrying away from this dismal thread.

May 20 13 05:17 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
richy01
Posts: 153
Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, Netherlands


After reading all posts I must say you have the 'talent' to stir things up.....smile
I do not agree with your statement. Hard work and dedication will help to improve someone's skill for sure, I agree. But if one has no talent for say..photography at all one will not pass the level of a mediocre photographer.
If you don't have feeling for lighting and shadow, one can tell you where to pay attention to but in my opinion you will never understand it. Same for facial structure in retouching and so on.
May 20 13 05:47 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Ezhini
Posts: 1,587
Wichita, Kansas, US


The platitude, "There is no such thing as talent, good amount of information and hard work can get you there,"  has been  successfully used as the carrot-on-a-stick by many who teach tangible physical skills to anyone interested in learning them. Not a bad pep-talk at all for what it is worth.

However, how-much-ever hard work and dedication, a catfish cannot fly!

FLW drew out the drawings for the Fallingwater in 2 hours!
Michelangelo Buonarroti sculpted Pieta before he was 30 years of age!

The list can go on ...

While it is true that hard work surely accomplishes great many things, and many people have positively overcome all sorts of hurdles by hard work, aptitude - talent  - and many other such words describe the reality of being able to accomplish things without much hard work!

Hard work is for mules! Human mind and heart know very well what atomic physicists call quantum leaps.

As far as NT's asking for emperical evidence:

Often times, empericists don't have the means, methods or simply the length of time required to go as far as Mind could go!

Unless and until one acklowledges that the farthest that human mind can go is the point of "wonderment" and no further, and that well beyond that wonderment still happens a whole lot of wonderful thigns in life, even mere appreciation of art is completely lost, leave alone understanding how art works!

One does not have to emperically understand the how of anything to ackowledge, appreciate and reap that-thing's benefits. You dont need to emperically understand the molecular structure of water or how water works for that water to quench your thirst.

Every single physical phenomenon that empericists claim to have understood through hard-searched emperical evidence have been operating for millenia before the empricists procliamed their undertanding of such phenomenon - like Gravity! Talent is one such thing.

The best anyone could say is that we dont fully know how talent works or even what it is. For the lack of comprehension, announcing something as non-existent, even when its results are experienced everyday, is not a lack of mental-talent, but simply a lack of appreciation for  Life's limitless possibilities.
May 20 13 07:26 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Feverstockphoto
Posts: 434
Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom


The Invisible Touch wrote:
So you think that by being intelligent, working really hard and have a ridiculous amount of dedication at something you will become amazing at it?? Really??

Ok, why don't you get a trumpet or piano and start proving it??

I think being born in a family of printers, musicians or whatever doesn't make you better than the rest, it gives you an advantage of your starting point, as Peano stated, there are a lot of examples out there of really incredible talented people that haven't had a music/printing/whatever background and they were/are amazing at what they do. That's in my opinion a talent!!

Why does somebody paint/run/write/talk better than others?? I can spend my whole life running and training and trust me I come from a family of runners... but truste me... I will never be at the Olympics or faster than most people.. why? because I don't have that talent!! Simple!!

Fast and slow tiwtch fibres springs to mind on the running as well as other factors ofcourse http://www.bbc.co.uk/science/humanbody/ … leus.shtml
Edited: http://www.topendsports.com/medicine/ph … uscles.htm

May 20 13 07:30 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
B R U N E S C I
Posts: 25,319
Bath, England, United Kingdom


The Invisible Touch wrote:
+1 Talent does exist and you don't become talented...you just are or not!!

+1

Of course, general intelligence, hard work, study.... all can enhance and train talent and help a talented person to realise their ambitions in that direction. But without the talent in the first place all you're left with is empty book learning and a lot of wasted hard work. Very few (if any) people without some innate talent in their chosen field will ever rise above the level of 'mediocre' or 'tolerably good' in my opinion.

I could study math every day for 20 years and even after learning everything there was to know about it, I have no doubt I would still not be any better than 'proficient'!!



Ciao
Stefano

www.stefanobrunesci.com

May 20 13 07:37 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Big A-Larger Than Life
Posts: 33,390
The Woodlands, Texas, US


You can't coach height....

Talent is born into someone's very being, but you can certainly hone that and turn the raw talent into massively awesome trained skills.  You can tweak the nurture, but some people are born with more nature than others.
May 20 13 07:49 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Garry k
Posts: 26,414
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada


MnPhoto wrote:
How ironic that this thread was started four weeks short of the anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo.

Such an assertion was doomed from the start.

coincidence is not irony

May 20 13 08:18 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Garry k
Posts: 26,414
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada


To the OP , watch this 5 yr old play the piano and then tell us again that you don't believe in talent

smile


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e3oNVmSaMsE
May 20 13 08:36 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
M Pandolfo Photography
Posts: 12,113
Tampa, Florida, US


Natalia_Taffarel wrote:
Exceptions such as Savants http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Savant_syndrome

Are an anomaly. Untrue for full functioning brains. Not valid evidence.

Natalia, you stated that "talent doesn't exist." It's one thing to think it's BS, that is subjective. But when you make the absolute statement that it doesn't exist, you're stating what you believe to be a fact.

You've been given countless examples that, in fact, talent does exist. You've admitted that it exists when you state, "well, those are anomalies and they don't count as valid evidence." That statement says that you believe talent exists, but that's it's rare. The rarity doesn't mean it doesn't exist. In fact, anomalies do count as evidence to your statement.

When someone makes such a silly assertion like "cars don't exist" and someone drives up in a car. You can't say, "Well, that car is an anomaly." It doesn't matter if that's the only car that ever existed. That car, IS a car and, therefore, proves the initial assertion wrong.

It doesn't matter that Savants are anomalies in your opinion. They still prove your argument incorrect.

Now, if you want to claim "talent is BS" or "talent is rare", you'd have a much better argument.

May 20 13 08:44 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Gulag
Posts: 1,137
Duluth, Georgia, US


Anything we hear can be one of the three forms: fact, opinion, or belief. But it can only be of them.  "If we wish to see the truth, then hold no opinions for or against anything. To set up what we like against we we dislike is the disease of the mind."
May 20 13 09:13 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
Ken Fournelle
Posts: 99
Saint Paul, Minnesota, US


Peano wrote:

Robert Lang  wrote:
Wow Natalia, talent turns out to be quite a hot topic!

There are two topics being debated: whether talent (=innate aptitude for one thing or another) exists, and how reasonable people debate that question or any other.

I think this thread has been fueled more by the second question, and in particular, the attitude conveyed by the thread's title ("TALENT is BS") and statements like this:

There's a big difference between raising a question for serious discussion, and daring others to knock a chip off your shoulder. To my mind, that's about the only point worth carrying away from this dismal thread.

+1

May 20 13 09:29 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
AKMac
Posts: 290
London, England, United Kingdom


Gulag wrote:
Anything we hear can be one of the three forms: fact, opinion, or belief. But it can only be of them.  "If we wish to see the truth, then hold no opinions for or against anything. To set up what we like against we we dislike is the disease of the mind."

Good weed?

May 20 13 09:45 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
The Something Guy
Posts: 14,771
Cheltenham, England, United Kingdom


Talent pppfftt, bs yes it works. You don't need to be talented you just need talented people to work for you (not forgetting a good business head) and a few photographers have used this and become very successfully.
Probably works for retouchers.
May 20 13 10:25 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
Natalia_Taffarel
Posts: 7,218
Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina


Garry k wrote:
To the OP , watch this 5 yr old play the piano and then tell us again that you don't believe in talent

smile


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e3oNVmSaMsE

sung started to play piano when he was only 3-years-old. He said his favorite composer was “Mozart because his music is beautiful and he was a child prodigy pianist. I want to be like him.

Talent as INNATE yes, I don't believe in it.

At the age of 3 he knew who Mozart was. He started playing piano at 3, so that's 2 years of training in the video. Playing every day and the influence of parents who love classical music and made a 3 year old sit behind an instrument and practice.

Yeah... innate....

Am I the only one who thinks someone who puts a kid with an instructor at 2/3 years old to play an instrument that requires hell loads of discipline is borderline child abuse?

M Pandolfo Photography wrote:
You've been given countless examples that

Great, if you're autistic or mentally disable you can have an "innate" ability.

Ezhini wrote:
The platitude, "There is no such thing as talent, good amount of information and hard work can get you there,"

I never said that. I said INTELLIGENCE

Out of every 40 people who take my class, I KNOW only 4 are smart enough to make something out of it.

May 20 13 10:40 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Photons 2 Pixels Images
Posts: 16,888
Berwick, Pennsylvania, US


Brain damage unlocks "talent"

Stimulation or damage to certain areas of the brain can enhance "talent"

Brain damage can alter "talent"

Again: Different areas of the brain have different functions. Each person's brain develops differently just as each person's physical characteristics develop differently. Some are taller, some have brown eyes...the brain is no different as it IS still a biological organ.

In cases that you mention where children are exposed to certain stimuli from early on, you claim that those children develop skills based solely on your theory....work, dedication, intelligence. What you aren't considering is that children inherit genetic traits from their parents....eye color, height, and yes, even brain development. It's also entirely possible that those children had a genetic disposition from their parents such that their brain developed more in the areas necessary for those skills. It's logical to assume that parents with particular talents will also expose their children more to those talents.
May 20 13 11:31 am  Link  Quote 
guide forum
Photographer
Giacomo Cirrincioni
Posts: 20,612
New York, New York, US


Natalia_Taffarel wrote:
Am I the only one who thinks someone who puts a kid with an instructor at 2/3 years old to play an instrument that requires hell loads of discipline is borderline child abuse?

I started at four (violin, no tiny basses), I had to play catch up...  And no, it was not abusive.

May 20 13 11:41 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
IMnPhoto
Posts: 2,171
New York, New York, US


The development and plasticity of the human brain is covered in very basic college courses.

I would suggest picking up a textbook, before pulling theories out of thin air.
May 20 13 01:10 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
IMnPhoto
Posts: 2,171
New York, New York, US


The Invisible Touch wrote:
+1 Talent does exist and you don't become talented...you just are or not!! Well explained David!!

In total agreement.
All of these statements about "developing a talent", should be restated as "making use of a talent."

May 20 13 01:13 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
IMnPhoto
Posts: 2,171
New York, New York, US


Garry k wrote:
coincidence is not irony

Yes. The date might be coincidental, but the irony is in the approach. This discussion was not well planned, and like Waterloo, was doomed to fail.

May 20 13 01:14 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
IMnPhoto
Posts: 2,171
New York, New York, US


Peano wrote:
There are two topics being debated: whether talent (=innate aptitude for one thing or another) exists, and how reasonable people debate that question or any other.

I think this thread has been fueled more by the second question, and in particular, the attitude conveyed by the thread's title ("TALENT is BS") and statements like this:
Natalia_Taffarel
"I mantin that [talent] doesn't exist, not only that, I DARE someone to give me empirical evidence supporting the assertion that it does"

There's a big difference between raising a question for serious discussion, and daring others to knock a chip off your shoulder. To my mind, that's about the only point worth carrying away from this dismal thread.

That is the first thing I noticed as well!
I have yet to read a single statement that helps assert any truth in the thread's title.

Lots of "I agree, because I feel the same way" supportive statements, but other than that, nothing of substance.

We seem to have fallen trap into yet another thread, which seemed to start off like a promising discussion, yet revealed itself to be no more than a vacuous rant.

I really wish people would limit themselves to updating their Facebook status or sending out tweets, instead of starting a thread with something that probably seemed like a smart thing to say at the time.

I don't discount hard work. I think it should be applauded, and those of us that lack talent thank the OP for thinking that way, but talent coupled with hard work, will trump hard work alone every time.

Therein lies the praise we give to talented individuals, even if they are shunned, ridiculed, and ostracized. Ultimately they are recognized as talented, even if it happens posthumously.

May 20 13 01:14 pm  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
Peano
Posts: 4,106
Lynchburg, Virginia, US


MnPhoto wrote:
We seem to have fallen trap into yet another thread, which seemed to start off like a promising discussion, yet revealed itself to be no more than a vacuous rant.

It was obviously trolling from the get-go.

May 20 13 01:32 pm  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
ST Retouch
Posts: 239
Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland


Natalia_Taffarel wrote:
Out of every 40 people who take my class, I KNOW only 4 are smart enough to make something out of it.

I think you gave answer to yourself .

Those 4 people are talented  for photography.
Others are not talented  for photography , which is normal.
They are talented  fore some other things, maybe to be doctors, musicians , engineers, pilots, but not photographers or retouchers.
Natalia , you can not tech no one to be creative in photography, simply it is impossible.
You have talent to be creative or you don't have.

Or if we follow your previous explanations that everyone can learn photography and retouching , that mean you are not talented teacher because you can not learn all 40 students to be great in photography and retouching.

Decide if those 36 people (from 40) are not talented for photography or you are not talented teacher to learn them all smile
With your explanations in previous posts mean you are not talented teacher.

I think  you are probably good teacher , so my explanation is that those 36 people are not talented for photography and retouching and you can not call them not smart enough , because maybe they are very smart , but simply not talented for photography.

Also the one and only way to teach someone in retouching is 4-5 days one on one .
Workshops with 10-30 people or more are nonsense.
Just a waste of time for students and teachers.

Probably you didn't understand my previous post about 17 years old son of my great friend.
The meaning of my previous post was that I didn't learn him anything , he already knew everything in his minds  , in his vision, in his talent, simply that is TALENT . You can call that natural born talent, innate talent , simply talent , whatever you like but there is one and only explanation--- TALENT.
I just showed him technical tricks and steps how to follow his vision.
I have no doubt , he could discover all these technical tricks and by himself , I just saved him couple of months or maybe 1 year , that's all.
I didn't learn him how to be creative or I din't learn him to be talent , because he is more creative then me and his father together ( and both of us have tens or hundreds  of thousand files in our pockets ).
With second file in his life he made real file.
Some people can not make that not even after 20 years of professional carrier or never.
And I just can imagine what he will make after 6 months.
I don't know if you look sometimes through MM profiles , if you don't look , do it.
I found couple of 17-20 years old kids which produce unbelievable photos from the first moments of their carriers , photos which you can not find not even in one famous magazine, kids which can give homework in photography for most famous published photographers around the world.
There is only one explanation--- TALENT.
I want also to share  how I work with  someone who wants to learn composite work.
First day when he/she come to my office I take coffee with him/her and we start to talk .
After 15-20 minutes I open one finished PSD file with layers in composite work.
It is always fake file , finished file full of small mistakes ( not large mistakes, because large mistakes you can see even if you are not talent).
Small mistakes mean slightly halo edges, slightly color problems between model and the background, slightly exposure problems between model and the background, slightly depth in filed problems , slightly shadow problems ,and couple of more very very small mistakes.
Then I ask him/her do you like this file , would you like to learn how to make this?
If I get answer yes this is great immediately I know that it will be very difficult to learn him/her, because I can not learn him/her these things.
I can learn him/her technical way and technical steps.
If student realize from the first moment that file is problematic with some small details, I know that he/she will teach everything.
I can teach them both exactly with same steps and tricks , but only talented students will become maybe professional photographers or retouchers one day if they continue with hard work , vision and talent.
The others will stay as a photographers/retouchers with technical knowlegde which mean they can do  the job .
It is so simple especially in photography if you look file at 100% of view in front of you and you don't realize problems no one can teach you that.
Talents realize everything , maybe they don't know for the first time how to get that look ( because they don't have technical knowledge) , but believe me they see everything.


Best,
ST

May 20 13 02:19 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Jakov Markovic
Posts: 954
Belgrade, Central Serbia, Serbia


Natalia_Taffarel wrote:
I don't believe in talent I believe in being intelligent, HARD WORK and dedication.

http://www.worth1000.com/artists/NataliaT

Those are the things I did when I started - Talented? I don't think so.

I show you mine, show me yours. Show there's no such thing as talent and we all sucked in the beginning.

x

There is simply no way not to get better at something if you love what you're doing and dedicate enough time to practice.

May 20 13 02:23 pm  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
Laura Abigail
Posts: 66
London, England, United Kingdom


My best friend and I both went to art college.
We grew up together and spent our time drawing together,
we come from the same background.
She came home from school and worked for about an hour.
I came home from school and had to work until 2am every single night.
Her grades were very good, I just managed to get 60%

Then I discovered cameras and half a year later I shot the picture that is my avatar.

Is she more intelligent than me? No.
Did she work harder than me? No.

She is so much better at drawing and no matter how hard I work, I will never be as good as my friend. On the other hand, give her a camera and she has no idea what to do with it. 

Also, someone can be a complete and utter idiot and very much not intelligent and/or very lazy, but still be good at something.

I do believe in talent. Talent combined with hard work and dedication. Intelligence has nothing to do with it. I also believe that everyone has a talent (maybe some people are more talented than others, but everyone has something they're naturally good at, something that just feels right), you just have to find it.

Anyway, just my 2 cents. I suppose this is one of those discussions that could go on forever. In the end it doesn't matter whether you believe in talent or not as long as you're happy with what you're doing.
May 20 13 02:35 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
David M Russell
Posts: 1,053
New York, New York, US


A-M-P wrote:
From 2007

When I first started photography shooting my sister as my only subject those were my first couple of shoots

Your sister is gorgeous.

May 20 13 02:41 pm  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
The Invisible Touch
Posts: 705
Tarragona, Catalonia, Spain


Laura Abigail wrote:
I do believe in talent. Talent combined with hard work and dedication. Intelligence has nothing to do with it. I also believe that everyone has a talent (maybe some people are more talented than others, but everyone has something they're naturally good at, something that just feels right), you just have to find it.

+1000

May 20 13 02:51 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
DG at studio47
Posts: 2,361
East Ridge, Tennessee, US


Almost everyone is born with some type of advantage. Better senses, better tactile ability, better coordination, better balance, etc. One can take any innate talent and nurture it, or bury it in the sea of do nothing.It has been said that the greatest storehouse of poetry, novels, inventions, music, genius, art, is in one place--the graveyard. People who had talent but never cultivated it to fruition.
I was born premature, heart defect,asthmatic, poor balance, and a speech impediment.
I never knew about the heart defect until I was an adult. I had a gym teacher who worked with me on my coordination and balance--later I got into karate and had the ability to balance very well. The schools I attended sent me to speech class every school day for 4 years. I became a good public speaker, a semi professional singer, and a very capable conversationalist. Some have "natural talent", some have "learned skills", some have both, and some sit on their ass and have nothing.
May 20 13 02:53 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Garry k
Posts: 26,414
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada


Natalia_Taffarel wrote:
Talent as INNATE yes, I don't believe in it.

At the age of 3 he knew who Mozart was. He started playing piano at 3, so that's 2 years of training in the video. Playing every day and the influence of parents who love classical music and made a 3 year old sit behind an instrument and practice.

Yeah... innate....

Am I the only one who thinks someone who puts a kid with an instructor at 2/3 years old to play an instrument that requires hell loads of discipline is borderline child abuse?

Assumptions seem to abound with you , and I believe your response to my point is merely an attempt to dodge the convincing counterargument by trying to inject needless drama into the discussion ( oh , he must have been abused to be able to play so well ..lol)

Who is to say how much practicing this 5 year old master pianist has done ?

Maybe he is just one of the those rare people who can hear a song and replicate it( proving that not everyone "sucks at the beginning" ) ..but even if he did practice every waking hour of his life( which is highly unlikely )  between 3 and 5 yrs of age  there would still need to an element of talent to achieve what has achieved

And the thing about Classical Music vs say Photography - it is an artform that can to a large degree be measured objectively

May 20 13 02:54 pm  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
Peano
Posts: 4,106
Lynchburg, Virginia, US


Jakov Markovic wrote:
There is simply no way not to get better at something if you love what you're doing and dedicate enough time to practice.

Right. On the other hand, the things we love doing tend to be things we have some aptitude for. Two personal anecdotes on that score:

When I was in about seventh grade, I got it into my head that I wanted to play chess. A couple of classmates belonged to a chess club, and one of them played at a very high level. I joined a chess club, read books, played game after game, studied the openings, the middle games, the end games ... but, alas, I just couldn't cut it. I finally figured out that I didn't want to dedicate my time and energy to chess.

But when I picked up a pair of drumsticks, that was like stepping into another world. My mother came from a very musical family. I inherited a natural sense of rhythm and a keen feel for timing. The rhythm of music fascinated me far more than harmony, melody, or any other aspect. I spent lots of time playing and practicing, joined a band, got better, moved up to better bands, took lessons from a private instructor, and eventually studied percussion at the college level. And made a pretty good pile of money along the way playing dance jobs.

It's a continuous cycle: Aptitude feeds enjoyment, enjoyment motivates effort and practice, which yields higher satisfaction and develops aptitude into higher skills, and so on.

As Jim Lafferty commented earlier, on the question of nature/nurture, "If you think only one determines success, have fun peddling that."

May 20 13 02:55 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
David Sheldrick
Posts: 710
London, England, United Kingdom


I have figured out the only way we can solve this, we have to all  put funds together to hire a team of babies and train each one to be a retoucher, stylist, MUA & photographer every day of their lives, and see how good they are by the time they are 18.

I dont think that will actually solve anything. But it would make a great reality tv show?
May 20 13 03:01 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
William Kious
Posts: 8,830
Delphos, Ohio, US


I've been around a long time, relatively speaking. Often, those who rail against talent are the same who, while successful, often feel they lack the vision they see elsewhere.

By the logic presented by the OP, anyone could create Beethoven's 5th, paint like Monet, photograph like Adams, dance like Anna Pavlova, sing like Etta James... all it takes is "hard work".

Thread is fail, unless it's born of sarcasm (or there's some obfuscated point.)
May 20 13 03:06 pm  Link  Quote 
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