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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre General Photography Talk 
Thread started 11 Jan 2016 (Monday) 13:05
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Where will photography be in 20 years?

 
mannetti21
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Jan 11, 2016 13:05 |  #1

I had this conversation with a friend as we were driving around to different antique shops looking for old film cameras. Our general consensus was that digital photography seems headed for a plateau in the relatively near future. Sure, sensors will continue to advance in ISO and dynamic range performance, AF systems will become more and more accurate, and lenses will show less and less flaws...but considering what the current technology is capable of, what real difference will it make? Just for example, lets take a look at lens sharpness. Is any modern, "mid-grade" lens not sharp enough already? Heck, we now have a $150 50mm that is plenty sharp even wide open.

What room is there for improvement that will actually change photography in a significant way? This conversation came up because we were laughing about having tens of thousands of dollars of digital equipment between the two of us, and here we are looking for film equipment that, by any quantitative measure, is going to produce an inferior end result. Ironically, part of the reason we've started playing with film is to achieve images with a fresh look.

So what is next for photography? Are we headed back to film, continued slow advances in the same old tech specs, or is something entirely new going to come into play?


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groundloop
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Jan 11, 2016 13:36 |  #2

I read an article several months ago (can't remember where) which talked about sensor/lens combinations being developed where we could actually change the focus in post-processing, much the way that we now can easily manipulate exposure with a single slider in Lightroom. THAT would be pretty revolutionary, I believe.




  
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Jon
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Jan 11, 2016 13:41 |  #3

There are at least three "revolutionary, not evolutionary" concepts either now available or in start-up mode. The Lytro (external link) offers photographers the ability to change focus point and DoF as part of their post-processing. Then there's the Light.co (external link) multi-lens/multi-focal length camera which promises high resolution and high ISO performance with low noise, and variable zoom within the camera's design limits in something little bigger than a cell phone. And several companies are working on cameras capable of real-time capture of 3D VR still and video images a la Google Streets.


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Tedder
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Jan 11, 2016 13:51 |  #4

I believe that people's attitudes will have a greater influence on the future of photography than will technological advancement.


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Jan 11, 2016 13:58 |  #5

You'll be able to look at a scene, think "CAPTURE-settings 3-CAPTURENOW" & the file will be waiting in your dropbox. ; )


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Jan 11, 2016 14:02 |  #6

Film, wet plates, instant film and digital are not superior or inferior to each other. They are different. You could have digital equipment for ten of thousands dollars, but your photography might remain inferior to some snapshot taken by school kid with instant camera.
And what concerns OP in terms of the gear it has nothing to do with photography and its future. Photography will be here as long as people with this vision are around:
"I photograph to find out what something will look like photographed". Garry Winogrand.

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Jon
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Jan 11, 2016 14:04 |  #7

PhotosGuy wrote in post #17854069 (external link)
You'll be able to look at a scene, think "CAPTURE-settings 3-CAPTURENOW" & the file will be waiting in your dropbox. ; )

Ken Rockwell's had that for years! :{)#


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Jan 11, 2016 14:08 |  #8

IMAGE: http://img12.deviantart.net/fda1/i/2004/11/3/e/rim_shot_emoticon.gif

FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
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Jan 11, 2016 14:08 |  #9

PhotosGuy wrote in post #17854069 (external link)
You'll be able to look at a scene, think "CAPTURE-settings 3-CAPTURENOW" & the file will be waiting in your dropbox. ; )

I only want that if they can fix my eyes! I have floaters, and that would be real bad from a photographic point of view. Oh and of course please find some way to incorporate the eq of a 600mm focal length, or would I still need to use a good pair of binos/spotting scope?:)

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mannetti21
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Jan 11, 2016 14:11 |  #10

Jon wrote in post #17854047 (external link)
There are at least three "revolutionary, not evolutionary" concepts either now available or in start-up mode. The Lytro (external link) offers photographers the ability to change focus point and DoF as part of their post-processing. Then there's the Light.co (external link) multi-lens/multi-focal length camera which promises high resolution and high ISO performance with low noise, and variable zoom within the camera's design limits in something little bigger than a cell phone. And several companies are working on cameras capable of real-time capture of 3D VR still and video images a la Google Streets.

Being able to change your settings in post would be pretty remarkable. Something else that came up was that technology, to some extent, is taking away some of the challenge and satisfaction of creating an amazing image. There is so much more room for error in the digital world. Imagine simply pressing the shutter button with the camera pointed at a scene and then applying a Landscape Preset in Lightroom that gives you infinite DOF, ni motion blur, as much or as little grain as you want, and calculates optimal sharpening and color saturations. That can't possibly give you the same sense of accomplishment of having to get it right in camera while on location.


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gjl711
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Jan 11, 2016 14:31 |  #11

I'm guessing that still photography as we know it today will be gone replaced by frame grabs from a video stream. 4k video is all over the place today and 8k is just behind. An 8k image covers just about anything that will be needed on any display device. Heck, might even have 16k or 32k by then. So, we all walk around with our streaming 8k Gopro glasses capturing every single thing we see. It's all instantly uploaded so when you return, you have every second of your life available as you saw it. We might even have personal drones hovering over our heads 24/7 making sure we are in the frame as well. :)


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gjl711
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Jan 11, 2016 14:35 |  #12

Or...
With the advances in computational power and photo manipulation, we can conjure any image you can dream up and forego the whole photographic process entirely. Want a BIF picture, why spend hours in the bushes when you can come up with an award wining image with a few button clicks on Photoshop 2036. Once an image is digital, anything is possible.


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Jan 11, 2016 16:00 |  #13

gjl711 wrote in post #17854102 (external link)
Or...
With the advances in computational power and photo manipulation, we can conjure any image you can dream up and forego the whole photographic process entirely.

We've had that for years. It's called painting.


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Jon
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Jan 11, 2016 16:02 |  #14

gjl711 wrote in post #17854102 (external link)
Or...
With the advances in computational power and photo manipulation, we can conjure any image you can dream up and forego the whole photographic process entirely. Want a BIF picture, why spend hours in the bushes when you can come up with an award wining image with a few button clicks on Photoshop 2036. Once an image is digital, anything is possible.

Yeah, but somebody's got to get enough of an image to start with. If you have mad art skills, why would you bother with Photoshop of some photo you had to find and hope the creator captioned correctly? Just go with Illustrator and start from scratch.


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Jan 11, 2016 17:34 |  #15

PhotosGuy wrote in post #17854069 (external link)
You'll be able to look at a scene, think "CAPTURE-settings 3-CAPTURENOW" & the file will be waiting in your dropbox. ; )

That would be kind of neat. Wear your iglasses, (as in apple product, not eye glasses) or google glasses. Go to camera mode and a frame pops up in your view, say(or think) take picture and it does




  
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Where will photography be in 20 years?
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