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DREW WILEY
09-07-2012, 01:10 PM
The logistical problem was simple: just getting the contrast range on the film before the light changed. So there's the story of how he calculated that since he couldn't locate his light meter.
But the darkroom trick in that era was water bath development. So he ended up with a highly compensated neg which produced a much softer more luminous print than what all this chatter is
about. Nowadays, some of those earlier renditions of Moonrise actually sell for more because they
are rare and allegedly even more "vintage". Then for some marketing, esthetic, or maybe personality
reason he wanted something more dramatic and contrasty and differentially enhanced the negative.
I thought it was overdone; but that more theatrical mode is what defines several of AA's most famous landscapes - inky black skies, high contrast. He certainly could make a poetic image at times,
but I never would consider him as the best printer of the era. And thank goodness, he didn't have
Fauxtoshop. Too many options just lead nowhere.

Prof_Pixel
09-07-2012, 01:48 PM
And thank goodness, he didn't have Fauxtoshop. Too many options just lead nowhere.


Photoshop is simply another tool - and like all tools, can be used for good or bad.

Someplace I saw an article where someone created a set of layers in Photoshop that implemented all of Adam's printing instructions.

IMO, manipulation in any form is manipulation.

Ken Nadvornick
09-07-2012, 01:53 PM
Someplace I saw an article where someone created a set of layers in Photoshop that implemented all of Adam's printing instructions.

Oh dear...

:(

Ken

ROL
09-07-2012, 01:57 PM
Photoshop is simply another tool - and like all tools, can be used for good or bad.

Someplace I saw an article where someone created a set of layers in Photoshop that implemented all of Adam's printing instructions.

IMO, manipulation in any form is manipulation.

Hmmm... Prof_Pixel, another tool? :laugh:

Hatchetman
09-07-2012, 02:27 PM
It is a good photograph because it is interesting to the eye and mind, and it tells a story if you allow it to. The vastness of space, the wind whipped human outpost on a barren rocky plain. Even the mountains are dwarfed by vast space. tiny crosses imply the hopeless vulnerability of humanity.

Really, I cannot imagine how someone could conclude "that is not a good print."

But to each his own...

DREW WILEY
09-07-2012, 02:31 PM
Yes, PS is just another tool kit, rather than a single tool, and can be used by either a genius or a fool. Good for mimicking this or that; but how things evolved in the first place often gives them their
historical importance. I was saw a remark in NG mag that when Timothy O Sullivan first saw a 35mm
camera in old age he wished he'd had one when he went down the Colorado River in a wooden dory.
Thank goodness, he didn't - or else instead of the iconic epic shots of his we now have, it would have been something more journalistic and Geographicky. Sometimes less is more. And for that reason, just about everyone I know who used PS responsibly is also someone who learned what they
want in a darkroom first! Turn a kid loose in a candy shop with no supervision, and he'll eat enough
to barf. And that's just about what most Fauxtoshop prints look like to me! Not the fault of the
technology, but of having way too much horsepower in an automobile with a kid behind the wheel
who probably couldn't steer a lawnmower. Slow down, folks, maybe you'll actually see something!

Ken Nadvornick
09-07-2012, 02:48 PM
It is a good photograph because it is interesting to the eye and mind, and it tells a story if you allow it to. The vastness of space, the wind whipped human outpost on a barren rocky plain. Even the mountains are dwarfed by vast space. tiny crosses imply the hopeless vulnerability of humanity.

"...and it tells a story if you allow it to."

This is exactly what I meant when I said "The viewing needs to be participatory."

Ken

Prof_Pixel
09-07-2012, 03:02 PM
Turn a kid loose in a candy shop with no supervision, and he'll eat enough
to barf. And that's just about what most Fauxtoshop prints look like to me! Not the fault of the
technology, but of having way too much horsepower in an automobile with a kid behind the wheel
who probably couldn't steer a lawnmower.


You know, I've seen some pretty horrific prints come out of darkrooms as well.


Anyway, the point of my earlier posting was to question if if is the tools used to make a great image or the artistic vision of the photographer that is important. My money is with the artistic vision of the photographer.

c6h6o3
09-07-2012, 03:16 PM
Photoshop is simply another tool - and like all tools, can be used for good or bad.

Someplace I saw an article where someone created a set of layers in Photoshop that implemented all of Adam's printing instructions.

IMO, manipulation in any form is manipulation.

http://mosaicdesignservices.com/webgraphics/tutorials/ps/AnselAdamsEffectPSCS2.pdf

Prof_Pixel
09-07-2012, 03:19 PM
Jim,

That's one I hadn't seen.

Ken Nadvornick
09-07-2012, 03:31 PM
http://mosaicdesignservices.com/webgraphics/tutorials/ps/AnselAdamsEffectPSCS2.pdf

God help us all...

:eek:

Ken

DREW WILEY
09-07-2012, 03:41 PM
Despite AA's open-mindedness to the dawn of dramatically newer technology, his own darkroom was
hardly state of the art even back then. Then when we reivew those moments of ephiphany in his
personal history, like when he discovered how a simple red filter used for "Monolith", the face of Half
Dome, would forever change his own way of looking at things, it puts things in better perspective.
He learned to look and (correctly termed or not) "previsualize". Many so-called photographers today
don't even known how to look. How one interprets the shot is a related by distinct subject. Ansel was really attuned to the quality of light and how it defined real scenes. ALL photographs are some
kind of manipulation - just pointing the camera a certain direction means you are taking something
and turning it into something else, within a new context. But some illusionists are quite skilled at it,
and making it convincing, and then there's a considerable number of wannabees who show their clumsy hand.

PKM-25
09-07-2012, 03:58 PM
And my point is a great print that comes out of the darkroom is hand made, photoshop is not. I have been using it professionally since 1991, photoshop is computer aided photography, not the darkroom by any stretch.


You know, I've seen some pretty horrific prints come out of darkrooms as well.


Anyway, the point of my earlier posting was to question if if is the tools used to make a great image or the artistic vision of the photographer that is important. My money is with the artistic vision of the photographer.

Prof_Pixel
09-07-2012, 04:04 PM
So you are saying the tools used are more important than artistic vision?

Ken Nadvornick
09-07-2012, 04:05 PM
Perhaps the tools used alter the artistic vision?

Ken

Vaughn
09-07-2012, 04:23 PM
Vaughn,

The problem that I had with your comment is you have no idea what the shooter was thinking of when he tripped the shutter.

You're basing your statements on total speculation.

- Leigh

No, actually, I just ask them...

DREW WILEY
09-07-2012, 04:53 PM
Mr. Pixel - anything tangible evidence of "vision" has to be some kind of marriage with a specific medium. A potter requires clay. A fresco painter requires plaster. The two grow together. And having
some kind of restraint actually greases the wheels, so to speak, because it gives one a direction.
In the hypotethical argument, What would Ansel do today - maybe he would shoot and print digitally.
But then his legacy would be something completely different, and possibly even a bellyflop. It's one
thing to reproduce things digitally - either prepress or by inkjet etc. But the learning curve itself,
and how one get to a vision in the first place, is just as important. For me, the hunt is just as important as the kill. And the darkroom is a real nice place to finish the chase. If someone prefers
other methods, fine. No problem. And maybe they can mimic what I do. Good luck. It ain't that easy! But better to let each media do what it does best.

Prof_Pixel
09-07-2012, 05:43 PM
I can imagine the same sort of comments from portrait oil painters as daguerreotype portraits became popular.


"It's only real if it's done in oil." ;-)

lxdude
09-07-2012, 05:49 PM
Ah, yes, Moonrise Hernandez... her parents were hippies, you know.

cliveh
09-07-2012, 05:51 PM
I can imagine that the printerís skill is very akin to a painter who is working from a sketch. The sketch in this case being the negative.