#1256. The Importance of Colour in the Work of Saul Leiter, William Eggleston and Joel Meyerowitz. Not.

By pascaljappy | Opinion

Jan 01

I did not write this article. ChatGPT did.


Colour plays a vital role in the work of photographers Saul Leiter, William Eggleston, and Joel Meyerowitz. Each artist uses colour in a distinct and meaningful way, creating a unique visual experience for the viewer.


Saul Leiter was a pioneer in the use of colour photography, and his images are characterized by their lush, vibrant hues. Leiter often photographed everyday scenes in New York City, capturing the city’s energy and diversity through his use of colour. His photographs are filled with rich, saturated colours that draw the viewer in and create a sense of intimacy and immediacy.


William Eggleston is another photographer known for his innovative use of colour. Eggleston’s work often focuses on mundane, everyday subjects, such as gas stations, parking lots, and laundromats. However, he imbues these subjects with a sense of mystery and beauty through his use of colour. Eggleston’s photographs are characterized by their bold, saturated hues, which give his images a surreal, otherworldly quality.


Joel Meyerowitz is also known for his use of colour in his photography. Meyerowitz’s work often captures the beauty of the natural world, and his images are characterized by their vibrant, luminous colours. Meyerowitz has a particular affinity for the colours of the ocean and the sky, and his photographs often feature vivid blues and greens that bring these subjects to life.


The importance of colour in the work of these photographers cannot be overstated. Colour adds depth, meaning, and emotion to an image, and it is integral to the success of the photograph. Leiter, Eggleston, and Meyerowitz all use colour in a masterful way, creating images that are rich, vibrant, and full of life.


In conclusion, colour is a crucial element in the work of photographers Saul Leiter, William Eggleston, and Joel Meyerowitz. Each artist uses colour in a unique and meaningful way, creating a visual experience that is rich, vibrant, and full of life. Whether capturing the energy of the city, the mundane beauty of everyday life, or the majesty of the natural world, these photographers demonstrate the vital role that colour plays in the art of photography.


The photographs on this page were made – by myself – during a lovely walk on Jan 1 with my wife and daughter. The penultimate one will be used for my first entry in my Matisseo 1 day 1 pic year-long project. The text however, has nothing to do with me. It was generated automatically by AI. I prompted ChatGPT with the title of this post, and the text on this page was the 100% automated response. I copied it without even reading it.

While the talent of the team who made the model work is to be celebrated, we can expect online content to become even less interesting and useful in 2023 as it was in years prior. Worse, at some point this year, you will probably read something false, possibly offensive, written in the name of a human being, but generated in the same way as this post. With wars igniting in every corner of the planet, do be careful where you find your information, and fact check.

ChatGPT is a simple-ish algorithm fed with a lot of data. If the data had been bad, its performance would be far worse. Our brains are no different. Garbage in, garbage out. I have added links to images of each photographer described to let you see for yourself how right or wrong the results of ChatGPT are. Do be careful what you feed your brain in this troubled time, and give others the benefit of the doubt. Caveat lector.


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  • Vladimir says:

    Happy New year pascaljappy,
    Interesting article, the scarry part is that this CatGPT can and most likely is being used to report serious stuff. But as you end your article: β€˜Do be careful what you feed your brain in this troubled time, and give others the benefit of the doubt. Caveat lector.’ Kind regards, Vladimir (no not from there)

    • pascaljappy says:

      Thank you Vladimir. And to you too.

      Yes, that is the scary part. Peer reviewing is in decline, so we might soon see scientific articles written by unsupervised AI … And political articles. It has never been easier to lie to us all.


  • Pascal Ravach says:

    Indeed a always welcomed warning… and the level of propaganda in the West is now unsurpassed, unfortunately, and totally ignored by the majority, including by very sensitive and intelligent people… AI is just the last iteration πŸ™

    As for your pick of photographers, Saul Leiter drives me crazy since ages… when I discovered him, my immediate feeling was “wow, *that* is the kind of photography I would like to create… I simply love the energy, and it never aged for me; reality check, I never ever even approached it… stayed out of me, proving that indeed we can’t force ourselves to see with someone else’s eyes and personal life πŸ˜€

    • pascaljappy says:

      Sadly, propaganda isn’t confined to the West, Pascal. It is rampant everywhere. Opinion dominates truth and rumour trumps scientific fact in most countries these days.

      We can never recreate the work of another photographer. We haven’t lived their lives, known their influences. But they can become ours, and I share your love of Saul Leiter’s work πŸ™‚ Cheers

  • jean pierre guaron says:

    “I did not write this article. ChatGPT did.” Thanks for the disclaimer – I didn’t, either. I thought at once that it must be a guy called Pascal, from Montpellier/Province, because the topic is way more intelligent than I am – and of course I already knew it couldn’t have been me, for the same reason!

    Good heavens! It WAS written (or composed anyway) by this guy from the deep south!

    Never mind the twaddle. This kind of article is what “makes” DS. If you like, I can refer you to a page promoted by a guy who goes round in circles, pushing “basic” – “Photography 001”, not even 101. Or another couple of them, one that thinks satire is more important than knowledge, and another who thinks sarcasm is all you need, to engage your audience.

    DS on the other hand is far more advanced than that, and much more pleasant. As for apologising for two issues in a single day, I look forward to them all – make it three, and I’ll be even happier!

    The warning is timely. It’s barely an hour since I replied to an anxious person on Quora, as to why cyber bullying is such a delightful way for bullies to pass the day. And quite recently I noticed a disturbing account of attempts by unscrupulous parties to invade WiKi, and exploit its self-editing scheme, to derail an article on WiKi.

    Sigh – it’s no longer just politicians’ lies that we need to guard against!

    I must confess – by the time I reached the final paragraph I was beginning to wonder whether I ought to stop here, and go look at some photos from Leiter, Eggleston, and Meyerowitz. The photos here seemed to be all the work of one person, and little or nothing to do with the text. Then the final paragraph itself – adding nothing, just recycling what had already been said. I guess that’s a “clue”, when AI is the author. Discrimination is a human characteristic – a two-edge sword maybe, but it gives us the ability to choose. Artificial brains are even less advanced, at this dateline.

    It’s a long while since I used to go “caving” – 65 years in fact! I took away from that a rather extreme dose of claustrophobia, which is with me to this day. I have been into one or two caves since – but massive ones, almost like underground cathedrals from “Jurassic Park”. Never again, into the dark and the miniscule! Scared off that, for life, when I got stuck in one, and had to be rescued by my friend’s father.

    The banter from this guy AI, whoever he is, was an interesting background till the truth was “all revealed” and the culprit unmasked. I had been trying to read the words and apply them to the photos – at times with difficulty, because the names changed but the photos remained the same. However I did notice something of interest. The use of colour is the tomtom theme AI is thumping. And there is indeed an interesting use of colour in these photos, if you want to be analytical. Colour wheel junkies are fond of telling you to contrast yellow & blue, or violet and orange. Occasionally, they also mention red vs green.

    And if you look carefully, you can see the value – and the balance! – in the use of blue vs yellow, or red vs green, throughout these images. Not “sky blue” perhaps – or “stop sign yellow” – or “pillar box red”. Much more subtle than that, and all the more effective because of it! Thanks for sharing them (and the “Thoughts of Chairman AI” – LOL)

    • pascaljappy says:

      Chairman AI indeed πŸ˜‰

      I’m glad you like the photos. Colour isn’t my natural forte, and I’m still learning, but there is a consistency accross the range, that’s a start πŸ˜‰

      As for the text (in Italics), I’m still impressed at the readability of it, but clicking on any link (in red) on the photographer’s name quickly shows that the content of the text isn’t up to the form of the text πŸ˜‰


  • Sean says:

    Hi Pascal,
    A salient message for sure. Forewarned is forearmed. A deployed AI system will eventually show how it does not work. What works is tuning and securing ones own functional intelligence through our knowledge, skills and experiences – even though there is opportunity for a variety and number of unexpected obstacles that can manifest, along the way. But hey, it makes for some memorial images that does not require some nerds AI programme to analyse and describe ones cognitive activities and resultant achievements, does it? Thank you for this post.

    • pascaljappy says:

      Thank you Sean, glad you liked the photos and found the topic of interest.

      It always baffles me how someone creates a potentially useful technology and the vast majority or uses are negative, lazy, wrongful, harmful … And I have no doubt ChatGPT will not escape this sad fate. Ah well.


  • Peter Oosthuizen says:

    My 1st thought on reading the disclaimer was “scary” – which I have in common with others below.
    However, happy New Year to all DS followers, authors and to the guys who do all the work – thanks for sharing a unique and friendly site.

    On you point “It always baffles me how someone creates a potentially useful technology and the vast majority or uses are negative” – it seems to be human nature always pressing for an advantage. One good result was the Nobel Prizes which do give something back.

    • pascaljappy says:

      You’re right. I guess Nobel Prize recipients are not scared little puppies like all those people who abuse society and its advances πŸ˜‰ Thanks πŸ™‚

  • Ian Varkevisser says:

    Now that you have your article written by AI yo can have your images post processed by AI

    • pascaljappy says:

      Yeah. I tried to test it, but it requires a metric s..ton of processed images to work. But it could be a great productivity tool for pros.

  • Ian Varkevisser says:

    Pretty soon there will be no life left on earth

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