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Four topics for art photographers in Detroit to avoid

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There are many interesting things in Detroit to photograph, so it is disappointing to see some of Detroit's most famous art photographers put on art gallery walls the same tired subjects amateur photographers fill album after album with. Maybe the professional creates a higher quality image than the amateur, but technical quality is by itself not a good enough reason to put a photograph in a gallery.

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This article is not meant to say that the subjects on this list are never to be photographed again. Nowadays, thanks to advances in digital photography that pack more memory into smaller cards, there should never be any hesitation to take the shot, whereas in the days of film it made sense to try to conserve frames. It's better to have to make a decision as to whether or not to use a particular photo than to not have that choice at all.

And to make that decision on the various visual cliches in Detroit, one has to ask whether the image at hand adds anything of value to discussion of the topic, or if it's hardly any different from the thousands of similar images that can easily be found with a simple Google search.

To illustrate this article, no new images were created; instead, photos by Getty Images photojournalists were used instead.


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