Does the subject influence our feelings about photos?

© Stephen Crowley/The New York Times

Of course it does.  But, can we separate ourselves from our like/dislike enough of a subject to appreciate the work of a photographer? I notice a lot of comments on the blogosphere on how excellent certain political photographers are.  I have never noticed anyone to compliment a photographers’ work who is covering McCain.  Are all the lousy photographers relegated to GOP coverage?

Obviously a photographers’ choice of subject says a lot about him/her.  But in the case of photographers covering the news, there is often no choice.  I know that if I find a subject particularly offensive, I withdraw from the photo, but often I appreciate the photographers who pursue these subjects.  Joel Peter Witkin comes to mind.

I offer up for your criticism the work of a photographer I think quite a lot of, Stephen Crowley.  Are the photos of McCain better or worse than photographs of the Obama campaign?  You can check out a feature of his at the Digital Journalist here.  A comment left there got me thinking about all this.

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3 thoughts on “Does the subject influence our feelings about photos?

  1. Well, Christopher Morris covered Bush’s last campaign. He did a fantastic job and his book, My America is a personal fave. I’m more interested in subjects I tend to “dislike” anyway; that is where the mystery and intrigue lies. I also like to see more of what I don’t understand.

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  2. “I also like to see more of what I don’t understand.” – That is a great statement, Scott, and will certainly serve you well on your photographic journey. I feel the same way, but sometimes, I forget – when being judgemental, something I’ve tried to give up for Lent, but always revert back to chocolate.

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  3. Pingback: dvafoto - M. Scott Brauer and Matt Lutton › Time covers the presidential campaigns

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