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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Nature & Landscapes Talk 
Thread started 08 Sep 2015 (Tuesday) 04:33
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When is a nature shot not...

 
Dalantech
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Sep 08, 2015 04:33 |  #1

...natural? I cringe at using that particular "N word" because if you asked a dozen people what natural means you might get more than twelve answers. I'll kick this off with an example from my own work:

IMAGE: https://farm1.staticflickr.com/595/21052309250_f58a758fd3_b.jpg
IMAGE LINK: https://flic.kr/p/y5jA​69  (external link) Dragonfly Portrait I (external link) by John Kimbler (external link), on Flickr

On the surface a head shot of a dragonfly might seem to be a "nature" (or "natural") image. But as a photographer I get to lie with my camera. The first lie is simply with the framing: I'm sitting at the patio table of a hotel room. The critter in question was spotted by my wife resting on the door to the patio, and I transferred it to a leaf (held the leaf close and got the dragon to climb onto it) to make it easier to photograph. To keep the background from being black due to flash falloff I placed an artificial flower behind the subject. Oh, that reminds me -the flash. There's no natural light in this scene. So just how "natural" is it?...

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OhLook
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Post edited over 2 years ago by OhLook.
     
Sep 08, 2015 13:57 |  #2

I cringe at using that particular "N word" because if you asked a dozen people what natural means you might get more than twelve answers.

If there's a category called "nature shots" that has a set of clear limits like what you're asking about, I haven't heard of it. Your dragonfly is a natural animal even though you posed it.

The next eleven people may now speak up with their opinions.


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Dalantech
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Sep 08, 2015 14:11 |  #3

OhLook wrote in post #17699696 (external link)
If there's a category called "nature shots" that has a set of clear limits like what you're asking about, I haven't heard of it. Your dragonfly is a natural animal even though you posed it.

The next eleven people may now speak up with their opinions.

Excellent! Thanks for contributing to this discussion -I think it's interesting to see where people draw lines.


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Larry ­ Johnson
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Sep 08, 2015 14:16 |  #4

You're freaking me out Italy! Now that one belongs in the Macro form; one of the few forums that I've hidden from view.


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Dalantech
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Sep 08, 2015 14:38 |  #5

Larry Johnson wrote in post #17699724 (external link)
You're freaking me out Italy! Now that one belongs in the Macro form; one of the few forums that I've hidden from view.

Really messing with you that badly?!


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Phrasikleia
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Sep 10, 2015 16:05 |  #6

I use the word "natural" to describe an appearance that suggests no human interventions or stylizations. So an image can appear natural even if much was done to it with staging, artificial lighting, post-processing manipulation, etc. If the image indicates the hand of the artist in any really emphatic sense (e.g. outlandish color shifts, HDR halos, etc.), then it doesn't look "natural". In other words, a photograph that shows a scene "how you saw it" and one of that scene that merely "looks natural" could be completely different photographs.


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Dalantech
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Sep 10, 2015 22:25 |  #7

Phrasikleia wrote in post #17702555 (external link)
I use the word "natural" to describe an appearance that suggests no human interventions or stylizations. So an image can appear natural even if much was done to it with staging, artificial lighting, post-processing manipulation, etc. If the image indicates the hand of the artist in any really emphatic sense (e.g. outlandish color shifts, HDR halos, etc.), then it doesn't look "natural". In other words, a photograph that shows a scene "how you saw it" and one of that scene that merely "looks natural" could be completely different photographs.

That's pretty close to my take on this subject. But I'm not concerned with making my images look natural, but I do want the viewer to suspend disbelief. I don't want anything in the frame that will keep the viewer from just relaxing and enjoying the photo, and that's why I've put a lot of time and effort into my backgrounds.

Thanks for aiding the photo in the OP to the best of group!


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