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09-06-2018, 05:58 AM - 5 Likes   #1
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"Bridging the Gap: Classical Art Designed for Photographers" - Adam Marelli


A bit long, but very informative video, which might turn more of my snapshots into better photographs (Not sure if posted in the correct place...)

09-06-2018, 08:41 AM - 3 Likes   #2
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Absolutely awesome....I would have happily shown this to my students were it available then, and done another 10 hours using it as a reference.

Salient points, at least from my perspective...

You can do an hour and half lecture on photography , without once mentioning format, lens sharpness or resolution or doing any pixel peeping.
If you pixel peep, you can't see how the compositional elements work together.
When I was at school school, six hours in the studio for each hour of lectutre. And that was the minimum. It was expected that whatever caught your attention would be explored further outside of scheduled class time.
Understanding concepts is useless if you don't practice incorporating them.


I'm completely impressed with how well he condensed and explained some very difficult concepts. Especially the part where he points out, if the picture doesn't draw you in with your eyes unfocused, it doesn't really work.

The forum, with it's emphasis on what lens you use, what aperture etc. I'm not saying that stuff isn't important, but that it doesn't define what a good image is and what isn't.

I really loved the part where he broke the Ansel Adams photograph down into light and dark patterns.

The part about people claiming they just don't have an eye is also quite good. Having an eye is about understanding visual values and practicing incorporating them. It's about practice. Being born with an eye has very little to do with it.

His short reference to narrow DoF and blurred back ground is right on. Creating focus with light and tonal values line and curves and other elements of design is just better.

His discussion of the fact that you have to take a lot of images before getting a good one, and that you often have to understand what you're going for and wait for the moment are also excellent points. (Although I would add waiting for the moment and shooting a burst often works out better than waiting for the moment and taking single frame.)

I guess, overall, the biggest take away would be, if your focus is on cameras, resolution, fast lenses for blurred out of focus areas etc. you aren't actually talking about photography. You're talking about camera gear. Camera gear is like any other tools, if you don't know how to use them to create visually meaningful scenes, what you use is meaningless.

I also loved his focus on natural light.

Of all the unboxing videos, camera and lens comparisons, MTF charts, camera reviews etc. etc. I've seen in my 10 years on the forum, this is the only video I would actually use in my classroom. Not because it's everything about photography, but because it clearly presents concepts I could expand on.

If you're only going to use one reference to better understand photography, this is the best I've seen.

Just my opinion.

P.S. I have been through this so many times, I know what's coming. "I'm just a documentarian, I don't do art." Well the most successful documentarians are the ones who create good photographs. Not the ones who just snap off an image using no compositional skills and claim it doesn't have to be a good photograph because it's documentary. You take your documentary type image, and then you pick the most artistic ones to represent your work. The fact that your are documenting something doesn't get you off the hook. Many, many of the best photographs ever taken have a very real documentary element. They were documentarians, but they knew how to take a picture that told the story effectively, in a way that caught people's attention. Bottom line, if you aren't engaging with composition, you aren't doing photography.

You have to decide, are you going to be guy who blindly fools around with cameras, or do you want to be a photographer?

Thanks for posting... It's really really good stuff.

Last edited by normhead; 09-07-2018 at 05:59 AM.
09-06-2018, 10:54 AM - 1 Like   #3
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Thanks indeed for pointing us to this, altopiet. Actually, I have watched several of Adam's presentations via tube before and found all of them informative, inspiring, and fun.

Definitely agree with Norm that this kind of video teaches you so much more about the essence of photography than hours and hours of gearhead rants. Yes, technology and technique matter, but if you want to be a photographer whose images make sense, you will have to learn the visual language.
09-06-2018, 12:36 PM - 1 Like   #4
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What a waste of time. I would so much rather watch a video on something important, such as a comparison of the new Nikon and Canon "mirrorless" offerings.

Kidding! This is a really good presentation. The presenter speaks well, clearly, directly, and persuasively. He sticks to his topic and concept of "visual language" and explains it with an excellent range of examples. Thanks for posting.

09-06-2018, 01:09 PM - 1 Like   #5
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I got pointed to this earlier this year and it's a keeper. Excellent content!
09-06-2018, 03:39 PM - 1 Like   #6
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Thanks for posting, as others have said, a really good presentation full of good info. I watched it on U-tube and afterward they had a link to another of his videos about travel photography.
09-07-2018, 07:33 AM - 1 Like   #7
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Great presentation. Adam Marelli is an engaging speaker. For those wanting to do some street, he has a good vid on talking to strangers.
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