Sunday, December 16, 2007

Also, Rename the Show "Hair Dance"

Sure, I've said bad things about The Shot. Criticism is easy, though. The real question is: what would actually work in a reality-television show about photographers? What would be less painful to watch? Well, here are three ideas:

  1. Stop with the repetition. Each episode is essentially the same, and people win and lose on the same exact concerns. Change things significantly from week to week. Photography is a broad and diverse art form, and even if the show is strictly "fashion photography" you can find the underlying skills and make challenges based on those.  

  2. Don't assume we won't understand the technical. A little bit of discussion of the technical side of photography, handled well, could really be interesting. Those knobs on the camera -- they do something, right?

  3. Stop just saying a photo is good or bad. Tell us how it works, and why you like it or hate it. Just giving a thumbs-up or down is boring -- why does this photo work, and not that one?
What would that be like? Well, for one assignment, set the expensive cameras aside, and get out of the studio. Drop off photographer and model on a grimy block with a disposable camera, a roll of aluminum foil and a cardboard box. For the next, emphasize shooting consistency by choosing at random which shot will be shown. For the next, show five great possibilities for the shot at hand -- and disallow all of them and penalize anything at all similar.

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