the re-appearance of an old chestnut

Discussion in 'Ethics and Philosophy' started by Leon, Nov 8, 2004.

  1. Leon

    Leon Member

    Messages:
    2,075
    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2003
    Location:
    Kent, Englan
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    forgive me for starting yet another "damn the digi" thread but I felt I needed to get this in the open for discussion again with new members joining & posting everyday.

    There has been a rash of posting in the galleries from colour film shots scanned and desaturated/ converted into mono pictures. I thought that in previous threads it was generally felt that this was against the accepted purpose of APUG?

    I am not adversed to the use of some digi techniques as part of a hybrid process, but I never discuss the technical details of this on APUG as it is not the place to do so. I am not adversed to a neg scan submitted for critcism as part of the process when working towards a final print, or a transparency scan as a "postable" version of the photographic image ... but i do find a posting described as being a "scan of a colour transparency then converted to mono in photoshop" as being irrelevant here within my understanding of APUG.

    Am I just Mr V. Irritible-and-Picky this morning, or do others agree with me?

    cheers
     
  2. Dave Miller

    Dave Miller Member

    Messages:
    3,894
    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2003
    Location:
    Middle Engla
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Yes and yes!
    :D
     
  3. TPPhotog

    TPPhotog Member

    Messages:
    3,042
    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2004
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Morning Leon,

    If I remember the previous posts correctly (and me old grey cells are getting greyer), I think the general concensus was that as long as the original picture was analogue then it was acceptable. The proviso was that it wasn't altered other than saturation, levels and sharpening (the last two due to scanners).

    As for my own opinion if I see it's a colour convertion then I either pass by or leave a comment saying how easy it is to process film at the kitchen sink.

    Your being "Mr V. Irritible-and-Picky this morning" as if LOL - just jesting :tongue:

    Tony
     
  4. 127

    127 Member

    Messages:
    581
    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2004
    Location:
    uk
    Shooter:
    127 Format
    Desaturation is definatley straying into "manipulation" territory.

    The only point in posting images here is to show a representation of a real artifact. I'm fine with neg scans provided they're intended to show the negative. Roughly setting brightness and contrast is only reasonable - though I don't see any point in getting hung up on it. Digitaly dodging and burning a scanned neg to make it look like a theoretical print, is missleading, and far more constructivly done in a darkroom.

    Desaturating isn't showing anything analouge - they're not showing the negative, but a digital image derived from it. I'm not going to get too upset about it, but it's a slippery slope.

    And to head of any escalation: I'm not putting this forward as a moral or ethical consideration - this is not digital intollerance. I'm quite happy for anyone to manipulate images digitally, or traditionally to represent anything their artistic vision requires. I'm just sugguesting that this isn't the place for it.

    Ian
     
  5. noseoil

    noseoil Member

    Messages:
    2,898
    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2003
    Location:
    Tucson
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Perhaps a gallery of images from film, which have undergone a digital manipulation in some manner other than scanning and sharpening, would be in order? But again, it is a slippery slope, isn't it? It does seem to be heading in the direction of digital at that point, so why bother in the first place? I just don't know.

    Scanning is a digital process, but it is necessary for a post to the galleries. A scan of a negative, which is then flipped seems ok, but it seems to me there should be a disclaimer involved in every case so there is no misunderstanding. I will continue to post scans of prints, with only enough enhancement to render a proper image, which are true to the print. This seems only correct for an analog format rendered in digital form.
     
  6. BWGirl

    BWGirl Member

    Messages:
    3,049
    Joined:
    May 15, 2004
    Location:
    Wisconsin, U
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Awww Leon :sad: I don't think you're being grumpy! :D I think you are right. If the negative is color and you scan it THEN take the color away electronically...it's a digitally manipulated shot. And while it might be very nice, this is not the place for it. If you take that same negative, slip it into the enlarger and work like an insane animal to make a B&W print...that's analog and the print should be scanned & posted (along with the grueling details) :wink:
    Just one woman's opinion! :D (Cheer up, Leon!)
     
  7. modafoto

    modafoto Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,102
    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2003
    Location:
    Århus, Denma
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Totally agree.

    I think that brightness and contrast settings are ok to adjust a scan to look like the print that is scanned. If it is a neg scan, then I think it is ok to adjust the same parameters to make the scan look like the potential print.

    Conversion from colour to B&W is over the line, as the digital work is a too large part of the work.

    Cropping is ALWAYS OK.

    Morten
     
  8. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    17,978
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2002
    Location:
    Honolulu, Ha
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    I'm inclined to draw a line at desaturation of color images, even if they are shot on film. While I don't object to neg scans where the goal is to try to match the print as best one can on a computer screen, desaturation is by comparison quite a ways away from printing a color neg on Panalure or shooting a B&W dupe of a color transparency, and somehow, I suspect that those who are posting desaturated color images don't have a traditional print as the final goal.

    Of course one could start from a color transparency or even a digital image and produce a digital neg for alt process printing, but I suspect that the alt process folks will want to use a print scan and not the intermediate neg scan, because the focus in alt processing is really on the look and texture of the print.
     
  9. TPPhotog

    TPPhotog Member

    Messages:
    3,042
    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2004
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Hate to say it (and we might already have one that I missed) but do we need a set of guidelines showing what is and what isn't allowed? With the increasing number of new members there can only be more physical (even with the same percentage) postings that do not comply with the spirit of analog.
     
  10. photomc

    photomc Member

    Messages:
    3,575
    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2003
    Location:
    Texas
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Grumpy or not Leon (I mean, hey it's the beginning of a work week- enough to be grumpy about), I agree 100%. In fact, have noticed the same thing and it is my PERSONAL opinion that unless we continue to make note of these -via comments or threads, they will become considered the norm - NOT A GOOD Thing in my mind.

    This is not to start the same old debate over, it is just we should either post an image that is as close to the original without using all of the digi-tools. There are way too many excellent prints that show up here THAT WERE NOT manipulated.

    Rant over, cup of coffee #2 almost finished, at work :sad:
     
  11. dr bob

    dr bob Member

    Messages:
    871
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2002
    Location:
    Annapolis, M
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    It is my opinion that the images posted in these “pages” should reflect the basis upon which the site was/is based namely traditional photography. We must employ digital methods to post images, but I think images manipulated by digital means should be restricted. I have no objection to manipulation by traditional means, chemical or otherwise.

    I think images posed here should represent the best reproduction of the photographers’ (I would like to use the term “artist’s” but…) intent as to their final product. I really prefer to see scanned prints as opposed to negatives as this entails the photographers’ printing skills as well as their creative camera work.

    I must agree that the final product is the important thing especially from a commercial standpoint. But I feel that this site is much more tuned to the individual than to commercialism, helping individuals to gain kill and knowledge toward the traditional methods. There are sufficient sites for otherwise. This one is unique. Lets keep it that way.
     
  12. Jeremy

    Jeremy Member

    Messages:
    2,767
    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2002
    Location:
    Denton, TX
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Nowadays I'm printing alt processes with digital negs--thinking about palladium over cyanotype from a holga neg (very mysterious feel) for my round 3 exchange print--and my negatives are c-41 color or c-41 black and white, but I would never think to submit a negative scan of a color image desaturated. Then again, as David said, since I'm working with alt processes I like the finished product on watercolor paper so much more than that on the screen :smile:

    For arguments sake, what if you had the image printed at the lab by Fuji Frontier desaturated and then scanned that print in? This is still a digital print, though....
     
  13. Flotsam

    Flotsam Member

    Messages:
    3,221
    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2002
    Location:
    S.E. New Yor
    I occasionally shoot color neg. When I do I tend to scan and inkjet print them. I never liked handing my negs off to a lab where a disinterested, overworked C printer would knock out an overpriced enlargment as quickly as possible while trying to keep ahead of the ever growing queue of incoming jobs. In color, my main interest is in composition, accurate color balance and perhaps some minimal burning and dodging. For the amount of color neg that I shoot, setting up a color darkroom is not practical, so the computer gives me the ability to make prints myself.

    Having said that, I also never post my color work in the APUG Gallery because while it is shot on film, it doesn't represent an anolog final product.

    I'm currently shooting a roll of color tranparencies. If there is anything on that roll that I feel is good enough to share in the galleries (not likely), I will scan it as accurately as possible and post it.
     
  14. Sponsored Ad
  15. modafoto

    modafoto Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,102
    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2003
    Location:
    Århus, Denma
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I agree with this. I have only B&W stuff in my (little) gallery at the moment. If I post colour it will most certainly be slides or neg scans. Not digital prints (that is the only thing I can get at a reasonable price. An analog color print 13x18 is $22 for one! Handmade, but everything else is digiprints).

    Morten
     
  16. Jim Moore

    Jim Moore Member

    Messages:
    957
    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2003
    Location:
    Iowa
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    I say throw that chestnut on an open fire! :tongue:

    Jim
     
  17. clogz

    clogz Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,842
    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2002
    Location:
    Rotterdam, T
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Chestnuts roasting on an open fire......that season will soon be upon us again.
     
  18. Joe Symchyshyn

    Joe Symchyshyn Member

    Messages:
    468
    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2004
    Location:
    Canada
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    By closing the door to manipulations, the next example wouldn't be allowed...

    What if one had a print that they thought might work with extensive burning and dodging? If they uploaded the original image, a mild burning version, a heavy burning version etc... In the interest of learning, wouldn't it make sense to explore the possibilities and get feedback on your image if you wanted people's opinions? If you scanned the original but made some quick changes in PS before doing the final prints... Kind of like a digital workprint.

    joe
     
  19. Dave Miller

    Dave Miller Member

    Messages:
    3,894
    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2003
    Location:
    Middle Engla
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Surely, a more productive method would be to get into the darkroom and try your ideas out; then post the results for comment.
     
  20. Joe Symchyshyn

    Joe Symchyshyn Member

    Messages:
    468
    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2004
    Location:
    Canada
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    So if one has access to a film scanner, you think it's more productive to print the image and do a bunch a variations, then a bunch of scans and then post them all? Rather than just do one scan, save, manipulate, resave, manipulate, resave, and then post them all?

    I don't know about you, but once I have the digital file, I could do tons of variations on a theme in seconds (literally) versus minutes/hours in the darkroom working out the variations.

    As I'm not a frequent contributor the gallery system, I'm not worrying about my own infrequent posts. But should a critique image come up that uses digital manipulations that are readily available in the darkroom (ie: burning and dodging) I don't think I would be concerned by it.

    Just my 2 cents,

    joe
     
  21. Les McLean

    Les McLean Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,609
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2002
    Location:
    Northern Eng
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I think this is an excellent method of working on an image to check out interpretation, it saves time and materials and clearly is less expensive than using up photographic paper.
     
  22. mark

    mark Member

    Messages:
    5,270
    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2003
    It was decided and handed down by he on high from down under that these types of manipulations are beyond what is acceptable. While it might be a good idea to play with a tough negative, in PS, first, don't post those playings. This is an analog site. If you burn and dodge via a computer you are digitally manipulating. If you could have done it in a dark room then do it and post the print. This was Sean's rule and it is his site.

    Once again the lines are bluring and we need a clear definition of what is and is not analog as per the site owners definition because his is the only one that matters. This should be posted clearly for everyone to see.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 8, 2004
  23. Flotsam

    Flotsam Member

    Messages:
    3,221
    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2002
    Location:
    S.E. New Yor
    From the APUG FAQ addressing the oximoron of using a digital forum to bring analog photographers together:

    "We understand if any images do exist on this site they will be "digital" representations of analog work."
     
  24. Jorge

    Jorge Inactive

    Messages:
    4,532
    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2002
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    This is true Les, but OTOH the manipulations done in the computer might not be what is possible or even needed as done in a DR.

    Also, if the only purpose is to "visualize" interpretation and manipulation, why not wait until the print is done instead of presenting the computer version?

    In my case I would love to be able to scan my negatives, play with them a little and see what changes could be useful, but I would never present the changes done in the computer, I would upload only the image from the final print.

    I think this is most people's objection, the fact that people uploading PS manipulated images have not even tried to do the "projected" manipulations in the darkroom, they have just gone ahead and presented them as if they were real prints, without knowing if the results would be similar when attempted in the DR.

    Photo.net, usefilm, photosig, etc. Are sites where they allow PS manipulated images that are not required to be printed. I think those people desaturating their negatives and manipulating them in PS should present these images in those sites and restrict themselves to post here the final printed image.

    One new member got all upset with me and tried to start a flame war just because I chose not to comment on those images that are not real prints, his argument was that I was putting those people down, well IMO it shows a greater lack of respect to come to this site and post PS manipulated images knowing very well this is an analog site. The only one available and one that most of the membership would like to keep this way.
     
  25. Joe Lipka

    Joe Lipka Member

    Messages:
    809
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2002
    Location:
    Cary, North
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    I rarely comment on such threads, because I do not post in the galleries. I do believe that if an image is to be posted in an APUG gallery, it should be on a paper substrate and been submerged in many chemical baths before it is scanned. (OK, wash and dry before scanning.)

    Negative to scanner to an APUG gallery with substantial manipulation in Photoshop is just not in the spirit of this site.
     
  26. Sean

    Sean Admin Staff Member Admin

    Messages:
    9,322
    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2002
    Location:
    New Zealand
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Well, I guess we have a few options.

    We can come up with a gallery statement that is visible on the upload page. Something along the lines of "In the spirit of traditional photography we ask.."

    We can create additional galleries. Covert Standard, Critique, Technical, and experimental to: Standard Print Scans, Critique Print Scans, Technical Prints Scans, Experimental Print Scans AND add a new gallery called "Negative Scans".

    Also open to additional suggestions..