Categories
Art and Design

A process for *selecting* rather than culling

Liked A Better Edit Makes Better Photographs by DavidDavid (davidduchemin.com)

My own edit process goes much more quickly because I’m not looking for every single image that meets some basic minimal technical standard. I’m looking for the ones that make me lean in. The ones that make my heart sing. The ones that grab me and won’t let me not select them.

You might have a great reason for rating images, but I think trying to decide whether an image deserves 2, 3, or 4 stars slows the process. Because I’m looking for a few frames that are a decisive “Yes!”, I’ve found rating them makes me look for the wrong thing.

I appreciate hearing about other creative people’s processes and approaches. A lot of these things, we kind of figure out on our own, but others may have developed more effective methods to do the same thing.

I totally am a “delete the bad stuff” editor, with my first round of edits simply clearing out the out of focus or poorly exposed or unnecessary duplicates. A second pass clears out boring and blah. Then I select my pool of images to edit (which is probably too many 😉).

As in everything, working with more intentionality yields better results, though it is harder. I like his mindset of thinking of a collection of photos from a trip as a body of work — this is probably similar to my thinking when I’m constructing an excursion blog post, where I try to curate a representative selection of photos, but if some shots are too similar I might remove one. In the comments, Jon Revere shares his perspective of framing a story, which sometimes means including less than great shots. This resonates with the approach I took to my 2021 photography and writing project Sense Memory.

I am unclear from his description: how many images does he delete? Does he save copies of all his photos to revisit in the future, or only the select best? Are there still 30k photos from that trip on his hard drive?

Categories
Future Building Lifestyle Personal Growth

Learning to live in community

Liked Themes of a Year (2022) by Anne Helen Petersen (Culture Study)

You’re trying to shore up your own life raft. Putting on your own oxygen mask and worrying about others’ later. But there is no such thing, not in this moment, as amassing enough capital to actually feel secure. You reach one foothold and start scrambling for the next, always focused on you and yours, forgetting that what you really need is a safety net. You need community that won’t immediately use you as a footstool and bitterly and violently sack all you’ve diligently amassed…

It’s so annoying, isn’t it, that the weightlessness and safety we crave requires more work. That to remember we are beloved, we must also do the labor of loving. It is particularly annoying to those of us obsessed with conceptions of fairness that there is no scoreboard to community, either, and that reciprocity is never straightforward, and rarely takes place within a designed period of time. We’re not talking about Giving Tree self-abnegation here, we’re talking about the real difficulty, when you’ve spent your life trying to get ahead, with letting go of keeping score.

Emphasis mine.

See also:

Gifting art

We Should Get Together

Categories
Meta Writing

Tricking your brain into writing the way you want

Bookmarked lowercase magic by Rob HardyRob Hardy (Ungated)

how ignoring the rules of capitalization catapulted me into the land of cathartic creativity

I’m all about using tricks to fool my brain — switching from computer to paper somehow unleashes a different kind of brainstorming that doesn’t work for me on the screen, sending a book draft to my Kindle helps me forget I wrote it so I can read more objectively. This guy’s switch to lowercase writing makes sense as a way to unlock vulnerability because it’s closer to the way we text and chat, which we often do with friends and family who we probably feel comfortable sharing more with and being ourselves. It’s a good reminder that switching our context and rules for ourselves can reveal ways we’re inadvertently keeping ourselves from our best work.

(I wonder how he’d feel about going back through and restoring capitalization after writing, or if the lowercase is part of the cue to the reader that this is something more personal.)

Categories
Personal Growth Self Care Society

Finding joy by rejecting a scarcity mindset

Liked WHY MISERY LOVES COMPANY (AND HOW TO AVOID BECOMING BITTER) (aestheticsofjoy.com)

When we view our lives through the lens of abundance, we live in a state of flow. Success is not taken from others, but created with others.

Like the idea of “an abundance-based community” — her example is authors, who “realiz[e] that readers are not a scarce resource to be squabbled over, but a community to be cultivated. The goal is not to get people to read one book over another, but to get more people reading period.”

I dig the rising tide lifts all ships idea, even if it’s hard to remember sometimes with my own work.

[S]top saying “I’m so old,” which effectively hides another scarcity statement: “I have so little time left.”

Oops, I am guilty of this 😅 She’s got a point though…

Categories
Culture Society

“The Decline of Wonkiness”

Replied to The Decline of Wonkiness (uliwestphal.de)

Didn’t read the article but I like this phrase, which could be used to describe trends in so many areas.

There’s a connection between the rise of social media and a lower tolerance for wonkiness. When you’re fed photos of other people’s beautiful (staged) homes constantly, you see the imperfections in your own all the more. Something that works but is a bit wonky might not be tolerated any more, culture driving a want for perfection, to live in the dream.