Brooks Jensen Arts

Every Picture Is a Compromise

Lessons from the Also-rans

Most photography websites show the photographer's very best work. Wonderful. But that's not the full story of a creative life. If we want to learn, we'd better pay attention to the images that aren't "greatest hits" and see what lessons they have to offer. Every picture is a compromise — the sum of its parts, optical, technical, visual, emotional, and even cosmic – well, maybe not cosmic, but sometimes spiritual. Success on all fronts is rare. It's ok to learn from those that are not our best.

This is a series about my also-rans, some of which I've been able to improve at bit (i.e., "best effort"), none of which I would consider my best. With each there are lessons worth sharing, so I will.

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Original digital capture

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2nd Time Around Week

What I saw that I liked:

Tubs — what's not to like?

What I don't like in the picture:

As a life-long b/w photographer, my first assumption is that I will make everything into a b/w image. Click on these two for a b/w version of each.

What I learned:

I may have cut my teeth and been trained as a b/w photographer, but sometime the color just should not be denied. Both of these images are dominated by their respective colors and the b/w versions pale in comparison. I guess I'm no longer a b/w photographer, but have become a "what-ever-is-best" photographer.

2nd Chances: What I might try next

I need more of these for a "tub project."