AC’s Big Book of Photos: Planning Extravaganza!

245

Posts

  • muninnmuninn Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Cycophant wrote: »

    One technical detail I just thought of; should we be limiting people to one particular orientation? As much as I'd hate to limit folks, I worry that having to randomly tip and rotate the book to whichever orientation the specific photo was shot at might get a bit annoying.

    According to the master plan, this is a discussion for next week. We gotta square away the theme first. One problem at a time.
    Is there a way to setup a poll, so that people could vote for their theme of choice? So far we have a :

    1) Water
    2) Age
    3) Childsplay
    4) Showcase (no theme)

    muninn on
  • gogglesgoggles Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    I vote showcase.

    goggles on
  • Dark MoonDark Moon Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Poll has been created.

    URL is added to main post. Password has been sent to all currently registered photographers. Password will be PM'd to new photographers as they register.

    Dark Moon on
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  • FlayFlay Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    I voted Child's Play.

    Flay on
  • mullymully Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    You guys are trying to appeal to a consumer.

    I, for one, would not buy a "showcase" book of photography. You may not care what I think, and that's alright.

    Animals are always a winner. So are portraits/images of people "living" life in aspects others may not normally see. Bringing beauty out in ugly things. I would think that might even be a good topic for you guys. You may even want to find a humour aspect to bring in the geeky crowd that likes that kind of thing -- Punny Photos, so to speak. Photos with humourous comments underneath that bring out the pun in the photo.

    Just my 2 cents - you need to think about who is going to buy this, not what you want. You're photographers!

    mully on
  • Jake!Jake! Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    I still think a theme + showcase would be best;

    ie. section 1: themed photos from each participant

    section 2: n number of photos by each participant, on no particular theme

    Jake! on
  • Dark MoonDark Moon Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Think I may have jumped the gun with the poll, muninn. Well, what's done is done. Perhaps I can add another question and bother everyone to vote again as we get nearer the actual due date.

    Mully's got a point. Marketing "a book of random photos from photographers you've never heard of" is harder than "a book of photos on theme X". Though, if we do a book of Punny Photos I may have to publish under a pseudonym :P.

    Dark Moon on
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  • SheriSheri Resident Fluffer My Living RoomRegistered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Wait, you want people to buy this?

    I wouldn't be under the illusion that anyone would want to buy it, aside from personal friends and family.

    I mean, unless I were Annie.

    How many books of photographs do YOU guys own? How many of them are by non-major photographers?

    Sheri on
  • mullymully Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    ...The point of making the book is to sell it, as much as possible, so that Childs Play gets as much money as possible. Yes yes? Yes yes.

    I have purchased photography books for people in the past, books of places they haven't been, or themed things such as big cats or birds, etc, or of funny things to make them laugh. Like those "once in a lifetime shots" you get through email forwards.

    Another suggestion (since you are trying to appeal to the geek mass here), how about finding faces in things that shouldn't have faces? We love that. If you were super creative with it, it could also be very good. For instance, Beavotron's "car faces" project. That was great. I would totally buy a book full of car faces -- and you wouldn't even have to stick to cars!

    mully on
  • anableanable Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    mully wrote: »
    ...The point of making the book is to sell it, as much as possible, so that Childs Play gets as much money as possible. Yes yes? Yes yes.

    I have purchased photography books for people in the past, books of places they haven't been, or themed things such as big cats or birds, etc, or of funny things to make them laugh. Like those "once in a lifetime shots" you get through email forwards.

    Another suggestion (since you are trying to appeal to the geek mass here), how about finding faces in things that shouldn't have faces? We love that. If you were super creative with it, it could also be very good. For instance, Beavotron's "car faces" project. That was great. I would totally buy a book full of car faces -- and you wouldn't even have to stick to cars!

    See my earlier post and Sheri's agreement. I'm not trying to be a downer here, just realistic. If you buy POD photo books, you are the exception and not the norm when it comes to these types of purchases. POD books (of any kind, but especially photo books) do not sell well. Don't break your own heart by getting your hopes too high. Be realistic and see this as an exercise for tying into Childsplay next year when we might actually be able to get enough attention to make a few sales.

    anable on
  • muninnmuninn Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    No biggie, we could probably just collect all the theme ideas this week, and open voting next week for a few days, while we discuss other matters.

    Concerning people buying/not buying these books, figuring out what our target audience is something we need to decide this week. Either way, we wont be selling hundred(s) of books without a massive amount of work (not feasible) or Child's Play involvement (wont make it this year).

    I dont see lack of theme as a deterrent to an average consumer. I have bought photo books due to their themes and despite of them. What usually matters to me is the quality of content. And lets face it, regular person not interested in photography or art, wont be buying photo books. And if needed, we can always cloak our book in a BS theme. This being our first venture, we have to simplify wherever we can to avoid failure.

    And as a matter of fact, Sheri, I own a bunch of photo books, and most of them are from non-major photographers. :P

    muninn on
  • Dark MoonDark Moon Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Fully recognizing that chances of actually selling any of these things are pretty slim, it would still be nice to put together the book with the intention of having it be sellable to The Public, or some subsection at least. Putting it together as a masturbatory exercise where everyone gets their own few pages on whatever they want doesn't seem like much of a dry run when any future attempts will have entirely different goals and methods to achieve those goals.

    Dark Moon on
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  • muninnmuninn Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Dark Moon wrote: »
    Fully recognizing that chances of actually selling any of these things are pretty slim, it would still be nice to put together the book with the intention of having it be sellable to The Public, or some subsection at least. Putting it together as a masturbatory exercise where everyone gets their own few pages on whatever they want doesn't seem like much of a dry run when any future attempts will have entirely different goals and methods to achieve those goals.

    Yes, this.

    muninn on
  • SheriSheri Resident Fluffer My Living RoomRegistered User regular
    edited December 2009
    I'm a cynic, I know, but having published a POD book, I can tell you with full certainty that the only people who bought/will buy copies are people I know.

    Now, you pull together a bunch of people into one book, and if a bunch of people THEY know buy it, then yeah, you've got some cash to donate.

    But don't fool yourself into thinking anyone else is going to buy copies, and definitely not enough of them to dictate what the book becomes (theme, etc). ESPECIALLY if there isn't a solid consensus on an idea that EVERYONE can participate in (which, really, there doesn't seem to be, so far).

    What's wrong with everyone wanting a few pages to put their favorite photos on? What 'future goals' and 'methods to achieve those goals' are there (I'm not saying there aren't, I'm just not sure what they are -- to make more books to donate the proceeds to CP?)?

    Sheri on
  • Uncle LongUncle Long Registered User
    edited December 2009
    I guess for me the only reason I wouldn't want a showcase book is because...well, I wouldn't buy a showcase book because it's like a wandering thought, or a story that has no focus and thus no real direction or point.

    The reason I would want a strong theme, point or overall idea, is because I'd want the book to be as impactful as possible.

    What I'm saying, I guess, is that if we're going to make a book that's not going to sell, then lets at least make a book that's as good as it could possibly be and express an idea.

    Edit: just an idea, but depending on how many pages each person will have we could each choose our own theme and have it as our own chapter.

    Uncle Long on
  • bombardierbombardier Moderator mod
    edited December 2009
    Even if only the people who contribute buy one, who cares? Guys let's just drop this idea, Sheri says nobody will buy it so it's not worth doing ok. I would like to have a copy of some of my photos in physical form and would gladly buy one.

    A solid theme of new work is what I'd prefer.

    bombardier on
  • mullymully Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    The overall point is that this is not FOR YOU, it is for OTHERS. You guys talk about "if 1 non forumer buys this I will be surprised!" -- but you don't NEED that. Do you know how many forumers there are here? Do you know how many of them don't give a rat's ass about any of you, nor are your friends/family, but would put money down on an INTERESTING book of photography AND support Childs Play at the same time? I'd imagine more than you would think.

    That is my point. Nothing more, nothing less.

    Also yeah, regardless, cool to have a book of your stuff.

    mully on
  • anableanable Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Dark Moon wrote: »
    Putting it together as a masturbatory exercise where everyone gets their own few pages on whatever they want doesn't seem like much of a dry run when any future attempts will have entirely different goals and methods to achieve those goals.

    This is a very good point.

    anable on
  • Dark MoonDark Moon Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    To the showcasers: You can still showcase your work when a theme's involved. It'll just be work that is done specifically for the theme selected and which is vetted through the other contributors to the book. Besides a wandering theme, the whole "showcase your best" also encourages submission of old work - I mean, what are the chances that all of your best photos will be made after you joined this project? It'd end up being a temporally and topically disjointed set of individual pages that happened to be attached at the binding.

    Sheri - We realize this. Said it a few times, actually, but never mind that. The idea of it being a direct tie in with Child's Play is one discussed earlier (and partially in the photo thread) but which was shot down due to timing and lack of experience. From that sprung the idea that this year we produce a book as a practice run and, if it works out, next year try for a direct tie in. Whoever buys it buys it, and profits go to Child's Play, but it's more of a practice book that leaves us with a finished product to hold and a solid example of our work for when we pitch this idea to the PA guys next year. If we do the first book right, it should also give us a pretty solid method for producing the direct tie-in book in an organized and timely manner.

    So this leaves us with a need for a set theme.

    As to the question of "guaranteed involvement," well, I think that regardless of the final goal of the book we should include at least one image from every photographer who volunteers (as long as they show at least a modicum of understanding of exposure, composition and adherence to the theme if one is selected).

    Dark Moon on
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  • SheriSheri Resident Fluffer My Living RoomRegistered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Shrug.

    Well, when someone thinks of this wonderful, all-encompassing theme that all the various-styled photographers on the forum can submit to, lemme know. :)

    Sheri on
  • CommunistCowCommunistCow Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Maybe we could have more than one theme. So we don't have an 'all encompassing theme'.
    I think a book with something like 3 themes could still be good.

    Also themes that work across various types of photographers are going to have to be more abstract than 'water'. Had I actually been paying attention I would have suggested some different themes.

    This is not a serious list just a list of example abstract themes:
    Change
    Serenity
    Standing out from the crowd
    Minimalist
    Colors

    When I say 'abstract' I mean the theme is open ended enough to let a nature photographer and a portrait photographer both submit to it.

    CommunistCow on
    No, I am not really communist. Yes, it is weird that I use this name.
  • CokebotleCokebotle 穴掘りの Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    I agree with CommunistCow here.

    Why not have an overall arching theme for the book itself, and then have a section in the back for people to show a few of their favorite pictures, but be completely optional (like, Miscellaneous, or something better worded)? This way it gives everyone a goal for the purpose of the book itself, and then those that want to do more, have a section to put it.

    I just don't see why we have to have either a theme or no theme, is all.

    Cokebotle on
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  • Dark MoonDark Moon Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Cokebotle wrote: »
    I agree with CommunistCow here.

    Why not have an overall arching theme for the book itself, and then have a section in the back for people to show a few of their favorite pictures, but be completely optional (like, Miscellaneous, or something better worded)? This way it gives everyone a goal for the purpose of the book itself, and then those that want to do more, have a section to put it.

    I just don't see why we have to have either a theme or no theme, is all.

    A miscellaneous section sounds really jarring. Continuity between one image and the next is really important in a book of photos. Look at any photo book ever put out by a professional photographer or collection of photographers. A jumble of random shots at the end would be puzzling to readers.

    Several themes would work if they were all related somehow. Having the four elements represented by four sections, for example. Having "dread," "purple" and "minimalist" would just be confusing.

    Dark Moon on
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  • muninnmuninn Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Yeah, I dont think that miscellaneous section is a way to go. Its either themed book, or not, otherwise it will look rather unprofessional.

    muninn on
  • CokebotleCokebotle 穴掘りの Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Fair enough. :)

    Cokebotle on
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  • gogglesgoggles Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Only half joking:

    Captain Planet theme:

    Earth
    Wind
    Water
    Fire
    Heart

    Obviously not described as such.

    Or what about themes based on techniques? Like fundamentals of photography: exposure, motion capture, depth of field, etc.

    goggles on
  • ProspicienceProspicience The Raven King DenvemoloradoRegistered User regular
    edited December 2009
    muninn wrote: »
    Yeah, I dont think that miscellaneous section is a way to go. Its either themed book, or not, otherwise it will look rather unprofessional.

    I very much agree with this comment.

    Also - Sorry I haven't been able to be very vocal about any of this yet, I've been busy as all get out lately. Hence the posting of this at... well I don't know what time it is here actually, but it's late, like 2:30 or something. Weeee.

    Prospicience on
  • mullymully Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    What about a theme like, video games in real life?
    Mushrooms, turtles, clouds that look happy, pipes, sewers, fat italian men, jellyfish.. uhhh... barrels, large monkeys?

    mully on
  • erisian popeerisian pope Registered User
    edited December 2009
    mully wrote: »
    What about a theme like, video games in real life?
    Mushrooms, turtles, clouds that look happy, pipes, sewers, fat italian men, jellyfish.. uhhh... barrels, large monkeys?

    don't forget gold coins, gold rings, stars, for monkeys you could do those inflatable gorillas people use for advertising, sledgehammers,

    This is slightly cheesy but kinda awesomely fun. I think I like this idea.

    erisian pope on
  • mullymully Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    I think it would let people be astract and creative and would lend itself well to every photography style.

    And, y'know, for gamers by gamers.

    ---

    haha and afterwards everything could be photoshopped together into their respective levels :P

    mully on
  • mtsmts Dr. Robot King Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    telling you all. pets and babies

    mts on
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  • KochikensKochikens Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    That would actually be pretty cool. I have no use for photography books, but something like that? I would put that on my coffee table. Show it off with a shit eating grin on my face and show people the pictures and be like, GET IT? GET IT? SEE? IT'S A MUSHROOM. AND A PIPE.

    Kochikens on
  • mtsmts Dr. Robot King Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    i actually have two shots that fit the mushroom kingdom theme perfectly already. and i actually like them both

    mts on
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  • muninnmuninn Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    mully wrote: »
    What about a theme like, video games in real life?
    Mushrooms, turtles, clouds that look happy, pipes, sewers, fat italian men, jellyfish.. uhhh... barrels, large monkeys?

    The problem with this is in order to make something coherent, you would have to have very involved photo shoots or a lot of photoshoping. Otherwise it will turn into "what these 4 household utensils represent" type of scavenger hunt. Love the idea, but I am afraid the concept might be too ambitious for our first project. It would fit better for our actual Child's Play charity drive, where we would have a lot of time to setup and plan our shots.

    I have said it before, but I think that we should go with a simple ideas for the first book, as we are testing if we can pull this off as a group. It is hard enough to come out with something physical, where a bunch of internet strangers with varied tastes, temperaments and real life commitments have to work together.

    So in short, love the idea, but I think its too juicy and ambitious to use it for what comes down to a really cool test run. Just my two cents.

    muninn on
  • erisian popeerisian pope Registered User
    edited December 2009
    You could have chapters derived from specific games and title the chapters in such a way as to indicate the specific game (maybe without naming it, not sure about the fair-use / copyright implications of having a "donkey kong" chapter and a "super mario brothers" chapter). Then the target audience, being gamers, should be able to interpret each photo pretty easily.

    erisian pope on
  • ProspicienceProspicience The Raven King DenvemoloradoRegistered User regular
    edited December 2009
    As odd (and possibly a joke) as this suggestion is. It could be a lot of fun, especially since you know we are all on the penny-arcade forums. It's pretty fitting. Sounds challenging as well, with plenty of creative leeway. I dunno, I'm definitely open to the idea of some sort of video game themed photo book.

    Prospicience on
  • SheriSheri Resident Fluffer My Living RoomRegistered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Maybe I could talk some models into dressing up like Mario Bros characters. :P

    Sheri on
  • mullymully Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    As odd (and possibly a joke) as this suggestion is. It could be a lot of fun, especially since you know we are all on the penny-arcade forums. It's pretty fitting. Sounds challenging as well, with plenty of creative leeway. I dunno, I'm definitely open to the idea of some sort of video game themed photo book.

    Not a joke at all, and I don't see it being as difficult as some people are making it sound. If you have a theme going through a book like that, someone is bound to notice. "turtle.. mushroom... gold coins.. overalls on the floor.. really bright red flower with orange centre... a raccoon hat ..picture of the ? part of a square sign. ... WAIT A SECOND".

    The name of the book would have to be a punny name though. Subtle, mind you.

    mully on
  • CommunistCowCommunistCow Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    DM:
    Seriously you think that we can't have something like 3 distinct themes in a book that it has to be one giant over arcing theme? To allow lots of people to participate the theme is going to have to be very open ended and will still seem some what disjoint because some people might not get how a certain photo fits in a theme.

    I see your point about having some sort of connection between the themes but I can't really think of a set of themes that they also have an overacrcing theme. Could you give us some examples that would still be open ended enough to allow lots of participation?

    CommunistCow on
    No, I am not really communist. Yes, it is weird that I use this name.
  • muninnmuninn Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    mully wrote: »
    As odd (and possibly a joke) as this suggestion is. It could be a lot of fun, especially since you know we are all on the penny-arcade forums. It's pretty fitting. Sounds challenging as well, with plenty of creative leeway. I dunno, I'm definitely open to the idea of some sort of video game themed photo book.

    Not a joke at all, and I don't see it being as difficult as some people are making it sound. If you have a theme going through a book like that, someone is bound to notice. "turtle.. mushroom... gold coins.. overalls on the floor.. really bright red flower with orange centre... a raccoon hat ..picture of the ? part of a square sign. ... WAIT A SECOND".

    The name of the book would have to be a punny name though. Subtle, mind you.

    Whole a book of seemingly random objects grouped together based on video games seems rather boring. Variety is a key to such project, and the good stuff takes time and planning. We could reenact iconing game scenes "in real world", we could do tasteful cosplay shots, we could shoot dioramas... This is a very rich subject, and I think we would be doing it disservice by not exploring it fully due to time constraints of the first project.

    muninn on
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