to photoshop or not to photoshop?

Discussion in 'The Creative Corner' started by cswift1, Sep 14, 2005.

  1. cswift1

    cswift1 TPF Noob!

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    I hear a lot about how it's just not right to "manipulate" your photographs - in any way; filters, digital "adjustments", etc. Somehow the "purity" of the shot not only goes away but the photograph is now unreal in some way.

    I'm don't especially hold to that opinion.

    I'm more in the camp of: do whatever you want, whenever you want, to make your photograph more pleasing to yourself.

    Documentary photography is another matter. Manipulation here borders on a lie. But for art photography, anything goes. The point is to evoke a mood, thought, feeling - and whatever it takes to make that happen in fair game.

    Chris
    http://www.photography-abstracts.com
     
  2. PetersCreek

    PetersCreek TPF Noob!

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    The problem with this philosophy, as I see it, is that these folks are a bit capricious in their use of the words "manipulate" and "purity." I suspect that the limits of "purity" are defined by their methods and opinions. When the methods and opinions of others fall outside those limits, they judge them as impure. That's not necessarily bad, if practiced with good sense and good manners. We all have to define our art as we see it...but it shouldn't hold anyone else back from their own vision.

    I look at it this way: photography is the process of manipulating light and time, so naysaying additional manipulation is, well, silly. The camera will never capture what the human eye sees with complete fidelity, so that level of "purity" will be lost with every capture. Where, then, do you draw the purity line after that? Is using a fisheye lens okay? An extreme telephoto? I've never seen flowing water blur like it does in a photo made with a long exposure so is that real or unreal? Pure or impure? All are ways of manipulating the image since they enhance, distort, or filter what the all-too-human eye of the photographer could actually see at the time.

    If those methods are okay, why not filters, post-processing (dark room or digital), and the like? In my opinion, they are all tools in the creative process. Let the image speak for itself...and stand or fall on its own.
     
  3. cswift1

    cswift1 TPF Noob!

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    Many of the purests revere people like Ansel Adams for his work and yet all his images were "manipulated" - he used to go over his prints with a magnifying glass. Any little unwanted dots were painted out!

    I had an exhibition a few months ago here in Bangkok and one of the visitors asked, "Did you use Photoshop at all on this picture?"

    Discouraging, really. I was sure that if my answer were yes, he'd somehow think the photograph was not as "good". Anyway, my answer was "definitely", and left him to think what he would.

    Chris
     
  4. Meysha

    Meysha still being picky Vicky

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    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    This should probably go in the photographic discussion forum. But it has been discussed to death already.
    Everyone on this forum is very open to whatever you do I find. So long as you don't lie about what you did and try to pass off something you did in PS as 'real' film stuff or vice vs.

    I think of it in the same way you do cswift. It depends on the purpose of the photo. If it's going to be used in advertising or something that needs to be a factual representation then too much photoshopping is unethical, I beleive. But then what is too much photoshopping. It depends on what you're advertising etc as to how much photoshop is too much.

    However if your photography is just for art, which all of my stuff is, then I say do whatever you want to do to it... it's all part of the creative, artistic process... and so long as you don't lie about it, then anything goes imo. So it just depends on what the photo is being used for.
     

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