Friday, April 18, 2008

sofobomo way

sofobomo way

The editing continues. When I started this project, my biggest concern was getting enough pages. Finding enough people to even meet the basic requirements and having the 35 images. So I shot a lot and shot quickly. Now I have the reverse problem. Too many pages and certainly too many portraits. More than enough. So I have to start cutting back and editing the book down to the best images. I'm left with the small dilemma of cutting images of friends. Sorry you didn't make the cut I'm sure is going to get taken the wrong way by some. When I say the pictures aren't interesting enough, someone will hear I think you aren't good looking enough or various other misinterpretations. If the pictures aren't in the book, it will be because I didn't make an interesting enough picture. Honest! Some of the sessions went better than others. Some of the locations I picked were better than others, for lighting, for background. Other shoots I just plain screwed up because I was working quickly or just nervous about the whole thing. Most of the time I spent no more than a few minutes with each subject. I'm used to getting maybe one usable image out of that sort of session and not trying to extract half a dozen or more. I am taking on board Julia's comment about too many pictures distracting from each individual image and for some pages, keeping things very simple. For others, all of the shots will be on display - again, trying to mix it up and keep it interesting. Still showing different expressions for each subject, even if the number of shots varies dramatically. That's the beauty of shooting landscapes or macros, they don't get offended so easily.


MikeW said...

"When I say the pictures aren't interesting enough, someone will hear I think you aren't good looking enough or various other misinterpretations."

That's alright, unlike some of us, at least they were appealing enough to have their picture taken in the first place.

Not to worry, I go under the knife to correct my Shrekness next Tuesday, so I don't break your lense for Sofobomo II.

Wish me luck!

Gordon said...

I can't currently run fast enough to keep up with you Mike - I guess that's why I haven't seen you in six months..

Julia said...

This was one of my concerns early on. If I didn't get the photo(s) right, but gave the expectation that it would be in a book, people would be disappointed. I've somewhat avoided that by not going the route of featuring specific people much. This was something I was originally going to do, more of a feature of specific volunteers. Yes, it would be more powerful, but it's just one step beyond what I feel I can do well in a month.

One comment I saw you mention elsewhere was about during a specific shoot for a person was to just say something like "This looks good, let's try over here/something else/etc." A professional photographer had just advised me not long before you made that comment that it's actually better to say something like "This isn't working out the way I had envisioned." and move on if you're not getting the shot you wanted in the first 15 shots. He said otherwise, it becomes about you getting the shot, and you're forgetting your client. Not that I'm shooting for money by any means, but I think the lesson here is not to give the impression that the shot was great, because he said for the shot/location that didn't work out, that will be the one shot your client asks you about. Granted SoFoBoMo subjects are quite different, but a little related to this.

I'm not surprised you have this "problem"! It's a good problem to have, but I can understand your worry of offending people. Fortunately this is your art project to please you, and not work for a specific client.

I'm not at the point where a whole volunteer event is going to be pushed out of the project, but there's always that possibility I suppose.

Gordon said...

I certainly agree about moving on if it isn't working, rather than fighting with it - that seems to be the underlying message of both approaches.

I'd tend to tell people afterwards that it didn't work out the way I'd envisioned, rather than introducing the doubt in my abilities then and there. I feel a lot of it is about building confidence in the subject - it doesn't matter if you are the one that made the mistake - telling most people that the picture of them isn't working is going to make them feel self conscious or that they are at fault some how, or you don't know what you are doing. Either way it doesn't help much for the subsequent shots, I've found.

A Jesse said...

Oops. You find yourself in the role of casting. Rough spot. I am confident you will find a way to let people know how much you loved working with them and ease the potential disappointment of not being included. Putting all the responsibility on your own shortcomings will help. Expressing an interest in another possible shoot that will give you an opportunity to "do a better job" might help. Telling someone that what they brought to the project was invualuable because while it didn't fit in the original concept, after all, it has sent you off on another mental track, thus added immeasurably to the value of the overall project for you might soften the blow. Maybe giving some prints to those not selected for the book.

Okay, I have gotten carried away with this brainstorming. The fact that you are sensitive to people's feelings about feeling rejected will allow you to come up with a way to make it all right and you will be appreciated for the effort. It's no fun being in the group not selected in most any situation, and your sensitivity will go a long way.

charla said...

Maybe you could feature the 'not good enoughs' on your blog to make them happy!! Your readers can than make wonderful comments about how wonderful they are...that would make me happy ;)

I just had my photo appear on a blog and it was AWFUL!!! I would have been more than happy for that photographer to have just stated it wasn't good enough than to humiliate me!! Seriously it was bad ...but I don't imagine any of your photos are actually bad. I do understand what you are talking about. Easier said than done but just can't let it get to you!