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Photography vs PhotoEditing

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Coleslaw e2 Member 913403 forum postsColeslaw vcard Wales28 Constructive Critique Points
5 Sep 2012 - 9:40 PM

Perhaps you should......TongueWinkGrin lol

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5 Sep 2012 - 9:40 PM

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Nick_w e2 Member 73903 forum postsNick_w vcard England99 Constructive Critique Points
5 Sep 2012 - 9:41 PM

Perhaps I should Wink Tongue

ianrobinson e2 Member 41108 forum postsianrobinson vcard United Kingdom8 Constructive Critique Points
5 Sep 2012 - 9:46 PM

Quote: because of too much editing the natural colour gets totally lost.

Not true if you know what your doing and most do know what there doing, some like me will enhance colour because that is what I remembered the scene to be.
Remember also that the camera does not see what the human eye sees when it comes to dynamic ranges in colour and light so therefore as a photographer taking a Landscape they will try to reproduce what they saw in Photoshop and when done well it does please the eye.

We all need photo shop as it's the modern day dark room, I use it all the time but not to try and make a bad image good.

A bad image will always be a bad image no amount of photo shop will sort it out.

Nick_w e2 Member 73903 forum postsNick_w vcard England99 Constructive Critique Points
5 Sep 2012 - 9:58 PM

Being serious now

Quote: I am not sure why every time I see someone complaining about the use of photoshop /postprocessing /manipulating /photoediting, they are normally those who can't really do it themselves....Wink

I think you have a point Cole. I would like to have a bet - the images on the back of the camera of most of those who DM will be exactly as they want them. It's far easier to use images that have been carefully lit on say a plain background. Most of those who I follow started out with "conventional" photography and learned field craft. I don't want to single out those that complain, but the images are frequently poorly composed (whether you DM or not you need to understand composition). Often poor exposure etc etc.

puertouk  31080 forum posts United Kingdom17 Constructive Critique Points
5 Sep 2012 - 11:03 PM

Photography has moved from the darkroom to the computer. The pioneers in the darkroom manipulated their images as they do today on their PC's, so what's the difference? Yes, photography today is far more advanced and I would say the standard of photography has made huge strides over the last 30 years or so. I have seen professional people at work using Photoshop and they are amazing what they can do. Is it photography any more or just pure digital manipulation? A little of both. Whatever your views on digital manipulation, it is here for the foreseeable future and if I see any work that has been done by Photoshop or any other software, which I feel has enhanced an image, why knock it if it looks good.

parallax e2 Member 5119 forum postsparallax vcard United Kingdom
5 Sep 2012 - 11:08 PM

Photoshop is merely today's digital darkroom. I'm always amused when people assume that because you're using Photoshop that it's somehow cheating and all that's required is a bit of wizardry and presto a perfect end result.

The early pioneers of over 100 years ago used every available technique to enhance the final result just as do photographers of today.

The bottom line is that Photoshop will not make a crap shot into a good one. Getting it right in camera first and foremost pays the best dividends.

Paul Morgan
Paul Morgan e2 Member 1315616 forum postsPaul Morgan vcard England6 Constructive Critique Points
5 Sep 2012 - 11:40 PM

I cheated all the time, books like this helped me a lot Smile


Sooty_1 Critique Team 41216 forum posts United Kingdom200 Constructive Critique Points
6 Sep 2012 - 12:54 AM

Quote: The bottom line is that Photoshop will not make a crap shot into a good one. Getting it right in camera first and foremost pays the best dividends.

I totally agree, but it doesn't stop a lot of modern photographers trying!

If you just take a picture straight...say a landscape on a sunny day, the sky may well be bleached out and the ground ok, or the sky correct and the ground underexposed, due to the limited tonal range of the recording medium. That isn't how we remember it, so subtle adjustment just brings the image back to how we would like to remember it. You don't have to try hard to change the colours completely in PS, and it's relatively easy to adjust them to a more 'pleasing' (to you!) balance, or maybe for more drama.

The reason is that out eyes constantly adjust aperture for the centre, focused part of our vision. Look at the sky, the pupils contract, effectively giving us "less exposure" so we see the sky colours better at the expense of a darker ground. Look down, and our pupils dilate, letting in more light so the sky goes pale and we see the ground better. Trouble is, our eyes do this almost instantly, whereas with a camera, we have to decide on one aperture for the whole scene.

A picture should stand or fall on its merits, not by how much work has gone into it. Lots of PS, no PS..makes no difference in the end - the viewer doesn't usually care. They are mostly motivated by the emotional response they get from the image.


6 Sep 2012 - 9:07 AM

Perhaps we need to remember the sort of fees the darkroom wizards, printers and re touchers were able to demand of many of the so called top photographers in the 60s 70s and 80s...
I used every trick in the book to produce good images as a press and pr photographer and darkroom technique was every bit as contensious then as photoshopping is today with many photographers.
I witnessed long and bitter discussion at camera club meetings about what was allowable or not and similar rows spilled over into the camera mags...anyone remember the posed cheetah in a tree furore cos the deer carcass had been nailed up by the crew?
Simple question...are you judging technique or finished image?...if its image how it arrived is not important...if technique then delve by all means...for me all is fair in love and art...but stay legal!

6 Sep 2012 - 10:16 AM

Does it really matter?

If so, to whom?

Having spent 50+ years learning what the OP calls "photography", in my dotage I really can't be arsed learning all the intricacies and nuances of Photoshop but I still welcome the processing facilities that my limited knowledge of Lightroom gives me and I do enjoy playing around with a few of Nik's packages.

And, thinking about it, I once spent an extortionate amount (about £22 I seem to remember) buying a colour head for my enlarger - not to process colour prints but to give me much more control when using Ilford Multigrade paper than I could get with the gelatin filter set. Same thing; different era.


Last Modified By User_Removed at 6 Sep 2012 - 10:17 AM
6 Sep 2012 - 12:37 PM

The problem you have here is the eternal one. There are 2 camps at the extremes, one that condones photo-manipulation, & one that says it should all be got right in camera.... "& ne'er the twain shall meet" as the saying goes.

One side will never convince the other that their point of view is wrong. In the end what matters is does the final image please you and, as a bonus, other people?

You can't fight it so either join in & have a go or carry on with your way of working. Whichever makes you happy, which is ultimately what a hobby is about.

peterjones e2 Member 123987 forum postspeterjones vcard United Kingdom1 Constructive Critique Points
6 Sep 2012 - 12:46 PM

Edit in the camera? Edit in software? Or both? All three views are correct or incorrect depending on your opinion. Mine? As a photographer I believe the most important part of the process is the finished image whether a file or a print and everything leading up to that goal is a means to an end and a matter of personal preference.

However being a lazy individual and having been brought up with such worthy media as Fuji Velvia I still prefer to get it right in the camera which means less post processing; if I then want to go and get creative and while away hours doing so (I could be watching all the rubbish on TV instead) then that is my choice.

From a professional point of view the more I get in right in the camera the less time I spend post processing and time definitely = money.


mikehit  56681 forum posts United Kingdom11 Constructive Critique Points
6 Sep 2012 - 1:06 PM

Quote: You take a snap of a sunset or sunrise with the beautiful colour of the sky and the surroundings made by NATURE HIMSELF and later when you edit that picture by increasing or decreasing it's auto level or auto contrast etc, may be it may look much better than the original one, but doesn't that change the original colour made by the NATURE and that was captured in the snap. And as a real Nature or photography lover would that pleases your eye more??

Unfortunately Nature does mean things like give you scene with a greater dynamic range than the camera can capture - so you either do not get all the information that nature provides, or you fiddle it to give the full range and misrepresent it.
Ansel Adams said something to the effect of that in the darkroom he corrects the mistakes that nature made.

When you see a fantastic scene there are many factors that go to creating the experience: maybe it was while the adrenaline was pumping after a mountain walk and the sunset capped it; maybe you turned the corner of a valley and a vista suddenly opened up. But when you get home, those immediate experiences are missing and sometimes overcooking the photo helps recreate that 'WOW!' emotion. This falls into the Kodak strapline of 'we don't sell film we sell memories'.

Like many here, I say do what you are happy with.

mdpontin  106016 forum posts Scotland
6 Sep 2012 - 1:19 PM

Just to play devil's advocate for a moment:

How do you know that the sunset you saw looked exactly the same to the guy standing a few feet away? Perhaps to his eyes, it had more reds in it, whilst for you it had more greys and purples. Which of you saw the "true" colours? Which of you, if you took a photo, would think your picture needed some editing to make it look like "reality"?

Sorry...just a thought that occurred to me. Feel free to ignore.


Quote: Like many here, I say do what you are happy with.

Exactly. There's no "one true way" when it comes to photography, any more than there is for drawing, painting, etc.

Last Modified By mdpontin at 6 Sep 2012 - 1:20 PM
mikehit  56681 forum posts United Kingdom11 Constructive Critique Points
6 Sep 2012 - 1:33 PM

I remember watching a documentary about the progression of art and it explained how until the mid 19th century art was considered a medium of record and how Turner and his contemporaries smashed through that with their depiction of colour rather than depicting the scene as people experienced it. Then along came the impressionists which really put the cat among the pigeons. However, at about that time photography was becoming more widely used and in the psyche, photography moved took the place of art as the medium of record which gave the impressionists (and later art schools) more latitude because the burden of 'true representation' had been taken off them.
Now photography and photo-art is making the same movesbut there is no 'other technology' for people to fall back on as representing the natural world.

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