My big problem with landscape and urban photography

I have a big problem with landscape and urban photography. I chose 5 examples for you, randomly in Google Images. I call this problem the “Intention of Effect“.

Long pauses transform cars into lines. Choosing sunset time gives “interesting” colours to the mountains. Using a drone makes you fly and shows lines. Putting the camera on the ground brings “interesting” lines and reflections.

Well, in each of these pictures I FEEL the photographer’s will, which seems to YELL at me “I AM SMART HAVE YOU SEEN IT?”. Yeah, I’ve seen it, buddy.

Each time I see one picture like this (and they are a majority), I’m rolling eyes. I’m like : “Okey little man, I see what you do”; and this is ABSOLUTELY boring.

Intention of effect kills effect.

This is not art, no art at all. It’s all waxywet, schmaltzy and wishy-washy, it is not gorgeous: it’s ridiculous and I’m already out, goodbye.

The contrary of all this monkey arounding appeared in the 70s with Stephen Shore and William Eggleston.

They knew the “pretty” urban or landscape pictures were ridiculous, and very, very far behind the Art Movement.

They had to find another way to show cities and nature. To stop being a show-off little idiot.

So they experimented a more neutral “way”, becoming an amateur-beginner, or becoming a tech-photographer. I think they wanted to show us the mood of a place, or maybe to be precise, or maybe they simply wanted to stop appearing like a smart-ass “look how I’m good” photographer. How to achieve that?

Of course they began to take pictures of the ordinary, empty urban spaces, parking lots, roads and houses. This was much more interesting and “charged” with the sense of a place.

I chose some Stephen Shore‘s pictures. This man makes my eyes stop. I want to wander on the photography. I (ain’t it strange)… breathe. I almost understand WHY the guy stopped there. This shadow. These lines. An horizon. The light of the day!

You’ll find many texts, articles and interviews about him and his influence on the web. Have fun!

“Cat & Chimneys” Photography : October Lights in a French City

I went to the the post office I walked with my little cam and the light was cool – I took the courtyard and the walls and the houses and redhead cat who’s a little the king of the street, it’s October!

I have a photographic place here :



The intense photography of Trente Parke, Part II

Here are a few color photos from Trente Parke. “Intense”, that’s not so simple. I love photographers who pushes leverages : darks are too dark, colors are too much. But also : the compositions are gorgeous, the light is splendid, shadows and lines are smart, the mood of the moment is always there – this is generous photography. This guy has it, right?


The intense photography of Trente Parke, Part I

Trent Parke (born 1971) is an Australian photographer, member of Magnum Photos.

For me he’s the best street photographer ever. You’ll find in his work : energy, composition, mystery, questions, technique (light, long pauses), intensity…

I’ll make a second article with his colors.

1999058JLLON38309LON38311LON38315LON38333LON38337LON38377LON38385LON38402AUSTRALIA. Sydney. Pitt st, city centre. 2002AUSTRALIA. Sydney. Hunter st, city centre. 2002AUSTRALIA. Sydney. Martin Place, city centre. 2002

French end of the afternoon near the sea Street Photography

Let’s imagine the levers you have in street photography.

  1. Consent : from “not telling anyone” you’re taking pictures to “asking politely to everybody you aim”.
  2. Speed : from “triggering one pic a second” to “carefully wait for a magic moment”.
  3. Movement : from “sitting on a corner with a zoom” to “taking pictures from a moving car”.
  4. Frame : from “by guesswork” or “single-handedly” to meticulousness.


I admit it’s not my cup of tea, but I played this exercise a few times. From a moving car, in summer, I took something like 200 pictures in twenty minutes. It had something with speed-aiming, improvisation, decisions, random, joy, openness, frustration…

Then watch them all on my computer, hoping I’d find a couple of good ones, then finding a few average ones, accepting bad framings, blurries, dark lights. I chose these.

If I have a mood, I’m happy. Hoping you’ll find one you like…

Thanks for reading!




Stolen Street Photography?

Salgado says somewhere that a portrait is something one “offers” to the photographer (I should find the quote, but I don’t remember where I found it).

As I was walking back home the other day, I wanted to play the Street Photographer, but I didn’t want to ask.

So : I zoomed too much, and I underexposed, and I clicked maybe 200 pictures. Most of them, in consequence, were good for trash.

When I did it it was exciting. When I watch it I feel the slight nausea of those who “try things”, like when you take a guitar for the first time…

Conclusion :

  1. Most people notice when you steal their portrait – and I dislike to do this (I have empathy).
  2. I’m not Alex Webb (who is a genius in this field).
  3. I prefer to take portraits of toys, dolls and funny things on flea markets (last picture).
  4. I should buy a big zoom camera…
  5. …or ask people first.

Have a nice day !