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Thread started 18 Mar 2015 (Wednesday) 08:41
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The Creative Vision Hoax in Nature Photography

 
joedlh
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Mar 21, 2015 17:02 |  #31

davebreal wrote in post #17485011 (external link)
If you printed a photo of an enhanced cloud versus one using a standard picture style and mounted them to appear as false windows.

In a blind study of 100 participants, how many viewers might think the enhanced cloud was reality?

You completely missed my point, which was that the memory of what the viewer saw might match the enhanced photo. I'm not sure how much more I can emphasize that point without making the text look obnoxious. You're talking about what the person perceives in the moment. They're two different things.


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Mar 21, 2015 17:55 as a reply to  @ post 17485568 |  #32

While we wait for the OP's reply (to Tom's question) - some thoughts on the question of "what does Creative Vision really mean"?

https://themofman.word​press.com …ughts-on-creative-vision/ (external link)


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Mar 21, 2015 18:08 |  #33

Yes, people actually DO see rather differently. I personally have problems with colour balance in photos because I see slightly into what is normally considered IR. Photos of most things on a computer screen, or in print, simply don't look like what I see in nature. Why? Because cameras do not accurately record the very near IR levels the same way as I see them, and computer screens do not project such colours in a controlled manner.

If I were to sit here and edit a photo so that my monitor appears to display something that looks reasonably close to how I actually see it for colours, then most people would look at the real object and think it looks nothing at all like what is shown on the screen.

That said, I do agree that some people make really poor decisions with HDR processing.


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Mar 21, 2015 18:59 |  #34

WaltA wrote in post #17485695 (external link)
While we wait for the OP's reply (to Tom's question) - some thoughts on the question of "what does Creative Vision really mean"?

https://themofman.word​press.com …ughts-on-creative-vision/ (external link)

Among that writer's top ten answers, #s 6, 5, and 4 come closest to what I try to do and what often moves me about others' images.

6 “My idea of photographic/creative vision is the task/skill of expressing to others what you have taken particular interest in when looking at something. Sharing your unique perspective of the world.” – Mathew Wilthone T.

5 “Photographic vision to me is showing people the extraordinary, and suddenly have them realize it’s the beauty of the ordinary that’s all around them . . . if they only took the time to notice it.” – Emilio J. D’Alise

4 “For me it’s all about bringing everyday things to life, and making the ordinary extraordinary.” – Richard Cooper-Knight

Achieving these objectives has much to do with framing and with snapping at the right moment. It has nothing to do with bumping up the saturation or substituting a different sky to get nicer clouds.


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Mar 21, 2015 19:07 as a reply to  @ OhLook's post |  #35

The thing that caught my eye in that blog (and the reason why I posted it here) is that those answers presumably represent a wide spectrum of photographers and in some cases their interpretation of "Creative Vision" is very different.

Tom made the comment that he thought the OP was "mis-interpreting what the term "creative vision" means."

I would suggest that there is no standard meaning for the term.
It stands for whatever you need to do to make your photos best reflect what you are trying to photographically articulate.

For some it means good composition. For others it means HDR. For others - everything in between.


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davebreal
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Mar 22, 2015 06:09 |  #36

Tom Reichner wrote in post #17485515 (external link)
I am still wondering why the OP included a photo in his initial post. I see that he has re-visited the thread, but he never answered my question.

NO correlation. I originally made this a blog post, and it needed a photo. It's a random upload that I took.


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Mar 22, 2015 06:18 |  #37

Tom Reichner wrote in post #17485568 (external link)
Dave,

I think that maybe, just maybe, you are mis-interpreting what the term "creative vision" means. It has little to do with what a photographer actually sees with his/her eyes. It has mostly to do with what the photographer sees in his/her mind's eye. In other words, it is about what the photographer/artist imagines.

I thought that the meaning of "creative vision" was commonly understood to be what someone imagines, but after reading your comments, I think that maybe you mistakenly thought it had to do with what is actually seen physically with the eye.

Could you please respond to this post, and explain to me what your understanding of the term is - what you think it means?

I know very well what Creative Vision means... I was in advanced placement english in school for no lack of cognitive ability. My point is that many modern-day photo enthusiasts will look you straight in the eye and tell you that their personal Creative Vision or style is only fulfilled by unrealistic yet cliched post-processing. If the Nik Plug-in Suite was never created, would these individuals have no Creative Vision?

Also, as the title of my post implies, claiming that unrealistic post-processing is how a person "saw" a scene is a poorly phrased and often abused statement.

Instead of stating my "creative vision" saw the scene this way, why not phrase it more accurately?

"I thought I could spice it up by adding intense contrast using software plug-ins."

"The straight out of camera shot would receive little attention so I tried to improve it."

"I use heavy post-processing on my photos to get more views on social media."


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Mar 22, 2015 09:59 |  #38

davebreal wrote in post #17486323 (external link)
I know very well what Creative Vision means... I was in advanced placement [E]nglish in school for no lack of cognitive ability.

Greetings, fellow wordfreak! I've toiled in the publishing industry all my working life for no lack of facility with language, and it seems to me that "creative" and "vision" are rubbery words, very stretchy. People drop them into artist's statements to mean this, that, and the other thing--and perhaps to sound impressive without meaning anything at all. When those two words are combined, you can get quite a range of meanings. The page at WaltA's link illustrates this diversity. Knowing what "creative vision" means to you doesn't necessarily include knowing what the phrase means to Person X who uses it to describe his or her work.


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Mar 22, 2015 11:43 as a reply to  @ davebreal's post |  #39

Except that you are assuming that those are the only three reasons for heavy post processing (or non-realistic/surrealistic​).

Black and white isn't realistic, and converting that color photo often involves heavy processing. However, I can take a photo with no intention of it every being a color image. As I do more b/w I can even begin to know what kind of process I will use on it.

While some photographers may take a decent photo and play with the sliders until they like it, I am not convinced that no one takes these pictures with an idea of the non-realistic treatment they are going to give it. I have a friend who absolutely loves overdone HDR / surrealist art. Every photo he takes, he intends it to go through that process when he clicks the shutter. His reasoning is none of your "truthful" answers.


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Mar 22, 2015 13:34 |  #40

davebreal wrote in post #17486323 (external link)
I know very well what Creative Vision means... I was in advanced placement english in school for no lack of cognitive ability. My point is that many modern-day photo enthusiasts will look you straight in the eye and tell you that their personal Creative Vision or style is only fulfilled by unrealistic yet cliched post-processing. If the Nik Plug-in Suite was never created, would these individuals have no Creative Vision?

Also, as the title of my post implies, claiming that unrealistic post-processing is how a person "saw" a scene is a poorly phrased and often abused statement.

Instead of stating my "creative vision" saw the scene this way, why not phrase it more accurately?

"I thought I could spice it up by adding intense contrast using software plug-ins."

"The straight out of camera shot would receive little attention so I tried to improve it."

"I use heavy post-processing on my photos to get more views on social media."

I don’t really hang out with other photographers, so I reckon I’ve been deprived the pleasure of hearing “creative vision” bandied about with unrestrained vigor.

On POTN and other photography sites, the word “vision” is, of course, frequently used in various context, though usually referring to more than one’s literal optical abilities. Consequently, when ‘vision’ is cited, there’s a general understanding that it refers to one’s aesthetic perspective or visual style.

Now, are some folks abusing the term to vindicate reliance on hackneyed post processing techniques? I don’t know, but I would have to consider the matter on an individual basis before denouncing a whole swath of photographers.

Nik plug-ins and other post processing techniques, of which some have been around for nearly two centuries, allow for different interpretations that are, in the end, all legitimate as the other (even if annoying or overused).

If one of these techniques happens to actually suite one’s vision, then who are we to question this so adamantly? Would they be able to express such “vision” if these techniques did not exist? No, but that’s irrelevant, since they do exist. Lucky them in all of the resultant cliched glory!

And after all, even straight-out-of-camera shots involve manipulative parameters: sharpness, saturation, contrast, and so on…

Now, I don’t doubt that pretentious pontifications are sometimes used to explain one’s dubious creation, but who are you to say that, in the more abstract sense, one did not “see” the scene in a manner that extends beyond strict photojournalistic standards.

Pre-visualization is an important part of photography, and this often refers to what’s floating in the mind more so than what is so cleanly mirrored in the eyeballs. I shoot black & white. I literally see in color, but I’ll often pre-visualize in monochrome. Nothing too complicated here.

I reckon you already realize most of this, so then this all falls back more on false representation rather than any specific words used to cover up the deception. But even here, as you noted, such flagrant manipulation inherently reveals such culpability, so how significant is the actual need for a disclaimer.

Moreover, your suggested disclaimers basically seek some sort of shamed confession, that the photographer admit to using preternatural enhancements to burnish an otherwise subpar photograph, cater to the lowest denominator, or both.

To be sure, these reasons are probably true in a number of cases. Yet, perhaps when the photographer remarks on “creative vision” or the like, he or she is explaining why he or she depicted the photo as such rather than trying to cover up any post processing wrangling (which is largely conspicuous anyway, right). Just a thought.

And of course, some of the most mendaciously manipulative photos are the ones that do look natural, without anyone really aware that a certain official had been airbrushed out, or that the words on a protestor’s sign were photoshopped to express a contradictory view. Even more troubling are photos that remain untouched but are accompanied by a false narrative for propagandistic purposes.


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Mar 22, 2015 13:54 |  #41

davebreal wrote in post #17486323 (external link)
My point is that many modern-day photo enthusiasts will look you straight in the eye and tell you that their personal Creative Vision or style is only fulfilled by unrealistic yet cliched post-processing.

...I don't think you will find a single photographer out there who has stated "their personal Creative Vision or style is only fulfilled by unrealistic yet cliched post-processing." "Unrealistic" and "Cliched" are your subjective opinions on other photographers work. Since you've posted your work in this thread: would you object to critique?


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Tom ­ Reichner
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Mar 22, 2015 20:25 |  #42

davebreal wrote in post #17486323 (external link)
My point is that many modern-day photo enthusiasts will look you straight in the eye and tell you that their personal Creative Vision or style is only fulfilled by.......post-processing.


Well, yeah. I mean, if I see a really cool cliff face, and I imagine some Bighorn rams poised precariously on the cliff's edge, then how am I supposed to fulfill my creative photographic vision - especially if no Bighorn Sheep live in the area? I would have to use heavy post-processing in order to fulfill my creative vision, wouldn't I? This is because I would have to take one photo, of sheep, and combine it with the other photo, of the cliff.

Likewise, what if I see some trees that look really cool in silhouette view......and then I imagine how neat they would look against a background of flaming sunset or sunrise colors. But the problem is that the trees are in the bottom of a ravine that never sees sunlight until mid-day. In order to photographically fulfill my creative vision, I would have to use post-processing and combine two images. And I may have to bump the colors way up - GOD FORBID - using a slider - in order to achieve the extremely vibrant colors that I imagined in my mind's eye.

davebreal wrote in post #17486323 (external link)
the Nik Plug-in Suite was never created, would these individuals have no Creative Vision?

No, quite the opposite. We have the vision in our mind's eye first, then we use the editing software to try to replicate what we see in our imagination. The vision comes first, then the processing is used to try to fulfill that vision.

davebreal wrote in post #17486323 (external link)
, as the title of my post implies, claiming that unrealistic post-processing is how a person "saw" a scene is a poorly phrased and often abused statement.

Instead of stating my "creative vision" saw the scene this way, why not phrase it more accurately?

"I thought I could spice it up by adding intense contrast using software plug-ins."

"The straight out of camera shot would receive little attention so I tried to improve it."

"I use heavy post-processing on my photos to get more views on social media."

I probably wouldn't word it the way you suggest because that wouldn't be true. If I had editing software that was capable of doing advanced stuff (such as Photoshop or Lightroom), I would use it to create what I first saw in my mind's eye (a.k.a. imagination). My reason for using the post-processing would be that I had this creative vision and I wanted to express it by creating what I had imagined. So I would be one of the people that you seem to be blasting in your posts. But for me it would be the truth.

Please let me explain, however, that I do not have any advanced editing software, nor the skills required to use it. I am just arguing this point on behalf of those who do, and those who use it the way I would use it if I had the ability to do so.


"Your" and "you're" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"They're", "their", and "there" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"Fare" and "fair" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one. The proper expression is "moot point", NOT "mute point".

  
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Mar 23, 2015 06:32 |  #43

Tom Reichner wrote in post #17487309 (external link)
No, quite the opposite. We have the vision in our mind's eye first, then we use the editing software to try to replicate what we see in our imagination. The vision comes first, then the processing is used to try to fulfill that vision.

Will photographers then "see" differently when new software is released?

I reckon that our sight has not changed much since the evolution of homo sapiens. Is that an extreme literal interpretation of phrasing? Yes.


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Mar 23, 2015 08:14 |  #44

davebreal wrote in post #17487827 (external link)
Will photographers then "see" differently when new software is released?

I reckon that our sight has not changed much since the evolution of homo sapiens. Is that an extreme literal interpretation of phrasing? Yes.

Actually there are fairly strong indications that perception of our visual world is strongly influenced by language. We have examples of some rather weird phrasing in history for blue colours until fairly recently, and we have examples of people from areas with languages that have a wide range of very precise words for colours within a given range are better able to pick out small variations in colour compared to people who have a language which is less descriptive towards those colours.


If someone develops the ability to see differently than their peers, and develop a method to express what they are seeing, then they are able to effectively 'teach' others to see in a similar fashion.


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Mar 23, 2015 08:30 as a reply to  @ Luckless's post |  #45

davebreal wrote in post #17487827 (external link)
Actually there are fairly strong indications that perception of our visual world is strongly influenced by language.

No. Maybe 30 years ago. But the Sapir–Whorf hypothesis is generally disregarded today. See: http://en.wikipedia.or​g/wiki/Linguistic_rela​tivity (external link).


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