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John Kavanaugh

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Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« on: November 06, 2022, 09:25:28 AM »
The taking, posting and sharing of photographs has obviously deteriorated most public experiences. How much do photo opportunities add to the cost of building and maintaining golf courses? My research shows 20%. Close to the cost of a caddie before gratuity.

Ally Mcintosh

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #1 on: November 06, 2022, 11:13:51 AM »
Photography and social media has definitely increased the desire from architects / clients / public for “wow” holes to be built, prioritising views and features over simple strategy or even a flow in the routing.

Tom_Doak

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #2 on: November 06, 2022, 11:32:10 AM »
Agreed, but it’s not such a new phenomenon.  Forty years ago Pete Dye lamented to me that clients wanted “18 postcards”.  [That was also a subtle dig at Pine Valley, which used to sell a set of postcards of every hole.]


But Americans have tried to make courses prettier than their British counterparts since Hugh Wilson.

Thomas Dai

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #3 on: November 06, 2022, 12:56:03 PM »
Can’t comment on the cost to build but there’s certainly a “must go there” factor when photos of holes and courses are posted both herein on the likes of social media etc and a “my course should be conditioned to that standard” (cost) factor too.
Atb

Ben Sims

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2022, 01:34:10 PM »
I like this thread John.


Courses I visit that have been photographed extensively routinely look different. Perfect late day lighting combined with over saturation are the Botox and airbrushing of golf course photography. At the moment I’m really enjoying the unaltered photos on twitter from some architects and supers at new courses. Shows them in a different light… ;)

Alex Miller

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #5 on: November 06, 2022, 02:03:38 PM »
Can’t comment on the cost to build but there’s certainly a “must go there” factor when photos of holes and courses are posted both herein on the likes of social media etc and a “my course should be conditioned to that standard” (cost) factor too.
Atb


That "must go there" factor is demand being driven from effective marketing created by photography and platforms to share it on. If the fixed cost of architecture as claimed from "research" then I'd imagine it's well worth those additional costs if the course can be more profitable in the long run.


And it isn't really fair to say that photography is driving up the costs if that is really the case. I'd love to hear an architect's perspective, but wouldn't any additional design costs and decisions related to making a course more photogenic be a decision the owner makes based on their tastes?


I'm sure that a talented photographer, such as our own Evan Schiller featured here would be able to make the most of a course that is not built with instagram posts in mind.

John Kavanaugh

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #6 on: November 06, 2022, 02:19:04 PM »
20 years ago we complained because Augusta would come on to our TV’s once a year exhibiting “perfect” conditioning. Now it is an everyday occurrence on our phones. What’s the point of paying for hand raked bunkers if not to hide sandpro trails from curious eyes?

Alex Miller

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #7 on: November 06, 2022, 02:24:22 PM »
20 years ago we complained because Augusta would come on to our TV’s once a year exhibiting “perfect” conditioning. Now it is an everyday occurrence on our phones. What’s the point of paying for hand raked bunkers if not to hide sandpro trails from curious eyes?


I don't see ANGC conditions everywhere or exclusively, but for thought experiment even if I did... does advancement in agronomy over the last 20 years not get any credit either? My research says it counts for at least 60% of the excellently conditioned courses in my instagram feed.  ;)

John Kavanaugh

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #8 on: November 06, 2022, 03:33:01 PM »
I was an early hater of turf research. Then I moved to Florida and found the greens to be better than Midwestern bent. Sure it cost me more, but it’s worth it.


I would put the cost incurred by embracing the turf-industrial complex to be slightly less than that of photography. Drone footage being the tie breaker.




Tom_Doak

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #9 on: November 06, 2022, 03:38:07 PM »

I would put the cost incurred by embracing the turf-industrial complex to be slightly less than that of photography. Drone footage being the tie breaker.


You should go to the Golf Course Superintendents' Association trade show, just for a day.  I think it would cause you to revise your estimate.  ;)

John Kavanaugh

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #10 on: November 06, 2022, 04:23:37 PM »
I went to the GCSAA a few years back. Met Brad Klein, Joe Hancock and the great Dan Lucas all for the first and only time. Hate the crime, love the super.


For the first time in my life I don’t know the names of the well dressed young men who manage the turf where I play. I’ve never been happier.


Is the celebrity super a thing of the past?

John Kavanaugh

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #11 on: November 06, 2022, 05:30:09 PM »
https://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,71456.0.html


You can’t look at these art for arts sake pictures in the above thread about the 21 best and not see something drastically wrong. Even LC is playing ketchup with the filter whores.

Ronald Montesano

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2022, 10:17:55 AM »
As a golf course photographer not mentioned by Alex Miller, I cannot speak to what my impact has on costs in the golf industry.

There was a time when LCL was the go-to photographer in the western hemisphere. Jon Cavalier got his start here, then branched out to LinksGems on Instagram. His work was then gobbled up by print magazines. Jon's early work was enhanced tremendously, and I recall the author of this thread calling him out for it. Jon, like all of us, improved.

Joe Bausch has done great work for years, and has resisted the siren cry of enhancement. A young, landscape photographer would do well to study his work.

I have been hired by a few clubs and courses over the years, and I have my own method for thorough shooting of a course. I don't drone, so all my work is land-based.

I do my best to not botox a golf hole, unless I am doing it for art's sake (and I state explicitly that I have Warholed it.) If a photo is awesome, but the coloring is improperly poor (the vagaries of lens/body interaction) I will gently massage it.

I am open to any critiques of my work on the @buffalogolfer instagram feed. As photographers, we are grateful for any insight. We certainly don't wish to contribute to the obliteration of golf.
Maybe for 2022
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John Kavanaugh

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2022, 10:53:19 AM »
I learned something living within unrelenting natural beauty for the last month. The only golf holes who don’t disappoint visually compared to their images are those whose surroundings inspire.

cary lichtenstein

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2022, 11:30:08 AM »
I can't believe the 20%
Live Jupiter, Fl, was  4 handicap, played top 100 US, top 75 World. Great memories, no longer play, 4 back surgeries. I don't miss a lot of things about golf, life is simpler with out it. I miss my 60 degree wedge shots, don't miss nasty weather, icing, back spasms. Last course I played was Augusta

Richard Hetzel

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #15 on: November 07, 2022, 11:34:15 AM »
Proper/creative photography/media of a hole or holes could possibly INCREASE the revenue at a golf course. I am still amazed at so many courses, both public and private, that do not showcase "the golf" but rather weddings and stuff like that on their websites and their social media, assuming they even have it.
Last Ten Played: 
Old Toccoa Farm (GA), Thoroughbred GC (KY), Urbana CC (OH), Dayton CC (OH), Maysville CC (KY), Ross Course French Lick (IN), Covered Bridge (IN), Trout Club (OH), Elkhorn Ridge (SD), Bully Pulpit (ND)
Top 5 this year:
Yale
Culver
Hawktree
Old Toccoa Farm
Chas Muni

Alex Miller

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #16 on: November 07, 2022, 01:45:00 PM »
As a golf course photographer not mentioned by Alex Miller, I cannot speak to what my impact has on costs in the golf industry.

There was a time when LCL was the go-to photographer in the western hemisphere. Jon Cavalier got his start here, then branched out to LinksGems on Instagram. His work was then gobbled up by print magazines. Jon's early work was enhanced tremendously, and I recall the author of this thread calling him out for it. Jon, like all of us, improved.

Joe Bausch has done great work for years, and has resisted the siren cry of enhancement. A young, landscape photographer would do well to study his work.

I have been hired by a few clubs and courses over the years, and I have my own method for thorough shooting of a course. I don't drone, so all my work is land-based.

I do my best to not botox a golf hole, unless I am doing it for art's sake (and I state explicitly that I have Warholed it.) If a photo is awesome, but the coloring is improperly poor (the vagaries of lens/body interaction) I will gently massage it.

I am open to any critiques of my work on the @buffalogolfer instagram feed. As photographers, we are grateful for any insight. We certainly don't wish to contribute to the obliteration of golf.


Just wanted to say the video about Evan happened to pop up on my youtube right before I saw this thread. A tremendous amount of talent is here so I don't want to make it seem like there was a reason for the specific shoutout. Also I think I can speak for many when I say I'm grateful for the content creation!

John Kavanaugh

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #17 on: November 07, 2022, 02:06:36 PM »
I can't believe the 20%


Start out imagining that cameras never existed and you get to 20% very quickly on maintenance alone.

Mike Bodo

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #18 on: November 07, 2022, 02:10:14 PM »
Proper/creative photography/media of a hole or holes could possibly INCREASE the revenue at a golf course. I am still amazed at so many courses, both public and private, that do not showcase "the golf" but rather weddings and stuff like that on their websites and their social media, assuming they even have it.
To your point, I'm always amazed at how many private club websites I visit where such little photographic attenion is given to the golf course, which should be promoted as the crown jewel.
"90% of all putts left short are missed." - Yogi Berra

Ben Hollerbach

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #19 on: November 07, 2022, 03:04:34 PM »
It's funny to think that while Augusta National might be one of the most photographed courses in history, many of the elements that the modern golfing public looks for in a stunning photograph will simply not be present in a picture of Augusta. There are no ragged edge bunkers, no varying textures or contrasts across the ground cover, no million dollar views. its simple shaped greens, tees, and bunkers across a uniform field of green with a backdrop of pines and the occasional flowering bush. Yet so little of that matters when someone views a picture of the tight drive up the 18th, or the 12th green perched above the creek.

Good photography can help boost the look of a course as much as good course design can help boost the look of the photography. While the aesthetic value, and thus photographic value, of a piece of property can impact the placement and design of a course, it would seem doubtful that any architect would place visual interest of a hole over strategy value and playability.



Tommy Williamsen

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #20 on: November 07, 2022, 03:53:30 PM »
I just returned from Bandon, where the scenic values were off the charts. I don't know whether or not photography has driven up costs, but beauty certainly makes a difference in the enjoyability of a round.
Where there is no love, put love; there you will find love.
St. John of the Cross

"Deep within your soul-space is a magnificent cathedral where you are sweet beyond telling." Rumi

John Kavanaugh

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #21 on: November 07, 2022, 04:02:45 PM »
I just returned from Bandon, where the scenic values were off the charts. I don't know whether or not photography has driven up costs, but beauty certainly makes a difference in the enjoyability of a round.


Given everywhere you have played it's obvious that photographs don't do Bandon justice or you would have gone years ago.

Steve Lang

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #22 on: November 07, 2022, 04:06:40 PM »
I can't believe the 20%


it's kind of like the 15 yard gain in driver distance from the latest technology...


I'm not buying it, the cost of architecture increasing. 
Mike Strantz was an artist first and then a gca... I don't think his courses cost more because of photography.



Now the costs that the retail golfer will bear, is another thing...
Inverness (Toledo, OH) cathedral clock inscription: "God measures men by what they are. Not what they in wealth possess.  That vibrant message chimes afar.
The voice of Inverness"

Tom_Doak

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #23 on: November 07, 2022, 06:05:25 PM »
Proper/creative photography/media of a hole or holes could possibly INCREASE the revenue at a golf course. I am still amazed at so many courses, both public and private, that do not showcase "the golf" but rather weddings and stuff like that on their websites and their social media, assuming they even have it.
To your point, I'm always amazed at how many private club websites I visit where such little photographic attenion is given to the golf course, which should be promoted as the crown jewel.


But are those private clubs actually trying to promote the golf course?  Or is the web site just a service for the members?  I know some people are "always selling" but a really good club doesn't need to put out personal ads.

Jerry Kluger

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Re: Photography driving up the cost of architecture 20%.
« Reply #24 on: November 07, 2022, 06:55:25 PM »
The whole idea of creating a beautiful golf course is certainly demonstrated by Kingsbarns.  As I understand it the property was flat and thousands and thousands of cubic yards of dirt were brought in to build the course which the public believes to be a links course and spectacularly beautiful and worth it to pay the highest, or second highest, greens fees of any course in the UK.  I am sure that many of us would not consider paying much to play that course when there are so many other true links courses which were built over the course of hundreds of years which one can play for far less.  But ask most American golfers their must play courses in the UK and it is right at the top of their list no matter what the cost.  Why - because it is beautiful and there are so many photographs of how beautiful it is.  So how much of its greens fee of 345 pounds is attributable to photography I cannot say but I would guess that it would be at least 20%.

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