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.



#250: Like the Whos in Whoville

February 7, 2017 at 11:00AM • 1 hour 17 minutes

This week, have the tools taken the mystery out of photography? When you no longer think about technical requirements to make photographs, have we gone too far or is that the point? Also, a couple terrific submissions from listeners — including one that has us marvelling at photos from an earlier time in America. Plus, is there value in keeping meticulous records of your life? We’re celebrating Black History Month by spotlighting African American Photographers of the Week, beginning with Addison Scurlock.


#249: Ancillary Collaboration

January 31, 2017 at 11:45AM • 1 hour 23 minutes

This week, we discuss the seemingly innate skills and abilities of our fathers and grandfathers and how somewhere along the way, that “folk wisdom” was either lost or perhaps no longer needed. Were the skills handed down to them, or simply a byproduct of the time and place in which they lived? Have we evolved? Also, we mention a few terrific documentaries about art and design that are currently available for streaming. Chuck Stewart is our Photographer of the Week.


#248: Albatross Is On The Move

January 24, 2017 at 11:30AM • 1 hour 27 minutes

This week, a discussion around the historic worldwide Women’s March on Washington has us wondering “are we so used to things ‘being Photoshopped’ that we ignore actual photographic evidence?” Also, Jeffery gets a faux secret service detail. Plus, getting “the shot” in three minutes — what do you do if you didn’t get it? Has Fuji gotten the feel right with the new X100F and XT-20? Rusty Fox is our Photographer of the Week.


#247: Keep the Nihilist in the Closet

January 17, 2017 at 11:00AM • 1 hour 27 minutes

This week, we discuss the connection between purpose and happiness. Are they connected? Does one precede the other? What happens to our work when we no longer feel any purpose in engaging in it? Does it merely become practice? If so, to what end? Also, a reflection on the life of Gene Cernan and men like him, who dared to leave their home behind “just to see if they could do it.” Luigi Ghirri is our Photographer of the week.


#246: If I Start This, Then I’ll Have To Finish It

January 10, 2017 at 10:30AM • 1 hour 14 minutes

Sometimes, you need to take stock of the path you’re on to make sure you get where you’re trying to go. Other times, you may need to change the destination entirely. This week, we’re talking about looking at where we are and what to do if it’s just a little off. We’re also talking about new projects and how sometimes just rolling up your sleeves and doing the work is all that matters. Jerry Schatzberg is our Photographer of the Week.


#245: A Higher Form of Noise

January 3, 2017 at 10:30AM • 1 hour 7 minutes

We’re starting out the new year discussing transformation — specifically, the transformation that seems to be an essential component to making art with a capital ‘A.’ To help with the discussion, we’re using a terrific Netflix documentary series that traces the foundations and evolution of Hip Hop that brilliantly exemplifies transformation at work. Through interviews and archival footage, we see the origin story that took hip hop from back alleys and front rooms in the Bronx to stadiums all over the world. Kurt William Kamka is our Photographer of the Week.


#244: That’s the Arrow That Got Through

December 26, 2016 at 4:30PM • 1 hour 18 minutes

This week, trying to reconcile the highs and lows of the past year and how for some of us, when an artist dies, a little piece of our history or even the personal identity that we have associated with the person (or their body of work) dies as well. It’s as if our potential, whether realized or not is inexorably tied to their energy. Also, a little about what’s next for each of us in 2017. Rodney Smith is our Photographer of the Week. Happy New Year everyone.


#243: Can You Make the Logo Bigger?

December 20, 2016 at 12:45PM • 1 hour 32 minutes

This week, we’re starting off with a little about gear, specifically the new Microsoft Surface Studio and the uncertain future of desktop Macs. From there it’s on to David Hockney and a somewhat relativistic view of the “good” of art and whether or not one piece of art is really any better than another. Also, are bigger prints always better? Plus, we take a trip to the Crit Wall. Lori Vrba is our Photographer of the Week.


#242: Lack of Stasis

December 13, 2016 at 12:15PM • 1 hour 21 minutes

This week, we discuss TIME’s Person of the Year cover and portfolio, made by Nadav Kandar. Specifically, we unpack questions raised by the potentially subversive nature of the work and whether or not an artist has a responsibility to art before personal belief. As part of the discussion, we also reference a collection of Dorothea Lange’s previously censored photographs of FDR’s Japanese concentration camps. Jack Davison is our Photographer of the Week.


#241: The Final Ten Percent Takes Ninety Percent of the Time

December 6, 2016 at 11:15AM • 1 hour 39 minutes

This week, details about the OTP Gift Exchange and some of our book suggestions. Also, how would what you make and release into the world — your art — be different if there were negative consequences to showing it? Plus, is it worth it to print all of your photos? Danny Clinch is our Photographer of the Week.