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NSN Image Galleries - what makes you comment?


Posted by Greg Downing on Sun Mar 27, 2016 2:39 pm

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by signgrap on Sun Mar 27, 2016 2:39 pm
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These day people are seeing 1,000's upon 1,000's of images daily.
Most of these images are a step up or two or three steps up in quality from what was seen  when this site was first started.
Most of the images on NSN now a days are very good if not better. I would dare say that many members would be be hard pressed to provide relevant comments on how to improve many of the images being posted now. That's why we're seeing so many "great Shot" comments and not much more.
As mentioned earlier in this thread, a forum dedicated to "Need Help With . . ." would probably get many more people commenting on these images because the image submitter has asked for help on a troublesome aspect of the image.
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by pleverington on Mon Mar 28, 2016 9:55 am
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isseu wrote:
Hi Paul,
thanks for your feedback. I thing generally it is getting harder and harder to get attention for any pictures and people spending less time really looking at pictures
let alone writing comments etc. If the intentions of Greg at all is to check what can be improved  I would ask what hampers people from leaving a comment, personally I have to admit that more often ten not I am to lazy to log-in from my mobile to leave a couple of letter comment (yes shame on me)
but maybe I am not the only one
KR
Dirk

I think your hitting the nail right on the head Dirk. It's about loss of interest. It's not so difficult to get images that are sharp, colorful, and in pose as it used to be so we all are more used to these things being a given. We are bored with that now. But at one time not really so long ago these things were not only a joy but a great source of challenge and fulfillment. But no one compliments on focus hardly anymore since we all  have great af cameras and no one is lacking for color, contrast, "cleaned up" compositions, cloned in or out elements, compositing....IOW's it takes a lot nowadays to impress the viewer. And most viewers know that most images are fictitious renditions. This looses value over time for all images in general. We rather have shot ourselves in the foot with today's digital capabilities..

But this might be a good thing in a way because an images power can only capitalize so much on sharp detail, vivid color, augmented contrast, embellished fakery.
As it was thousands of years ago and hundreds of years ago an image either "speaks" or it doesn't. If it doesn't it's eye candy, if it does speak it becomes a part of you. It gets let into the mind, the memory and the spirit. No amount of trickery or fad or special effects can accomplish this on it's own.  Great subjects and great composition can. Elements that have depth of meaning and relativity are always at the heart of great images. And probably is where photography in general has come to rest at the present just short of. (very generally speaking) Hence the boredom.

IMO if this site wants to increase commentary, the fostering of the evolution of the image itself is the key. No one stays in one place too long before that place gets restricting and perhaps old.  All need to keep growing with their own deep felt creativity in wherever that takes them and leave the cheap tricks behind. The latter only serves to devalue over the long run.


Paul
Paul Leverington
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Last edited by pleverington on Mon Mar 28, 2016 10:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
 

by pleverington on Mon Mar 28, 2016 10:02 am
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signgrap wrote:
These day people are seeing 1,000's upon 1,000's of images daily.
Most of these images are a step up or two or three steps up in quality from what was seen  when this site was first started.
Most of the images on NSN now a days are very good if not better. I would dare say that many members would be be hard pressed to provide relevant comments on how to improve many of the images being posted now. That's why we're seeing so many "great Shot" comments and not much more.
As mentioned earlier in this thread, a forum dedicated to "Need Help With . . ." would probably get many more people commenting on these images because the image submitter has asked for help on a troublesome aspect of the image.


Spot on Dick....The technical side of our images  is more or less now mastered and requires little to no commentary like it used to. Most of the commentary as I remember was all about getting the basic technicality's down. Hardly a problem anymore with PP and superior gear..
Paul Leverington
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by Greg Downing on Mon Mar 28, 2016 10:38 am
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Good idea Dick on the "need help with..." forum (or some iteration of that). We'll consider that seriously and see how it works.

Paul your comment re: "And most viewers know that most images are fictitious renditions" is probably more you than it is anyone else. I don't think most viewers feel that most images are actually worked so much as to feel that they are "fictitious". I think you're alone in feeling that the majority of images posted here are so overworked as to fit that category of "fake".

We'll get back to you. :)
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by pleverington on Mon Mar 28, 2016 11:19 am
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Greg Downing wrote:
Good idea Dick on the "need help with..." forum (or some iteration of that). We'll consider that seriously and see how it works.

Paul your comment re: "And most viewers know that most images are fictitious renditions" is probably more you than it is anyone else. I don't think most viewers feel that most images are actually worked so much as to feel that they are "fictitious".  I think you're alone in feeling that the majority of images posted here are so overworked as to fit that category of "fake".

We'll get back to you. :)

Greg even if I am THE only person in the world who no longer trusts images, and both you and I know this is not true, you did ask for our opinions and thoughts. So I gave you mine. And polarizing thinking by defining "fake" as a category of some sorts detracts from the truth of the matter as some images are abominations and others are gentle embellishments. Not all are fakes as if in total deceitful frauds. None the less my point still stands that over time these images loose their value for impact as we see endless streams of them. They fail to impress or even inspire after a time. Again big generalization here, on my part, but that was my point. Keep also in mind that the scope of this phenomenon is far past just images here and is coming at all of us from every direction. Maybe call it overload or a point of saturation. And yes it manifests it self here and the proof is maybe the main reason for the thread you yourself started.

I know you remember when people here were livid about a lot of any but the most modest adjustments in photo shop. I know you remember the very long threads on "to clone or not to clone" as just one example. Is it even an issue any more? Seems to me that nowadays we have come to accept all but the most brutal of editing techniques. You'd be mistaken if you think that that is a problem for me. But you would also be mistaken if you or any one thought that I accept everything I see. I have that right as any viewer has the right to reject things that they see. Pretty pictures are fine, but how many of those can we all look at before getting bored?? Would you not at least acknowledge that the more an image in a visceral manner affects one, the more value it  has? Now neither you or I can determine such a subjective thing of course for anyone but ourselves, but I also disagree with you that I am alone on this though.

In today's world it's like if everyone looked like Barbie and Ken then what would beautiful be then? One must have an opposition for determining the value of something no? Right now "the lowly Pigeon"  are maligned as dirty flying rats with many people, but if there was but one left it's value would be priceless. I submit that perhaps images have taken a similar devaluation as has the Pigeon. Technically great images are ubiquitous.  We have to do something far more than that now to arouse interest and inspiration. Wouldn't necessarily be just about the image itself either, could be stories about the animal or capture with the camera, environmental concerns about the subject, and one I would love to see more myself an included description of the nature of the subject so as to learn.

Anyways Greg it's been quite a long while now, yet you haven't really discussed anything here with us. Not to tell you what to do or anything, but I would think you would be dialoging back and forth with folks in order to pry out deeper and wider meanings of thought from them. You don't do that here or elsewhere really. Getting folks comments and not exploring those comments with them is limiting the possible truths and revelations that I'm sure would help.
Paul Leverington
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by Greg Downing on Mon Mar 28, 2016 1:22 pm
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Dear Paul,

Thanks for the insightful input. As for the last paragraph... remember I started the thread (!) thus I engaged the discussion on the first place ... and I have periodically checked back in to comment that I was hearing everyone's comments (shrug) and have addressed some of them specifically. I apologize if I am not as wordy as yourself... but I am here and I did post the question!
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by pleverington on Thu Mar 31, 2016 6:14 pm
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Greg I wish you the best and the site the best moving forward and in the future. Please talk more to us so we can help more. Tell us what your thoughts are these days....
Paul Leverington
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by OntPhoto on Thu Mar 31, 2016 11:25 pm
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This site seems to be doing well if the results in the link below are to be believed


Web traffic
 

by pleverington on Mon Apr 04, 2016 9:11 am
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OntPhoto wrote:
This site seems to be doing well if the results in the link below are to be believed


Web traffic

Interesting link. If I read it correct, the site is getting about 475 hits a day, (85,000 hits over 6 month period), at an average view time of 3.5 minutes, and an average of five and a half pages viewed. I guess that's pretty good. But at only a very short time for an average visit of 3.5 minutes, wouldn't that rather indicate people for the most part just are doing a quick check for anything new and relevant, or just visiting for a quick skim through, and not really immersing themselves too much further? Spending some time and thought here IOW's? I suppose it also needs to be said of the average 472 visitors a day, surely some have logged in more than once on that day and perhaps multiple times as they try a keep up with a thread or post they may have started.

But Ont... what's your point about the stats you linked to? I'm not sure myself on how to interpret them perhaps..

edit**  the luminous-landscape.com gets 1 million visits it seems in 6 months according to the link you provided, that's 5,555 visits per day, (11.5 times more than NSN). Only 1.46 minutes time spent at the site per visit however, and only 2.26 pages viewed, but that might be because Reichmann now charges if you want to see any of but the most superficial and general of his articles, so maybe people as I do often do, just check in and see what I can still read up on for free or use discretion if I want to read something that I might have to pay for.
Paul Leverington
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by Greg Downing on Wed Apr 06, 2016 5:23 pm
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pleverington wrote:
Greg I wish you the best and the site the best moving forward and in the future. Please talk more to us so we can help more. Tell us what your thoughts are these days....

I appreciate that and I plan to - we're working on some site modification to make the remainder of the site responsive and mobile ready as well as enhancing the gallery experience over the coming months - it is, and always will be, never ending. It would be interesting if folks looked back 10 years and see what the site looked like or functioned like then...

I think a learning gallery is a good idea and we plan to implement some form of that - we just need to figure out the details and wrangle up enough volunteers to help out in moderating.. and stick to it...

The site stats are interesting and we're aware of the traffic we have at the moment. Of course we'd like more and are always seeking new members.

Stay tuned and thanks again for the feedback.
Greg Downing
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by John P on Fri Apr 08, 2016 10:44 am
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I probably do not lurk or comment as much as I have in the past, because of probably the reason you already mentioned! But I still go on and when I do make a few comments on images. I also will post a image in various gallery's from time to time! It is a great site and the photography is outstanding! But at the same time we would not want the new outdoor/nature photographer feel intimidated! And those that make a comment should always make positive comments first and than maybe  one constructive comment!
 

by Paul Fusco on Fri Apr 08, 2016 11:20 am
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One idea that might help juice things up is for image posters to include a little narrative about how they went about getting the shot. Nothing too long, just a short description. Someone may have already alluded to this - I didn't read all of the rep[lies on this thread..
Technically good posts with no storyline have little meaning to most people. Just a pretty picture that is supposed to be worth a thousand words, but it might be boring because there is little information behind it. To really be meaningful, I for one would like to hear a little about what it took to get the shot. Some images are posted without even saying what country the image was taken in.  
P
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by Cynthia Crawford on Sat Apr 16, 2016 4:30 pm
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Karl Egressy wrote:
Constructive, tactful critique is great.
However, not everybody is good at it.
Doing critique on images posted by members, should be chiefly done by moderators IMO.
Unfortunately, they are not to be found at all most of the time.
Well, it is a time consuming job I realize that, and it is not always appreciated.


Hi Karl

I am surprised to see this.  I don't know which galleries you are referring to, but I see mostly moderator comments in many Galleries and wish there were more non-mod participants. I guess "Birds" has the most participants of any kind, and even there, there are fewer than in the past. Personally I don't think I've ever missed commenting on a single post on P&DA, nor has Gary Briney.  Some Mods are also now branching out to occasionally comment in Galleries they are not assigned to.  Please remember mods are volunteers.......  I see our jobs too,  as overseeing comments by others to make sure things are going well-no spam or hostilities, etc. as well as making comments.  Perhaps that is not known  as part of our work here.

By the way, I DO appreciate YOUR comments-especially in the "talk" forums- you are always very thoughtful and helpful. You are one of our best commentators!
Cynthia (Cindy) Crawford-Moderator, Photo & Digital Art
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by pleverington on Thu Apr 21, 2016 9:33 am
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Maybe a forum where people would post the unedited version of a already posted image revealing what the image either really looked like or what editing they had done to get. Call the forum "honesty" or something like that. I'm sure it would take a minute to gain popularity but certainly if people participated I think most would find it extremely interesting.
Paul Leverington
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by troylim on Thu Apr 21, 2016 10:44 pm
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This is one of the two places I learned a lot from since I started picking a camera back in 2010.
I like constructive criticisms that make me better and see things different from different perspective. I am guilty of not commenting a lot of time because I don't know how it will be perceive. I enjoy studying others' work along with the technical info and trying to understand the reasons behind it.
 

by pleverington on Fri Apr 22, 2016 11:19 am
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Or call it ...."Let's see it RAW"

Just think what it would say if no one posted their raw versions of an image. What would that then say?

Then again, on the other hand, what would it say if one or two individuals posted their raw versions? Wouldn't they gain some trust and respect for that as far  as their truth in imaging? Perhaps people might start looking at that persons images as some semblance to the reality of what actually is out there? Reliable, truthful, honest, real, believable, respectful, actual depiction of what nature is and looks like, ....not driving while getting drunk so to speak.....are just a few attributes I can think of that such a persons photo work could evoke.

I guess I'm in the minority about these things but clearly if an image looks to be so real  and true to what it is depicting, that image gains so much power due to it's validity for me. I actually feel resentment when being subjected to anything that is flagrantly presented falsely.
Paul Leverington
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by troylim on Fri Apr 22, 2016 2:23 pm
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pleverington wrote:
Or call it ...."Let's see it RAW"

Just think what it would say if no one posted their raw versions of an image. What would that then say?

Then again, on the other hand, what would it say if one or two individuals posted their raw versions? Wouldn't they gain some trust and respect for that as far  as their truth in imaging? Perhaps people might start looking at that persons images as some semblance to the reality of what actually is out there? Reliable, truthful, honest, real, believable, respectful, actual depiction of what nature is and looks like, ....not driving while getting drunk so to speak.....are just a few attributes I can think of that such a persons photo work could evoke.

I guess I'm in the minority about these things but clearly if an image looks to be so real  and true to what it is depicting, that image gains so much power due to it's validity for me. I actually feel resentment when being subjected to anything that is flagrantly presented falsely.



That is an interesting concept but I wonder how many people would actually do so.  
 

by pleverington on Mon Apr 25, 2016 9:09 am
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troylim wrote:
pleverington wrote:
Or call it ...."Let's see it RAW"

Just think what it would say if no one posted their raw versions of an image. What would that then say?

Then again, on the other hand, what would it say if one or two individuals posted their raw versions? Wouldn't they gain some trust and respect for that as far  as their truth in imaging? Perhaps people might start looking at that persons images as some semblance to the reality of what actually is out there? Reliable, truthful, honest, real, believable, respectful, actual depiction of what nature is and looks like, ....not driving while getting drunk so to speak.....are just a few attributes I can think of that such a persons photo work could evoke.

I guess I'm in the minority about these things but clearly if an image looks to be so real  and true to what it is depicting, that image gains so much power due to it's validity for me. I actually feel resentment when being subjected to anything that is flagrantly presented falsely.



That is an interesting concept but I wonder how many people would actually do so.  

It could be a part of a learning forum as others have suggested maybe. Then it wouldn't be so obtrusive if that is the right word. But the idea would need some encouragement I'm sure at first but as time would pass I'm  also  sure it could catch  on. We need to stop fooling ourselves, we need to stop deluding ourselves, and some flat out honesty and humility would benefit our images and nature greatly  I feel.

Something I have noticed...when all these images that we are bombarded with these days(all sources) that are overdone, mostly in a similar way, IOWs, saturating, contrast, super sharpening, the result is they all seem to have a similar look to them. They just all start looking the same.They loose a lot of appeal because they have so much in common with every other image out there.    ...how many times do we see any image that capitalizes on soft resolution or pastel colors unless it is in digital art forum? Every thing in birds is almost always squeaky clean, almost antiseptic looking, with, brilliant over the top color and too much contrast. They all look the same.  It tends to get boring at times. Perhaps there's a mindset and it's locking people up.......
Paul Leverington
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by Tom Reichner on Mon Apr 25, 2016 10:37 am
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Greg Downing wrote:
The site stats are interesting and we're aware of the traffic we have at the moment. Of course we'd like more and are always seeking new members.
 


If you would like more traffic, as well as more registered members and A LOT more active participation, then you really should consider group sharing threads.  These are threads in which everyone is invited to post their images to a thread.  

Such a thread may be entitled:  "Post your Bird in Flight Photos Here", or "Desert Wildlife:  Post yours"

These threads are the very backbone of most photography forums.  Without them, we are alienating a huge portion of the photographic community, as many people - especially the casual photographers - are a bit intimidated with the prospect of starting a thread of their own, or of posting an image to something that is called a "gallery".  They just want to post a pic to the internet, like they do on Facebook, Flickr, and other photography forums.  

There are a few thousand people who are very serious about nature photography, and you have done a great job of bringing these folks in to this forum.  

However, there are tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of people who enjoy nature photography at a much more casual level.  These folks do feel intimidated here, and do not register or participate.  I know because I have referred several of them to this site, and when I follow up to see how they like NSN, they have told me things like, "I could never post there, but there is some really excellent photography on there".  They have this perception that NSN is really for the elite, and I think that a gallery-style image sharing section, as opposed to a chat forum-style sharing section, exacerbates this impression, which limits comments and participation.  

You've done a great job of creating a forum for those who take their nature photography very seriously.  Now, what about the huge masses of people who are much less obsessed with nature photography - the thousands upon thousands of folks who just want to share a photo that they think "turned out good"?  What are we doing to make these people feel welcome to participate and comment here?  
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by pleverington on Tue Apr 26, 2016 7:27 pm
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Tom is big time right Greg.......
Paul Leverington
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