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Any Purists

23 Nov 2002 4:05PM
I have been following the debate in the digital imaging forum about what makes an image "digital" and am prompted to ask;

When does an "image" become so heavily manipulated that the term "photograph" is no longer applicable?
photoid5 18 154
23 Nov 2002 4:49PM
Someone used the term "capture". If the main point of the image is "THE DECISIVE MOMENT" then I consider it a photograph even if it was recorded on a digital camera. Computer art is when the original image is used only as material for elaboration. Here the end result is the work of the artist and the photo only a starting point.
23 Nov 2002 6:50PM
Hi Leanne.
Firstly let me apologise for posting the same question twice! I'm new to this technology!
I agree with your view that using an original image (or images) to produce a piece of artwork is not photography but graphic design.
Why then, are these images being submitted to a photography website as opposed to one catering for graphic artists?
photoid5 18 154
23 Nov 2002 7:23PM
I'm new too.still learning to type!Great fun.You may be about to ruffle some feathers with that comment!!!! computer intervention is now considered the norm in professional photography to enhance the original image in the same way that pics were retouched by hand in the past.Interesting to note that world famous photographers are making statements with very direct looking photography in the last couple of years. Photos can be dated more quickly by the technical fashions of the day than by their content.which is why b/w seems so timeless.Just look at the changes in color film since the 50's.
Stan. L-B 19 222 United Kingdom
23 Nov 2002 7:40PM
Hi Alan.
You have posed quite a loaded question which is aimed, it seems, directly at me! All my working life I have used photographic images to assist, a drawing or painting, in the conventional style.
I have always regarded my calling as that of 'photographer' rather than an artist or graphic designer. Whereas, it may take me up to three months to complete a graphic portrait or
painting, I can do the same by photographic means in a day. All three skills are so closely linked now, brought about digital art work. This is fine for commercial work where speed is of the essence, but we should still appreciate the skills of the hand worker, photographic or otherwise. They are, the time served honoured
caftsmen that in my opinion will survive and who's work will remain well sought after into the future. Sorry if you consider I am an imposter
on this site but, I still think my basic work is photography not graphic artist or painter.
And, as I process all my photographic work, a purisr.
photoid5 18 154
23 Nov 2002 7:41PM
this site will remain interesting if it remains open and openminded.I haven't submitted any yet myself because:1) I am terrified! Comments fly fast and free!!!!! ANd 2)I Don't have much in the way of computer manipulated Nature pics to show. But the people are great and I do think the most important thing about a picture is who took it!
bppowell 19 2.2k 2 England
23 Nov 2002 8:31PM
I was not aware that this is only a photography website. I thought it was all about imaging. What do you mean by Photograph? Any image produced by light reacting with a receptor material is not a photograph it is only when that material has been processed, manipulated and printed that it becomes a photograph, regardless of the way it has been done.

J-P 18 396
23 Nov 2002 8:36PM
'Manipulation' has always been part of traditional photography. Burning, dodging, different grades of paper, solarization, sepia, selenium... the list is endless.

Digital just allows you to do more and do it more quickly.
photoid5 18 154
23 Nov 2002 9:05PM
getting back to the moment of capture,guys (the girls hardly ever contribute to the forums .it feels like a boys'club,very english perhaps?) getting back to the moment of capture,all the shading and dodging in the world will not improve your photograph all that much if there has not been forethought,beautiful lighting and sheer talent there in the first place.The advent of computer art is that by mixing and matching this with that you can improve on the original.And you don't even have to take the picture yourself!It is generally accepted that copyright does not extend to photographs manipulated beyond recognition.So legally computer art is not photography.
bppowell 19 2.2k 2 England
23 Nov 2002 9:24PM
I think you need to recheck your copyright law. It applies to any type of artwork, photograph, design or written work not matter how it is produced. The CLA have just produced a new leaflet giving advice on digitisation and copyright. In my opinion the printed photograph is almost never the same as the moment of capture.

photoid5 18 154
23 Nov 2002 9:52PM
Good news. Iwill certainly check up! Getting back to the moment of capture(MOC hereafter lol) isn't that the whole problem?Takes a lot to communicate that thru the final result.
photoid5 18 154
23 Nov 2002 9:58PM
By the way,how does ePHOTO get away with publishing "mavis" supposedly by Matt Dean?
bppowell 19 2.2k 2 England
23 Nov 2002 10:24PM
Yes the MOC is what it is all about. You see something that really fires you to want to capture it, how does not matter. My trouble is I see to many. When I get home the image I download to my PC is never quite the same as I imagined when I took the picture, that is why I digitally try to create what I saw at the MOC.
If I used film instead I would do my alterations in the same way in a darkroom using the techniques described by jp. If I knew how that is.

sinargee 18 245
23 Nov 2002 10:30PM
I think the time is right to now question the word photograph. The dictionary discribes a photograph as a "picture formed by chemical action of light on sensitive film" this is obviously correct for traditional photography, though it is not for a digital image. Yet the digital process still records an image electronically.

The word imaging would still be correct for the photographic process and digital capture, maybe this should be the generic word for what we do.

Does it matter how much an image is manipulated, is it still not an image. Should we not look at digital imaging as setting us free to create the images we want to.

Is not the wet manipulation of a print by toneing,solerisation and lith seperations and burning and dodging not manipulation. The digital image can be minpulated much easier and to a greater degree, only our creativeness limits this, the outcomes only governed by our skill or craft of the process as it is with traditional photography.

Leane's MOC holds good whether we use film or none. We use film and scan into our PC's so what is this photography or imaging.

I think there is only a very grey line between the two these days, too intangable to argue over.

BOB S 18 2.6k
24 Nov 2002 12:01AM
Photograph comes from the Greek meaning:
Photos - LIGHT
Graph - DRAW
(or very similar before any scholars out there shoot me with their abundant knowledge)
i.e. "drawing with light"
So in pure terms the original capture is the "photograph", digital or film makes no difference but what happens after that changes a photograph into "ART"
ART - PHOTORAPHY, there is another thorny subject ! save that one for later though.

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