ON STREET PHOTOGRAPHY and other life changing events


What Sturgeon’s Law May Tell You About Street Photography.

The Persuasion © Knut Skjærven

The Persuasion © Knut Skjærven

I became aware of this late last night.

Yes, you could say that Sturgeon’s  Law is nothing but a repetition of what Vilfredo Pareto (1848 – 1923) already indicated in 1906 measuring land in his home country, Italy. He found that 80 percent of the land was owned by 20 percent of the people. That ratio had widespread implication and was much used thereafter. Still is today.

Sturgeon, Theodore Sturgeon (1918 – 1985), was an American science fiction and horror writer. He expressed it more bluntly. In the mid fifties he said two things about science fiction: 1) Nothing is always absolutely so; and 2) Ninety percent of everything is crud. Crud sounds a little better then crap but normally Sturgeon’s Law is formulated this way: Ninety percent of everything is crap.

Sturgeon even suggested that this was not only the case in science fiction but also in film, literature, consumer goods. etc. Implying that this indeed was also the case in photography and very much so in street photography.

Don’t take this number literally because if nothing is always absolutely so, it might as well be 92 percent or 88 percent that hits the nail. Unless you want to use Pareto’s numbers and light a little light for the future of mankind.

What Sturgeon most likely would have said about street photography, is that 90 percent of what you see around on the internet and in other corners of the world, is crap.

I am not here to say if this is right or wrong or even halfway so. Only to report that there is a law called  Sturgeon’s  Law, and that it may well fit the area of street photography.

If you sometimes feel overwhelmed by blatant mediocrity, we might, in fact, be in the same boat. Believe it or not.

Have a good day :-).

© Knut Skjærven

#knutskjærven #knutskjaerven #oneverystreet #newstreetagenda


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This entry was posted on October 15, 2014 by in Others and tagged , .

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