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Author Topic: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"  (Read 42217 times)

Colorado David

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #40 on: April 05, 2015, 12:27:03 am »

What is the aspect ratio of reality?

graubaer

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #41 on: April 05, 2015, 04:08:12 am »

He had increased contrast by using a red filter, so the scene or the light has not been changed. No clouds copied in, no selective greyscale changes on parts of the image, just during paper exposure selective exposure time. No tens of layers, each with selective manipulations. All those changes apply essentially to the entire image. Compare it with what have been seen on the lula pages, like this ocean scene (australia?), where a person has been copied in, because actually noboday wanted to stand there, or this river bed in which dramatic early morning sun light has been copied in. The difference between half dome, in which only contrasts of been adjusted, on those are obvious to me. There is a difference between adjustments made to overcome the limits of the negative and paper etc. and those which just creates situation, which didn't exist.
Drawing clear lines always has something arbitrary, but that doesn't makes them obsolete. Think of state borders, official languages etc.. They are arbitrary, but have been made for good reasons. Using color filters in color analog photography is also a manipulation, but it has it limits and can enhance color to properly translate the real lighting situation on film and paper. If you create a colorful sunset, which hasn't been colorful at all, it is a manipulation which goes too far.
This is where painting starts.
One has to discriminate between techniques, which help to translate a situation, with which one tries to overcome the limits of the techniques and those which create something, which has only been in the mind of the creator of the image.
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HSway

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #42 on: April 05, 2015, 07:49:20 am »

I am not against post-image recording processing, but this discussion just demonstrates that people have not drawn a clear line, or do not even want to draw one (!), were a photo ends and a digital painting starts. That's all what I wish to see eventually, to separate the 'image hunter' from the 'image creator'.


To see better about the lines of others one needs to draw one for oneself first.
Such a line then, if it is to work at all, is drawn every second. The ruler is your heart, the ink your conscience and the style your consistency. Unless one moves into this space he/she will keep looking for unseen and unrecognisable. Once in that space, one can see that the character of that line is always directly depending on individual motivation. That is the real core of this debate. As it is the person’s individual motivation with which he/she take photographs that sets the stage for involvement of the abstract, yet the most real, qualities mentioned above.
I suppose the fact that most people struggle to have motivation clearly defined to themselves when it comes to their photography explains the ambiguities surrounding manipulation vs processing (optimisation) in photography and the related topics.
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HSway

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #43 on: April 05, 2015, 07:59:03 am »

The trouble is that there is no clear line between the things. All distinctions are arbitrary. All photos are manipulated.

Having holy wars over whether the line should be drawn here or there is stupid. Albeit great fun.


Yes, that is truth.
All photos or any other records are manipulated and always will be.
Any visual representation - any - is and will be representing the real only within constraints of the means used (technology, physical laws). To be clear, there always will be these constraints. Debate here is only about what approximations in relation to reality people might prefer.
(Then there is wider question and topics regarding our visual perception.)
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HSway

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #44 on: April 05, 2015, 08:54:22 am »

+1.  As photographers we know that our eyes, brains, and cameras all see differently.  But the general public doesn't seem to realize this.  Some seem to regard cameras as lie detectors, recorders of absolute truth.  People need to be educated on this point, regardless of what our varying opinions of where the line between "optimization" and "manipulation" lies.
Regarding that line, I found it odd that in Mr. O'Neill's essay he states "Removing power lines from a landscape is one thing. Changing the colour of the sky from grey to orange quite another."  So he feels that changing the color of the sky to what it might have been at another hour is unforgiveable, but removing a physical object that will be there anytime of day or night is okay??


+2

One thing, on the difference, though. O’Neill's approach suggests that he has got clear guidelines based on his philosophy. That very likely grows from the motivation that makes him engage in photography (I know nothing about his photography). That view also makes his rules seem more alive rather than a lifeless dogma. And a dogma will get us nowhere sensibly.

For this concrete case of the power lines and the sky there is one difference. No person made the sky grey or put it there. Unlike with the power lines that were put there (an hour ago?). And considering this difference it can become a key difference in many instances.
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graubaer

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #45 on: April 05, 2015, 08:57:17 am »

It is not about reality, but about our visual reality. A photo cannot show the reality, at one of the reasons is that you go from 3d to 2d and in fact this translation is part of the challenge of photography, and fun. How to translate space in a 2d image?
The kind of frame you put around things, doesn't change the thing. It is an important aspect of photography, because it influences the way we look at an image.
Taking a photo is of cause a translation and interpretation of a scene, that's why we take it, don't we? You show it the way you saw it, but you won't see a sunset when there wasn't one, unless you are on drugs.
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amolitor

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #46 on: April 05, 2015, 09:07:26 am »

Distinctions between 'this only translates, enhances' while that 'alters, creates' are bogus. What they mean is 'what I do is OK and what you do is not'. That is why they always feel tortured.

The artifice begins with the frame. Reality has no aspect ratio.
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kers

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #47 on: April 05, 2015, 09:31:25 am »

about the reality of a photograph...
I have met some persons living in the Sahara that could not read a normal landscape colorprint. They just did not see anything in it.
We all have learned to see things and give meaning to it. The 'reality' we see in a photograph is a learned interpretation.
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Isaac

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #48 on: April 05, 2015, 01:55:59 pm »

He had increased contrast by using a red filter, so the scene or the light has not been changed. No clouds copied in, no selective greyscale changes on parts of the image, just during paper exposure selective exposure time.

Contrast was not increased uninformly; contrast was increased selectively to achieve a dramatic effect rather than a literal record.

Quote from: Ansel Adams
"Monolith, The Face of Half Dome. ... I realized after exposing that the image would not express the particular mood of overwhelming grandeur the scene evoked. I visualized a dark sky, deeper shadows, and a crisp horizon in the distance.
With my one remaining plate I used the #29 dark red filter, achieving very much the effect I wanted."

The Negative, Ansel Adams, page 5

Anybody "who looks at a photo automatically assumes, that this images shows the scene as it was and not how it possibly could have been" would do better to not "automatically assume", because they are likely to misunderstand what they are looking at.
« Last Edit: April 05, 2015, 03:12:09 pm by Isaac »
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Telecaster

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #49 on: April 05, 2015, 04:18:45 pm »

It's funny. While I lean philosophically toward the "anything goes" approach to photography, this is mainly the result of understanding that vision is itself massively subjective and interpretive. But when it comes to what I actually do in practice…I use a very light touch in Photoshop, Iridient, etc. I'm interested in documenting found moments rather than creating idealized or imaginative moments. The important thing is to realize & acknowledge the arbitrary nature of such interests & choices.

-Dave-
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AreBee

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #50 on: April 05, 2015, 05:15:40 pm »

Tony,

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The bottom line is that the debate should not really be about whether some imagery is art or not but rather whether it is any good!

Given that "good" is subjective, what positive outcome(s) will be returned from such a debate?



Andrew,

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...you're never going to get the light and perspective correct.

Why?

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The power of a photograph over other forms lies in, precisely, its reality.  Every bit of manipulation you perform sacrifices a little bit of that reality. Therefore, make your sacrifices count.

The logical conclusion from the above is that manipulation should not be carried out at all.



Dave,

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As for Galen Rowell, I wonder if he would've maintained his no modification stance...

Galen Rowell used graduated filters.



Isaac,

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...photographs are...constructed.

Absolutely.



David,

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What is the aspect ratio of reality?

3:1
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Colorado David

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #51 on: April 05, 2015, 05:35:12 pm »

Are you quite sure?  Why not square? Or 16:9?  It seems to me that by constraining reality to a square or some type of rectangle, it is no longer reality since some part of reality has to remain on the outside.

AreBee

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #52 on: April 05, 2015, 05:46:24 pm »

David,

It was a joke.

Having said that, our (relatively) in-focus field of view approximates to a horizontal ellipse, when our eyes are stationary.

Quote
It seems to me that by constraining reality to a square or some type of rectangle, it is no longer reality since some part of reality has to remain on the outside.

We see with our eyes only that which falls within our field of view. Does everything outside of it not exist as a part of reality?
« Last Edit: April 05, 2015, 05:53:15 pm by AreBee »
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Isaac

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #53 on: April 05, 2015, 05:52:52 pm »

Are you quite sure?  Why not square? Or 16:9?

His panos are 3:1 ;-)
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amolitor

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #54 on: April 05, 2015, 05:58:29 pm »

Quote
The power of a photograph over other forms lies in, precisely, its reality.  Every bit of manipulation you perform sacrifices a little bit of that reality. Therefore, make your sacrifices count.
The logical conclusion from the above is that manipulation should not be carried out at all.

No. If I say "sausages cost money" the correct conclusion is not "one should not eat sausages".

The sacrifices, anyways, begin immediately. The moment you press the shutter button you are manipulating. The point is that one should not manipulate without getting something back of value. I don't care, and I do not believe that it matters in the slightest, what kinds of manipulation one performs. Arguing that curves adjustments are OK but cloning is not, or vice versa, is a waste of energy.

Cloning that thing out, though, costs you. Is it worth it? Making the curves adjustment costs you. It is worth it? And so on.

Depending on what you are doing, the costs may be larger or smaller. In some cases, cropping may exact a tremendous cost, in others it may be free. Hence, that particular never-ending debate.
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elliot_n

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #55 on: April 05, 2015, 06:26:35 pm »

In this case, what do you mean by "its reality"?


Its indexicality
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Telecaster

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #56 on: April 05, 2015, 07:20:23 pm »

Galen Rowell used graduated filters.

Well, yeah. But the context here is post-exposure modification…which Rowell also did (or allowed to be done) but only in the limited tonality-oriented ways I've previously mentioned.

-Dave-
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Alan Klein

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #57 on: April 05, 2015, 10:06:09 pm »

I think a good guideline might be: -  will it stand up as evidence in a court of law?  Since a photo normally represents reality, at least to the viewer, barring any comment about manipulation by the shooter deceives the viewer.  The NY Times and other publications of "standards" insist that photos may be cropped, and their lighting adjusted.  But they insist that no object be cloned in or removed.      The BW photo is a straw man argument because the viewer accepts that the original scene was in color.  The viewer is not fooled as to the original content or hue. 

I'm not arguing that photos cannot be manipulated to a scene different than what was shot.  It's just that photography still has a belief aura that it represents reality to the viewer and if not the viewer should be made aware of this fact.

Tony Jay

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #58 on: April 05, 2015, 10:21:26 pm »

I think a good guideline might be: -  will it stand up as evidence in a court of law?  Since a photo normally represents reality, at least to the viewer, barring any comment about manipulation by the shooter deceives the viewer.  The NY Times and other publications of "standards" insist that photos may be cropped, and their lighting adjusted.  But they insist that no object be cloned in or removed.      The BW photo is a straw man argument because the viewer accepts that the original scene was in color.  The viewer is not fooled as to the original content or hue. 

I'm not arguing that photos cannot be manipulated to a scene different than what was shot.  It's just that photography still has a belief aura that it represents reality to the viewer and if not the viewer should be made aware of this fact.
Actually a photograph never represents reality.
It may, or may not, be an acceptable representation of someones definition of reality but a photograph, in absolute terms, it is not reality.

This is much more than semantics because misunderstanding this issue is actually fuelling a lot of debates.
IMHO post-processing manipulation may actually enhance the reality of an image despite the fact that pixels may be bent.

Assuming a camera, and its sensor, is the ultimate arbitrator of reality is just way off the mark.

Tony Jay
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Slobodan Blagojevic

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Re: AB:"Why Photoshop is not Ruining Landscape Photography"
« Reply #59 on: April 05, 2015, 10:50:07 pm »

...misunderstanding this issue is actually fuelling a lot of debates...

Well, Tony, debates are there not because the other side misunderstood something, but because the other side (myself included) has a different opinion. Otherwise, you seem to claim the "truth" for yourself, and misunderstanding for those who disagree.
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