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  #1  
Old 11-21-2012, 10:47 PM
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Default Critique my composition in general, please

My mom is not someone I'd consider an expert in art, but she has seen a fair amount and does know what she likes and dislikes. Her main photography has been taking family shots here and there and the very occasional vacation photo. But a couple of times, when looking at my photos, she's made comments that indicate she doesn't think I know how to compose a shot and that I don't think about that at all. Since I DO think about composition, it bugs me. The latest was while she was looking at the pieces I used to screen into the Pittsburgh Society of Artists (and I was accepted) - pic below. She said that what she sees when she looks at my photos is that they're technical and not about composition. She wouldn't really go further and didn't say straight out that she thinks they're bad, but it was definitely the impression I got. So, I'm putting on my toughest layer of skin and asking people I respect and trust - do I use good composition in my photos? Is it just that my mom doesn't know about composition? Or is she right and my shots are about the technical stuff and composition be danged?
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Old 11-22-2012, 03:07 AM
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Jim Jones Jim Jones is offline
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The one on the left does nothing for me as presented here. Perhaps a better version of it would have more appeal. The one in the middle is the way I might tackle that subject with perhaps lightly looser cropping. The one on the right needs to be seen in a good reproduction for a valid critique. The compsition looks good.
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Old 11-22-2012, 06:12 PM
Suzanne Suzanne is offline
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I can only comment generally because I can't open your thumbnail (problem with my computer not opening external links these days for some reason). I admire your photography very much because of the artistry and creativity you put into it. I can only imagine how beautiful the ones are in print. I looked back over your gallery here on Photochimps last evening and saw your beautiful black and white images, your experimental pieces and expressive colour ones. I always look forward to seeing your work here.
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Old 11-25-2012, 09:48 PM
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Delorum Delorum is offline
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Bethe,

We all want our parent's approval, and we often give their input far more weight than we should. Your composition and creativity are top notch. Don't get hung up on what mother says. If you start worrying about it, it will take away your joy and your photography will suffer.

Bruce
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Old 11-26-2012, 04:21 AM
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Thank you all for the input! Yes, wanting mom's approval has figured in a lot of things over the years. I tend to see them just as they happen, but when I look at a longer timeline, there really is a lot that makes me go, "hmmm." Typical for a mother - daughter relationship, I'm guessing.

I posted the middle one awhile ago and posted the other two this evening. I'm really not that happy with how the roses turned out, but I won't have a chance to try again until spring or summer (it needs warmer weather and being able to do some of it outside). I would have used my "usual" shots of B&W landscapes except for their rule that pieces need to have been created in the last two years. These three are definitely more alternative and probably not my mom's style to begin with as are the handcolored ones she didn't like either.
I plan to keep doing my thing.
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Old 11-26-2012, 01:56 PM
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Certainly continue doing your own thing except for those occasions when you may be shooting for someone else. While doing our own thing, we sometimes fail to see improvements that others notice and comment on. Those remarks may improve our vision and be applied to future photography. This is not bending to the opinions of others, but is doing our own thing better than before. Most of what we learn in life comes from others; only a little is discovered through experience. Experience is occasionally the best teacher, but a very slow and often painful one!
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