Yesterday's Light

Images in Space and Time

One Looks a Lot Like the Other

In many respects, diversity and variety seem to be going the way of  the dodo bird.  Some things you just can’t tell apart anymore.  Like –

Politicians (regardless of party).  Reality TV shows.  Movie sequels.  Teenagers with cell phones.  Drugstores.  Cars (especially the hybrids).  Malls.  Fast food restaurants.  Celebrities who have fallen from grace.  Newspapers.  Talking heads.  Bookstores.  And on and on and on…………

Oh, one more thing.  Photographs on certain websites.  Come on people – surprise me one of these days.

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10 Responses to “One Looks a Lot Like the Other”

  1. Earl

    “Everything that is new or uncommon raises a pleasure in the imagination, because it fills the soul with an agreeable surprise, gratifies its curiosity, and gives it an idea of which it was not before possessed.” – Joseph Addison

    I thought this quote fit the discussion.

    What may be something new for me may be old-hat for you. 🙂 The ability to do something totally new and uncommon is harder now then it use to be. If you search the Internet there’s examples of almost anything you can imagine. Even if someone does come up with something new and original, if popular, it will immediately be copied by thousands. But, I agree each of us needs to regularly step beyond our comfort zones and try something we’ve never done before.

    The image made me smile — I like.

    Reply
    • Paul Maxim

      I like the quote, Earl. And it certainly does fit. The thing that’s been bugging me lately is kind of like the old Peanuts cartoon where Lucy is holding a football for Charlie Brown so that he can kick it. Every year he tries and every year she pulls it away at the last second and he falls on his butt. And every year he says he won’t fall for that again. But of course he does. I feel that way each time I visit certain blogs – I keep thinking maybe this time I’ll see something different, something I haven’t seen some version of before (like yesterday). Then I see another variation of the same old theme.

      That’s entirely their business, of course. If they want, they can post the exact same picture 100 times in a row. Totally up to them. But I have a hard time understanding the “why”. Heck, you don’t even have to step out of your technical “comfort zone”. All you have to do is point the camera at something else. The lens won’t break. Honest.

      Reply
      • Earl

        Perhaps I read more into your post then what there was — I sometimes do that. I do agree. I could think of only two reasons for doing the same thing over and over — “they” are working towards perfection but can never reach their goal or the definition of insanity applies, “Doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results.” Take your pick.

        Reply
    • Paul

      I don’t know if doing the same thing over and over again is insanity, or if the person doing things over and over again is exploring. Our minds have a tendency to always want something new. Once we see something or learn something, then we think that we know everything about it and it’s time to move on. Earl, you love paths, so that is a recurring theme in your photos. A theme that you love to explore and delve deeper into it. Perhaps you are not looking for meaning, perhaps you are not; however, just because you might have explored it over several hundred shots or perhaps several thousand that doesn’t mean that you should not keep exploring it because it’s not ‘different’ or ‘new’.

      Certainly, it is fine to step out of the comfort zone and grow. However, the converse, I think, is true as well. It’s just fine to stay with a known subject and explore it fully. We each have our ways that we explore our world, our art.

      Reply
      • Earl

        Paul, I would argue this point but once someone uses the word “Art” in a reasoning conversation I shut down — I’d just as soon have a fist fight with the air.

        Reply
    • Paul

      LOL! Sorry, Earl. I didn’t mean to mix intensions, nor to argue, but to present a different point of view. Now, go and have that fist fight. Let me know who wins. 🙂

      Reply
  2. Don

    Being different.

    I haven’t used a 35mm camera since I put down my Canon Rebel and bought an inexpensive Polaroid digital to take pictures of my new granddaughter back around 2000. Since then I have changed alot both in my equipment, the way I “see” things now compared to 20 or 30 or even 40 years ago in Vietnam. I find myself trying other things and taking shots that I would probably walk by 10 years ago.

    I think my exposure to all the photo blogs has changed my style, I am more open.

    Hard to explain.

    Reply
    • Paul Maxim

      “I think my exposure to all the photo blogs has changed my style, I am more open.”

      I think you’ve hit on something, Don, but I’m not sure that the effect on me has been to make me “more open”. I sometimes wonder if I’d have been better off – as a photographer, at least – if I’d never laid eyes on another blog. Once you start looking at other people’s work you inevitably start making mental comparisons with your own. Eventually, I think you begin to make adjustments (even if they’re made unconsciously). Maybe that’s a good thing. Maybe not. I wonder, though. If I didn’t have an internet connection and I’d never seen other photo blogs, would I be the same photographer that I am now? If not, which one would I like better?

      Reply
  3. Paul

    Oh, one more thing. Photographs on certain websites. Come on people – surprise me one of these days.

    Why must someone surprise you?

    Reply
  4. The Landscapist

    come on – answer the question (why must someone surprise you?). it’s one the best serious amateur questions that I have ever heard.

    Reply

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