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motivation
Old 10-18-2018   #1
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motivation

is the motivation to be a successful fine art photographer different from being a successful street photographer?
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Old 10-18-2018   #2
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Motivation is the key too all success!
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Old 10-18-2018   #3
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Well success in fine art photography means getting your work into galleries and museums and getting people to buy your work so that you can eat and can continue making new work.

You need to be willing to make it your fulltime job and work your ass off to succeed. Most are unable/unwilling to do that.

When I say "Work," I mean more than the business side of it (getting into exhibits, selling). I also mean the rigor and discipline needed to create a consistent, well thought out, unified, meaningful body of work.
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Old 10-18-2018   #4
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Motivation is the key too all success!
well said!
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Old 10-18-2018   #5
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Originally Posted by Chriscrawfordphoto View Post
Well success in fine art photography means getting your work into galleries and museums and getting people to buy your work so that you can eat and can continue making new work.

You need to be willing to make it your fulltime job and work your ass off to succeed. Most are unable/unwilling to do that.

When I say "Work," I mean more than the business side of it (getting into exhibits, selling). I also mean the rigor and discipline needed to create a consistent, well thought out, unified, meaningful body of work.
This is the kind of answer that can only come from one who knows!
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Old 10-18-2018   #6
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I'm not sure if motivation to be successful will makes you better photographer.
Was VM successful? She is gifted street photographer with interesting work.
Is Fred Herzog regretting to be not successful for decades?
What success is in photography or in fine art? Labels or interesting photography?
I often find what good photography is not always correlated with labels and titles photog recieves.
I'm finding more interesting photography, mostly street, I'm not into artsy things, on forums and Flickr.
Is number of likes showing success? Many giftless crap I see have many likes.
Junku Nishimura doesn't have hundreds of likes under each photo, but he is the classic of street photography.
Helen Hill is fine art street photographer. To me then it is obviously visible if photog has talent and knows how to use it - it is successful. Labels and titles are sales. Not photography, nor fine art, but networking and business.
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Old 10-19-2018   #7
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Having a vision and being persistent is the key to it all. The vision maybe more so in the fine art/street world than it is in the professional world.

I have had some success in the art world/galleries books and selling work though the selling is not my main goal. I have been making a living and a fairly good one in the professional world for over 3 decades.

In the pro world I like to think that in many situations a professional photographer is like a studio musician because one is put into situations that require different styles and approaches to get an art director what they are looking for. Sometimes one is hired for their look but it is not always the case. For me photography is my full time job and the personal work is the hobby. Not unlike many that have full time jobs doing other things and photography is their hobby. So my vision in my personal work does not rely on sales to support my family. The pro work does that. And that can be freeing when it comes to my personal work. Sales don't drive the vision.

For the personal work it is a lot of rejection. Many galleries will not take chances today. Persistence and hard work are key. Having a clear vision with a consistent body of work is also important. Knowing who you are as a photographer and having something to say visually is also part of the process.

I do know in the pro world consistently exceeding your clients expectations is the really key to success. Building a business on repeat clients and solid working relationships is what will keep you working. What gets you in, just like in the (I hate this term) fine art world is first creating consistent solid work that someone is willing to buy or hire one for. Over the years I have seen many friends and colleagues come and go. I have seen many fail early and I would say persistence is maybe the one thing all successful photographers all have in common.

In the beginning 90% will be rejection. Just getting through to someone that makes decsions on what to exhibit in the galley or who to hire for a shoot is hard. Many get rejection early and quit.

In my opinion the pro world is not that much different from the fine art world and that if you have any kind of chance at success persistence is key. it is tough out there.

I would say that all of this equals someone being motivated. I would say it even has to go beyond that and is key to success especially in this over saturated world.
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Old 10-19-2018   #8
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I can easily see a commercial market for fine art photography, but is there an equivalent market for street photography? Many people buy fine art prints as decor. But street photos as decor? I'm not sure.
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Old 10-19-2018   #9
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I can easily see a commercial market for fine art photography, but is there an equivalent market for street photography? Many people buy fine art prints as decor. But street photos as decor? I'm not sure.
I think if you get into the right gallery you can sell street work. I sold 4 pieces at my last exhibit in June.
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Old 10-19-2018   #10
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It is a bit of a disjointed question.

I cant to speak to what makes a good street photographer but i am sure someone will chime in. I know a few and their success seems rooted in a relentless drive to do it. Day in and day out. Photograph, photograph, photograph.

The 'fine art' world takes a lot more work than most imagine. As Chris has mentioned already, you need a body of work before anyone will even pay attention. A cohesive, well edited, original and relevant one at that. That is just the beginning. You also need a CV/resume that says 'this person is motivated, serious and has an exhibition history', and not just a couple of pics at the locap cafe. You have to do whatever it takes to create that first body of work and start the CV/resume. Fry burgers, retail at the mall, work at local camera shop... Whatever. It's the price of admission. Body of work and CV.

The other thing most folks overlook is a media phone book. The contact details and names of everyone that can help you get work out. A curated one... If you shoot a particular subject/genre, tailor the media list for said work. Go to library, take pics of mastheads... Research galleries, make a calendar of all grant and award opportunities and carpet bomb. Start again when you are done.

So what's the difference? I think a lot of folks have the goods to be a street photographer. I think very, very few have the motivation and discipline to be a 'fine art photographer'.
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Old 10-19-2018   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by back alley View Post
is the motivation to be a successful fine art photographer different from being a successful street photographer?
I think that the structure of motivation to photograph whatever is similar in
many categories. But I have some difficulties with the term "fine art".
Maybe thats a translation problem. Is fine art finer than art and what makes the
difference?
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Old 10-19-2018   #12
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Originally Posted by emraphoto View Post
It is a bit of a disjointed question.

I cant to speak to what makes a good street photographer but i am sure someone will chime in. I know a few and their success seems rooted in a relentless drive to do it. Day in and day out. Photograph, photograph, photograph.

The 'fine art' world takes a lot more work than most imagine. As Chris has mentioned already, you need a body of work before anyone will even pay attention. A cohesive, well edited, original and relevant one at that. That is just the beginning. You also need a CV/resume that says 'this person is motivated, serious and has an exhibition history', and not just a couple of pics at the locap cafe. You have to do whatever it takes to create that first body of work and start the CV/resume. Fry burgers, retail at the mall, work at local camera shop... Whatever. It's the price of admission. Body of work and CV.

The other thing most folks overlook is a media phone book. The contact details and names of everyone that can help you get work out. A curated one... If you shoot a particular subject/genre, tailor the media list for said work. Go to library, take pics of mastheads... Research galleries, make a calendar of all grant and award opportunities and carpet bomb. Start again when you are done.

So what's the difference? I think a lot of folks have the goods to be a street photographer. I think very, very few have the motivation and discipline to be a 'fine art photographer'.
From experience I find street photography to be one of the most challenging to do right. I don't separate street work from fine art work (whatever those two might be). Good is good no matter what one labels it. As pointed out bodies of work are the key.
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Old 10-19-2018   #13
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Define "successful."
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Old 10-19-2018   #14
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Define "successful."
And then you have that
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Old 10-19-2018   #15
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You cannot separate them. Good street photography is by definition fine art photography. Here I am talking of the likes of Cartier-Bresson, Frank, Winogrand, Meyerowitz, Friedlander, Shore, etc. One may like some of them more or less, but their work is clearly considered fine art photography, not least by the museums that exhibit them.
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Old 10-19-2018   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by airfrogusmc View Post
From experience I find street photography to be one of the most challenging to do right. I don't separate street work from fine art work (whatever those two might be). Good is good no matter what one labels it. As pointed out bodies of work are the key.
oh absolutely. there are folks who are bewilderingly talented at it and i ain't one of them i don't actually categorize much myself... i shoot portraits, i shoot life, sometimes big cameras and and often little ones. sometimes i drink beer.

but if i can ever offer humble, sincere advice here... body of work
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Old 10-19-2018   #17
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"Having a vision and being persistent is the key to it all"

indeed
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Old 10-19-2018   #18
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"Well success in fine art photography means getting your work into galleries and museums and getting people to buy your work so that you can eat and can continue making new work"

and that
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