Photographical Tension

Something I’ve always known, but rarely do I ever take into conscious consideration is tension in photography. I have a flickr contact who mentioned it about one of his photographs, and then thought “hmm…I need more examples of tension” thus I stumbled across this page on the internet http://www.pbase.com/pnd1/tension.

Now, I’ve had people ask me “but what makes that a good photo?”. All I’ve ever been able to say was “It just is”. This person has explained every photo and while I think some explanations are a stretch, they are each uniquely summed up to answer the question, “what makes this good?”.

So really it all brings me to the point of saying that I do not pay enough attention to these things. Some of that is due to the limited time frames I’m allotted to shoot my usual subjects; some of it is due to the fact that I don’t put enough energy to actually think about things like that. Another part is the fact that, typically, I’m usually framing for such things without thinking about it. However, it depresses me that I don’t put much thought into it as I ought to to create a great photograph and then have a definitive reason as to why it is indeed great.

Just a musing for today.

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One thought on “Photographical Tension

  1. amazingnelle says:

    “It just is” is a lazy cop out when it comes to critique. Bear with me, this isn’t meant to be insulting. When thinking about art (and photography) you should go through steps in evaluating it.

    You will probably have a knee jerk reaction when you first look at a photo. It’s good, or it’s bad. I like it, or I don’t like it. But you also have to take into consideration that just because -you- don’t like a photo doesn’t make it a bad photo.

    Ultimately, you can look to the formal elements of photography when critiquing art. How does the artist use framing and composition? Is it unbalanced? If so, does that negatively affect your opinion on the photograph? What’s the subject matter and context? And so on, and so forth.

    This very hokey website lists how you can analyze formal elements of design/composition. I think it would be good for you to explain why you think a photo is bad or good in other ways than just that it’s bad or good.

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