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  1. #51

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stephen Benskin
    I look at BTZS as tone reproduction with some Zone terms. I can accept however you want to apply it. I can also respectfully disagree with it too. We can argue that Davis writes that "SBR" is his abbreviation for Subject Luminance Range, but what's the point? I think it's possible to communicate our ideas without coming to an agreement on terms.

    I've place Naturalistic Photography for Students of the Arts on my reading list. Thanks for that.

    As for the question:
    Here's an interesting question. Except for special cirumstances, all scenes look best in a print when there is a full range of tones. Why can't we let a flat scene remain flat in the print (apart from artistic considerations)? It's flat in nature, why not the print?

    Part of the reason is psychological. It falls under the heading of visual adaptation, and more precisely the area of lateral adaptation, and perhaps falls within simultaneous contrast. Every photographer has experienced at one time or another photographing a scene on an overcast day and being disappoint by the flat results. The scene looked fine when photographing it. What happen? For various survival purposes, it's important to be able to distinguish elements in a scene as clearly as possible. So our brain wants to adjust every scene so that it has as full of a range as possible. That's why the scene looked good to the photographer and came out flat on the film. And I believe that is why we want to see a print with the full range of tones.

    Back to the topic of the thread. One of the images in the current issue of PHOTO Techniques required something new for me. The subject was the stone work in Peterborough Cathedral. The camera was pointed up toward the ceiling. Strong ambient light was coming in from a bank of windows and illuminating the lower columns, and the ceiling remained in shadows. The luminance range was around normal, but not only was the balance of tones not aesthetically pleasing, there was little tonal seperation in the stone work.

    If I pushed the film, the tones on the lower columns would be increased further unbalancing the tones, and the local contrast in the stone work would change little. Masking was an option. I figured it would take approximately four or five seperate mask to accomplish the look I wanted. I needed to hold down the columns while I brought up the ceiling. I needed to increase the local contrast over the entire image with an additional increase in the ceiling. There were a few touches that could also be accomplished by bleaching.

    I could either go the complicating masking route or try something different. I chose to go digital. Digital is just another tool. I had the negative scanned, worked on it in Photoshop (just using the tonal controls - no cutting and pasting) and then had it output on a negative. It now has the look I want and is almost capable of a straight silver print.

    OK, I donít expect that you necessarily agree or disagree with me. I am just trying to make the point that the use of the term SBR is neither incorrect nor contrary to the language of sensitometry. It is simply a word used by Davis as part of his BTZS incident system of metering. Since LSLR can not be measured with an incident meter I wonder what term you would have preferred to describe what he means by SBR?

    As to the other point, I certainly donít discount the role of psychological factors such as visual adaptation, lateral adaptation, and simultaneous contrast as part of the creative process of Emerson's photography, even though my first inclination would be to explain his style by more ubiquitous influences such as the sister arts and the influence of other contemporary artists, both painters and photographers. And, though I could make a very good case that his style was primarily influenced by contemporary artists, such as Whistler, there might be some information in Von Helmoltz's Physiological Optics that would tie in with your idea of psychological factors.

    Sandy

  2. #52

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kirk Keyes
    Right - that's what I was trying to point out. When we are all using different materials, then it is not so clear unless we state the materials being used.
    Jesus men, I give you Phil's quote, directly from the horses mouth, not my interpretation, not what I think it means and you still have to argue a point....did you read the entire quotation I gave you? He says assuming a constant ES an SBR target is fine, BUT if you state G bar you dont have to state ES...Now if you want to once more argue a point, I suggest you take it up with Phil...I am not getting caught in another circular jerk off again....

    Benskin, I am not fighting I simply tried to answer your initial question and you started with the "please allow me the right to use..blah, blah blah.." One more time, it seems your posts are designed to show how much you know and not in an interest to share a discussion. Since you understand the BTZS terminology as well as the other stuff you use, I thought it would make sense we all use the same languange, I apologize for making such a silly assumption..... As Don said I am outta here, I dont see this thread eveolving any better than the other one....you all have fun.

  3. #53
    Stephen Benskin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sanking
    I am just trying to make the point that the use of the term SBR is neither incorrect nor contrary to the language of sensitometry.

    As to the other point, I certainly donít discount the role of psychological factors such as visual adaptation, lateral adaptation, and simultaneous contrast as part of the creative process of Emerson's photography,
    Sandy
    We disagree with the language of sensitometry. Fine, and the points you've made have been well taken. With Emerson, I was only adding to the information you supplied on the subject. I found your post intriguing and look forward to reading the book you mentioned.

    --------------------------------

    Once again Jorge gets upset and insults people. Do you not see how ".blah, blah blah.." is insulting to people? You read the tone of my post as antagonistic which appears to be more about your personality.

    I believe the information on flare, and about how I've approached different luminance ranges has been helpful for people. I don't have a need to prove how much I know as you can see by the limited number of posts I've made. I've been visiting this forum for one or two years and haven't participated in it until recently when I jumped in to admonish what I saw as an inappropriate attack on another poster.

    How many times has Jorge and Don referred to someone's intelligence in a derogatory manor? How often do you guys end a post by blowing off someone? How many times do you insult people's talent? I'm sorry, but you are constantly contemptuous of the people on this forum and it is petty.

    Please Jorge, if you don't like what I'm saying ignore it. You definitely don't have anything to teach me.
    Last edited by Stephen Benskin; 04-17-2005 at 12:35 AM. Click to view previous post history.

  4. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donald Miller
    Stephen Benskin wrote "Here's an interesting question. Except for special cirumstances, all scenes look best in a print when there is a full range of tones. Why can't we let a flat scene remain flat in the print (apart from artistic considerations)? It's flat in nature, why not the print?"


    While you would certainly be entitled to your viewpoint...I heartily disagree...
    A print can look stunning without the full range of tones provided there is adequate local contrast.
    I agree with your point. I have to admit, my assumption to the question wasn't well stated. Perhaps I should have said "one of the general principles..." or something like that. Still, over 90% of black and white images tend to fall into the full range catagory. When I said special circumstances, I was thinking about people like Huntington Witherill's beautiful high key work and Ray McSavaney's work. This is just a simple case of bad wording.

    I also like to do high key work and found that printing the image on a grade three and giving it a little flash makes for some nice local contrast while helping to hold the highlights.

    Don, why not participate with an example on how you would handle a high key shot or a scene with a limited luminance range? You obviously know something about it.
    Last edited by Stephen Benskin; 04-17-2005 at 12:05 AM. Click to view previous post history.

  5. #55

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stephen Benskin
    We disagree with the language of sensitometry. Fine, and the points you've made have been well taken. With Emerson, I was only adding to the information you supplied on the subject. I found your post intriguing and look forward to reading the book you mentioned.

    OK, but what about my question? Since LSLR can not be measured with an incident meter I wonder what term you would have used/preferred to describe what Davis really means by SBR?

    And let's be clear as to the facts. Although one could pull language from Beyond the Zone System to suggest that Davis equates SBR with SLR, or LSLR as you prefer, a full reading of his text shows that he has a separate and very different meaning for the two terms.

    Sandy

  6. #56
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    " The second great artistic evil engendered by Science is the careless manner in which things are expressed." - Peter Henry Emerson

    FWIW, I find it very interesting that Emerson has been mentioned in this thread.

    In 1888 he wrote "Naturalistic Photography" and promoted the idea that Photography could rank as Art along with painting., etc.

    That same year Eastman introduced the Kodak and democratized Photography. "You push the button and we do the rest." You don't have to be a chemist to make photographs anymore! Photography liberated from science once more.

    Also in that good year of 1888, Hurter & Driffield published the results of their initial investigations into sensitometry. Turns out photographic materials were predictable after all, much to the dismay of artistic alchemists, and Photography very much a science.

    So upset by H&D curves, in 1889 Emerson ate some warm crow and rebuked himself with "The Death of Naturalistic Photography."

    And here we are today talking about that same old stuff again. "...Priceless."



    Joe

  7. #57
    Stephen Benskin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sanking
    OK, but what about my question? Since LSLR can not be measured with an incident meter I wonder what term you would have used/preferred to describe what Davis really means by SBR?

    And let's be clear as to the facts. Although one could pull language from Beyond the Zone System to suggest that Davis equates SBR with SLR, or LSLR as you prefer, a full reading of his text shows that he has a separate and very different meaning for the two terms.

    Sandy
    Sandy, I'm fine with what you say. As you know, I'm not intimately acquainted with Davis' book as I am with sensitometry and tone reproduction. I don't think I can authoritatively speak to your question until I have time to familiarize myself once again with BTZS. To me, BTZS is just tone reproduction, so I moved past it long ago. I do have some interest in investigating your question, but there are priorities that might not allow it.

    Off the top of my head, I can understand that there really isn't a sensitometric term to define the luminance range derived from an incident meter, and that Davis had to invent one for his system. This makes sense to me. From a purely sensitometric perspective, the use of SBR is limited, but with BTZS it has additional meanings. Davis could have chosen from dozens of terms, and my suggesting one doesn't really matter at this point.

    You still have to admit that BTZS is more of a niche than the main stream. And that this forum isn't the BTZS forum. And that I'm not being unreasonable wishing to use (at least for myself) the nomenclature from the greater world of sensitometry (or what ever you want to call it).

    I will admit that as far as I know at this time, SBR when used with an incident meter has no correlating international term and therefore Davis has every right to use it in this context.

    Although, he does use ES instead of LER without any apparent difference in meaning. Not that there's anything wrong with it. All I have been saying is that these terms are outdated (with a possible exception now of SBR and incident metering). It was more of an interesting point of fact than a challege.
    Last edited by Stephen Benskin; 04-17-2005 at 12:10 AM. Click to view previous post history.

  8. #58

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kirk Keyes
    Wouldn't SIR - "Subject Illumination Range" have been appropriate if Davis modified the system to not include the addition of "5" to the difference of all readings?

    (But then it doesn't matter, as Davis is free to use any terminology he wishes. It is his system, after all.)
    Kirk,

    Yeah, that would have worked fine for me. But if he had used SIR what would we be obsessing about now?

    Sandy
    Last edited by sanking; 04-16-2005 at 11:42 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  9. #59
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    Let me propose Subject Luminance Range be given the acronym SLuR.

    Might be appropriate given how this discussion has progressed.

  10. #60

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    Quote Originally Posted by smieglitz
    " The second great artistic evil engendered by Science is the careless manner in which things are expressed." - Peter Henry Emerson

    FWIW, I find it very interesting that Emerson has been mentioned in this thread.

    In 1888 he wrote "Naturalistic Photography" and promoted the idea that Photography could rank as Art along with painting., etc.

    That same year Eastman introduced the Kodak and democratized Photography. "You push the button and we do the rest." You don't have to be a chemist to make photographs anymore! Photography liberated from science once more.

    Also in that good year of 1888, Hurter & Driffield published the results of their initial investigations into sensitometry. Turns out photographic materials were predictable after all, much to the dismay of artistic alchemists, and Photography very much a science.

    So upset by H&D curves, in 1889 Emerson ate some warm crow and rebuked himself with "The Death of Naturalistic Photography."

    And here we are today talking about that same old stuff again. "...Priceless."



    Joe
    Yes, very curious, even bizarre by my understanding of the word.

    But Emerson's first book obviously had a very profound impact on several generations of pictorialists, even though he subsequently renounced virtually all of his earlier writings.

    A similar analogy could me made with Demanchy. Clearly the most important pictorialist of his generation he gave up photography entirely at the height of his creative period. But the ensuing artistic silence does not detract from the genius of his earlier creative work.


    Sandy
    Last edited by sanking; 04-17-2005 at 12:11 AM. Click to view previous post history.

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