Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Art and differences of opinion

A coworker (and friend) and I had a friendly argument today about some art work. It all centered around a set of photos (on this page and no, I'm not telling you which set).

One of us argued that the photos were technically great, the other argued that they were severely technically deficient. We also strongly argued about their artistic merit, given the subject matter (wedding photography).

This is a coworker and friend who also takes photos. Our own styles are quite different from each other (and the same can be said about our subject matters). I didn't, however, expect there to be such difference in the what we though was good photography. The difference is vast, with one of us indicating that if he had paid for the photos he would ask for his money back and the other willing to spend money on these prints (even though they are of someone else).

All this to say: Art is subjective. Very. Very very subjective. So when you create something and you put it out there for people to enjoy, let your art be its own reward. Don't get bogged down by people who don't like it. Take their criticisms with a handful of salt, improve where you can, and don't be too harsh on others. Everyone gets respect but that doesn't mean their opinions do.

In the end the two of us decided to just disagree. Hopefully we can discuss something else tomorrow.


Michael Swart said...

I land squarely on the side of "good photos" (Just to throw in my two cents).

Snides said...

Yeah, you see that all the time on competitive reality shows, whether it's singing or dancing being discussed. There's the technical aspects, then the chemistry/emotional aspect where everyone seems free to disagree. I was thinking about this today as I was trying to decide if I should just stop watching a particular reality show...