On Taking Pictures

On Taking Pictures

Every week, Jeffery Saddoris and Bill Wadman take on the art, science, and philosophy of photography and explore how they play out behind the camera in the process of making images. Insider insights for the novice, shop talk for the professional, and opinionated discussion for the interested observer of the field's trends and legacy.

Hosted by Bill Wadman and Jeffery Saddoris.

#234: Measure Twice, Cut Once

October 17, 2016 at 2:30PM • 1 hour 23 minutes

This week, Bob Dylan wins the Nobel Prize for literature and it inspires a discussion around boundaries as they pertain to art and creative pursuits. Does Dylan winning this re-define what qualifies as literature? How does this discussion pertain to photography? Is portraiture more valid than street photography? Is shooting wildlife somehow “better” than shooting weddings? Also, how much does creative efficiency figure into your own creative process? Are you looking for the shortest line between to points or do you prefer the more scenic route? Jonathan Mannion is our Photographer of the Week.

#233: Live Up To An Impossibility

October 11, 2016 at 11:15AM • 1 hour 27 minutes

This week, we’re discussing changing directions creatively inspired by both new gear and a new environment, which raises a couple questions for us that we’d like to also ask you. To what degree does what you use affect what you make? Aside from tools, how does the environment you create in contribute to the work you produce? Also, once you make a dramatic shift and have the necessities locked in, how do you decide what comes next? Fred Lyon is our Photographer of the Week.

#232: Solid Steel Walls of Reality

October 4, 2016 at 12:45PM • 1 hour 23 minutes

This week a few thoughts around the new National Museum of African American History & Culture and how photography was sourced and is used throughout the museum. Also, rock and roll photography — has increasingly limited access to the band and performances limited the resulting quality of the work? Sails Chong is our Photographer of the Week.

#231: I Look Forward to Looking Back

September 27, 2016 at 11:30AM • 1 hour 28 minutes

This week, we’re in a few different directions and we begin with a discussion around the Smithsonian’s newly opened National Museum of African American History and Culture. Specifically, do you feel an obligation to visit places like these - places that are as much a historical record as they are a cultural cautionary tale? Also, a followup to the gear discussion that we started last week. Plus, a terrific email from a listener inspires this week’s G+ group assignment. Claude Cahun is our Photographer of the Week.

#230: Full-On Artistic Telephone

September 20, 2016 at 11:00AM • 1 hour 36 minutes

This week, we begin with a discussion around how we actually discuss art, including some of the collective meaning of the terms we use. Also, can concepts like “commentary” and “criticism” be as effective if they are non-verbal? For example, is a jazz improvisation an appropriate response to a particular work of art? Also, we spend some time talking about gear, from Hackintoshes, to the slew of new cameras announced (or “pre-announced”) at this year’s Photokina. Alexey Titarenko is our Photographer of the Week.

#229: Almost to the Shipping Point of Shipping

September 13, 2016 at 11:30AM • 1 hour 30 minutes

This week, we’re talking about getting work out the door, and some of the difficulties that can arise around trying to figure out how and why to make the changes necessary to do it. Sometimes the best thing you can do is to take a step back from the thinking and the strategizing and just make. Also, we discuss the Documerica project and how differently a similar project might look today. Jacob Riis is our Photographer of the Week.

#228: The Giant Pachinko Game in the Sky

September 5, 2016 at 7:00PM • 1 hour 38 minutes

This week, we’re doing another Q&A show and, as usual, you all sent in some terrific questions that we had a great time going through. Topics include: how often to update your website, whether or not to shoot DNG, how to get more engaging street shots, whether or not to print in-house and a bunch more. Marc Riboud is our Photographer of the Week.

#227: Psychologize That Up The Wazoo

August 30, 2016 at 10:45AM • 1 hour 24 minutes

This week, a discussion around photojournalism inspired by the Netflix series Conflict that raises a few questions for us to chew on. Would you ever put yourself in harm’s way for a photograph? If you already do, why? Is it for the photograph or the thrill of the shoot? Or some combination of both? Is a photograph more valuable than the life that is potentially lost capturing it? Also, does taking photos at important or milestone events enhance or take away from your ability to enjoy/remember said event? Plus, a teaser for next week in the show notes: what do you see when you look at art? Richard Tuschman is our Photographer of the Week.

#226: You Want The Pixie Dust

August 23, 2016 at 9:30AM • 1 hour 13 minutes

This week, we discuss the magic of things and the legacy of genius. Is Winogrand’s camera, Clapton’s Stratocaster, Picasso’s brush or Hemingway’s typewriter somehow imbued with greatness? In choosing the same tools as our heroes, do we secretly (or not so secretly) hope that a bit of their magic will rub off on us? Photojournalist Nicole Tung is our Photographer of the Week.

#225: The Megapixel List of Life

August 16, 2016 at 11:00AM • 1 hour 31 minutes

This week, a discussion around printing (spoiler: be sure to use the correct profiles) leads to the start of a larger discussion around the perceived value of signatures. Do you sign your prints? If so, why? If you don’t, why not? Also, looking for the one camera that does everything—even the things you don’t currently need it to do—is a fool’s errand. Better to look for the right tool for the job at hand and let the future sort itself out. Brad Goldpaint is our Photographer of the Week.