How much Photoshop is too much?

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by dewey, Dec 1, 2006.

  1. dewey

    dewey TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2006
    Messages:
    650
    Likes Received:
    29
    Location:
    The Space Coast of Florida
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    At some point images take a turn for the worse when Photoshopping gets too heavy. From time to time after an hour or two with an image I have to walk away and start over... there's nothing worse than a fake looking image.

    I saw this video recently and it drove the point home... as long as it's done well nobody is ever the wiser ;)

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=knEIM16NuPg"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=knEIM16NuPg[/ame]

    So how much is too much? I say you can never have too much Photoshop, as long it's done well and it's undetectable.
     
  2. ladyphotog

    ladyphotog TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2006
    Messages:
    215
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Georgia
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    If your photograph is technically well done as well as elicits an emotion from the viewer, then very little PS would need to be done. At some point you get away from photography and get into graphics.
     
  3. Nurd

    Nurd TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2006
    Messages:
    347
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    That video is sad to me but also awesome. I love photoshop and all that but it's sad that most "beautiful" people were photoshoped.

    It's not entirely their fault that women think they have to look like however. It's that own person's fault. How small minded do you have to be to let someone else tell you how to look or how to act..

    So I don't feel to bad for them. But I think photoshop isn't for making pictures..I think it should only be used to enhance them. Well..as far as photography goes anyways.
     
  4. Peanuts

    Peanuts TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2005
    Messages:
    2,905
    Likes Received:
    85
    Location:
    Canada
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Well, this one has been toiled over time and time again, and my personal view is that everyone has a specific 'art' whether what they do is 100% photography, 50% photography/50% photoshop or 1% photography/99% photoshop. Someone somewhere is going to like each of these styles, and someone somewhere is going to hate it.

    Now with this video - I would say that it is directed towards today's phenomenon of 'false advertising', therefore I don't entirely agree with it. Yet I will say, the talent of the photoshop-per? (for lack of better terminology, perhaps graphic artist?) is outstanding.

    Now, with that being said, I guess I don't really have the stance on the issue. Ugh. What am I doing on here on a Friday night anyways! :lol:

    Interesting question though
     
  5. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2006
    Messages:
    2,598
    Likes Received:
    137
    That is certainly the truth and, in my opinion, it doesn't take much. I guess I'm just an old timer. I think photographs should portray real nature and real life. Whenever I see an image that would not be successful without Photoshop, it leaves me cold. When photoshop is used to do the things that were once done in the darkroom, that's a good thing for me. When it is used to transform the image into something unreal then I just tune out.

    Ansel Adams was successful primarily because of his darkroom skills. Yes, he chose powerful subjects but he transformed them into extra powerful images in the post process. While he sometimes changed the mood of what his negative captured quite dramatically in the darkroom, he never lost touch with nature and reality. He would have loved Photoshop and he would have used it well.

    Turning photographs into graphics is for folks younger than me. I love Photoshop but I think it is misused as often as it is used. Sorry, I didn't mean to climb the soapbox.
     
  6. Mole

    Mole TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2006
    Messages:
    194
    Likes Received:
    0
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    The only thing I can say about that video is it is an advertisement, so thats all about graphic design not really about photography. I also think it depends on what generation you ask this question to also.

    Besides all that stuff you gotta admit that, that girl went from not so hot to WOW!!! So from my perspective, job well done to that graphic artist.
     
  7. craig

    craig TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2003
    Messages:
    5,600
    Likes Received:
    20
    Location:
    Hermosa Beach, CA U.S.A
    Personally I work with my images as I would in the darkroom. Tonal layers and sharpen is about far as I go. Other folks are heavy into image manipulation. Point is that photography should not not be a trick or the product of an action that you found on Adobe's web site. Photoshop is a tool just like the darkroom. It is only limited to your imagination.
     
  8. Arch

    Arch Damn You! Staff Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2006
    Messages:
    8,487
    Likes Received:
    102
    Location:
    locked in the attic
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    yea this has been discussed a few times before... but my opinion is that the line between an image being a photograph or a graphical image is VERY blured. We now live in a digital age.... so when i alter my photo with ps i am altering it digitaly... even if im just changing contrast... so therefore, its difficult to say when the line has been crossed.

    My personal tastes are not to see too much obvious minipulation in a photograph.... but im talking about crazy filters... or a mash up of several images which is poorly constructed... not just how much time/work is done in photoshop.

    After all some of my images have multiple layer masks.... different exposures for forground and background.... distracting objects removed..... is this too much photoshop?

    Being a graphic designer i can remember all those years ago when first started to use photoshop... and it was often a case of overuse, as id find something new out.... but the more experienced you become the more you learn to be subtle.... or at least gain the ability to hide what you have done... the video link is like an image i might use for an advert, so it shouldn't really be viewed as the kind of photograph you might produce of your girlfriend at home!... its all about marketing.
     
  9. mysteryscribe

    mysteryscribe TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2006
    Messages:
    6,071
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    in the middle of north carolina
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    If we divide photography into two parts I can better give you my opinion.

    Things you shoot just because you want to make a great image. Those you can toss till you get it right. Then no more editing than you would do in a darkroom. Crop change the density ect. Those things have always been used and are traditional.

    If you have to produce a portrait and swaping heads and a ton of other things have to be done to satisfy a paying customer then by all means do them. So now we have two very different photo models to follow. One that is purely the art and pleasure of pure photography and one that is purely economically driven.

    Might as well be Walmart for number two but hey they make a lot of money. Back in the day, I used their lighting scheme in my studio and produced images about a couple of notches up from theirs. I hope my people and I related better so that I got better portraits that were always lit the same.

    So I think if you do so little that it doesn't substantially effect the outcome of the print you are okay with number one type prints.

    With number two, if they dont scream photoshop you are cool.
     
  10. DocFrankenstein

    DocFrankenstein Clinically Insane?

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2004
    Messages:
    1,646
    Likes Received:
    6
    I'm with mysteryscribe. For one, you can't argue against economics. If there are budget constraints for the client then photoshop all the way. Even for myself - if I get a particular image in mind and can shoot the background separately and the subject in front of a chromakey - then I'll do it. It's easier than dragging the right model to the location, with reflectors strobes and then waiting for a perfect weather.

    When you leave the economics out of it, I beleive photoshop is fair game. You can manipulate all you want and the controls you have are gorgeous.

    People who are starting out want to find out the boundaries of the program or just to experiment with an effect. So a poorly composed, improperly exposed picture becomes the raw material for "rescuing" in photoshop. A few filters are applied in the process. The end result is mediocre at best.

    On the other hand if you approact the abilities of photoshop like adams did - have a vision and pre-visualize the end result.... the flexibility and the power gives you new opportunities to express your vision.

    I don't have a vision to express right now, but if/when I get one I wouldn't want to limit myself by being just a photographer. If I can use photoshop to express myself.

    Label me a graphic designer, but I'm still an artist.
     
  11. astrostu

    astrostu Guest

    For webalbums and events, I generally want the object I'm trying to shoot to be as good as possible, where "good" generally means the colors look original, there's no yellowing due to crummy lighting, etc. With this in mind, I generally only play with auto-levels, -contrast, and -color in PS and leave it at that. But I have a friend who won't look at any picture of a sunset from me unless there was absolutely no editing, even if the editing "brings out" the colors more. So everyone has their own preference.

    I generally have a different perspective than most, though, since I do a lot of astrophotography. In astrophotography, we shoot in B&W with different color filters attached, process the images to take care of various effects, and then color-combine and adjust the heck out of the image to bring out all the detail possible.
     
  12. With all due respect, I find it to be a loaded divisive question. Everyone should be welcome to make their own creative choices, and to somehow feel that some person is "photoshopping" too much is somewhat condescending and elitist. If your particular version of photography is focused on the reproduction of unadulterated captured content then don't be mad if someone else uses an image as a foundation for creating something different and new. The question of whether there's such a thing as too much "photoshopping" is right up there with whether a long exposure is somehow cheating because it creates an image that wasn't really visible to the human eye.
     

Share This Page

Search tags for this page

how much is too much photoshop

,

never too much photoshop