Thursday, November 19, 2009

An Embarrassment



If there had been just one other blogger present at the photo preview of the Terra Cotta Warrior show last night, just one other person taking pics with a small point and shoot or from their phone, I could have made common cause, I could have relaxed and enjoyed doing what I do every day. Or so I'm telling myself this morning.

Sadly that was not the case. I was among a bunch of Professional Photographers, all of them with 2 or three cameras slung around their necks, carrying huge tripods and other equipment.

I doubt seriously I would ever find myself intimidated in the treatment room. I know there are better bodyworkers, lots of them, but I'm so comfortable with the way I practice my art. I am confident.

Not so with photography. Even my little camera seemed to have a freak out, reverting as if by magic to all its original settings, so I couldn' find the menu to switch the light meter and such. Instead of calmly modifying the settings, I was so frantic to get out of there I just snapped at random. All my pics are sadly orange-ish and blurry.

I was back out on 17th Street after 10 minutes, giggling in spite of how intimidated I was, while the real photographers were just getting settled in. Oh well. If you want to see good pics of the show I'm certain they will be available in many locations. I think National Geographic even has a flikr site. Here you will see only the fruits of my humiliation. Mea culpa!

31 comments:

Mrsupole said...

I like orange and I like a little blur. Those pics look pretty good to me. And those professionals probably take cold sterile pictures while yours are so full of life and things that they would never imagine putting in their pics.

Your pics make us feel. They make us see. They make us think. Those are the signs of an artist. They were photographers. You were an artist.

You just are.

God bless.

Reya Mellicker said...

You're sweet! Thank you Mrsupole.

David said...

It's not the size of the camera, Reya.

ellen abbott said...

Ah Reya, you held the torch for all of us with point and shoots who couldn't be there. (Which is why your pics are so warm, the torch light and all.)

Joanne said...

I think there's a certain reality, an authenticity to your work that we may not find in the others. A certain you-ness ;)

willow said...

You make my little point and shoot proud!

louisey said...

The power in that warrior's head comes across so clearly to me.

Mary LA

Liza said...

"giggling in spite of how intimidated I was"
I had that nervous feeling I get in my tummy when I read that. Thank you for stepping outside of your box Reya. I find it very inspirational.
I LOVE your pics.

Steve said...

Ha! I can see you getting all rattled. But your photos actually turned out fine -- and all those professional photogs had better get used to seeing underequipped bloggers, because that's the media wave of the future, don't you think?

NanU said...

That's funny, this is just the same thing I was saying to myself yesterday when I went on a photoshooting hike with a long-lost friend who just happens to be a professional photographer. Thought I would shrivel in the shadow. But everyone here is right - it's not the size of the camera that counts. Great shots, Reya!

JC said...

I like your first photo.

I sometimes think that 'real' people photos are the best. We see things that maybe the pros don't see.

John Hayes said...

I think your photography is consistently top-notch; you know, I play guitars that aren't the top of the line either, & frankly--as with cameras--what the player brings to the guitar means at least as much as the price tag & the bells & whistles. I like both of these images quite well.

ArtSparker said...

Isn't it annoying how adolescent feelings hang on? Maybe it's compensated for by being young at heart.

Linda Sue said...

The trick is to secretly get behind the gadget photography and ride their tail wind. I have done that and they get cross but I get really great shots.Sometimes.
Nothing wrong with the hue of your very cool photos- goes well with terra cotta warmth- I am sure that the heads were smiling at you, thanking you for your lack of fuss- You can see that they loved your camera- made in china???

lacochran said...

I also like these photos, particularly the first one. Orange is an underrated color.

lacochran said...

Apparently, Foggy Dew was there. You should introduce yourself. Good guy.

The Bug said...

I felt exactly the same way yesterday as I was shopping. I knew what I wanted, but once I got in the door I panicked. I just grabbed random stuff, bought it & headed out the door. Heh. Thank goodness it all fit!

PurestGreen said...

But think of it this way. For some of us, your photos will be the only images we see of this event. You are our insider's look - our behind-the-scenes master. You're the one having adventures that we can follow here on our screens. And that's pretty cool.

Ronda Laveen said...

What Mrs said. What Willow said. What David said. What...many GREAT comments here. Not much to add except What Steve said resonates very strongly. It is the next media wave and like all beings in the ecosystem we will learn to coexist. Big camera or little camera...they all produce images...which is the point of the mission.

Teacats said...

Actually I love the photo of the bust! Strong lines in the face are somewhat softened and more human -- as in the lighting. More of a peachy-pink -- flattering to the tones in the stonework -- and great contrast with the lines in the display case. Well done!!


Jan at Rosemary Cottage

Reya Mellicker said...

These comments are FANTASTIC! I want to do what Ronda did - what David said, what Lacochran said, etc.

Yeah.

It was SO adolescent, Art Sparker. Afterwards I flashed back on junior high, having to take showers after gym with other girls, worrying about my boobs being too small or something. But the feeling overwhelmed the experience, for sure.

"You make my point and shoot proud!" OMG that is so funny.

The cameras were all huge, with even huger lenses and then these big floppy shades on the end of the lenses. And the tripods! As large as the Terra Cotta Warriors!!

Reya Mellicker said...

Steve, I wish you had been there. If you had, we could have laughed with each other. It would have been a hoot.

steven said...

it's the real reel that matters reya mellicker. orange blurry real sweet terracotta men. the second picture - well i wasn't expecting that . . . it's soft in the way of people sitting. but you've captured smiles yesterday and today. steven

Meri said...

You can always play with them in Picasa or Photoshop and try to de-orange them. But isn't the point to capture the memory, not to compare your skills to the pros?

karen said...

Hi Reya, I love your photos - they are real, and they are taken in real time, too,with a bit of spontaneity as opposed to a formal setup etc!

Been catching up on all your many posts,as I've been absent from blogging for a while.. so glad to see you decided not to give up just yet after all, and good luck with your stint with the Terracotta Warriors x

Lynne said...

You have nothing to be embarrassed or ashamed of! Who knows how their photos turned out, or if some of them even know how to use their fancy cameras?

Every person who looks through the lens of a camera will see something different. What you see is you. Art a la Reya.

Please take more!

mouse (aka kimy) said...

you were just bracing simplicity in equipment definitely nothing to be embarrassed about! and your eye is always magical.

the orange light (meaning lack of harsh flash) is kind to the terra cotta warriors in many ways.

those professional photographs have nothing on you! you go girl!

Jo Floyd Lucas said...

I demand a retraction of your blog title--"An Embarrassment". Your photos showed us the warriors through your eyes, and they are beautiful! And by the way...isn't terra cotta kind of orangy in reality? I think you've captured the mystery and the aura of the warriors perfectly...anything BUT embarrassing!

Reya Mellicker said...

Thanks y'all for your votes of appreciation, and yes Meri I tried to de-orange them in Photoshop. These are crap photos - the real things are beautiful and not orange-y at all. Also not blurry.

But really - thank you!!

Melissa said...

I agree, thank you for stepping out of your box. I too
become extremely intimidated by the "extreme pro photographer" Then I have to compose myself after I feel humiliated and remember its in the eye of the beholder.

True photography can be felt as well as seen.

I remember being so stressed out in the darkroom at school, comparing myself to other students and their awesome equipment. Only to find out the teacher admired my work for its simplicity with my manual stripped down camera.

Blessings to you. Embrace the moment.

Reya Mellicker said...

I was thinking today that if I had just brought a couple of large cameras, had them slung around my neck, I would have felt far more comfortable in there. Oh well!