Response to Reading and 5 Terms

Out of the four stories, I found the ones by Berenice Abbott and Larry Sultan to be the most interesting. Abbott’s story opened my eyes to the documenting aspects of photography. I thought that her best line was “the picture has almost replaced the word as a means of communication.” This emphasizes the importance that photography has since an image is easier to process than words, making every aesthetic decision that much more important. I found her history of photography to be very interesting, and I agree with her point that it must progress or wither away. However I think that with all the creativity and decision-making that goes into photography, it will never die since something new will always come up. What stuck out to me the most was her description of what photography is. Saying it should be a statement, guided by selectivity was new to me. I never understood photography because I was never interested in it. But seeing all the creativity and thought that influences selection, I can see why it is so fascinating. Everyone will be different, even when photographing the same subject, which is why photography is so fascinating.

Sultan’s story stood out to me because it was a personal family narrative. Personally, I take the point of view of the dad when he says, “You shoot thirty roles of film to get one or two pictures that you like. Doesn’t that worry you?” To me, this makes perfect sense since I don’t have that passion for photography that Sultan has. However through his eyes, I can see and understand why he does it. Making his parents live forever really stuck with me, because he was using photography to capture time and memories, which my own family does. It was relatable and I enjoyed that. I think that through these stories, I was able to get a deeper glimpse into photography and understand/relate to it more because I am now more interested in the art form.

5 Terms

Aperture – The variable opening produced by the iris diaphragm through which light passes to the film plane.

Depth of Field – The range of acceptably sharp focus in front of and behind the distance the lens is focused on.

Shutter Speed – How fast the camera’s shutters open. Determines how long the film is exposed for.

Close-Up – The general term for pictures taken at relatively close distances, from 1/10 life-size

Filter – A transparent piece of tinted glass, plastic or gelatin used to alter the color or character of light or to reduce the amount of light.

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