Over Manipulatd Crap

This is a discussion on Over Manipulatd Crap within the Casual Chat forums, part of the OTHER FORUMS category; Ok, It's been a bunch of years since I picked up a camera and to be honest, ever since I switched to digital, I still ...


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  1. #1
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    PHOTO EDITING NOT OK
    Ok, It's been a bunch of years since I picked up a camera and to be honest, ever since I switched to digital, I still havent got an opportunity to really make the equipment work for me. I've registered for an online course (proudphotography.com) to refresh on the basics, but the bottom line is, unless you can carry your camera everywhere or make time to get out and shoot under different ambient & artificial light, it is too damn hard to get better and be critical of others.

    But I am seeing a trend in the digital age. Composition might be okay, but because the contrast, lighting, or whatever other reason the photo turned out bad to start, it doesnt get any better under artificial modification means. At what point is modified images just bad. If it helps capture the actual ambient light and colors, that's one thing, but to enrich the photo to cartoon-like qualities is nothing more than poor photography with good technology.

    Sorry about the rant but I am just tired of seeing untouched bad photos and over manipulated bad pictures. I am also a bit frustrated that I don't get to photo as much as I would like sometimes.

    Does anyone agree with me - over manipulation is crap and not true photography - put down the editor and start taking better pictures.


  • #2

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    PHOTO EDITING NOT OK
    I have been on the fence with this issue for awhile. I highly enjoy the "artwork" images but people who are good at manipulating images have to learn to take good images first. I learned how to photograph using film and I know how to set my camera to get the great shot. I'll admit that sometimes the camera doesn't do what I set it to do...haha OK fine I set it wrong. And then I get a less than desirable image that needs some work. But I don't take my crap shot and pass it off as excellent work, I hit myself and then do better next time. Just like I had to do when shooting film.
    In the digital world it is fun to play on the computer, but a good image is much easier to work with from the start! I love to shoot digital because I can play and try new things without having to wait for my film to develop. The difference is that my "playtime" is just that and not something that I would show anyone.
    I attend a few print competitions a year and people ask why I don't enter my photographs. I simply respond "because these competitions have become photoshop competitions and not print competitions!" It is all about who can make the photo look the best in the processing afterward. Sure there was a bit of artwork on film but not like the stuff they are entering now.
    I could go on forever!
    Rachel
    There are always two people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer. ~Ansel Adams

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  • #3
    A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.
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    PHOTO EDITING NOT OK
    I have been on the fence with this issue for awhile. I highly enjoy the "artwork" images but people who are good at manipulating images have to learn to take good images first. I learned how to photograph using film and I know how to set my camera to get the great shot. I'll admit that sometimes the camera doesn't do what I set it to do...haha OK fine I set it wrong. And then I get a less than desirable image that needs some work. But I don't take my crap shot and pass it off as excellent work, I hit myself and then do better next time. Just like I had to do when shooting film.
    In the digital world it is fun to play on the computer, but a good image is much easier to work with from the start! I love to shoot digital because I can play and try new things without having to wait for my film to develop. The difference is that my "playtime" is just that and not something that I would show anyone.
    I attend a few print competitions a year and people ask why I don't enter my photographs. I simply respond "because these competitions have become photoshop competitions and not print competitions!" It is all about who can make the photo look the best in the processing afterward. Sure there was a bit of artwork on film but not like the stuff they are entering now.
    I could go on forever!
    I have to agree with photomagnate...although when I even think about entering a competition, I get really critical of my work and then back out...but yeah, I've noticed that a lot of competitions allow some major photoshopped images as "real" photos. I too learned how to take photos with film before switching to digital (a photographer friend of mine wouldn't leave me alone until I took that leap), and while I'm happy at the money saved from not having to get film developed (and waiting at least an hour to see the pictures), I still miss film sometimes!
    It's kind of like the question, "how much photoshop is too much"? The answer will always be different since everyone has different opinions about where the line should be drawn. While I feel that levels, hue/saturation, color correction, curves, and cropping of an image can still be considered a real photo, some others may think that any work in photoshop makes that image a photomanipulation/image art rather than a photograph. But I would like to hear others' opinions on the matter, it's an interesting topic to discuss!

  • #4
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    EVERYTHING HAS IT'S PLACE..EVEN IN THE DARKROOM DAYS PICTURES WERE MANIPULATED, IT'S JUST EASIER NOW
    say cheeseburger!!!

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  • #5
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    PHOTO EDITING NOT OK
    I haven't been taken photographs for very long but right from the start my husband encouraged me to get the very best pictures I could,using film at the time. When he bought me my EOS 350D he still encouraged me to do the same so that post-processing could be kept to an absolute minimum. I think the trouble is that ones and zeros are easy to use and just as easily disposed of,which can make people lazy and opt for the digital darkroom instead of trying to capture a good image for real.

    Just my 2p worth...
    Karin


    Taking photos that please me, but if you like them too then it's a bonus!

  • #6
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    PHOTO EDITING NOT OK
    Just because the digital age has arrived it doesn't mean photos have always been "purist" I saw a program not so long ago on UK TV about the history of photography and even the iconic image of the great Abe Lincoln didn't have his body - see here http://www.cs.dartmouth.edu/farid/re...italtampering/

    I see nothing wrong with using PS or any other tool to visually manipulate and enhance an image, the main thing for me is to see something that is pleasing to the eye and be aware that it is artwork more than pure photography.

    So long as the manipulation is not used fraudulantly then I'm OK with it -IMHO.

    Darkrooms have been doing it for years anyway, products liike Lightroom are just the electronic version of the Darkroom for the most part.


  • #7
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    PHOTO EDITING OK
    I agree with George. Photography is an art. The camera is one of the tools used in creating an image. The best artwork starts out with a well composed and exposed image from the camera.


    “Try and penetrate with our limited means the secrets of nature and you will find that,
    behind all the discernible concatenations, there remains something subtle, intangible and inexplicable.
    Veneration for this force beyond anything that we can comprehend is my religion.”
    (Albert Einstein)


  • #8
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    PHOTO EDITING NOT OK
    I used to shoot only Black & White because I felt that you people taking color photos were not real artists. That to have soul a picture needed to leave the false impressions of color behind and work with light and dark, tone, mood, and pure focus on subject. Ansel Adams, who most agree was a great photographer was a master at manipulating the negative. Possibly more of a master in the darkroom than behind the camera.

    The reality of the art and commercial market is that non-manipulated images are likely to lose. Editors like over-saturated colors and frankly, so do most people. Visit any of the sites that have image sharing with points being awarded and the vast majority of photos with high marks (other than scantily clad women) have been highly manipulated with PhotoShop; generally over-saturated or excessive tone mapping.

    Is this a good thing or a bad thing? For me, I'm happy if you chose not to learn Photoshop, Lightroom and the other superb tools available to take your images to the next level. And there is the question of where does photography end and art begin. I am not trying to recreate nature, I am trying ot convey a feeling, a mood, a story. If I can convey that better by twisting the image sideways then that is what I should do as an artist.

    If I were a photographer, I would deplore ANY manipulation of the image. But as an artist I feel otherwise. To be honest, it bothers me that I must be artist, photographer, (poet), and a master of PhotoShop. I have been making some basic errors in my digital photography and I admit I need to improve my technique, but I also know, without a doubt, that I must learn to be a master with Photoshop to be competitive in today's photography market.

    For me, I think of Photoshop and the other pieces of software I use as part of my tool chest; and the camera is just another one of those tools. But again, to be honest, I do mostly panoramas and this absolutely requires manipulation to stitch and blend all of the images into a coherent scene. I have panoramic scenes with images taken over a period of a month. There are people in the scene that were there weeks apart. Is it a photograph? It's a scene that never happened. But it is an amazing image.

    But Photoshop can't cure bad taste or bad composition. And it can't give me the eye of the photographer.

    And if that doesn't stir things up, I don't know what will
    I currently spend a fair amount of time on Google Plus: https://plus.google.com/103236949470535942612

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  • #9

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    PHOTO EDITING NOT OK
    I have shot in film and digital but only for the past 18 months taken it up seriously with digital equipment.

    In my experience there is a minority of people trying to use editing software to enhance their images to try and create a image that is better than it actually is. I am sorry guys and gals but most photographers who know what their doing will spot this a mile away. A good image is a "good image".

    I have seen images posted on this and other forums that are completely professional in every respect, some from pro working photographers that shoot in digital and some with less pro equipment but get outstanding results.

    Zoot, I see your point but ultimately digital is here to stay and will improve at a rapid pace. I agree that there will always be those that try and use software to enhance a shortfall in equipment or capability but that will never change.

    Patrick



    Nikon D700 / D40 - Nikon 16-35mm, Nikon 50mm F1.8 Prime, Tamron 90mm F2.8 Macro, Sigma 70-300 F4

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  • #10

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    PHOTO EDITING OK
    Great link btw. Loved reading it.


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