Monday, January 28, 2013
Evaluate My Art
I have a question for those of you in my audience. And while I appreciate flattery elsewhere, right now I'm looking for an honest critique. I know you like my art - you've said as much with your faves, comments, and messages. But compared to other erotic photographers - regardless of whether they consider themselves artists or pornographers - is my work special in any way? Does it stand out, or is it just more of the same sexy pictures you get from any number of sources?
Because, though my enthusiasm for my work is charged by my interest in voyeurism and exhibitionism, there's more to it than that. I don't take pictures just because I get some sexual thrill out of it (although I do at times). I take them because I have a passion for photography. I'm intrigued by the challenge of depicting eroticism in a visual medium, but I am also concerned with the aesthetics of beauty, and not just raw sexuality.
The reason I ask is partly because I want to become better at what I do, and partly because I'm a little curious as to the reason why I don't have more opportunities to pursue my passion. For example, I want beautiful models to say, "ooh, I want to be photographed by him!" I want magazines to want to show my work. I want publishers to be hunting me down for book deals. And I want to be critically acclaimed among a larger community than "flickr perverts" (as much as I appreciate them).
And I want to know if the reason I'm not is because my work isn't good enough yet, or if there is another reason. There could be other reasons. It could be because my work is unabashedly sexual. But then, I don't have the porno industry beating down my door, either. It could be because the subject of most of my work is male, and not female which is far more popular; and beyond that, not just any male, but a very peculiar, feminine male. But then, don't people love the allure of the exotic and unusual?
Maybe there's just a much bigger audience for disposable porn - people who look at images to get off by without much concern for artistic quality, one way or the other - than there is for artistic works. Or, it could very well be because I - not only because of the nature of my art - like to keep private (in relative terms), am not extremely sociable, and am not super enthusiastic about putting my skills out on the market and advertising what I do and what I want to do.
It could be any of these reasons, or others, but all I'm asking you is about the quality of my art. Is it exceptional, above average, or just average?