Fish Porn Exposed – Part 2

| March 13, 2010

Porn sells, and good porn really sells. It’s like Niki Christopher said in the article “Money Shot” (Gray’s Sporting Journal, April 2010), magazines sell some distant location over the water ten miles from our house. Exotic locales and more exotic fish are as magnetic to fly fishermen as any other type of porn is to any other consumer. The balance of selling and showing, for the vast majority of fly magazines, has been sacrificed and will be difficult to resurrect. Any photographer who was a true porn photographer, or what was in the old days called pornographer, of people, has probably weathered the past decade of decline better than most. Thanks to the internet, softcore and hardcore are the financial income leaders in the field of photography – past present and future.

Creativity does surface occasionally. I got a real “wow” when seeing the new generation of (what I call) split surface images that show fish below water and angler above. And, when that got hot, I bet housing manufacturers saw a pop in their sales. The message boards lit up with “how much does a housing for a _____ camera cost” and “which housing should I buy?”. The bull rush to copy a fresh new look was on, and you too can do a split surface image for the paltry sum of 2-thousand dollars! Forget that the images have exposure, composition, focus and depth of field problems. Remember – delete delete delete. Buy a housing, and maybe you have bought a cover. Then the unusual becomes common again, and the challenge is to continue to be creative. I recently advised a very good photographer, after he took some marvelous split surface images, to “not make it look too easy … and not to over expose his images” because they would lose their novelty.

So for those of you who know that I may carry a camera on the water, you will have to come up with something different if you want me to take your trophy CPR image. What that is … I guess we will figure that out as we go. Nobody said it would be easy, but I do challenge any photographers reading this to walk away from porn this spring – either cold turkey, or wean themselves off it a little at a time.

Stand up. Walk over to your windows, and open them, shout out to the world “I’m not going to take it anymore! I will not take a fish porn photograph anymore! And if we do … delete delete delete. If your editor asks “where’s the porn”, you tell them I told you you didn’t have to do it ANYMORE. Then let me know how much it cost you so we can “out” these editors who are perpetuating pornographic myths.

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Category: Culture on the Skids, Photography, Writing

About the Author ()

I write. I photograph. I fish, and I live.

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  1. Robin says:

    oh now Shannon, we all love the fish pR0n. You do some of the best!

    thanks for keeping up the good work.