Interesting thread Al. Perhaps long overdue. I am a amatuer photographer. I am middle aged, well educated, have a family, a well established career, and a hefty mortgage. My roots are deep where they are. I have no desire to become a professional photographer. But, on my down time, I have a passion for photography (particularly Glamour) and Photoshop. Although, I don't aspire to become a professional photographer, I do aspire to become a good photographer.
I became a member of the G1 community almost a year ago for the critique forum that it offered and for the abundance of professional photographers that frequented this site. I use G1 as a learning tool to better my photography. I have aquired alot of useful information from this site and because of that I will continue to visit and post.
I too feel the critiques could use some improvement. If you look at the numbers, the critique rate is less than 1%. Plenty of viewers with nothing to contribute to the forum. In my opinion, you can't get better if someone isn't pointing out what you might be doing wrong. Most of the time, I recieve no critiques so I continue to post what I guess are unworthy photographs.
In a recent post, I essentially tried begging for a critique. When one of the "Big Fishes" in this G1 community bit the Hook, the critique was prefaced with an attitude of " the photo sucks and there is so much wrong with it that it's a waste of time to critique (Gee! Thanks
)." Turned out, however, to be a pretty useful critique for me. Many of the points were well taken, but I felt the preface was unnecessary. I paid my Lifetime Membership. I am not just another Free Member. I am also a supporter of the Shot Critic website. I think myself and others like me deserve better. And I might add that many of the professional photographers are excellent on this website, but some of you professional guys out there (not directed at you Al) could use some improvement too! Give your fellow photogs a break!