Popop Hosts First Fine Art Photography Panel

By in News on June 4, 2013

Popopstudios recently held its first Fine Art Photography Discussion Panel.

It was a dark and stormy night… well, not really, but it was a rainy night, hence, we didn’t have the attendance that we had hoped for (or that RSVPs and Facebook had indicated).

What we DID have was a very lively, thorough, well-rounded discussion with the members of the panel and the few die-hard photo enthusiasts in the audience who came out despite the rainy weather.

On the panel we had John Cox, Jay Koment, Sabrina Lightbourn and Dede Brown with Duke Wells as the moderator.

The discussion started off by trying to define fine art photography… there is no simple, direct answer, and a variety of opinions and different thoughts were presented. Sabrina Lightbourn brought an eruption of laughter with her initial response that “it is a body of work that nobody buys”. But on more serious note, she said to her it meant that it is something more than just a pretty picture. Dede Brown followed that train of thought saying, fine art photos should have a concept or meaning, something deeper that is being represented.

The importance of skill versus concept and visuals was also discussed. How is fine art assessed – some of the old masters of photography now regaled as fine art photographers were actually working. For example, Ansel Adams’ famed landscapes were done not as a fine art project but as a job he had been hired to do.

Jay Koment brought the point that it is very subjective. Art evokes an emotional response but how do you determine what is art, he said, and is it still art if it’s bad. A friendly exchange began, with John Cox declaring that in his opinion it’s still art, it’s just bad art. And by the same rule, you can have great photos that are not art.

By the end of the night, everyone expressed that they had thoroughly enjoyed the conversation and hashing out the many aspects of fine art photography. Though the answers remain unfixed everyone benefitted from the rich discussion and varying points of view.

If you missed this panel discussion, don’t worry, there will be more.

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