Archive for November, 2010

Playing Editor

November 13th, 2010 No comments

I’ve been looking over my old photographs lately, and have been surprised to find that there are a bunch of images that I skipped over before that I actually quite like now.  It’s hard to say exactly why some images look like “duds” when you take them, but carry more weight later.  In my case, I think this effect is due to a number of factors:  I’ve grown as a photographer.  I’ve taken time to look at a lot more images from successful photographers.  I’ve done a lot more critiquing of other people’s images.  I’ve also been working recently on defining my artistic and photographic style more clearly, which I think has helped me pick images that fit with that aesthetic.  And, of course, I’m less attached to the historical images, so I can look at them with a more editorial eye.

Whatever the reasons, I think it’s an interesting experiment.  My hope is that in looking back, I’ll be able to gather a set of photos that do show a consistent theme, and will be better able to define where I’m going in the future.  If I do well enough, I’d eventually like to pare the set down to its essential parts and put together a photo book.  But for the moment I’m focusing on putting the images together and putting them online.  Baby steps.

So anyway, keep an eye on the box to the left (or just check out my Flickr page) for the new images as I upload them.  I’d love to hear what you think!

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Who Designed This Menu?

November 10th, 2010 No comments

It’s a fact of life that there are bad user interfaces out there.  Let’s face it: designing something that is simple and intuitive is tough.  But we put up with so-so or even downright bad interfaces because we just need to get things done.  It’s not optimal, but whatever.

Then every so often you run into an interface that is so completely awful that you not only can’t get anything done, but it seems to actively do exactly the opposite of what you want.  Tonight I encountered such a beast.  I give you the menu from the DVD of Muppet Treasure Island that allows you to select between standard and widescreen versions:

Who Designed This?

What would you do?

Yes, the giant red X is in fact indicating my current selection.  As in, if I hit enter at this point I’ll be watching the standard aspect ratio version of the film.

You read that right.  The giant symbol for “not this one” actually was meant to be “‘X’ marks the spot”.

The best part? Once you select the (wrong) version you’re stuck with that choice until you physically remove the DVD from the player and start again from scratch.  Oh well… what’s another five minutes of obligatory dire FBI warnings and previews for shows from a bygone decade…

Sigh.  Sometimes I’m amazed that we, as a species, haven’t been overthrown by slightly-above-average goldfish.

On second thought, maybe we already have.

Categories: Create Every Day Tags: