On Ken Rockwell

Why oh why would I even write about Ken Rockwell?

He is easily one of the most hated in the industry. That’s why.

If you haven’t read or heard about him then you are one of the lucky few. It probably means you are out there shooting instead of lurking in forums and hurling shit at other “photographers”. Some forums even have strict rules of “no KR discussions”. Some “togs” are very quick to tell n00bs not to read Ken Rockwell.

But WHY?!

Here’s my own conclusion based on common observation: Those who hate him are primarily jealous gear heads who can’t stand the blunt opinions of KR.

Hey, Rockwell isn’t perfect and some of his views are kinda outrageous. Consider his opinion on not using tripods for example. I’m not sure if he is just masochistic but I will bet my unused Nikon D700 that I can take better photos than him if we go on a one-on-one photoshoot contest on the same location as long as he doesn’t use a tripod. I can guarantee that I will have more keepers and more interesting shots than him. Does that make me a Rockwell hater? Far from it. Have a read on his other articles especially those that tackle composition and FARTing and why your gear does not matter. Every newbie should read them. If you visited Rockwells page and totally missed his excellent tutorials then there is no denying that you are a gear whore. Yes, Rockwell is a gear head. What differentiates him from other gear heads is that the guy can shoot. Compare him with FroKnowsFoto or Kai of DigitalRev (if you don’t know them then consider yourself lucky for the second time). Compare him with those “photographers” who hate him. If you don’t believe me then check out his gallery at 1x.com. Now try submitting your own shots to that group and see if you can even get one image approved by their expert curators. Gear whores, on the other hand, think that Rockwell can’t shoot. Guess what, he owns everyone’s dream gear. So if you think that he can’t shoot then truly gear does not matter if you suck at photography. So touche. Every gear whore who hates him is shooting himself on the foot. Gear heads hate him because they can’t beat him. Rockwell is everything a gear whore wants to become but can’t. Rockwell can buy any gear he wants yesterday. Heck he could probably get any camera before they are even released. I said BUY. Not borrow. Kai or Fro don’t even own the gear they “review”. Rockwell BUYS his gear. He buys them and make very blunt reviews about them. Fan boys will kill anyone who makes blunt criticisms about their chosen brand. That’s why they hate him. Gear whores feel like Rockwell just told them that their mothers are ugly. They feel that it’s cool and that it makes them more credible if they hate Rockwell. They can’t accept the fact that after they upgraded to the latest and greatest camera and acquired the holy trinity of lenses their photos still suck. Rockwell was right after all!!!

I’m not saying that Rockwell is God but some say he is the Chuck Norris of photography. If you have not read about that then consider yourself unlucky. It’s easily one of the funniest posts I have read.

I’m not saying you should believe whatever Rockwell says but he is more credible than any other “photography” magazine when it comes to gear reviews. It’s quite funny because there won’t be Rockwell haters if they did not visit his website frequently. How could you hate someone at first glance? You have got to be a frequent visitor to develop a hatred for the guy. These same gear whores keep coming back for more! And rightly so. Rockwell is easily one of the most honest reviewers out there unlike magazines who are scared to say something bad for fear of being abandoned by gear manufacturers.

So you really hate Rockwell? Then I would like to see your photo gallery.

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7 thoughts on “On Ken Rockwell”

    1. Rockwell has a very sound basis, i.e. it’s not the camera, it’s the photographer who makes the great pictures. I have to agree that his technical reviews often expose his lack of technical knowledge.. As a physics professor (in physical optics) it does not however bother me as much as it should. The reason is simply that there are very few or no reviewers that has more than basic knowledge about optics (including dp review and similar sources). As an expert you’ll soon find out that they are on very thin ice especially when hey are talking about e.g. lateral aberrations and vignetting So, when these guys are complaining about Rockwell who concentrates on the results he gets with the equipment, it’s quite funny.

  1. Just 7 mediocre pictures in his 1x.com gallery. Sure! One excellent photographer he is. As for his reviews, it’s just one man’s opinion and there could be everything he says that doesn’t work for you. He’s a good entertainer! 😀

  2. So what you are saying is it is ok for you to criticize KR because you are a real photographer who knows what he is doing, but everyone else is just a jealous, wannabe, hater. That is pretty much the same condescending attitude KR has that leads to so many comments about him.

    1. I can criticize anyone for their work. I don’t care about what equipment they use. A bad photo is a bad photo. A bad photo from a very expensive equipment isn’t just bad, it’s hilarious.

  3. Sounds like you are jealous and hateful of those guys yourself. Ken is a living legend, and inarguably one of the best photographers in the world today.

    1. I don’t understand your comment. You contradicted your first statement with your second statement.

      Maybe reread my article. Slowly this time.

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