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  #1  
Old 11-12-2004, 05:03 PM
Homerhomer Homerhomer is offline
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Default Are we afraid to be honest?

In a month or so since I have joined this website I realized that by far the majority of comments on the images are simply glowing reviews, which in many cases is justified.
I also realize that photography is very subjective, hense there could be hundreds of different opinions on the photo, and they will all be right, especially when it comes to the way photo is seen or felt or even the compositon.
My issue here is the critiques of images that aren't perfect or even good technically, yet based on the comments it would seem like it must be a photo of the year. I ask what purpose does it serve? Aren't we all here not only to learn about world through photography, but also to learn or share our knowledge about photography?
I am not implying that each image should be judged by the same standards or each photographer for that matter, I just think that pointing out aspects of the image that may lack in some way is, or at least should be, thought provoking. I have pointed out things I don't like about a photo, or even in some cases thrashed the whole image if I thought it is appropriate, on this and other sites. I have given what I think is a constructive critizism to poeple who are 100 times better photographers then I ever will be, and not once I have received a response indicating that the author is in some ways upset, I have received answers appreciating the input, appreciating pointing out things that went unnoticed, explaning what went into the process of making the image this way and why the route was taken, or no answer at all.
So folks, let's not be afraid, we can be honest and very polite at the same time, constuctive critisizm isn't all that difficult, and it should be beneficial to the author of the photo, author of the critique and anyone following the topic.
Peter
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  #2  
Old 11-12-2004, 05:12 PM
PixelTerror PixelTerror is offline
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Default Re: Are we afraid to be honest?

Hi Peter, I think the key points when writing a critique are:
1. be polite
2. highlight the positive points of the photo
3. write your remarks or improvement proposals, add a WS if you have time and/or knowledge
that's it.
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  #3  
Old 11-12-2004, 05:22 PM
Homerhomer Homerhomer is offline
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Default Re: Are we afraid to be honest?

I agree with that 100%, the point I was trying to make is that while the image can have for example exposure that is quite poor (at least in my opinion ofcourse), yet I see dozen of comments saying that the exposure is great.
While I admit that my point of view mybe wrong in a particular case, I am hoping that such a critique may stir a discussion or, or at least someone, me, poeple reading the topic, or the once who don't agree with me, will gain a better understanding why the image was done this way, or why this aspect of the image is incorrect, or how it could be done differently.
If all say that the exposure is great, yet part of the image is overexposed, what benefit is this going to be to anyone, unless there is an explanation to the reasons why it was done this way.
Peter
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  #4  
Old 11-12-2004, 05:27 PM
green green is offline
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Default Re: Are we afraid to be honest?

Hey Peter,

Every month this subject is brought up on the forum (not always as explicitly as you do but still). I totally agree with you. I don't write much critiques (nor I post pictures either) because of lack of time. But when I do, I tell what I feel about the picture with no kind of self censorship editing. And as you said, no one ever complain about it. Sometimes I received message thanking me for the input or telling me they don't agree with my point of view on which I often engage into a discussion then to explain my point of view (which is always enlighting for both part of the discussion).

When the subject about honesty in criticism is brought up in the forum, there's always some saying they dim their own opinion just not to hurt people feeling. Well, I say if someone can take an harsh critiques then he souldn't be member of community which first goal is to comment and give good or bad appreciation of the work published in this community.
So go on, be harsh, tell what you really think also tell what should have been done (most importantly) that's the best way for everyone to learn. When you where in school did you learn because the teacher was always nice to you and praised anything you did eventhough it was bad? No, you learned from the mistake you did and by the teacher giving you bad grade and telling why you were wrong. The next time would have done anything possible to get better grade.

Romain
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  #5  
Old 11-12-2004, 05:38 PM
Homerhomer Homerhomer is offline
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Default Re: Are we afraid to be honest?

Romain, let's just say that you and I are exactly on the same page.

It's the engaging in the discussion and presenting different point of views that I find the most educational and beneficial.
Peter
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  #6  
Old 11-12-2004, 06:16 PM
RandomCameraGuy RandomCameraGuy is offline
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Default Re: Are we afraid to be honest?

Well said Peter. I raised this same question a month or two ago! I was told then that people didn't appreciate it, that the people didn't like recieving hostility in return. I have seen examples of this and gotten it myself. That said, I still believe in being critical. But I do believe that some are more accepting of it than others, so if I get a negative reply I basically just don't comment to them again (obviously they have a different intent for being on TE than I). So yes Peter, keep it up. I know I appreciate your comments!
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  #7  
Old 11-12-2004, 07:17 PM
Riz Riz is offline
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Default Re: Are we afraid to be honest?

Peter-

Some people I do find tend to be very "wow great photo nice dof!" green smiley!
and that is good for the people that don't want to learn more on how to improve on the work the post here, you know.

It goes another way as well if you just keep dogging out someone shots saying "nothing is in focus" or "what is this snapshot", because you might really want to type these things and yes you don't be as honest as you really want to be.
personally the people below I find to be the most honest for the most part on a regular basis and are quite active here on TE
in my opinion... are

Bogdan MKING Rhiannon rabani cgrindahl Edwin Midnight_sun zto joseelias AdrianW Luko Ebbe torben kajenn shutterbug sohrab

here are just to name a few off the cuff.
check out these people comments Peter you get a good subjective point of view I think- email me if you don't think so-

I also try to be as honest as I can without saying this is god awful because being subjective helps me, also if I comment on someones photo some people feel like they just give a quick comment back just because and not really usefull good or bad.
=dave=
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  #8  
Old 11-12-2004, 07:43 PM
Homerhomer Homerhomer is offline
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Default Re: Are we afraid to be honest?

Dave wrote:
"Some people I do find tend to be very "wow great photo nice dof!" green smiley!
and that is good for the people that don't want to learn more on how to improve on the work the post here, you know"

I agree, and have made similar statements myself simply because I liked the photo and had nothing to add, just wanted to show my appreciation. Nothing wrong with that as long this is honestly what we feel. The question I raised also isn't on the quality of critiques (this has been done over and over again), most of us here aren't great photographers nor critiquers, so the quality may not be there no matter how hard we try, I think that what I am trying to address is that we can say what we feel, and if done in a proper manner it will be very appreciated.

Dave wrote:
"It goes another way as well if you just keep dogging out someone shots saying "nothing is in focus" or "what is this snapshot", because you might really want to type these things and yes you don't be as honest as you really want to be.
personally the people below I find to be the most honest for the most part on a regular basis and are quite active here on TE
in my opinion... are"

I agree, it isn't my intention to put anyone down. In this case I look at it from the point of view of what the photographer has done (based on other images), and try to critique based on that. I have issued positive comments with couple of hints on the photos that were so so at best, but judging by the photographers other work the encouragment is needed. I have also comletely thrashed (tried to do it politely) images that were better than the once coming from complete novice, because judging by the photographers other work this particular image was IMO way below their own standard.

I reconise some of the names you mentioned, and I am sure there are more, however with the volume it's is hard to make the argument this is a rule and not the exception to it.
Maybe if less pictures were posted something would have changed (instead of photo per day, make it photo every 3 days-geez for me once a week would be more than enough?).
Peter
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  #9  
Old 11-12-2004, 07:28 PM
Homerhomer Homerhomer is offline
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Default Re: Are we afraid to be honest?

And vice versa Alex, I look forward to your comments.
I agree that if you see constructive cirtisizm not received very well, then no need to comment on this persona again, however I think many will be surprised how well the critisizm is usually accepted and and is appreciated more than "great image" comment.
Peter
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  #10  
Old 11-12-2004, 08:43 PM
Riz Riz is offline
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Default Re: Are we afraid to be honest?

I would be fine posting a picture every 3 days hell I've only posted like what 20 shots and I had an account here since Jan.
but there are people that post everyday and comment like 25 times a day and I give them credit I personnal don't have the time for one thing
and secondly I'm going keep doing what I do an if people don't like my comment/critiques/or photos thats find I post what I see and comment how I see things. I wish I could comment on every fav of mine everyday, but ther is no way.
I try my best and I wish I could comment more...

TE MEMBERS JUST BE HONEST GOOD OR BAD!

I should post more and I like putting in "my two cents" on a lot of pictures and people to be quite honest Peter
the 1st picture I posted read some of those comments at the time I was like people are going to hate me I can already see it but I liked the negative critiques to be honest more than the positive, because I would not post the picture on the web if I didn't like it, I mean come on.
An I think by setting a standard for yourself helps photo wise or comment wise because true to what you believe I don't back even to some the friends I've met here on TE. I tell them what I think that is all you can do, and

Some people are going to feel bad for typing something that they might piss someone off, even a person that comments on his/her photos often some people tend to hold back, set a standard for yourself peter.
maybe the majority will be true to what they type.
=dave=
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