pleb1024 wrote in post #10550266
Between the two photos - without looks better to me.
Am I the only one left that leaves photos alone? If there were clouds, then there were clouds. If not, then no clouds.
Well, here's the way I see it. To me, it's not about what I take with the camera, it's about the final print. The truth of the matter is that many, if not most good photographers have "altered" their own images for years. Long before programs such as Photoshop, many people used to do "comps" in the dark room...and there's nothing wrong with that at all. In this day and age, it's really no different with Photoshop accept that it's just easier, faster and less messy.
In my opinion, there are two approaches to photography once you get past the snap shot...that of the "photojournalist" and that of the "artist". The job of a photojournalist is to "represent the truth of the event" and to portray it in a factual way. Now please understand, I -do- have a very deep respect for photojournalism...my father worked as a printer for the Cleveland Plain Dealer for over 40 years of his life. It's something I grew up with. That said however, I'm an artist. To me it's not about trying to document something as accurately as possible with a camera, it's about the "art" that comes out at the end. As such, I do whatever I feel I need to do and I use whatever tools I have available to create the work that I do.
To me it's not about who can capture the most accurate image with a camera and it's not about who can output their work the fastest...it's about how I (and hopefully others) feel about my final prints. To better illustrate my point, here's a couple of shots of mine...
Now I took this shot of this beautiful guy at a Smoky Mountains Exhibition at a local nature center a few years back. The Coyote was of course in a cage and from my window perspective there was simply NO WAY to avoid getting the cage in the shot. To me however, the cage looked nasty and very unnatural...it most certainly did NOT add anything to an otherwise nice image of a Coyote. In this case, the brush in the background was taken of a bush in my own back yard....I had about 4 or 5 hours worth of work in to this one. Now for some folks it wouldn't be worth it but to me, I -know- I'll never get a shot of a Coyote in the wild that's this good, so absolutely it was worth it.
Consider this...I have this shot displayed at an exhibition and the general public is looking at it, generally speaking they're aren't sitting there saying "oh...it sucks because he must have Photoshoped that picture...". People see this shot framed and hanging on a wall and they either like it or they don't (and since I've sold a few copies of it, I'm guessing that at least some people like it). They don't care how
I took it, they don't care what camera or lens I used, they don't care what I may or may not have done to the image afterward, they just know whether they think it's a pretty shot or not...and in the end, that's the -only- thing that counts. The same thing goes for this next shot...
This is a shot of my folks Golden Retriever, "Lady". In the original shot, she was actually sitting in front of my Dad's minivan and had a big silver bumper growing out the sides of her head. I had taken SEVERAL other pictures that day...without the bumper...but this was the pose that my parents liked. Since I was doing this for them as a Xmas present, I wanted the image to be as nice as possible...and the van bumper really didn't add anything at all to the pic. This shot is of course framed and hanging on my parents living room wall...they don't care what
I did to this image or how
I did it, they just know that they love this shot!
Now clearly if I were "documenting a fire" or some other new event that were to be published in a magazine or new paper or something, I would -NOT- do what I do, the way I do it...again that is a very different type of photography. However that's simply NOT what I do and as such, there's absolutely no reason for me to limit myself in that way at all. Why should one so completely limit one's creativity like that? The image I create is still mine...the initial picture was taken by me, the work was done by me...why is that a problem?
Some people seem to think that editing, adjusting or even creating your images in Photoshop is some how "cheating" and it's not. Again photographers and artist have been "creating" images in darkrooms for years using many of the same methods used today in programs such as Photoshop. Hell...the late, great Ansel Adams invented half the techniques we use in Photoshop today...would you really consider Adams "a cheater"? Further, I grew up with film photography and most of what I do in Photoshop I -can- do in a dark room...again here the difference is that it's faster, easier and much less messy. It's not cheating, it's simply a matter of using the tools that are available to you and Photoshop is a wonderful and very powerful tool.
Think of it this way...a carpenter -can- build something using a basic hand saw and basic tools but isn't it MUCH easier to use a good, modern power saw? Unless you're Amish, what's the point in doing things the hard way when you really don't need to at all?
You seem to take pride in that your images are "the way they came off the camera"...and that's fine. To me however, I use whatever tools I have at my disposal to create the best images that I can...nothing more and nothing less. Again, it's not about what I take with the camera, it's about what I print...and I try to print the best images that I possibly can. That said, please don't look down your nose at people who choose to do more and be more creative than simply using their camera...the camera is simply -one- of the tools that some of us use to create our art.
"It is horrifying that we have to fight our own government to save the environment. " - Ansel Adams
Walczak Photography - www.walczakphoto.izfree.com