Art and Photographic Portraits

What is art? Art is subjective, and not everyone agrees on what makes something art. Something like beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. A client told me not long ago that while she had no problem hanging large art pieces on her walls, she just couldn’t see a large family photo on her wall…She didn’t want to look at herself “that big!”Wow!I know my ears turned red because I could feel the heat coming off them! I stood there in stunned silence for a minute, then said, “So, you don’t consider portraits as art?!” I felt like I had been slapped in the face!You see, I have dedicated myself to creating the most beautiful family portraits possible for the last 16 years. To me, and to the vast majority of my clients, (I must say all my real clients), a fine family portrait truly is an art piece. A family art treasure! And I would venture to say that even the client I referenced at the beginning here would, in the case of a fire, grab her family portrait and run for safety….but I could be wrong…it’s happened before.Since I was a very young boy and to now, I have always taken my inspiration for my work from the Old Masters of painting. Their ability to show personalities and emotion in their images has always drawn me in. Most of their works were portraits of friends and patrons. Yes, portraits. Are they art? Absolutely! Very few would disagree.Back when the “Old Masters” were contemporaries, film hadn’t been invented, so there was no photography as we know it. And as I said, the majority of their works were portraits commissioned by their patrons, or inspired by their friends. Certainly landscapes and city scenes, slices of life as it was then were also subjects for paintings. Very much as it is today with painters and photographers alike.For the most part, the job of creating portraits has been turned over to photographers, and those who specialize in portraiture have received the baton from the portrait painters of old. The art of portraiture largely remains the same. Only the tools have changed. The ability to ‘see’ and to compose remain the cornerstone of the portraitist’s art, along with the ability to draw out the personality of the subject and transfer the vision to print media.There are many parallels between the painting masters portraits of old and today’s photographic portrait artists. Not the least being that we are commissioned to create the portraits in the first place, and it is our passion and livelihood. Depicting personality, emotion and moment has always been about lighting and featuring certain aspects of the subject whether captured in oils or on film or by digital sensor. And today’s portraits will be the future’s historical record of our contemporary life.

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Digital Frames – The Best Answer to Sharing Photos With or Without Internet Access

Digital frames are one of the newest technologies on the market today. They enable dynamic connecting with family and friends through photographs in a way that challenges the static display of photos and art in traditional frames in homes. These frames can be found in business settings as well because of their ability to quickly and efficiently transmit important information in a variety of ways to employees and customers.These electronic products have had a brief history. A few years ago, when they first appeared in stores, consumers bought them for gifts thinking they were the greatest and newest gadgets. The concept was simple–display all those stored photos for everyone to see and all in one place. But the early frames had problems with their user interfaces and the quality of their features. Often the recipients of these wonderful new “photo frames” had never figured out how to use them so they were left sitting dormant on a shelf or still in their boxes!The Digital Camera Came First and Changed Everything!In a relatively short time, the digital camera has literally changed the face of photography, photo storage and photo printing. The art of mastering photography using a manual camera was a challenge for some people. So when the digital camera arrived as an affordable option, many people felt they could once again enjoy picture taking without the learning curve. Adults and children alike can now take amazing photographs with a digital camera simply by using the “point and shoot” method.The digital camera has several great advantages:
• No wasted paper (developing).
• Hundreds of photos can be stored on your computer.
• Instant access to all of your photos whenever you want to see them.
• Take as many photos as you want and just delete poor photos.Of course, with every new technology comes a “catch.” Digital cameras are fantastic for taking lots of photos, but once they’re in the camera, on the memory card or in the computer, what happens next? How do you organize them and share them?Sharing and Organizing Photos on the Internet: The Internet is in millions of homes across the country and the world. You can organize your photos into folders on your own computer or by accessing on-line photo sharing sites such as Flickr, Photobucket, Picasa and others. You can easily email photos from these sites or directly from your computer to family and friends.This works only if the person to whom you’re sending photos also has access to the Internet and knows how to use it. If so, wireless digital frames are an excellent way to share your photo collection with friends and family. If not, how do we share photos with those who are not computer-savvy or don’t have or are not able to connect to the Internet?Digital frames are the best answer to sharing photos with family and friends, with or without Internet access. Once you download photos from your camera to your computer, you can then transfer them to memory cards or flash drives. These can be inserted in digital frames, which will display them in a variety of ways for the enjoyment of the viewer. Digital frames can easily be pre-loaded with photos before gifting. If the frame has an internal memory, photos can be copied to it, either from the computer itself or from a memory card. If not, you can always give a pre-loaded card along with the frame.When considering a purchase of one of these frames, try to match the features with the person receiving the frame. Of course, the more features, the more expensive the frame will be. However, if you consider the amount of money that would be spent to have the same number of photos printed out and delivered on a regular basis, the cost of any one of these frames becomes quite affordable. With a digital frame, you can change the photos whenever you like and you can see new pictures every day if you wish.The Future of Digital FramesThis versatile product should have been a much welcomed addition to our lives. Unfortunately, they had a very poor start. Too many manufacturers jumped into production with frames that were for the most part too complicated to use or of poor quality and with features that did not work as promised. Today’s frames are vastly improved with more user-friendly interfaces and features that really improve the viewing experience. These features include excellent image quality, content management and screen resolution to just mention a few.

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