I'm willing to bet my answer fits with most others, but TL;DR. I think its almost like a learning curve. In the beginning, when someone first starts getting into photography, it's all about technique. Ooh let me try keeping the shutter open to blur it! That's fun! But the subject is something so plain as a ball rolling on the floor in their garage. Only after that, when technique and style have been improved, can emotional weight become the main focus. At that point, the photographer should not have to focus on how technically skilled the photo is because it should be second nature to him/her. But in the long run, both are equally important. Even the most emotionally potent photo will look bad with amateur technique.
Both are important, but it depends on the purpose of the photograph in my opinion.
For editorial, commercial work: Hands down, it's technicalities. It is nice if an image has an emotion to it, but, lets face it, they aren't going to pay you to sell jewelry in a fine arts campaign... For art for the sake of art: Emotional, technicalities take a side step.
I am attracted to images that are emotional, personally, even though I shoot a lot of commercial work. To me, art is one of the most incredible things in this world, and if I can find something in a photograph that is downright brilliant and passionate, I don't even notice the technical aspects. I have seen some beautiful photographs that were not taken with the best set of equipment nor the best settings, but have a heart behind them. That is what is important to me, as a viewer, not just a fellow photographer.
I agree here most definitely, it depends on what reasons you're shooting for! A photographer who isn't that great upon the technical understanding would never make it becoming a commercial photographer for magazines and such, blabbing their way through on the "emotional" aspect of things. So like you say it really does depend on what purpose you're shooting for. Like you though I'm more drawn to the emotional side rather than technical. Thanks for sharing!
I think the technical side of a photograph is just as important as the emotional side, but I sometimes get more "dragged in" by a photograph with more emotion, especially if I feel as though I can relate to it.
I definitely think emotionally. That is the part of your art that reaches out to the audience, makes them wonder about the technical parts. You need to make the audience connect to your photo or be inspired, which is what the emotional part does.
I have just started photography, literally, I got my camera a couple days ago, but I really want to work on both.
Agreed here, sometimes I think photos can be "too" emotional, i.e you start to feel the emotion the photographer was trying to portray too much, and it all becomes a bit too 'obvious'. I prefer to look at photographs and make my own impression from the mood/expressions I see, but sometimes you just can't do that with overly emotional photos.
You don't see to many overly emotional photos as what could get one person crying may not even stir another person.
Its also very hard to shoot for emotional content only and this is where the difference between a talented and a hack photographer lie.
Always remember that there are no rules when it comes to photography and you should always strive to capture what YOU see and how YOU see it, not every one will see a photo the same way you do or feel the same emotion as you do so it can be hard to shoot for emotional content and even then it only works if the emotions are generic in nature. Images that may have strong emotions for you may be nothing to another viewer.
You can learn how to do all the technical aspects of photography from reading books and technical details of modern cameras aside it really is not very complicated however getting that right in an image that has the emotional content that draws viewers to the photo takes talent that just can not be taught.
Human emotions are far far more complicated than photography will ever be
Emotionally for sure, mostly because I suck majorly at technical. I'd love to be able to do both, but I think if i'm completely technical and spot on, then all the emotion is gone and I'm frustrated with a shot
georgewjohnsonFeatured By OwnerNov 30, 2012Hobbyist Photographer
I favour creativity over technical aspects, but only by a slight margin. A quick look at some of the top photos in any good quality gallery they all lean towards the creativity slightly more than the technical. Images are to move us or prompt us to feel something, buy something or stir is to do something. A creative image can move you irrespective of quality but a technically perfect image is often just that with nothing hold your interest for more than a second or two.
Take a look at your favourite classic images and they may not be technical perfect but they stirred your emotions, that's why they are so famous and well regarded.
Photography is a mix of science and art. If you are not technically competent AND artistically inclined you can't really do it well, except maybe by accident. I mean, what's the use of taking 50 beautifully composed photos if they are all badly exposed? What's the use of taking 50 perfectly exposed photos of crap? You need both.
When I do a photoshoot, I'll typically shoot between 10 and 20 rolls if film (36 exposures each). When I have developed them, I check for badly exposed photos and I clip them out and throw them away, regardless of how great the composition is, they are useless. Only then do I start looking at them for the best compositions and artistic value. The ones that don't make the second cut get trashed as well. In at least my own case, if they don't have both qualities, they are literally garbage.
It's pretty much the same for me although I shoot digital, if something is awfully taken, it's scrap to me no matter what. It's annoying that sometimes the emotion is right in the photograph but it's just out of focus, I wish I could just go back to that moment and tweak it! I didn't think of it the way you explained, which is probably the most practical. Thanks for sharing your opinion
Emotional brilliance wins every time for me. You do need to know how to operate your camera though, and having a good sense of composition, but doing nothing but following the rules would only turn photography into math, and produce boring photographs. You need to know when to break the rules, and when to do things in a unique way so it's more captivating to the audience, and thus return again and again to look at your photograph.
Vic-P-PhotographyFeatured By OwnerNov 24, 2012Professional Photographer
There is an equal and honest argument for both though really you rarely need them all at one time and certain aspects of photography demand different skills even before getting into the ideas of personal taste and style.
If you are shooting something that is required to look perfectly recreated the. The technical aspects of taking a photo come to the fore. Shooting nature, landscape or macro the requirements for knowing how to get the shot is much more technical, lighting needs to be controlled sometimes or at the very least harnessed to create accurate depictions over thematic ones. Studio shooting and I think high fashion also demand genuine technical know how. These areas are all I think though about showing something specific, an item or a look and are less about telling a story or showing a lifestyle.
Other aspects rely more heavily on feel photography, street, a lot of portraiture, weddings and anything looking to brand itself these days. These all very often rely on an emotion and vibe to the photography which while never removing the need for understanding how your camera works will rely more heavily on an ability to spot or indeed create a moment or emotion.
Rarely though is it going to be come tell one or another, bit from each camp will slip in and I think the key to success is recognising how much from each you need. Not that it ensures good photos of a certain kind, I have seen emotional macro and street work with amazing lighting control. Rather that in order to get the best from your shoots knowing what you want to achieve is important to give yourself directions and highlighting the aspects you need concentrate one and equally removing those that you don't from the equation will aid that no end.
At this moment just technically brilliant photographs. It's not that I don't want an emotional aspect, it is just that I am quite a newbie to photography. You see my main aim is to focus on my skills to get to a compentant level. Basically learning the camera and it's different settings so the focus for me at the moment is the purely techincal aspect to photography. Once I have "basic" skills I will try incorperate both emotional and technical elements to my photography.