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Why Photoshop?

mistere Plus
4 4 3 England
13 Jul 2013 5:07PM
I know this will be controversial and i have no desire to upset or offend anyone, would just like to get some opinions on the subject of using Photoshop or any other photo software.
So many of the photographs we see these days have been touched up or altered in post production its dificult to tell what is a photograph and what is a digitally altered image. We use cameras and call ourselves photographers but if the picture that came from the camera is then enhanced in a computer can that still be called a photograph?. A talented digital artist can take any picture from a camera and turn it into a stunning image. Is he a photographer? if the picture from the camera needs no digital processing then that is a photograph and should be left as such.
I'm not saying that photoshop is bad, just that it would be nice to see more pictures as the camera saw them and the photographer took them. That way we can credit good photographers for their work and not have to thank photoshop for producing the "stunning image" that gets featured in magazines and such like. What do you think?

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hobbo Plus
7 1.2k 2 England
13 Jul 2013 5:13PM
In my opinion.....PHOTOSHOP ....is the current version of the old....DARKROOM..... to be used as creatively as you feel,......nothing more nothing less.

Carabosse 15 41.1k 270 England
13 Jul 2013 5:14PM
With digital imaging, pressing the shutter button is only the start of the imaging process, if you are an enthusiast.

Actually this was also the case with film photography. But very few had the facilities or inclination to process their own pics. Smile
Hazelmouse 11 376 United Kingdom
13 Jul 2013 5:16PM
A talented digital artist can take any picture from a camera and turn it into a stunning image.

I disagree. A poor photograph remains a poor photograph.

If you shoot in RAW you HAVE to use some sort of programme to produce a final picture - people who shoot JPEG are letting their camera do the processing.

Each to their own when it comes to using Photoshop - or anything else.
robthecamman 6 1.7k United Kingdom
13 Jul 2013 5:18PM
i use iphoto rather not use photoshop though some may think i need it Smile
dcash29 12 2.3k England
13 Jul 2013 5:59PM

Quote:A talented digital artist can take any picture from a camera and turn it into a stunning image.

I disagree. A poor photograph remains a poor photograph.

Now that sounds like a challenge for members of the site
llareggub 7 825 United Kingdom
13 Jul 2013 6:03PM

Quote: A talented digital artist can take any picture from a camera and turn it into a stunning image...

just that it would be nice to see more pictures as the camera saw them and the photographer took them.

On the first note I would disagree and on the second note a camera cannot see!

Photoshop or any other media enhancing program can alter an image sometimes to the the benefit of an image sometimes to the detriment of an image.

I have a question to point back at you, in the digital age why are the 'engineers' at Canon, Nikon, Pentax, et al better at defining the picture you want to produce than you are?

Digital manipulation is as capable of producing a masterpiece as it is an aberration.

Stop judging people on what they do and be happy with your own images, whether they are engineer defined or defined by you, if you are bitter that other folk produce images that you perceive to be 'shopped' then go back to school and learn to play in a medium you will be happy with!
dcash29 12 2.3k England
13 Jul 2013 6:08PM
Obviously its down to ones opinion but I know which I prefer



Stillbase 6 75 Wales
13 Jul 2013 6:11PM
If you don't photoshop (or post process) your camera will.
saltireblue Plus
8 8.1k 33 Norway
13 Jul 2013 6:30PM

Quote:Obviously its down to ones opinion but I know which I prefer

Well tell us then, which one do you prefer?Wink
redhed17 12 842 England
13 Jul 2013 6:54PM
If you think that pictures were untouched straight out of the camera to a print, for Professionals and Enthusiasts pre digital, then you're living with a deluded version of history imho.

Professional photographers especially made full use of the darkroom, and for some it may have been their darkroom prowess added to their photography skills which made them stand out from the crowd. The difference now is that because of the digital revolution, and programs like Photoshop, Paint Shop Pro, etc, and even Picasa, it has brought the the ability to edit their images to almost everyone, and not just the relatively small numbers of photographers with access to a darkroom.

But unless you are a journalist, what difference does it make how the image was created? Those of us that edit our images, will have a line of what they will do to an image in processing, and what they won't do. It's a personal thing.

'Do you like it or not?' should be the main question about an image.

And for those that don't like to do any editing fine, good for you, I hope all your images come out the camera as you want them to be. Smile
13 Jul 2013 7:35PM
Photoshop is an excellent piece of software, a "tool" if you like. In the darkroom of old, people would dodge and burn parts of the image and perhaps tone the image. I see nothing wrong with using photoshop, if you can afford it. Photography is not a cheap hobby and even software can cost a fortune so if you are going to use photoshop, try and get the best out of it you can. Use it wisely. You can overdo it just as you could do in the darkroom. People who are skilled at Photoshop are probably not those who manipulate the image to a huge degree because they are probably skilled enough to get the picture as "right" as possible out of the camera in the first place.

I use Gimp as it's free. I am pondering getting Lightroom but Photoshop is a bit rich for me.
capto Plus
6 5.2k 8 United Kingdom
13 Jul 2013 9:18PM
Each to their own, if you enjoy what you're doing that's great. This discussion will run and run. I think the problem is we still call our images 'photographs', maybe we should get used to calling them images. Instead of photographers we have become image makers. Even images straight from the camera[ except raw files] have been processed and enhanced by the technology in the camera. Post processing software is only an extension of this. Whichever route you choose just enjoy it.Smile
mistere Plus
4 4 3 England
13 Jul 2013 9:25PM
Thanks guys and gals, as i said at the very start of my topic, i have no desire to upset or offend anyone. Just interested in the discussion. I am new to this site and have only recently started to take photography beyond the occasional holiday snap. I'm curious as to what exactly makes a photograph "good". It is very much a matter of personal taste and there are as many opinions as there are cameras. Photo editing software is, as has been mentioned, a tool to be used (or not) at the disgression of the photographer. My dilema when looking at some of the stunning images on the site and in magazines is trying to work out how much of the image was the photograph from the photographer and his/her camera and how much was software, trying to set up a shot to recreate some of the effects i see, in sunsets and seascapes for example, its dificult for a beginner.
Anyway, thanks for your comments, sorry if i offended anyone.
Oh and Dcash29, thank you for both pictures, that was what i was getting at.
Gundog 5 629 Scotland
13 Jul 2013 9:43PM
Photography = Drawing with Light.

Whether the light is captured and manipulated (manipulated = the "drawing part") purely as a result of being focussed by a Lens (dozens of different types of those) on to silver halide film (lots of different types of those) or processed by a camera sensor and firmware, or passed through some computer software that allows the photographer to have more influence over the "drawing", it is all really a matter of degree.

Since the very inception of photography, photographers have striven to develop and employ the most sophisticated drawing instruments available to them. Fine grain developer and the use of paddles for dodging and burning over the enlarger easel was one stage. Multigrade printing papers were another. Photoshop is just one more in the evolution of our craft.

Perhaps the OP is confusing a "photographer" with a "camera operator" rather than seeing him as a craftsman/artist drawing with light.

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