Our images and the ratings we get
Has anyone else noticed how the screenshots you take seem to lose the impact they had for you while you were actually playing the game?
There are times while playing that I'll see something and think, "Wow, thats gonna be a nice screenshot." Then I open the console and remove the menus, maybe toggle the fly camera so I can get a better angle and then press 'the button' to take the picture. "That's gonna be good." I think to myself and go about my merry way slaughtering my way through Tamriel's guts. At the end of my playing session I open my FRAPS folder and look at my images again and the good feeling's gone. Sometimes it doesn't go until I've already posted the screenshot on the Image Share section and by then, well, it's just a little to late.
Fortunately for me all of you, my co-posters and site companions seem to think most of them are decent if not pretty good, but that still doesn't make my opinion of my own images get any better. I think "What can I do to take a better picture next time."
This is where Good constructive critiques come in. Fortunately most of us value a good thorough explanation for the ratings we get on the images we post and I believe that most of us try to give constructive criticism because that's what we want others to do for us. Personally a small part of me almost (and I stress 'Almost') prefers not to get a 10 rating on my images as that leaves me no room for improvement. I'm not saying to not rate images a 10, by all means if someone deserves the highest rating, give it to them as they have most likely put effort into the picture they are posting and I believe that needs to be recognized. Then there are also those pictures which seem to have no thought or effort involved, and this goes back to rating them as deserved with an honest, constructive comment.
Of course a rating is a highly subjective thing as people have different tastes from one another.
The way I see it, if an image is something I'm interested in, I'll leave what I think is an appropriate rating and then, if in my opinion there is room for improvement, I'll try to say so in an non-offensive but honest and informative manner. If it's not an image I'm interested in I'll skip by it. That is not to say that if I see a picture that ,even though it may not appeal to my individual taste, has potential or needs more of something I won't add my two cents.
I think a certain value needs to be placed on looking at the image share section with an objective eye. The ability to look at something and not judge it according to a personal preference is a precious thing. We can all improve but, the only way is through constructive criticism.
It strikes me as a shame that some of us (myself included) are so thin skinned when it comes to the comments we get. There are times when I've lost my cool and participated in a limited skirmish or two with another site member, much to my chagrin. There are some people out there, known as Trolls to the masses though I prefer a more colorful, less PC name for them, who are motivated by jealousy, vindictiveness or some abstract need to be a pain in the butt, that like too do what they do and that makes it harder on the good honest members of this site. The recent fiasco with AlienSlof ( God bless her ) comes to mind. That was something that never should have happened and I'm glad to see her back. But I digress, we need to just 'blow them off' for lack of a better term and report them. I think we are lucky in that we have some very good and dedicated moderators here who are committed to making this the great site it is.
All in all the point of this diatribe is that constructive criticism is important and that we should be grateful when someone takes the time to give their opinion. We should remember not to take it to heart when we hear something we might not like because after all, thats how people learn, trial and error. Take them as motivation to improve if nothing else. This is something I'm always trying to remind myself of as I'm a little crazy and tend to lose my temper when someone tells me something I don't like. But with all of your patience I will improve and I think my hard lessons are something we can all benefit from.
Maybe all of what I just said makes no sense to anyone other than myself and maybe it does. I just ramble on sometimes. My intent is not to convict anyone or 'call them out'. If I've offended anybody with this I apologize. Just tell yourself I don't know what I'm talking about and go about your business as normal.
Your friendly neighborhood whack-job, LeeHarvey.