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Photographer
Green Grape
Posts: 283
West Paterson, New Jersey, US


Some may ask for advice and to be criticized on their work. But I think it would help to view the critics profile & port before actually taking that advice.
Jul 09 13 04:00 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
K E E L I N G
Posts: 39,777
Peoria, Illinois, US


Green Grape Photography wrote:
Some may ask for advice and to be criticized on their work. But I think it would help to view the critics profile & port before actually taking that advice.

I just did that.

Jul 09 13 04:13 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
SPRINGHEEL
Posts: 38,188
Gibraltar, Michigan, US


You don't need to know how to cook to know what shitty food tastes like
Jul 09 13 04:14 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Laurence Moan
Posts: 7,704
Huntington Beach, California, US


.   
Jul 09 13 04:16 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Toto Photo
Posts: 2,649
Belmont, California, US


Green Grape Photography wrote:
Some may ask for advice and to be criticized on their work. But I think it would help to view the critics profile & port before actually taking that advice.

Seems like a good idea to me. Although I'd need to be on the fence. If I flat-out didn't agree with their advice, I'd ignore it and not look. If I kind of agreed but wasn't sure, I'd check their port.

Also, if they brought brand new information, something I didn't know, I'd check then also.

Jul 09 13 04:19 pm  Link  Quote 
guide forum
Photographer
Rays Fine Art
Posts: 6,098
New York, New York, US


I would tend to agree.  While there are many (indeed, I think most) here who are quite qualified to give useful advice and criticism, unfortunately there are also some who simply delight in spouting useless and even harmful "advice".  The reasons for this would probably fill several volumes of psychiatric textbooks but in the long run, before taking any piece of advice, you need to evaluate it.

I was once told that advice is like strawberries.  Strawberries grow out of a mound of manure.  The trick is to learn to eat the strawberries without swallowing a lot of bullshit.
Jul 09 13 04:40 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Select Models
Posts: 35,777
Upland, California, US


Green Grape Photography wrote:
Some may ask for advice and to be criticized on their work. But I think it would help to view the critics profile & port before actually taking that advice.

True... BUT... the way the game's played around there... it's not like you can actually pick and choose who they are... hmm... lol

Jul 09 13 06:06 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Rick Edwards
Posts: 6,159
Wilmington, Delaware, US


SPRINGHEEL  wrote:
You don't need to know how to cook to know what shitty food tastes like

^^^ this

Jul 09 13 06:09 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Paige Thomley
Posts: 573
West Bend, Wisconsin, US


Rick Edwards wrote:

^^^ this

Yup, this.

Jul 09 13 06:11 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Miss Photog
Posts: 287
VALLEY VILLAGE, California, US


SPRINGHEEL  wrote:
You don't need to know how to cook to know what shitty food tastes like

haha +1

Jul 09 13 06:14 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
C h a r l e s D
Posts: 9,304
Los Angeles, California, US


OP would be wise to note that the most "qualified" critiques are are NOT going to be positive.  While they may point out a few things they like about an image, they're really going to point out problems with the photo that unqualified critique-ers won't see or care about.
Jul 09 13 06:27 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Ben Hinman
Posts: 596
Westwood, California, US


as a rule of thumb i judge the value of the feedback on the person giving it and what they might have to gain from bullshitting you. not all criticism is valid, deserved, or accurate. the best way is to avoid the forums altogether and message an artist or photographer who inspires you directly. this eliminates the ego boosters and those who will placate you for extra comments and tends to get you more specific suggestions.
Jul 09 13 06:57 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Ben Hinman
Posts: 596
Westwood, California, US


SPRINGHEEL  wrote:
You don't need to know how to cook to know what shitty food tastes like

sure, but you wouldn't go around telling a 5 star chef how to do his job, right?

Jul 09 13 07:06 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Laura UnBound
Posts: 27,259
Toronto, Ontario, Canada


SPRINGHEEL  wrote:
You don't need to know how to cook to know what shitty food tastes like

While I do agree with this, at the same time, maybe you don't know what good food tastes like either. What is it that you're cooking that you would say tastes GREAT.


Last time I got a critique on a headshot I took, I was told I needed to work on my skin retouching....that guys entire portfolio was full of models with worse than plastic skin. Since he ventured to put it all in his own portfolio over and over again, I have to believe that's what he considers "good"....and if that's good then I don't want to be good.

Jul 09 13 07:29 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Rich Burroughs
Posts: 3,259
Portland, Oregon, US


SPRINGHEEL  wrote:
You don't need to know how to cook to know what shitty food tastes like

People who are really good cooks are likely to have a refined level of taste though.

Jul 09 13 07:42 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
DarrylPascoePhotography
Posts: 477
Toronto, Ontario, Canada


SPRINGHEEL  wrote:
You don't need to know how to cook to know what shitty food tastes like

but if what you think is great food is shitty food because its what you are used to eating and enjoy.......yea kinda matters haha

Jul 09 13 07:48 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Rich Burroughs
Posts: 3,259
Portland, Oregon, US


Laura UnBound wrote:

While I do agree with this, at the same time, maybe you don't know what good food tastes like either. What is it that you're cooking that you would say tastes GREAT.

I think there are a couple of issues there. One is taste level, another is just having the context/awareness to be able to evaluate work.

I was a Theatre major in college and I took an advanced acting class that was very good. During the course of the class I think every one of us had that "oh shit" moment where we realized all the acting we'd done to that point was total crap. And once we understood that, we were able to get better.

I think it's the same with photography. Some people just don't know enough to understand what's good and bad. And then there's the taste thing. If someone's on a totally different page there, their feedback may not be helpful to you.

I absolutely look at people's work when I consider their opinions here. I sometimes won't even give someone a critique if I think it's going to be wasted air.

Jul 09 13 07:50 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Farenell Photography
Posts: 17,966
Albany, New York, US


Green Grape Photography wrote:
Some may ask for advice and to be criticized on their work. But I think it would help to view the critics profile & port before actually taking that advice.

I think this is a load of bunk. Some people are better at having the passion & drive to execute the "good" work, some people are better at recognizing what's good & what's bad (or what's working in a piece & what isn't). Otherwise the world wouldn't not have ANY critics whatsoever.

Take what people say to heart. Most will be worthless & not be worth anything, other times they'll have a viewpoint worth considering that you yourself never would have considered in a million years. & if that's the case, the quality of that person's port isn't really going to matter, now will it?

Jul 09 13 08:11 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Chronos Creations
Posts: 353
Benidorm, Valencia, Spain


SPRINGHEEL  wrote:
You don't need to know how to cook to know what shitty food tastes like

True but if you don't know how to cook, how will you know how to improve the food?

Jul 09 13 08:14 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Chronos Creations
Posts: 353
Benidorm, Valencia, Spain


If someone critiques my work, I always check their work to see if I want my pictures to look like their pictures or not.
Jul 09 13 08:18 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Zack Zoll
Posts: 2,426
Glens Falls, New York, US


Chronos Productions wrote:

True but if you don't know how to cook, how will you know how to improve the food?

This is a really bad analogy.  I'm quoting you, but I'm not blaming you.  My father is a good example of someone who cannot, for the life of him, follow a recipe ... but I can't tell you how many times I've had leftovers at my parents' place that had been reworked to taste like something I would have gotten at a five star restaurant.  My mother is the opposite:  if you give her a shopping list, you're going to get a great dinner.  But if you tell her to go look in the fridge and figure out what dinner is going to be ... well, not so much.

Two different skill sets, really.

Critting work is the same.  Talking about work - either your own or others' - is a different skill from making your own.  I've had great professors and terrible ones, and many of the terrible ones made excellent work.  I think the best policy is to listen to everything but the be prepared to ignore it all.

Jul 09 13 08:33 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Laura UnBound
Posts: 27,259
Toronto, Ontario, Canada


Rich Burroughs wrote:

I think there are a couple of issues there. One is taste level, another is just having the context/awareness to be able to evaluate work.

I was a Theatre major in college and I took an advanced acting class that was very good. During the course of the class I think every one of us had that "oh shit" moment where we realized all the acting we'd done to that point was total crap. And once we understood that, we were able to get better.

I think it's the same with photography. Some people just don't know enough to understand what's good and bad. And then there's the taste thing. If someone's on a totally different page there, their feedback may not be helpful to you.

I absolutely look at people's work when I consider their opinions here. I sometimes won't even give someone a critique if I think it's going to be wasted air.

I dont disagree. Which is why I generally don't ask for critiques from the masses, unless my goal is to appeal to the masses, which is 99% of the time isn't.

I ask for feedback from people whos work/quality/style I aspire to.
If I want to shoot more like bob, and bobs work is entirely different than joes work, regardless of whether or not joes work is good, joes opinion doesn't help me unless he can tell me how to be more like bob. If he doesn't even like bobs work and is going to steer me in a different direction than I want his opinion is especially useless to me.

Jul 09 13 09:44 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
zaxpix
Posts: 1,988
New Brunswick, New Jersey, US


Green Grape Photography wrote:
Some may ask for advice and to be criticized on their work. But I think it would help to view the critics profile & port before actually taking that advice.

"Pay no attention to what the critics say; no statue has ever been put up to a critic."
-Jean Sibelius

First and foremost, your work should satisfy you.

Following the advice of every Tom, Dick and Harriet will have your work looking like every Tom, Dick and Harriet's.

Seek advice from those who have already accomplished the end results you're looking for.

Take the best. Leave the rest.

PMs and tutorials can be wonderful things.

Z.

Jul 10 13 03:14 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Farenell Photography
Posts: 17,966
Albany, New York, US


zaxpix wrote:
"Pay no attention to what the critics say; no statue has ever been put up to a critic."
-Jean Sibelius

You mean other than the "critic(s)" commissioning the work in the first place.

Jul 10 13 08:10 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
zaxpix
Posts: 1,988
New Brunswick, New Jersey, US


zaxpix wrote:
"Pay no attention to what the critics say; no statue has ever been put up to a critic."
-Jean Sibelius
Farenell Photography wrote:
You mean other than the "critic(s)" commissioning the work in the first place.

Not me. Jean Sibelius.

That wouldn't be a critic, in the sense of the word. (Nor in the context of this thread.) That would be a client. If you want to be paid that commission, it would be wise of you to listen to their opinions.

The customer is always right. Critics? Not so much.

Z.

Jul 10 13 09:12 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
ontherocks
Posts: 22,359
Salem, Oregon, US


the opinions i'm most interested in are from my paying customers and models.

there's no rule in critique forum that bans newbies from putting their two cents in. in fact the newbies are probably more in tune with the average consumer.
Jul 10 13 09:18 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Marin Photography NYC
Posts: 7,130
New York, New York, US


Sometimes a critique even a bad one will force you to take a second look and think about it. Since we all tend to view our work favorably it may help to take an honest look again. If you don't like the information given to you - ignore it.

No one is required to participate.
Jul 10 13 09:27 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Farenell Photography
Posts: 17,966
Albany, New York, US


zaxpix wrote:
The customer is always right. Critics? Not so much.

That may be so but those critics can be extremely influential in their own right & can sway the opinion of the very customers you're seeking.

Cases in point, Siskel & Ebert as well as "Consumer Reports" magazine immediately comes to mind.

Jul 10 13 09:33 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
zaxpix
Posts: 1,988
New Brunswick, New Jersey, US


zaxpix wrote:
The customer is always right. Critics? Not so much.
Farenell Photography wrote:
That may be so but those critics can be extremely influential in their own right & can sway the opinion of the very customers you're seeking.

Cases in point, Siskel & Ebert. Same goes for "Consumer Reports".

They can be wrong as well

No doubt, critics can hold a certain amount of sway over those who rely on their opinions of this and that.

Everyone does not.

I would wager that there are many more of us who go to the movies and consume products based on our own opinions and are just fine with that.

Z.

Jul 10 13 09:46 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Mark Harrington Photo
Posts: 383
Riverside, California, US


The ability to critique an image is very different than the ability to create an image. Hind sight is always 20/20... Anytime someone takes the time to honestly critique an image you should pay attention. While art is a subjective term, technique and rules are not. Sure rules can and should be broken at times, but remember they serve as a basis for separating the good from the bad. Some basic criteria are standard, ie. Rule of Thirds, No 90 deg joints, If it should be bent bend it, Don't crop at joints etc. These are foundational and therefore most people will come to agreement on these suggestions. Current processing methods such as desaturated colors, flare, unique perspectives etc, are subjective and no two people will agree totally on such and this is where your image makes its impact. Photographer skill level is generally easy to spot by the obvious foundation strengths and weaknesses. Camera shake, poor cropping, bad angle are indications of a less accomplished photographer so it makes no sense to rip color profiles when the photographer likely won't need to correct that issue until they can get the picture focused..

We all learn and grow from our mistakes and most of us like to share our successes, some just want to hear themselves prattle on... Critiques requests are a great way to grow, just have a tough skin and take them for what they are - someone's opinion. As so eloquently stated, you don't have to know how to cook to know something tastes like shit. You also don't have to know shit to cook something... It should be easy to tell who knows their stuff from those who just want to prattle.

Great topic, it comes up on every photo site.. Recently a big discussion on PPA site.
Jul 10 13 09:48 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Dekilah
Posts: 4,883
Detroit, Michigan, US


Green Grape Photography wrote:
Some may ask for advice and to be criticized on their work. But I think it would help to view the critics profile & port before actually taking that advice.

I tend to agree in some ways but not in others.

There are some things that a person can see without having a great port. Images not in focus, poor editing (as in the really bad stuff), etc. There are also some people who just happen to be really good at critiquing and noticing things, but maybe not so talented themselves.

I think there are also times when you get a critique from someone who probably has no idea what they are talking about or who does not understand your genre, etc. And I think sometimes people throw artistic goals or similar that the photographer or whoever mentioned and just judge on personal taste, often in a negative respect. Those are the people who I personal just ignore. If someone cannot take the time to read a post explaining the image (if there is one), then they really are not giving a very good, though out critique in my opinion.

I also tend to put less concern in critiques that are not constructive. It is a lot easier to tell someone you just do not like something, than it is is to tell them why it did not work and a suggestion on how to fix it.

For me as a model, I will often look at the profile of a model if she is giving me more detailed advice. If she is a fashion model living in New York, what works for her may be a lot different than what works for me. It does not mean she is giving me "bad" advice. It just means it is not really relevant for me.

Jul 10 13 09:59 am  Link  Quote 
Artist/Painter
The3LivingAndThe3Dead
Posts: 963
Los Angeles, California, US


There is no hard and fast rule about this.

You can get great feedback from someone with a bad portfolio, and shitty feedback from someone who does great work.

And vice versa.
Jul 10 13 10:11 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Evan Hiltunen
Posts: 3,140
Minneapolis, Minnesota, US


SPRINGHEEL  wrote:
You don't need to know how to cook to know what shitty food tastes like

If the person judging my food calls themselves a chef, they better know something about food and cooking. Their expertise is being used to judge my expertise.

OTOH, you can get great feedback from people that aren't experts or pros, but you know going in that's the situation. They aren't pretending to be experts.

Jul 10 13 10:21 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Shot By Adam
Posts: 5,654
Las Vegas, Nevada, US


Green Grape Photography wrote:
Some may ask for advice and to be criticized on their work. But I think it would help to view the critics profile & port before actually taking that advice.

They did a big study of the NFL and collegiate football years ago and found that, quite conclusively, that the worst coaches were great players and that the best coaches were typically people who never once played the game.

Jul 10 13 10:34 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Motordrive Photography
Posts: 2,604
Lodi, California, US


Green Grape Photography wrote:
Some may ask for advice and to be criticized on their work. But I think it would help to view the critics profile & port before actually taking that advice.

it can be another case of "do as I say, not as I do"
I view it as another pair of eyes that might see something that was missed

Jul 10 13 10:46 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Mikey McMichaels
Posts: 2,112
New York, New York, US


Green Grape Photography wrote:
Some may ask for advice and to be criticized on their work. But I think it would help to view the critics profile & port before actually taking that advice.

You've worded this perfectly.

This is what people read when they hear someone ask for a "critique". They hear it as "criticize me" or say critical/negative things.

You can have great critiques without saying anything negative. In fact these are probably better because the ideas that get stimulated tend to be about the future - the next shoot, rather than about what was done.

Jul 10 13 11:35 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Green Grape
Posts: 283
West Paterson, New Jersey, US


Mikey McMichaels wrote:

You've worded this perfectly.

This is what people read when they hear someone ask for a "critique". They hear it as "criticize me" or say critical/negative things.

You can have great critiques without saying anything negative. In fact these are probably better because the ideas that get stimulated tend to be about the future - the next shoot, rather than about what was done.

Exactly. I hardly ever see any positivity.

Jul 10 13 11:41 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Jeffrey M Fletcher
Posts: 4,344
Asheville, North Carolina, US


Zack Zoll wrote:

This is a really bad analogy.  I'm quoting you, but I'm not blaming you.  My father is a good example of someone who cannot, for the life of him, follow a recipe ... but I can't tell you how many times I've had leftovers at my parents' place that had been reworked to taste like something I would have gotten at a five star restaurant.  My mother is the opposite:  if you give her a shopping list, you're going to get a great dinner.  But if you tell her to go look in the fridge and figure out what dinner is going to be ... well, not so much.

Two different skill sets, really.

Critting work is the same.  Talking about work - either your own or others' - is a different skill from making your own.  I've had great professors and terrible ones, and many of the terrible ones made excellent work.  I think the best policy is to listen to everything but the be prepared to ignore it all.

+1 Very well put. Developing the vocabulary and perception to say something intelligent, insightful or meaningful about artwork is a craft and skill of its own.

Jul 10 13 12:06 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Jeffrey M Fletcher
Posts: 4,344
Asheville, North Carolina, US


SPRINGHEEL  wrote:
You don't need to know how to cook to know what shitty food tastes like
Rich Burroughs wrote:
People who are really good cooks are likely to have a refined level of taste though.

Undeniably, but sometimes also pointed and narrowly opinionated , lacking the breadth and flexibility needed in useful critiques.

Jul 10 13 12:11 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Christopher Hartman
Posts: 54,138
Buena Park, California, US


SPRINGHEEL  wrote:
You don't need to know how to cook to know what shitty food tastes like

True, but if you're trying to be a cook and you're bad at it, telling others what's wrong with their food may not carry that much weight...

Jul 10 13 12:13 pm  Link  Quote 
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