Editing, a bad thing?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Skiiandme, Dec 16, 2016.

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What is editing for you?

  1. Editing is essential fro photography

    18 vote(s)
    72.0%
  2. Editing Shows lack of Skill

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. None of the two above choices

    4 vote(s)
    16.0%
  4. In between the first two choices

    3 vote(s)
    12.0%
  1. Skiiandme

    Skiiandme TPF Noob!

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    Hi! I'm a newbie photographer. No background in photography. I only do self study, and so far I learned to balance ISO, Aperture, and Shutter Speed. I do get good photos (I think), and I learned from previous thread that I created, to appreciate the limits of my gear and use it to its full extent.

    I am not that skilled, so sometimes....I mean most of the time, I compensate my lack of skill and limitations of my gear with editing. I enjoy editing the photos I took. It's like the unedited photo is a beautiful woman's face, and the editing is the make-up to get the best result. I mostly like to play around using dodge and burn.

    For professional photographers out there, Is editing a bad thing? Does editing your photo show that you are a bad photographer and have no skills? or is editing essential to Photography? or in between?



    Below are 2 sets if sample of an unedited photo and an edited photo, respectively.
    DSC_0162v2.jpg Beach Time!v2.jpg
    DSC_0244.JPG DSC_0244v7.jpg


     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2016
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  2. photo1x1.com

    photo1x1.com TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    In my opinion, editing can make a great image awesome. Sometimes you just can´t get it right in camera for various reasons.
    That said, for my taste your edit is "a bit" overdone ;) . Do you shoot RAW? What do you use for editing?

    A tip: when shooting, try to think about what you want to tell with your image, If the time on your watch was the time of your birth, or of the birth of your child, etc. that´s great, but other than that 27 past 2 is not a great number ;) . 5 to 12, etc. would be. You can also use the motion of the second hand. Set the shutter speed longer (that would also help you to reduce noise a bit) and let the second hand move during your shot. I hope you understand what I mean.
     
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  3. john.margetts

    john.margetts No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I think most photographers realise that processing is essential for finessing an image. The problems come when an unskilled photographer uses processing to replace photography skills. My personal attitude is that if I cannot finesse an image in very few steps, I need to delete and reshoot. Of course, reshooting is not always possible/feasible, in which case knowing how to process is valuable.
     
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  4. john.margetts

    john.margetts No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Note: I used the term 'processing' rather than 'editing' as processing is completing the image while editing is changing the image.
     
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  5. Skiiandme

    Skiiandme TPF Noob!

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    I see. Hmm....so I should improve my skills rather than relying on processing. Thanks! I've learned something new.
     
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  6. Skiiandme

    Skiiandme TPF Noob!

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    - Not everyone sees the picture the same way, I'm open to criticism :)
    - Nope I don't use raw, I set it to fine.
    - The photo tells about a watch that is on a beach (I can't afford to go on a trip to a real beach. haha). I guess the sunny beach isn't quite obvious on this photo.
    - Yes, yes. I do understand what you mean. I would gladly take your advises.
     
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  7. photo1x1.com

    photo1x1.com TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    I like your attitude ;). Do use RAW next time. You'll be surprised about how much more you can do with a raw file.
     
  8. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Digital photo editing is neither good nor bad. It is simply a capability we didn't have in the film days. It adds to the tools available to the photographer.

    Using it requires skill just like operating a camera. You have a good example of that in the two images. The unedited image is underexposed. Poor camera operation. The edited image is overexposed, has too much contrast and displays blown out highlights. Poor editing skills.

    Any tool can be used well or poorly. It doesn't make the tool good or bad.
     
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  9. Skiiandme

    Skiiandme TPF Noob!

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    Oh.. I get it, you are saying that editing and camera operating are merely tools, as long as you get the photo that's what counts. It's in line with my opinion :)

    P.S Now I know I still have a lot to work on both in camera operating and editing. But I'm sure I'll get the hang of it in time.
     
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  10. Gary A.

    Gary A. Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I've been doing this stuff for a long, long time, decades. I don't know any photographer who does not process/manipulate their photos. Even in the film only days, every handmade image had some sort of manipulation.

    If your desire is to be a photographer, then you strive to "get it right in the camera". Getting it right to me, means minimal post processing.

    If you desire to be a digital artist, then the capture is merely the starting point for maximum manipulation in post processing.

    I think most of us are somewhere in between using the tools we have (camera and computer) in order to attain the final image.

    When I purchased my first dSLR, I got lazy. Being a lazy person anyway, it doesn't take much to get me unmotivated. I quickly found myself thinking, "Ahhh ... that's good enough, I can fix it in post." For me, it was a slippery slope and the overall quality of my images started falling into the realm of 'good enough'. That isn't the photographer or the person that I desire to be. So now I am striving to get it as right as possible in the camera. In the film-only days and at the height of my skill level, I printed full-frame, no cropping. If the horizon was off or there was a distracting element in the frame, the image never got printed. I am working to attain that skill level again.

    In summary, (lol), I believe that working to get it right in the camera, working to minimize post manipulation(s) will make you a better photographer. Being a better photographer means that you will have greater consistency (more keepers) and that you will be capable of recognizing and capturing the exceptional image every time you pick up the camera.
     
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  11. KmH

    KmH In memoriam Supporting Member

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    Back in the day people took there film in to the 'photo finishing lab' to have the film developed and prints made.
    The film lab did basic editing (photo finishing) for the customer.

    However, the less post production editing you can get away with the better, so the #1 goal should be to get it as close to right in the camera as you can. But, pretty much every photo will benefit from some basic edits.

    Many of the editing tasks we do to digital photos today using computers are edits that were done by hand in the wet darkroom to make prints from film.
    Dodge, burn, sharpen, adjust color, crop, remove unwanted subjects, add subjects, and lots more.

    Ansel Adams, a famous American photographer, was particularly skilled producing prints of his photographs in the darkroom.
    As he or others developed new darkroom editing techniques Adams sometimes re-printed some of his iconic photos using the new techniques.
    The newer prints have a different look to them.

     
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  12. otherprof

    otherprof TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Just a general thought: Ansel Adams said, "Photography gives us a chance to correct God's tonal mistakes." The goal is the image. I think it would be interesting to provide a number of photographers with the same file or negative straight from the camera and see the different images they produced.
     
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