Editing photos

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mmvt
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Editing photos

Postby mmvt » Thu Sep 03, 2015 10:38 am

I know that most of us on the forum use a variety of photo editing software - just came across this brief article and interested in people's thoughts.
http://visualwilderness.com/q-and-a/to- ... m=facebook
I have only "changed" a sky once for a friend who wanted a particular shot of her litter of golden retriever puppies - the best shot of the pups had a not so great background so i worked to change it (not very good at photoshop and it took more time than I wish!). I have other photos that would certainly benefit from a different/better sky but have never felt the need to do much about them.
I know Al mentioned we might want to edit some things when we shoot the milky way so I will be interested in learning more about that.
What do folks think about how much editing is too much editing!?!


Utah Baker
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Re: Editing photos

Postby Utah Baker » Thu Sep 03, 2015 11:32 pm

Good article, MMVT, and I agree with his opinion. I have really enjoyed editing my photos in LR5, and certainly enhanced a sky to get the best look I can, but never replaced one, nor do I know how. It would kinda of feel a little like cheating to me, I guess, or misrepresentation. But then an artist gets to paint or draw the sky he wants, I guess I just feel a photo should represent how it really is, or how I saw it or remember it, the best way possible.

Well it's late and I'm rambling a bit too much, not sure I'm making sense, Goodnite! :)

autzig
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Re: Editing photos

Postby autzig » Fri Sep 04, 2015 12:34 pm

I don't really care whether someone replaces the sky or not, so long as the photographer discloses that fact if he is selling it.

If someone doesn't like sky replacement, to what extent is manipulation of the photo acceptable. Is it OK to add saturation or to remove distracting things? Should a photo really represent what was seen by the photographer? When I shoot the night sky, most everything is black. Should all night sky shots have a black foreground? Is it OK to increase the exposure so the foreground isn't black?

I often make composites in my night photos. A long enough exposure to make a nicely exposed foreground, causes star trails. A short exposure to make the stars pinpoints, leaves a black foreground. I make two exposures, one for the sky and one for the foreground. The final photo is exactly what the camera saw but nothing like the eye saw because the eye can't capture the same amount of light as a camera.

It is even possible to set the controls on the camera to settings that affect the image captured by the camera. Is in-camera manipulation OK? Ultimately, it doesn't matter to me.

Al

Utah Baker
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Re: Editing photos

Postby Utah Baker » Fri Sep 04, 2015 9:21 pm

"But then an artist gets to paint or draw the sky he wants," And Al, you are definitely an artist and your medium is photography and you certainly create beautiful works of art. So I will have to concede on this one, and have no problem, as long as that is disclosed to a buyer. You have the talent and knowledge to get the most out of your camera, and I greatly admire and envy that! :D (as do many of the other talented and gifted photographers here)

Andy
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Re: Editing photos

Postby Andy » Wed Sep 23, 2015 7:31 am

I agree with Al in all but one respect. Why should I need to "disclose" manipulations if I am going to sell an image? I think it is important to note the "fine" print in the author's piece. He comes from a perspective many of us do not (note the number of days he spends in the field annually). Most of us don't. We may have one time in our life to capture a scene and that "it just happens" POV he espouses (I know from experience) well, sometimes just doesn't. You have to work at it and you have to devote the time.

Having said that I am in the "don't care" camp and I challenge the author's main theme that one must either be fur it or agin it. Why? Why does he get to make that rule? :) . In my view, it is a matter of disclosure, and then only when appropriate. If my image purports to be photojournalsm, or evidentiary in nature, I probably need to disclose. If I have created something impossible or improbable in nature, I [i]might[i] want to disclose (particularly so I am not embarrassed when someone else does. If I have entered a contests whose rules say, or imply, disclosure is necessary......etc.

Otherwise, do we really care?
Andy

If it sounds too good to be true, its probably . . . .

deaner1971
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Re: Editing photos

Postby deaner1971 » Wed Sep 23, 2015 8:30 am

I can see both sides of this but, I am leaning toward a degree of agreement with the author.

That said, we are talking about degrees.

This is obviously photoshopped: http://www.anvari.org/db/cols/Photoshopped_Animals/Photoshopped_Animal_07.jpg

But, if I claimed, either as an outright lie or a lie of omission that it was a "photograph", I would be misleading you.

To a lesser degree, to claim that I got this great shot of Yosemite Valley with an amazing pre-storm sky, when, in fact, that sky was shot over a municipal dump in Amarillo, Texas, is that too not a lie?

You could argue that you are publishing an image and not "claiming" anything but, that what is the title of the image? Does it make the "deception" clear? Does it need to?

As I said, I can see both sides of this but, I do feel that the art form has reached a cross roads. With ever more powerful tools, the world is open to a skilled software user but, should skill with software be given apparent parity with work in the field and a skilled hand on the release?

Taken a step further, do the images you use even have to be your own or is the act of editing others' images where your claim comes into existence? For example, I grab two images in the public domain. One is of a gorgeous sunset in Hawaii. The second is of an Asian mountain range. I artfully (and I am obviously being hypothetical as I am barely passable with editing software) combine the two images. Is that now my image? Should I be able to sell it as such?

Perhaps, we are at a point where there is photography and there is digital imaging. One requires manipulation of images captured by the artist and in the same location and during the same shoot. That is photography. The other one is use of digital images in any way the artist desires. That is digital imaging.

You guys have sold far more pictures than have I so, I will defer to you from the artist's point of view but, as a consumer of art, I believe I have a right to know what I am buying and I believe that mediums need to have some distinctions.

Andy
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Re: Editing photos

Postby Andy » Thu Sep 24, 2015 5:21 am

For example, I grab two images in the public domain. One is of a gorgeous sunset in Hawaii. The second is of an Asian mountain range. I artfully (and I am obviously being hypothetical as I am barely passable with editing software) combine the two images. Is that now my image? Should I be able to sell it as such?

Yes. This is known as a "derivative" work. Of course, you specified that the original images were in the public domain. If they were not, then there might be some copyright issues and there is lots of grey area regarding how much "changing" of the original work you must do to make it truly derivative.

That's the legal perspective.

The moral perspective is all yours. Is there enough originality in the work to consider it your art?

With your animal photo example - does it really require disclosure, or would the vast majority of viewers need to be told it was "photoshopped"?

Did you shoot the yosemite shot and the dump shot? If they are both yours and you combine them, to me there is no "lie" in that (until you start to get specific and try to tell your viewer otherwise). And if you were there on the correct day, could the sky have looked like that over Yosemite? Again, is it a work of art or a reportage image? Most of us viewers are probably not going to ask - hey, did you really shoot that image and by the way, where did you get that sky? :D

Once again I really believe that whether disclosure is required is a matter of circumstances.
Andy

If it sounds too good to be true, its probably . . . .

Andy
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Re: Editing photos

Postby Andy » Thu Sep 24, 2015 10:58 am

Hey Dean: What is your VT itinerary?
Andy

If it sounds too good to be true, its probably . . . .



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