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I noticed that almost all comments given on pictures are very positive


some standard positive remarks:


nice dof

nice colors

nice composition

nice crisp

nice topic


can we please be a bit more critical, not everything shot with a Leica is a great shot. We sometime fail to see that a picture is just nice for the family album or just messed up or just not right


Can we please comment with the same quality as our gear ;)

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I usually comment on images I particularly like or have some interest in, and sometimes make suggestions on how I think an image could be improved.


I don't look at them all, through lack of time and don't comment on all either because the image doesn't interest me (not that there is anything wrong with it) or again time!


This general issue has been discussed before and there have been some ill mannered exchanges in the past - personally I would welcome any comments on images I post but agree with the remarks above, lets keep it civilised!

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As a enthusiastic noob and frequent poster of photos that may be better in a family photo album, I like being able to post without fear of outright condemnation.:rolleyes: When my photos sink without a trace (as they often do), it is a sign that I have not struck a chord or inspired a response and it inspires me to try a bit harder. The gentle advice from, or the reworking of photos by forum members whose work I admire has also been helpful.


I suppose the poster of the photo can make it clear if they want a more detailed critique.


The (generally) civilized atmosphere on this forum is one of its greatest assets.

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there are alsways two sides in critique, the one who gives it and the one who receives it.


For the receivers: Imo, if you bring up a pic for comment be ready for critique, otherwhise don't show it. Try to learn from it rather than defend against it. You may not agree (at first) but be open to the fact that other can have different opinions


For the senders: I think you can tell in a civilized way what in your opinion is wrong with a pic. Just be honest in your critique and think how you would like to be critisized yourself. Indeed, terms like "you suck" are just as useless as the ohs and ahs. If you can't bring your critique into words it is best to write nothing. Note that giving founded critique is not easy but receiving it can also not be easy. So if you give critique do it with respect.

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I was just thinking of posting something similar to this topic and I agree with David's suggestion of letting people know if you want a critique. Any comments should be supportive and not condemning.


There are very fine and talented people here and I would certainly appreciate learning from them. Often for me, just seeing other people's pictures is a great learning tool.

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My impression with the photo forum is that members tend to mostly comment on images they like, therefore we see many positive comments. I enjoy visualizing the many images posted daily and tend to comment on those I like. I think if you read carefully you might see some subtlety in many of these positive comments that suggest how some photos may be improved.

The nature of the forum however seems to favor brief comments so as not to clutter the threads. Personally I prefer to visualize many images and read less comments...but we should all feel free to critique any image in any way.:)

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I don't comment on photographs that I don't like, or those that I think are poor technically, or in subject matter or whathaveyou.


There has been quite a discussion on PMs this week amongst a group of us about this very issue. No conclusion has been drawn from what I can see. :)


I would like to see people only showcase their very best shots, the ones really worthy of hanging on the wall. I promise that I will only do this with my own stuff from now on. Expect me to be very quiet in the posting department :)

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I support the general tone of the above responses. Positive comments are encouraging, and I appreciate them, particularly when they come from people whose pictures I also find to be of high quality. I welcome gentle constructive criticism, and I welcome the opportunity to learn something. I also take a lesson from my posts that receive no response - there is likely a reason why.


I commment on pictures I like, remain silent on ones that do not communicate to me, and very rarely gently suggest ideas for improvement. I practice the "do unto others" rule.


For me, an important reason to be here is that almost everyone is civilized and friendly, and mainly seem to be interested in making good pictures. I also quite like that sometimes photo threads morph a little into sharing of personal experiences, so I think I get a little insight into some very interesting individuals.

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i think you MUST give imported_reinierv credit for bringing up this topic in his honest way because i AGREE that we need criticism as much as positive inputs.


at the same time, i think it's wrong to criticize someone only because they left positive remarks; i think they were nothing but constructive.


how about put it this way - let's all get stricter with what we say about someone's photos that interest you. peace.

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To be fair, this discussion, or one like it, comes around every couple of years. Some people want criticism, others object strongly.


One solution proffered before was that, should you be open to constructive criticism, place a line to that effect in your signature.


If you are sharing your masterpiece, and don't want critiques, say that too. Just make it clear.

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For me this is a very tricky subject and I hesitate to respond, but I will after thanking Imported for bringing it up.


Positive comments are easy to give and are welcomed by most. Just saying "I like it" can be rewarding for the author. "I like the composition, tone ......." is just reinforcing the comment.


In-depth positive critique on good work is much more difficult, requires much more effort and is subjective. Constructive comments can be rebuffed, not by the author, but by others who like it the way it is/was and in my experience can make the well intended critique to be rejected and deter future critiques. One can also give 'wrong' advice in a critique.


This week, I spent 30 minutes reworking a post to help an author see the potential for his image. I know I'm not a bad judge and it was an improvement. 2 minutes after posting a re-worked image popped up that had none of the attributes I'd attempted to communicate, so I pulled the post.


Turning to images at the bottom of the rankings - we all started there and that's where the support can have the most effect. However, it's even more difficult to avoid offending someone who has done their best to get the image onto the Forum at all. It's made doubly difficult when one looks at a really poor image yet someone else got there first and praised it for its "composition, tone, colour and detail". Can you follow that up with "what possessed you to take this pile of ...... ?"


What's more disconcerting to me is that there are posters that don't really care for their images. They're dumping this morning's images come what may. No quality, no value .... you're having them. It takes no effort to upload from the card without any consideration for showing the image at it's best. I regard this to be very dangerous for this Forum and I'm not on my own here. Good images flash through the first page and are lost to the archives as a consequence. Those authors will leave, are leaving. I think it needs a solution that goes beyond "no comment".


Going beyond Imported's post, I also strongly feel that "thank you for your comments" should not be allowed to return the thread to the top of the Photo Forum. This ' attention seeking ruse' is being abused beyond all reasonableness at everybody else's expense. Yesterday, one post had 12 comments, six of which was from the author saying "thanks". That just pushed six others off the first page.


I'll end there. :)


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The dilemmas well put, Rolo.

I do think silence should be replaced with polite critique, and constructive criticism is always welcome (I happened to have a friendly discussion with Reinier just a few hours ago;)) As to the <thank you>, I generally make a point of thanking for comments, normally after a few days. I do not think of it as a bump, it is in my book simply a matter of manners. Abuse by thanking for each comment separately is something else, of course.

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I usually simply post the image together with equipment details. Sometimes it might be interesting to post 'why an image was shot in the way it was' or what the motivation for taking it was' and invite comments as well as constructive criticism - as an example it might be useful to know whether an image has succeeded in putting a specific message or even nuance across. Just me thoughts.


I usually only respond to a shot that really motivates me to do so - but this might be for other reasons than technical competence or composition - if I know a location its often much easier to be objectively critical.

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I certainly welcome the discussion following the above post from imported_reinierv. I find it very relevant and the subsequent posts I've found similarly interesting. Many of my own queries as to what this forum is all about are certainly being highlighted in this thread.


Although I share most of the opinions expressed above by e.g. Andy Barton, Michael Hiles and Rolo I would, however, as a relatively new members of the forum like to contribute with some random reflections.


Photography is my hobby. Professionally I unfold myself in a completely different setup, but nevertheless I do work seriously with my development as a photographer and I'm quite ambitious about what I'm trying to accomplish with my cameras.


Knowing that the forum is also populated by a lot of true professionals with a lot more experience than me - and apparently also by a crowd of people who seem to know each other personally - made it quite scary to even post the first image which was indeed carefully considered. The fact that someone actually cared to look at it and even post some recognition therefore made a lot of difference to me. The risk of being ridiculed (which was basically the reason for my anxiety) was then somehow eliminated.


Since then I have confidently uploaded images fairly frequently with the only goal to get constructive feedback in order to improve. I dare not say that all my contributions have been worth looking at seen from a professional viewpoint, but I dare say that I've made a strive and that the development I believe to have experienced since I began posting to the forum wouldn't have happened if it wasn't for those comments I received. In fact now I actually feel a sense of direction for my photographic ambition.


But still I couldn't promise anybody that I wouldn't from time to time post something which is a complete flop.....:o to me this is learning by doing.....


....and I'm prepared to realise that an image fails. It doesn't matter whether this appears from the fact that no one cares to look at it or comment it or it happens because someone tells me directly.


It's all fine with me ! I do trust that people here are honest about their feedback - otherwise I might as well withdraw.


With regards to my own commenting on other people's work my lead principle is to comment on what attracts me and leave be what doesn't. People should be able to to rely on my honesty as well.


With regards to thanking for appraisal I was brought up by a rule that one returns recognition by thanking for it - the opposite to me seems somehow arrogant.


But I do try to post my thanking returns on my own work first and move on to recognition of other peoples' work next. This will inevitably result in somebody else's work ending at the top of the list.


That's all from me. My appologies if the language is gibberish - obviously English is not my mother tongue - I hope it all makes some sense at least :)


All the best to everyone...



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There are really two viewpoints to consider here - first as the poster of images then as a commenter on the work of others. When I post - which tends to be sporadic at best - it is usually because I have enjoyed a burst of activity, around a holiday or short break, say. I tend to post images in groups, sometimes more than one to a thread, and I like to provide some explanation beyond the "Seville, M2, 50mm Summicron, Kodak 400CN" one--liner. My images illustrate my life, and the words that I choose to accompany them are meant to inform and entertain. Comments are welcome, good and bad. I do not profess in any way to be God's gift to photography, after all. I do find the anodyne "great capture", "nice shot" type of comment to be a bit like eating a digestive biscuit - momentarily satisfying but generally a waste of calories.

I seldom comment because I do not think that I am particularly qualified to do soo. I have opinions, of course, but there is nothing out of the ordinary either about my views or my ability to express them. I tend to comment when something really stands out, and speaks to me.


All that said, the photo forum is a place I seldom visit these days because it is flooded with mediocrity. I fully appreciate that this is a function of the medium, but as has already been said it is all too easy for dross to bounce the good stuff off the front page, particularly if every comment is acknowledged individually. Like Jaap I thank people if they have commented on my images, but only after a few days.


What's the answer? Well, I shall renew my efforts to look at the photo fora, and to comment in a courteous and constructive manner. One other practical suggestion may be to limit the number of images that can be posted in a day - this may slow down the card-dumpers.





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Maybe I am oversimplifying this, but this is simply a forum. Nothing more and nothing less. Any member may post in the photo section and comment. Are there restrictions on how critical or praising the comments may be? Who is holding back and why? Is the point here that some feel that the comments are too favorable and therefore driving away those who would like to be more critical? If that's the case then I would encourage others to speak up.


It is the posters who dictate the culture of this forum. Unless of course there is a desire to appoint 'experts' to judge and criticize photos...then it becomes more of a contest.


Either way, I enjoy the photo section primarily as a venue to view images created by other leicaphiles...and I'll be the judge of which ones I like;)

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