Saturday, September 5, 2015

Joe Baraban and Degas

I have not posted much lately that is educational or instructional. I am trying to get away from that as previously mentioned. I still come across stuff that I think is important to pass along but by the time I get to a keyboard I have generally reconsidered.

It’s a lot like smoking—no matter how hard you try, for a very long time you keep reaching for your shirt pocket out of habit. Someday, even that is unlearned.

I am a sucker for quotes and in reading Joe Baraban’s blog I came across one from Degas that Joe uses in his “Stretching Your Frame of Mind” workshops. It is so applicable to photography.

“Painting is easy when you don’t know how, very difficult when you do.”

Joe goes on to tie the quote to his workshop: “As my students eyes becomes more refined, and they begin to see the how and why, it becomes more and more difficult for them to take pictures. Now they see that it takes work to create good photos… learning new things is a job, but the pay off is a job well done.”


  1. Thanks Gary, great quote. I think it goes further in my case in that I tend to hold back even taking the picture when everything is "not just right" in the viewfinder. It's not that everything I shoot is great (ha, far from it!!!!) it's just that I try too hard not to shoot mediocre / junk images to the point that I never get anything shot. I obviously need to loosen up and experiment more. Besides, memory is cheap! John

  2. John, thanks for the comment. I probably go the other way--baking so many meaningless photographs that it almost makes me sick. It's the blind hog rooting out truffles theory. I really wish I could be more disciplined.