Page 5 of 18 FirstFirst ... 3456715 ... LastLast
Results 41 to 50 of 175

Thread: Music as analogy for LF photography

  1. #41

    Join Date
    Sep 1998
    Location
    Oregon now (formerly Austria)
    Posts
    3,084

    Re: Music as analogy for LF photography

    Heroique,

    I'm not sure I agree with you about my post leaning heavily toward the Apollonian. I really believe that many of the basic elements of composition and colors of an image along with elements of melody, harmony timbre and rhythm (in the basic metric sense) in music, movement, gesture and pose in dance and vocal timbre in recited poetry and acting are things we respond to instinctively, at the level of the limbic system or even at a more visceral level with untempered emotional responses that are hard-wired into our brains by years of evolution. These responses are common to all humanity, as opposed to the intellectual and cultural elements of "higher" thought. Example: I read the fear, anger or warning in the tone of someone's voice, whether or not I understand the language. Much in music and the visual arts and dance is "wordless" and often relies heavily on our common instinctive responses to things as a means of communication. True, the organization of an image leans toward the Apollonian, as does form in music, but that element in a work of art that causes us to immediately catch our breath and gives us a thrill (say the monumental sweep of St. Peter's, or Beethoven's "three Gs and an E-flat" or the leap through the window at the beginning of Nijinsky's "Invitation to the Dance" choreography) has to be straight from Dionysus. Things like songs, program music, images with specific cultural and literary references, etc. incorporate even more Apollonian elements. Sure, Schubert songs have moving melodies, but one doesn't really get "Gretchen am Spinnrade" or "Erlkönig" until one understands the words.

    Thus, a photograph can contain visual elements that immediately evoke a basic emotional response. These are not just things we recognize, but shapes, forms, repetitions of elements (aka "rhythm - more later), colors, etc. to which we instinctively respond. Overlaid on these are the more cultural, conscious and "intellectual" elements in the image: the things we recognize in societal and academic contexts, references to other art works or literature, the printed word, etc. The interplay can be extremely complex and also extremely rewarding.

    I tend not to like dividing the world into polarities, however. For me, there are 50 shades of grey between Apollonian and Dionysian, not just a mix of the two pure elements in whatever proportions. We have complex responses that lie between the two extremes. Still, the concepts help us approach our complex responses and actions and are, therefore, useful - as long as we don't really believe that we or the world are really that simple (kind of like the Zone System...).

    On to whether static art works have a temporal aspect.

    Again, generalizations and oversimplifications make things easier to approach, but end up not being the whole picture. A piece of music, like a dance or a play, unfolds in time. It's elements are presented in a specified order in a calculated temporal juxtaposition to each other. Recapitulation in a symphony wouldn't be one without the exposition coming first; neither would the development be anything at all without the themes being elaborated on having been previously presented. And, that tonic chord at the end certainly doesn't belong anywhere else! The apprehension of musical form depends on our remembering what came before and only becomes perfectly clear when the repetition (or variation) occurs. One loves the opening themes of Beethoven's "Emperor" concerto, but isn't moved by the monumental architecture of the work until somewhere in the end of the last movement, when the whole construct becomes blazingly apparent in one instant of remembered themes from the previous movements. Time is thus an essential organizing element, upon which the composer relies for dramatic effect.

    A painting, sculpture, structure or photograph exists in its entirety at a given instant. Sure, it takes time to view and appreciate all the elements in such a work, but, to an overwhelming extent, it is the viewer, not the artist, that is deciding on what to view when, in what order and for how long. We live in a temporal framework and our interaction with anything takes time. That's not really the same as structuring an artistic expression using time. Yes, there can be temporal elements in, say, architecture: you see the outside before the inside, the entrance before the back rooms, etc. but, for me at least, these elements are more spatially organized than temporally.

    You ask, "are you saying, for example, that the rationally spaced columns of the Parthenon or the regular ripples in a sand dune or a pond have no temporal organization for the viewer?" I answer that you are confusing the analogous with the equivalent. "Rhythm" in visual art is simply the repetition of some same or similar visual element, be it columns, ripples or trees. But they really don't come one-after-the-other in time; they are all there all at the same time. It is just us that needs time to take them in and recognize the repetition. Music is different: Joe O'Hara said it more succinctly above: in music, "the composer is driving."

    Nevertheless, the mere fact that we call such visual and spatial elements "rhythm" tends to support the cross-media connection that started this thread. There is, almost undoubtedly, some kind of connection deep in our minds. How far we want to carry the analogy is a matter of choice

    Best,

    Doremus

  2. #42
    Land-Scapegrace Heroique's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Seattle, Wash.
    Posts
    2,914

    Re: Music as analogy for LF photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Doremus Scudder View Post
    True, the organization of an image leans toward the Apollonian, as does form in music, but that element in a work of art that causes us to immediately catch our breath and gives us a thrill … has to be straight from Dionysus.
    Thanks for the Pulitzer Prize clarification on Apollo and Dionysus – in addition to how time plays a different type of role in plastic works of art, like sculpture, architecture, LF prints. Yes, I think you saw I was referring to the viewer’s existence in time as he or she views these works, which are, of course, static in time. And I think you addressed that very well and added some improving and effective distinctions. Thanks for the time it took enrich your ideas further. About music and the irrational, I have some disagreements, not too significant, so for now will save my breath to cool my porridge. BTW, this thread is giving me some ideas about a companion thread – how composing on the GG can evoke pure silence. I hope you show up for opening night.

    Quote Originally Posted by Doremus Scudder View Post
    And, that tonic chord at the end certainly doesn't belong anywhere else!
    This triggered a memory from an introductory course on orchestral music from long, long ago. If memory serves, the teacher shared an anecdote about the child Mozart, who one night couldn’t get to sleep because he was very troubled. His concerned father Leopold, upon investigation, discovered it was because the last piece of music the child heard before bedtime had not ended on the tonic, but on the dominant. Makes one curious if some of the more modern music played down at Orchestral Hall deprives audiences of sleep when they return home. ;^)

  3. #43
    Vaughn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Humboldt County, CA
    Posts
    8,741

    Re: Music as analogy for LF photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Doremus Scudder View Post
    ...

    A painting, sculpture, structure or photograph exists in its entirety at a given instant. Sure, it takes time to view and appreciate all the elements in such a work, but, to an overwhelming extent, it is the viewer, not the artist, that is deciding on what to view when, in what order and for how long...Doremus
    This is where the art of the curator of a show of photographs or the designer of a book of photographs can step in (if they have the skills, it can be the photographer) and reclaim control of the viewing of a cohesive set of photographs -- creating a flow, visually connecting images, providing rests and stops to create a rhythm...which may or may not be based on any musical theory. One can restore time as an important part of one's photographic work, not unlike literature or a play.

    Granted, while it is the job of the show curator or book designer to lead the viewer to water, both the images and the design have a lot of wrangling to do to keep the viewer from just getting a drink next door at the bar.

    Makes one curious if some of the more modern music played down at Orchestral Hall deprives audiences of sleep when they return home. ;^
    I would not be surprised. The ancient Chinese made a connection between the qualities of the music and the state of the State.

    I wonder if any of us of the Euro-centric world view ever see images and 'hear', for example, höömii? (Mongolian throat singing -- I listened to some in Kyoto at a nightclub that had the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers painted on the outside.)
    "Landscapes exist in the material world yet soar in the realms of the spirit..." Tsung Ping, 5th Century China

  4. #44

    Join Date
    Sep 1998
    Location
    Oregon now (formerly Austria)
    Posts
    3,084

    Re: Music as analogy for LF photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Heroique View Post
    ... About music and the irrational, I have some disagreements, not too significant, so for now will save my breath to cool my porridge. ...
    I'd love to hear your thoughts.

  5. #45

    Join Date
    Sep 1998
    Location
    Oregon now (formerly Austria)
    Posts
    3,084

    Re: Music as analogy for LF photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Heroique View Post
    ... About music and the irrational, I have some disagreements, not too significant, so for now will save my breath to cool my porridge. ...
    I'd love to hear your thoughts.

    Quote Originally Posted by Vaughn View Post
    This is where the art of the curator of a show of photographs or the designer of a book of photographs can step in (if they have the skills, it can be the photographer) and reclaim control of the viewing of a cohesive set of photographs -- creating a flow, visually connecting images, providing rests and stops to create a rhythm...which may or may not be based on any musical theory. One can restore time as an important part of one's photographic work, not unlike literature or a play. ...
    Indeed. Restoring the narrative sequence adds a temporal element.

    Best,

    Doremus

  6. #46
    Kirk Gittings's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Albuquerque, Nuevo Mexico
    Posts
    9,814

    Re: Music as analogy for LF photography

    I love many forms of music from Classical and Jazz to Grunge and Bluegrass. But when I am photographing I am fully present in the scene and everything else feels like a distraction. I want to feel the wind, the smells, the color, the sense of history, anything that puts me more present in the landscape. I guess I'm seeking a kind of hyper presence, something distinct from my everyday life.
    Thanks,
    Kirk

    at age 71:
    "The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
    But I have promises to keep,
    And miles to go before I sleep,
    And miles to go before I sleep"

  7. #47
    Drew Wiley
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    SF Bay area, CA
    Posts
    16,818

    Re: Music as analogy for LF photography

    I came to the conclusion long ago that certain responses to ordered pattern and rhythm are instinctive to our species, but differ in response somewhat, to that degree it might be visually versus audibly handled. No, I don't "hear" music in my head when doing photographic composition or printing; just the opposite. Often when hearing a particularly interesting piece of music, in my imagination I "map" it as if it were visual instead. For example, Jimi's remarkable talent for "filling up space" right to the edges with his guitar, yet with remarkable balance devoid of redundant clutter, causes me to plot the details in my head much like a Pollock painting; for he too efficiently filled space clear to the edges without clutter. Mere wannabees of either of those men can't, and just make overlapping noise, whether audible or visual.

    So I made the right personal choice. My childhood music teacher still gave me dirty looks clear up till the year he died, when I myself was well into middle age. But even he liked my photographs.

  8. #48
    Alan Klein's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    New Jersey was NYC
    Posts
    1,716

    Re: Music as analogy for LF photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Doremus Scudder View Post
    Heroique,
    ...

    Thus, a photograph can contain visual elements that immediately evoke a basic emotional response. These are not just things we recognize, but shapes, forms, repetitions of elements (aka "rhythm - more later), colors, etc. to which we instinctively respond. Overlaid on these are the more cultural, conscious and "intellectual" elements in the image: the things we recognize in societal and academic contexts, references to other art works or literature, the printed word, etc. The interplay can be extremely complex and also extremely rewarding.

    ...

    Best,

    Doremus
    This is why the "rules of photography" work. Because rather than rules, they reflect the aesthetics and organizational parameters that are already in our heads.

  9. #49

    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    3,357

    Re: Music as analogy for LF photography

    Which brings up Fibonacci, aka Leonardo Pisano and the Fibonacci Sequence that can be found in music, paintings (ala Foto images), sculpture, architecture and lots more. Fibonacci Sequence is based on observations of Nature and the way Nature IS. This is one of the many not always apparent ways humanity and MUCH more is directly connected to Nature or why these patterns in Nature have a persistent appeal in many ways.

    https://www.classicfm.com/discover-m...ence-in-music/

    In the process of creative / expressive image making or music, practitioners make choices in their work. They can choose to learn about the ways Nature really is then work with the ways Nature IS (the "rules") in their work as a symbiotic relationship or choose to impose entirely self-centric ego as their work ignoring the ways Nature really is.

    ~Which of these approaches tend to produce works that endure the passage of time?


    One of the many ways it's all connected.
    Bernice



    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Klein View Post
    This is why the "rules of photography" work. Because rather than rules, they reflect the aesthetics and organizational parameters that are already in our heads.

  10. #50

    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Location
    Montreal, Canada
    Posts
    1,213

    Re: Music as analogy for LF photography

    This is going exactly as I predicted lol. Sorry for trolling but you people should exchange artist statements for christmas.

Similar Threads

  1. Karlheinz Stockhausen music composer analogy - PSF Question
    By Mustafa Umut Sarac in forum Lenses & Lens Accessories
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 5-Dec-2018, 18:01

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •