Lately I have been reading a lot of articles on photography and one of the contentious issues that always seems to froth to the top is the issue of whether or not photo editing using Photoshop or Lightroom is considered “cheating”.
There are a lot of purist photographers out there who seem to look down their noses and snarl at anyone who wanders down the dirty path of photo editing… (lets not even get into digital art and photo manipulation!)
You’ll hear them pronounce “I don’t edit! I don’t even crop!” like it’s a badge of honour somehow and all those who do edit are somehow incompetent.
I find this quite amazing really when you consider that photography is all about presenting a scene and asking the viewer to have a response to that scene.
That is what it is. “Please look and feel something.”
Just as you would tidy the house and make it a bit more presentable for visitors, why would you NOT do that with photography? After all artists seal and glaze and frame and do all kinds of things to give their artwork that polished final effect. Musical artists record their work and it goes through a whole list of processes which result in the final ear candy that reaches you on CD or on the radio.
Hey and I’m not talking about the way overdone cinching in of waists, creating bubble butts and airbrushing models till they look like plastic dolls, but for goodness sakes photo editing programs like photoshop are simply tools – just as the camera is.
How far you take it is your business but to me, it’s not cheating. I don’t think so.
If done well it can take an ordinary picture to an amazing picture – or at least a MUCH better picture, and THAT is a skill in and of itself!
I read the other day someone’s comment which said something like.
“It’s those that criticize the harshest that haven’t got the foggiest idea how to use Photoshop.”
Maybe? Who knows?
I understand the contention. Truly I do.
There is a lot of work that goes into learning how a camera works (I’ve still got a heck of a lot to learn!) and how to work with light and angles and composition and leading lines and the rule of thirds and ….oh my, the list goes on.
I envy the highly technical people who work with very tricky situations and create some outstanding work in camera… Hats off to them!
But to me, it’s still about “Please look and feel something.”
Bottom line, it’s about the final image…. Your vision as the photographer…however you get there.
And on that note….I’ve been playing again
I’m really finding this style of merging photographic images to be so satisfyingly creative.
It’s scratching a creative itch! AND…there’s no glue involved!
Here’s a few I’ve been dabbling with.
The first one is a photo that Shai took of her brothers eye. I had her permission to go to town on it editing wise. “Eye catching” it’s called.
This next one is titled – “Beyond or back?” A dark one with room for interpretation.
This one….”The nature of reflection.”
And the final much quieter one…
what beautiful work )
Thank you Beth 🙂 All experimental at this point.
Awesome work … I crop … hard to center a flower when the wind is blowing …
You are definitely getting better … keep exploring …
Love, hugs and Happy New Year … ME and the Boss
Thank you 🙂 Ah yes, the wind. It can be your friend and your foe.
Lovely pictures ! More like paintings ! ❤
Thanks Ralph, Yes they are more like paintings 🙂
Most of the people who say these sorts of things are also ignorant of the fact that photoshop is just a digital version of a darkroom. Photomanipulation existed long before photoshop did, and there were many photographers who did exactly that. It isn’t good or bad – it’s just creating, no matter what the physical medium.
Their work will suffer for not understanding these things. Digital cameras as a general rule take photos as their “best” and by best I mean the most evenly lit and toned. They are processed by your camera with the expectation that you will edit them – because let’s be honest here, you, the photographer, are smarter than that camera. Most need a boost of contrast and saturation, at the very least.
Thanks for your comment. I totally agree. “digital darkroom” – I like that. 🙂