Friday, June 26, 2015

Sally Mann

I have had the good fortune to read Mann's memoir, Hold Still, recently. More on it later, I think, but I need some time.

I was struck at one point by a bit of "fan mail" she received something like 25 years ago, giving her some helpful critique. For instance on "The Ditch" (Google it if you like) the commenter says:

... removes two and a half heads as well as most of the figure on the right. Cropping three inches off the right side could help (slightly) with the composition. But the arrogance of decapitation would still make this a "no sale."

Sound familiar?

We see rubbish like this trotted out on internet forums all the time. Useful "critique" from insensitive idiots, critique that is worse than useless. If followed, it will eventually turn the artist into a boring clone of everyone else who follows and (eventually) doles out this sort of junk. There's a class of people for whom the "chopped head" is the worst crime imaginable. These people are clods.

The only real difference is that in this case the critic has a vastly superior grasp of language and idiom than the average internet forum fool.

1 comment:

  1. Hahaha, you are spot on again. Your writings related to photography and internet stupidities are getting more and more entertaining. My pet issue: try to find good and insightful discussions on image content or "photographic vision". It's hard. Even TOP, the sanest corner of them all, mostly avoids it. Best/ Mattias