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Tuesday, 30 December 2008

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I really like Eric Meola's work; his eye for color is striking. But is it just me, or does his work remind anyone else of Pete Turner's?

Maybe it's just that Pete Turner was such a pioneer in color vision that it's hard not to echo it.

Geoff,
I believe, although I am not sure, that Eric got his start as Pete Turner's assistant. That might be wrong, and if it is I'm willing to be corrected--the ol' memory banks start to suffer data loss once the older records get moved to the warehouse. [g]

Mike J.

Man, I've been enjoying Meola's color work since I was a kid. Funny, I had no idea he did that Bruce/Clarence photo.

Beautiful images, indeed. I went to check his website, because I first thought that the top image on the post was really off, in terms of color. Even for a colorist. But it is the same on his website. And I do not understand the yellow cast on most of the pictures. Is it also the way the book is printed? It seems that some images have between a +30 and +60 of yellow. People end up (see picture above) with yellow skin, yellow eyes, yellow mustaches (like the older gentleman with the umbrella, a striking portrait). I really like the images, but I think the excess of yellow is more distracting than interesting.
/ln

I am glad to actually visit your blog and read about your honest and valuable opinions about photography!

The emphasis on style and colour are something to make me think twice about photography. I have yet identified the use of complimentary colour in photography and this is definitely a new direction for me.

Thanks again

Dear Luc,

Color balance looks fine on my monitor. Rich and (over?)saturated, but no major color cast. Check your system settings and monitor profile.

pax / Ctein

Luc -- not completely sure I'm not being sucked in by deadpan humor here (especially since I can't find a photo of an older gentleman with an umbrella), but have you considered that the people in the photos you cite are Indian?

In 15.jpg (on Meola's web site), for example (that's the green door, plus red, saffron, and yellow hanging cloths, with white robe and brown feet coming from under the red cloth), the robe reasonably neutral, as is the white window frame showing between the saffron and yellow cloths. (Based both on visual appearance, and on checking RGB values.)

Eric Meola's pictures from India do indeed show a strong personal style and remind one of Pete Turner, as the first poster stated. In terms of using color as "its own subject" he has done an excellent job. In terms of showing India he could have done better; there really is a lot more to the country than just colorful clothing and decorations.

I know from my own experience there that is very easy to fall into the trap of shooting the visually overwhelming (for a westerner, that is) scenes that present themselves on almost every corner. But that is only the traditional India that in fact we already know from countless books. What I found more interesting is the way the country is rapidly changing and especially the situations where tradition and modern culture meet.

I agree with you Mike about Raghubir Singh. I haven't seen more fascinating pictures from India (and I wish I could find his book on Calcutta someplace).

Carsten

David,

"not completely sure I'm not being sucked in by deadpan humor"

I would not even consider this kind of 'humour'.
No, it's really yellow for me. My screen is calibrated, since I work with it. The picture of the older gentleman with an umbrella is on his website, 2nd column from the left, second picture from the bottom of the column. I copied it and opend in photoshop, and took out the yellow. The mustaches becomes white, as it seems they should be, and the grass in the background becomes green, and not yellowish anymore. And ho! surprise! the reste of the game of colors becomes more 'real' and far less saturated. I think he has a bad post-processing to achieve his vision.
Also, if my monitor was off, I would not see the white of the page surrounding some of the pictures as white, but also with a yellow cast. Which is not the case. Simple test, look at the picture posted on this blog, look at the color aof the white part of the eye of the soldier. Is it white? No. The pictures are obviously filtered to get an effect, then a grey border is added, and that's what gives some people than there is nothing 'wrong' with the picture. I'll be glad to send you the 'corrected' version by email. But again, it's not a critique of his work, or some negative comment. It's just not my taste. A friend in Europe saw and experienced exactly the same thing. So much for Ctein suggestion. Look at the grey, and white, and you'll see the color applyed to the images at the processing level before layout and dressing.
A little long, but I wanted to be clear.
/ln

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