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Monday, 11 March 2013

Comments

Kodakchrome - Dye Transfer . . . What next?

I really like that photo, despite having zero context for it.

Will these be Ctein dye transfer prints but of images made by another photographer? Please?

[That's almost impossible, and here's why: because we try to sell our prints for comparatively low prices, and dye transfers are so difficult to make that there isn't room in our prices to pay the photographer and pay for the print, separately. To offer a Jim Marshall picture as a dye transfer, for instance--we've never looked into it--the selling price would at the very least have to double or triple, and probably much more. That might be welcome by some people, but it's not what we're about. --Mike]

Dear Phil,

3-4 years ago, that might've been a cool idea (price issues aside): offering a set of photographs by other photographers but all printed as dye transfers by me. Unfortunately, we didn't think of it back then, and the window of opportunity is gone.

Given my severely limited dye transfer supplies, I have zero interest in using them up printing OTHER people's photographs. I've allocated all the remaining paper to printing my own work. I no longer accept commissions to print other people's photographs as dye transfers even in single quantities, only as digital prints.

pax / Ctein

Dear Timprov,

Both of the paintings in the portrait are by Hockney, so you have Hockney posed next to a painting, in front of his self portrait where he's dressed the same. It's a very Hockney kinda thing (great painter, mediocre photographer).

pax / Ctein

Ctein needs to take a photo of the artist again to see if he looks like his painting of his older self in the background.

Ctein mentions Hockney the artist and Hockney the photographer as if he wears two distinct hats. I think Hockney has interesting things to say about photography in relation to art, and has used photography in interesting ways as part of his continuing adventures as an artist. Doesn't make sense to me to separate the two - and also of course it's another banana skin on the endless path to deciding what exactly is "a photographer?"

Just to follow up my previous comment if anyone is interested. Here's an example of Hockney talking about art and photography

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/art/art-features/8782275/The-many-layers-of-David-Hockney.html

I find Hockney's writings and thoughts about art direct and refreshing. There's a lack of pretension - it's not pompous or dogmatic.

Re Hockney photo/print.

I like the paintings and the way they (and Hockney himself: shirt, hair) is rendered in color in the picture. But that owes more to the dye print(er) rather than the photo(grapher), I think.

The photograph itself could have been framed better. Hockney's left elbow and the dresser (or at least its mirror) would not have been truncated had he used a wider aspect ratio (say 3:2) with the same lens and the camera a feet or so farther. The large depth of field is OK. Hockney probably takes better pictures if he's not in it.

Dear Richard,

I did not mention “Hockney the artist and Hockney the photographer;" I referred to what he's done as a PAINTER vs. a photographer. That's kind of a very different thing, don't you think?

I think Hockney is extremely interesting, intellectually; I enjoy his writings. I also very much enjoy his paintings. But on the matter of photography, while I think he has done some very interesting exercises and experiments, I don't think the results are especially successful or work as art (however you want to define that word). Yes, they inform his total self as an artist, but he's still a mediocre photographer in my book. It is possible to parse the two. Look, let's take it from a different direction: in my life I've done sculpture, painting, and photography. It would be entirely reasonable to say that all three inform the picture of who I am as an “artist.” But there's no question in my mind (and I cannot imagine anyone else seeing it differently) that I am a much better photographer than I am a painter and I'm a much better painter that I am a sculptor.


pax \ Ctein
[ Please excuse any word-salad. MacSpeech in training! ]
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-- Ctein's Online Gallery http://ctein.com 
-- Digital Restorations http://photo-repair.com 
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Dear Aron and Sarge,

Let's get this clear, I did not make the photograph and Hockney did not make the photograph. As the caption says, Bernard Schwartz made the photograph.

As for the color, Sarge, so far as I know it's realistic. All prints of this photo were made under Bern's and then Ronny's supervision. She approved the color on anything I did, and she frequently nitpicked it. Boy, did she nitpick!

And, considering you're looking at a JPEG, how could you have any opinion on the color of the print? This is a rendition done from a scan of the negative, it's not a photograph of a print.

As for the composition, that is by intent. I just pulled up the scan of the entire negative, and it shows all the bits and pieces that you say the photographer should have included. Well, they are there in the original negative (the crop includes barely half the negative) and it happens that composition is lousy. Hence the crop, which was decided on by Bern and Ronny and vetted by me.

Bern frequently worked fast and loose [pun intended]. In a great number of cases, he only had one opportunity to photograph someone, and he made the most of it. He made LOTS of photographs and he didn't spend a lot of time fiddling with the composition in the camera. The Schwartz's did that in editing, later. Occasionally he worked full frame, but that's a minority of his portraits.

By the way, just for the heck of it, I tried playing around with the crop, adding in a little more of his elbow. Nope, doesn't work! This is where it should be.

Wish I had permission to show you the uncropped photographs; I don't. You'll just have to take my word for it.

If you don't like it, fine. But do understand that this is the best framing for this photograph. Even if it's not to your taste.


pax \ Ctein
[ Please excuse any word-salad. MacSpeech in training! ]
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-- Ctein's Online Gallery http://ctein.com 
-- Digital Restorations http://photo-repair.com 
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