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Gary_Yngve

Photo Contest: photoshopping images

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camera capable of shooting a burst of 10 frames a second. So you reconstruct the middle shot from the before and after.

 

Henri Cartier-Bresson is rolling over in his grave...

 

and i want to vomit.

 

You would do well to take a ethics in journalism course. Perhaps then you would understand everyone elses perspective. Maybe buddy up with the reporter from the NY times who made up his stories because it was allot less work than actually going there and covering the story?

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What about the special effect given by the some video cameras night vision feature? I think Sony had to discontinue the feature because it served as xray, which would of course be useful as a Miss America Pageant.

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You would do well to take a ethics in journalism course. Perhaps then you would understand everyone elses perspective. Maybe buddy up with the reporter from the NY times who made up his stories because it was allot less work than actually going there and covering the story?

 

I take a picture f(t). I take a picture f(t+1).

I use both pictures to construct a middle picture, which is INDISTIBGUISHABLE from if I had taken f(t+.5).

 

I fail to see how that violates journalistic integrity.

In fact, I think it has more integrity than quoting someone out of context or finding a split-second frame of someone's facial movements that make them look weird.

 

In the future, we won't be taking 2-d pictures any more. We'll be taking 3-d or even 4-d (lightfield) pictures. Artists will appreciate the greater flexibility with the new technology. Just as old technology was subject to abuse, the new will be too. And you'll still need an eye for subject, lighting, and composition to produce a fabulous result.

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I'm with Gary - the line is too thin. I have a specific example in mind: this summer I took a shot of three people running downhill. We had just had a close bear encounter and were running like mad. i snapped the pic quickly then started running again. Back home I added a motion blur which was no different than if I had zoomed out while snapping the pic. What's the difference? Fashion photography is the perfect example. Photo altering / brushing etc. has gone on for years yet few argue that what they're looking at is not real.

 

Furthermore -- there is skill and talent with coming back in and editing a photo digitally. True anyone can manipulate a photo just as anyone can take a photo. But only skilled users can take a decent photo and likewise only skilled user can manipulate a photo in a way that others can't tell if what they looking at is "real" or not.

 

Finally I find it very ironic that this argument has arisen in the past 10 years (and will be argued for at least 10 more). If anyone recalls their art history lessons the exact same argument was made against photography at he turn of the century. Painters argued that photography - because it captured a scene instantly - was cheating and unfair and didn't show the true nature of an object or scene. Even Ayn Rand argued that photography is not art - stating that "many fine photographs are lucky accidents" but that "nothing in art is accidental". In this sense one could argue that digital manipulation is closer to art than true photography because the digital artist selects "the details of reality one at a time".

 

However... as I've stated before - no one listens to Ayn Rand anymore.

 

PS - check this out: http://www.apple.com/aperture/

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Sheesh Gary... if you don't want to hear people's opinions, don't ask. You already said it earlier: art has no rules. But folks' definition of art varies.

 

In your original post where you threw out some specific instances, you are specifically talking about putting something in, or taking it out of the picture. The idea of having two shots of birds flying and wanting the one "in the middle" that you didn't take means you have to do some bird drawing. The finished product entails you making some assumptions of where wings were, where heads were, etc. Is it art? Sure thing. Is it good photography? Hmmmmmmm.

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Hey Gary, if these are things you have already done to pictures, why don't you post a couple of examples of what you are talking about, say, before and after alteration. I have already made up my mind (and I agree with Griz), but I can also completly understand your perspective as well. To me, the appeal of photography is my impression that every detail of a photo is representing an exact moment in time and space. Any alteration to an image (including stitched panarama shots) creates the potential that some detail of that picture was artifical (details created by the "mind" of a computer and not your own), and may not represent what was occuring naturally. Images taken in 3 or 4-D are gonna be rad, but I wouldn't call them photographs. I would call them holograms or something, and I would have a different set of expectations of them. It would be cool if a little disclaimer was under each photo to say exactly what alteration were made. You put in a huge moon, put in a disclaimer that there is an artificial huge moon. I'll still appreciate what you have done, but I will appreciate if for different reasons than an unaltered photo.

Now if I could only figure out if Oly's photo is real or not...

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I'd be happy to post photos going from original to finished product. I started to get some stuff together yesterday and then realized it would take a few hours...

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I find that attitudes of people here inetresting. I wonder how much of it is brainwashing from skilled photographers who are trying to preserve their jobs. I'm getting a definite vibe that digital manipulation is "unfair," just as using pitons once was and using bolts and rock shoes and cams.

Not "unfair" just an entirely different medium. I spend too much time in front of a computer as it is. I've no desire to spend more editing pictures - which is pretty damn tiring. Additionally most of your suggestions violate journalistic ethics.

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It would be cool if a little disclaimer was under each photo to say exactly what alteration were made

Would you ask film photographers to do the same - i.e. ask photographers to point out images that have had color saturated or contrast increased? Ask them to disclose which rolls have been push processed?

 

WEFinley-hulapano.jpg

 

Above is an example of a digital panorama created from meshing 2 photographs together. This particular photo was posted on the front page of Salon.com and published as the coverpiece for 2 environmental newsletters. If a photograph works and conveys a message then it shouldn't matter what methods were used to create the photograph as long as the digital manipulation did not modify content or adjust "reality". I would argue that by merging two photographs I successfully created a photograph that conveys the immensity of an area that is on the verge of development. My techniques are no different than, say, Arctic Power taking a wide angle shot of frozen ground to illustrate the Arctic Refuge as a "wasteland".

 

The journalistic integrity issue is also not so clear. Here's a great excerpt (emphasis added by me):

 

An example of a manipulated news graphic is the famous image of the 2003 Madrid train bombings. This image of the train wreck and wounded, headlined The Australian, The Telegraph and the Courier Mail. Although not immediately noticeable, the image in both The Telegraph and the Courier Mail did not bear the exact resemblance of the other. A decapitated arm seen next to the train lines was only present in The Australian. This can be seen as an act of deletion on the other paper's behalf, to shelter the public's eyes to a potentially disturbing image, whilst not changing its meaning. This is considered to be an issue of editorial taste and differs from ethical problems.

 

As Long states, ethics refers to the issues of deception, and taste refers to issues involving blood, sex, violence and other aspects of life which are disturbing to the eye (1999). In light of there not being any change in meaning, unethical claims are often reputed, and the image can be seen as acceptable despite its manipulation. But the presentation of these photorealistic synthesised images or pseudo-photographic assemblages (photographs with additions, deletions, substitutions, or rearrangements) as straightforward photographs is not valid reporting. And as Mitchell further argues, the resulting transaction then becomes something other than valid reporting - either falsehood or fiction (1994, 218).

http://wiki.media-culture.org.au/index.php/Digital_Image_Manipulation_-_Journalistic_Integrity

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You take a pic of a group of friends, and darn it, one of them has their eyes closed. You take another pic and someone else has their eyes closed instead. You merge the pics so everyone has their eyes open.

 

You take a pic, except darn it, a bug flew in front of the camera. You remove the bug.

 

You take a pic of a reflecting pond, except there is a small branch in the middle that distract from the composition. Do you wade into the middle, remove the offending object, and wait for the water to settle, or digitally alter it later?

 

You take a picture with some birds flying in the air. You take two pictures in rapid succession, but it turns out the picture you really wanted for best composition was one timed in the middle. You digitally alter the image to reproduce that timing.

 

Which of these do you disagree with?

 

 

All of them if you represent that you did not manipulate the photo.

 

None of them it you're upfront about it.

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I liken this to the debate regarding digitally produced music vs music played on an instrument. It is a very different skill. For me, I appreciate the skill in playing an instrument and artful knowledge of the camera. Less so the use of a computer.

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I liken this to the debate regarding digitally produced music vs music played on an instrument. It is a very different skill. For me, I appreciate the skill in playing an instrument and artful knowledge of the camera. Less so the use of a computer.

 

Kind of like the crowds booing Bob Dylan when he played his first electronic set? Or how about the riot that erupted after the first performance of Stravinsky's Le Sacre du Printemps? The same arguements against have been voiced before; any time a new medium is introduced there are many who will argue against it and say it isn't pure or isn't art.

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Gary,

 

Be it digital art or photography, some of those images are really gorgeous.

 

Just like climbing, in photography I think we all have an ill-defined ethical line of what is and isnt acceptable. To me I think exposure bracketing and such is a great tool to recreate the dyanmic range of an actual scene. I probably draw the line at moving animals around and such.

Edited by TrogdortheBurninator

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Damn, Gary - some of those images are sweet. I especially like how you combined multiple images with different areas washed out to make one image with all the right colors. I'll have to try that with some of my own pics.

 

While I think those tricks are cool, my interpretation of "photography" in the strictest sense would be anything that was done in the field using only the camera equipment. Lenses, filters, tripods, aperture settings, shutter speed are all in bounds. I don't know much about film development, so I'll conveniently ignore that aspect.

 

 

The rules seemed pretty clear to me - no photoshopping. Take the image off the memory card and upload to gallery. If you used the wrong settings when you took the picture, tough. For the contest, it doesn't seem fair to enhance your picture digitally.

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I take a picture f(t). I take a picture f(t+1).

I use both pictures to construct a middle picture, which is INDISTIBGUISHABLE from if I had taken f(t+.5).

 

I agree with most of the things you said, and I think they are well said. But, regarding above, devils advocate: A sports photographer takes a photo of a basketball player squatting with the ball in their hand, about to leap up and make the shot. The photographer forgot to change the batteries in their D2X and the motordrive is working super slow. The next shot they get off is when the ball has already swished through the net, and the player is about to touch ground again. The photographer is frustrated. They missed the "f(t+.5)" moment when the player was airborne, legs askew, enormous hand palming the ball, look of concentration on their face. Rats. Thats ok, the photographer goes back to their laptop, opens up photoshop, and creates that image that "actually existed" by creating a composite of images they shot throughout the game. If a sports photographer ever did that, I would strongly disagree with it. I agree with griz in that, hey, if you missed the shot, tough luck. There will be plenty more possibilities. What was it Galen Rowell said? "Chance favors the prepared mind".

 

I think that if one uses photoshop as a tool, just like graduated filters, polarizer, etc, to help technology mimic what the human eye would have seen in that particular moment then that is legitimate because it is part of taking a really good photograph. We all know our cameras and our film and our lenses can't always do what our eyes can do. But the problem is when we use our technology to do more than what our eyes can do. Photographers do it all the time. In my book, thats not a photograph, thats a photo-illustration. Just as valid, but I think it ought to be listed as such in the caption. "photo-illustration by so and so". That way, the photographers that had perfect light perfect composition and, IMO most importantly, perfect moment can get from us the credit and praise they deserve.

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I think the analogy with digital music is really not relevant.

 

With digital music, people don't try to pass that off as a symphony they actually played or something. you know what I mean?

 

I think it's sad when people have to completely remove or add objects to make photos "good", you should learn to take pictures, not make them.

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It would be cool if a little disclaimer was under each photo to say exactly what alteration were made

Would you ask film photographers to do the same - i.e. ask photographers to point out images that have had color saturated or contrast increased? Ask them to disclose which rolls have been push processed?

 

WEFinley-hulapano.jpg

 

Above is an example of a digital panorama created from meshing 2 photographs together. This particular photo was posted on the front page of Salon.com and published as the coverpiece for 2 environmental newsletters. If a photograph works and conveys a message then it shouldn't matter what methods were used to create the photograph as long as the digital manipulation did not modify content or adjust "reality". I would argue that by merging two photographs I successfully created a photograph that conveys the immensity of an area that is on the verge of development. My techniques are no different than, say, Arctic Power taking a wide angle shot of frozen ground to illustrate the Arctic Refuge as a "wasteland".

 

The journalistic integrity issue is also not so clear. Here's a great excerpt (emphasis added by me):

 

An example of a manipulated news graphic is the famous image of the 2003 Madrid train bombings. This image of the train wreck and wounded, headlined The Australian, The Telegraph and the Courier Mail. Although not immediately noticeable, the image in both The Telegraph and the Courier Mail did not bear the exact resemblance of the other. A decapitated arm seen next to the train lines was only present in The Australian. This can be seen as an act of deletion on the other paper's behalf, to shelter the public's eyes to a potentially disturbing image, whilst not changing its meaning. This is considered to be an issue of editorial taste and differs from ethical problems.

 

As Long states, ethics refers to the issues of deception, and taste refers to issues involving blood, sex, violence and other aspects of life which are disturbing to the eye (1999). In light of there not being any change in meaning, unethical claims are often reputed, and the image can be seen as acceptable despite its manipulation. But the presentation of these photorealistic synthesised images or pseudo-photographic assemblages (photographs with additions, deletions, substitutions, or rearrangements) as straightforward photographs is not valid reporting. And as Mitchell further argues, the resulting transaction then becomes something other than valid reporting - either falsehood or fiction (1994, 218).

http://wiki.media-culture.org.au/index.php/Digital_Image_Manipulation_-_Journalistic_Integrity

 

Hey Wfinley, first I say thumbs_up.gif for the photo you posted. As I mentioned, I can totally see your side. If it's for an environmental movement, and is circulated in flyers, sure. I'm with ya! But, if you were to submit that photo, to say, an art gallery, I wouldn't mind knowing that it was stitched together. Or, say, if you submitted it to a photo contest where the prize award was greater than a ball of chalk (I'm not knocking the chock... It's rad and fitting). I would ask the same of film processors as well. Why not? Does it detract from the art to just say what you did? Someone paints a picture lot's of times they write "oil on canvas" even though it's pretty obvious that it's oil on canvas. I don't understand why people would be afraid to say what they did to a photo cause to me that's just honest? What would you be trying to hide? Would it detract from the artistic value to state: Image stitched from two digital photos, saturation +1, or whatever else? Shit, list that info in appendix F.12 or something. [/myrediculaspersonalopinions] bigdrink.gif

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