I am not dazzled by process.

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by simnine, Jan 30, 2004.

  1. simnine

    simnine TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2003
    Messages:
    127
    Likes Received:
    1
    Sure you can spend hours shooting multiple exposures and using some experimental development process to get a picture. It is good to know how to do these things in certain situations.

    What I do not understand is why some swear by doing things in overyly complicated ways. It seems foolish to me for someone to spend loads of time doing something one way when they can often do it faster and with better results by using a less complicated method.

    To me, the end result is ultimately the goal. It doesn't matter if they used some crazy elaborate method or photoshopped it up. If it looks good, it looks good and crap is still crap. That is how I see it at least.

    What's your take?
     
  2. terri

    terri Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2003
    Messages:
    25,334
    Likes Received:
    2,089
    Location:
    In the mental ward of this forum
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    I would agree with you fundamentally that if an image looks good - then an image looks good.

    Does it matter how you got there? That may be where we differ. I can't give the same kudos to some Photoshopped image that I do to someone who went out and captured the image - digital OR film, as long they employed basic photography skills. I have a real problem with treating cameras like point n shoots and then scurrying back to a computer and playing around with contrast, hue, saturation, etc., to get a good end result. But that's only because it's understanding PHOTOGRAPHY that I have the ultimate respect for. Just my opinion. Yes, you can reach a desired effect in Photoshop by technological manipulation. Does it mean you are a good photographer? No. It means you are good at this software program. Is there anything particularly wrong with that? Not really, I suppose. It's just my personal preference knowing that a good image was not manipulated, but captured by a photographer.

    Again - just my preference, my respect for the art of photography. For what it's worth. :wink:
     
  3. Josh

    Josh TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2004
    Messages:
    44
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'm with Terri.

    simnine,

    "Sure you can spend hours shooting multiple exposures and using some experimental development process to get a picture. It is good to know how to do these things in certain situations. "



    There are lots of ways to get difrent effects with photography and what you might fined is: the bigger the format the less you shoot. It is not practical for someone shooting larg format to bracket (shoot multiple exposures). It is more likely that you would expose one sheet of film and get it right the first time. One way that you can do this is with the zone system. I know lots of ppl don't care for it and I'm not saing this to start a dibate=).

    What I am saing is that, with exeriance, you can have a good idea of what the end result will look like befor prossesing. The better a photographer gets the less film they have to use.
     
  4. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2003
    Messages:
    7,021
    Likes Received:
    34
    Location:
    Lawrence, KS
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    If the end product is all that is important, then everyone should give up now, and just die, for it is inevitable. And no matter how good you are or ever will be, compared to the big picture, you are nothing. Does that sound depressing? Fortunately for us the means is very important. How you arrive at the end product and the path you take is just as important, probably more important, than the final product.

    When I look at art I often think about how the artist created the piece, and that influences my perceptions or the work greatly. If I get the impression that the work was done production style to save time it's going to get less respect from me than similar work that shows greater effort.

    I don't think that there are lots of examples of convenience increasing quality. I think that time, sweat, and effort often contribute positively, uniquely, and significantly to the end result. Complicated processes allow for more variation and potential for experimentation and growth. Working by formula is a recipe for stagnation, and boredom.

    I tote a big, heavy 4x5 press camera, a large tripod that can support it, the film fills a small cooler, and a regular sized back pack full of other gear out into the woods to take pics. It's physically exhausting, and most people running around in the world can't tell the difference between my photos and pics taken with an APS point-n-shoot (actually, I think it's that they won't take the time to really look and see). But I can tell, and every once in a while I run into other folks who see the difference, and that's why I do it the "old-fashioned" way. I know it's better for me. For most people the tripod alone is too much of a pain in the butt, let alone the cumbersome, ancient equipment. Whether or not they see the difference, I do.

    Very few things in life are actually made better overall by taking the easy way. It is easy and economical to make all furniture out of plastic, but I still prefer wood furniture; made by a craftsperson if I can afford it. Which is better? Different folks would have different answers. For me short cuts are for getting to the liquor store before it closes, not art or craft.

    If your only goal is value of the end product, then streamlining the process, making it quicker, easier, and more profitable may be a good strategy. If you want to be a rich photographer and have your photos known all over the world it's important to remember that a grainy, blurry, over enlarged photo of Britney Spears' left nipple is worth more $$$ and publicity than a museum full of work from the masters of fine art photography. You ever watch that show "Papparazzi"? That $10,000 DSLR doesn't make that guy a photographer; his photos are some of the worst you'll ever see. His skill is tracking people down, networking with his connections, and getting into places he's not supposed to be. And he'll make more this year than the greatest fine art photographer will make in their life.

    I do make some money on photography, and I'd like to make more, but the reasons I enjoy photography encompass more than just nice photos. I am proud of my photographs, but my fascination and enjoyment of the entire process is what drives me. While I find Adobe PS to be a wonderful and powerful tool, I don't find sitting at the computer tweaking files anywhere near as interesting as working in the darkroom. That's just my flavor.
     
  5. Dew

    Dew TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2003
    Messages:
    1,688
    Likes Received:
    0
    my hubby teaches me to get what i want in the original photo (and im not perfect yet) ... for me, sometimes photoshop is necessary to save a photo ... but these days, its mostly for resizing images ... im still working on getting what i want in the original ... its a learning process ... but i'll be there some day ... i have Drill Sgt. Härtel over here :lol: ... if nothing else .. he'll make sure i dont take the easy way out, or he'll die trying :lol:

    on the other hand, i like digital art (i dont do any myself) ... but i like the style of it ... im sure every photographer has a uniqueness about them that makes them special...

    i watched the hubby produce a catalog for a large company and the medium format negs he got were a mess with a blue tint all over them :? .. he had to fix it (from this so called top dollar proessional photographer) ... but they needed this catalog so he had to "photoshop" them.... after that, he was convinced that i could have done it better (not that im a pro, but i do a lot of studio stuff and u learn from trial and error) ... so sometimes, what's necessary is necessary :?
     
  6. Josh

    Josh TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2004
    Messages:
    44
    Likes Received:
    0
    Matt just gained 20 cool points
     
  7. simnine

    simnine TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2003
    Messages:
    127
    Likes Received:
    1
    I agree with "get it right the first time". The less touch up work, the better.

    I am also not saying that you should go out and photoshop an effect into your photo because you can. What I am saying is that technology is making some things easier, faster and higher quality. Sticking to old methods for sake of tradition is admirable in a sense, but if there is a better way to get a better looking photo, why not use it?

    I stick by my "end result" opinion though. Sure, it is interesting to know how someone got an image to look just so, but you are still seeing the same image no matter what process is described to you. The fact that someone would have a lower opinion of my photo because I said it was "photoshopped" is just silly to me. If I were to do something during the development process to get the same results, it would be held in higher opinion by some. I think people are just tainted by the garbage that has been put out because everyone can access some kind of digital image editting software. Not everyone has access to a darkroom, so there is kind of an elitist thing happening there as well. That's just the way I see things.

    I am not attacking anyone for using different methods. If I think your work looks good, i'll like it no matter how you got it (unless you ripped it off :p).
     
  8. motcon

    motcon TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2003
    Messages:
    1,410
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    usa. soon to be a euro boy.
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    ksmattfish; you gave me goose bumps. wonderfully written.


    news flash: the process does matter.

    acrylic or oils?
    watercolor or gouache?
    pencil or charcoal?

    and on and on....

    the process has always mattered in the world of art. it has never mattered in the 'the end justifies the means' scenarios (product shots, glamour shots, snapshots, etc.), but it has always mattered to those that know the difference.

    an individual that recently bought a lith print of mine that i recently sold to him requested to see the negative before he actually purchased it.

    the process has always mattered since the inception of 'art'. i have my preference of process, but it's not relevant here. what is relevant is that history, as well as contemporary selection and thought, bears out the truth that process does matter.

    take a read through art history. take note as to why methods changed. take note as to why some methods are still desirable after centuries of practice.

    to do a regression analysis, start here:

    http://www.bauhaus.de/

    a contemporary process and thought of 'art'. then go back through time to stone carvings. there has always been a lean on process.

    the message? the process matters. the suggestion? do what you want. it's that simple.
     
  9. motcon

    motcon TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2003
    Messages:
    1,410
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    usa. soon to be a euro boy.
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    k, that one just took grip of me. mostly b/c i just beat the closing by 9 minutes tonight......

    ....and i'm feelin' fine.
     
  10. Kent Frost

    Kent Frost TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2004
    Messages:
    572
    Likes Received:
    21
    Location:
    Springfield, MO USA
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    There are no rules as long as you understand the basics and are able to approach a project and come out the way you were hoping to. Each person may develop their own technique to produce results like that....and that's exactly what sets good artists apart from GREAT artists. A good artist is one who can understand the basics, use them, and become good at using them. But a great artist is one who experiments to find results that were previously unknown to them.

    Who cares how you get there? JUST GET THERE!!!!
     
  11. mrsid99

    mrsid99 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2003
    Messages:
    2,964
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Florida
    And just think what you'd make with a pic of her right nipple!

    All kidding aside, Matt is absolutely correct in all respects and the bottom line is what you personally are looking for.
     
  12. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2003
    Messages:
    7,021
    Likes Received:
    34
    Location:
    Lawrence, KS
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    And if you could get both in one photo....
     

Share This Page