This post is bad. I really hope you don’t read it because it’s full of disdain for modern humanity.
Since becoming a proper adult with a child I’ve tried to not let the mist of rage cloud my vision and taint my soul but every now and then it gets to me.
We see the junk that comes out of peoples keyboards daily or hear it from their own lips then my blood boils then I feel the need to do the same, bleed myself into the sick-filled-cauldren-of-putrid-hate-that-is-the-internet.
For this I am sorry but sadly I’m just as sick as the rest of us.
I had been thinking about, again, the
street photography name and concept when out popped Two Cute Dog’s (2CD) blog post about something vaguely similar and I must say I found it quite disagreeable.
Then the other day there someone I follow on twitter retweeted another tweeters views on
street photography which at first I didn’t find disagreeable until I read other tweets and saw examples of his work which incidentally also included street photography.
It was stuff like “photography isn’t art”, the act of photographing to be precise, that the subject is the art. He did have a disclaimer to say he’d been to art school but still didn’t know; it was enough to push me over the edge and I was ready to go to the cauldron of blood-vomit.
I always go back to a video of Winnogrand discussing framing photos. There’s an act of editing within the frame, if you don’t want it you don’t include it, very similar in the way I would with a pen, pencil or paintbrush. In short I’m for photography as a valid medium for an artist.
To me, photographing is almost entirely subjective but take this discourse and add a few tweeted Peta Pixel articles and I’d simply had enough of the internet and virtually, pun semi-intended, everyone in it.
The Agonising Realisation
I used to really enjoy looking at 2CD’s older work and used to like reading or watching videos of him discussing it but recently it feels like he’s going out of his way to be rude often coming off as seriously arrogant and a pseudo authority (he does now charge around $1500 per person for virtual ‘lessons’ these days).
The post was basically a rattle-out-of-the-pram rant against a Flickr group called Hardcore Street Photography Group and probably more personally towards Dirty Harry as I believe there’s been a few heated exchanges about the ‘authenticity’ of Dirty Harry’s photos.
That in itself was sad but he went on to talk about picture authenticity and how, to him, the picture is tarnished if discovered the subjects were known to the photographer;
street photography is generally regarded as a candid process.
All that shite aside, the important element of the blog-rant was the revelation to me about what the true essence he and many other
street photographers of his ilk are looking for in street photography, and I don;t think its pictures anymore.
What I believe they’re looking for is the glory of a ‘difficult’ photo and the thrill of the chase.
In fact 2CD sort of implied this by referring directly to the chase or cold act of taking the picture, of wondering how the photographer took the photo, as if the difficulty of the photo validates it. But in his eyes, if the people in the photo are revealed to be known to the photographer all that pictorial validation is rescinded.
I’d quote him directly but he’s managed to screw up his blog and removed all three of his tumbr posts (13 August 2013) Update, the post is back but on Eric Kim’s blog. Probably a good thing too as the Alex Webb article came across as very spiteful with regard to Webb’s vision of Istanbul and it was the turning point of my tolerance of 2CD’s acidic online personality.
Ever since the JCH article was pulled due to negative comments or whatever he’s appeared to me to have gone out of his way to be vile.
Sad Conclusion (Rant Alert)
So this is the sad conclusion to my meagre, meaningless, thoughts on what has been bothering me for a while but amplified by two almost unrelated utterances, my vomit-cup is full.
My conclusion is …. the internet is full of arseholes, myself included.
There are too many of us. We’re all crowded together using various similarly minded platforms to cry out our bullshit fantasies as if they’re true, as if they’re real and important.
From one arse ranting that ‘film is dead’ to another arse ranting that digital is soulless or another arse slowly claiming to be an authority on a photographic language who’s actually only been photographing for a few years.
The worst internet arsehole of all is the ‘brand guardian’. These sick bastards are championing corporations like perverted warring gods. Corporations? Really?
I’m not aiming that at people who really like the products of a certain brand but towards the cultural lowlifes that sit on forums debating the minutia of, say, a lens barrel, flanges and maybe button layouts with the intensity of a cease fire negotiation.
More so, these Peta Pixel douche-bags that preach how one should photograph
street photography and how they’d “punch you in the face” if you dared do it to them yet have an extensive catalogue of creepy ‘ street‘ photos of girls on their webshites).
Seriously? is there nothing better for them to do? These arseholes aren’t in it for the pictures, these arseholes are Peta Pixels; one of the worst collections of lowlife pond-scum you’ll fortunately never meet giving YouTubers a good name in the process.
I wish I could remember who wrote it or exactly how they wrote it so I’ll paraphrase: “there’s nothing worse than other people.”
The Real Conclusion
With all that vile spitting over with I’ll tend to my real conclusion. What the hell am I going to do moving forward with my internet half life crisis?
Although it’s progressing at a snails pace the photography collective I’m part of is apparently still alive (I haven’t deleted the website yet and I am still exclusively paying for it so it’s still alive).
I’ll still be taking my lame pictures pretty much daily, I can’t help that, but I’ll be posting less images publicly except for Abandoned Edinburgh.
I won’t be posting photos on social media sites like Twitter and I’ll be pruning my Twiter in-tray and blocking any shitty “5 best ways to …” articles but is that really enough to avoid the poison?
I’ll probably keep posting here off and on but in my present mindset I’m not sure. Once I move house and have space to empty my camera closet across whatever floor I get for a darkroom then I might have more substantial positive material to write about.
Finally: Be nice. If something is shit, say it nicely unless they’re being vile then say it nicely down to them.
Photography as art; what is art anyway? Is art a guy hiding under the floor boards of his exhibition having a wank? or, say, a group of folk dressed up in weird costumes pretending to shit chocolate into an elves mouth? Photography as art debate? Fuck off! It’s nothing to worry about, of course it can be!
I’ll apologise again for the negativity of this post I might end up deleting it in a few days but maybe I should keep it as a reminder of how low things can go.
To be continued …