Are Your Pictures Stupid?

Posted by David Ozanich — 5 Oct 2010

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Choire Sicha, of the superb website The Awl, does not like all your fancy digital camera tricks. This afternoon he posted an incensed opinion piece titled ”Your Beautiful Pictures Are Stupid: Against Trendy Digital Photography.” A snippet:

This epidemic of easy-to-manipulate "arty" images infesting our blogs and our Facebook pages is way out of control. And it's not just photography. Take a look at the Vimeo HD channel.


Every trick in the book is showing up in pretty much every photograph and video these days. Super-limited depth of field! Film emulation! Diffraction! Long exposures, tilt-shifting, faux Polaroid, high contrast, faux lomography! When was the last time you saw a video without a beautiful, sweeping time-lapse segment?


He follows with a few examples of things that annoy him and since lots of things annoy me too, I like it when people are specific (though admittedly this particular one was not on my radar). But one of his examples is the nifty “Dark Side of the Lens” a short film that is well worth watching and even Sicha admits it is “pretty incredible.” You can see that below. Afterwards, check out the whole diatribe. (Don’t worry, it’s not too long!)

DARK SIDE OF THE LENS from Astray Films on Vimeo.

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