Interesting, I'll have to think about that. Anyone got the tonal curve of the brain at hand?
Originally Posted by BetterSense
To my mind, it would only be unethical if someone tried to pass off a digitally-created photograph as a silver gelatin photograph. I only wish that the term "photograph," when used to describe a picture shown in a gallery or magazine, was more accurate, as in "digital photograph."
Just this week, I was talking with some people about one of my photographs for sale in the coop gallery to which I belong. One woman asked if it was digital, and seemed happy to hear and seemed to appreciate the photograph more when I told her it was "old school:" taken on film, printed in the darkroom.
Therein was a good news/bad news conundrum: good news that some people value silver gelatin photographs more than digital ones, bad news that some people now assume all photographs to be digitally produced until told otherwise. I try to have my photographs accurately labeled, but I am not in control of the labeling process and am not always successful.
And if you don't get it right at the release of the shutter, then the best you can hope to do is salvage the mistake.
I like what you say here.
And remember, if the print looks manipulated, you didn't do a very good job no matter what you did.
When does maing a print as good as you can go too far?
In some sense dodging and burning are like HDR, you are changing the dynamic range of the negative for the final result, in this case a print. Masks, sandwiching negatives and other traditional darkroom techniques similarly do more than a straight print. Heck, even using multigrade contrast filters is stretching things, the most contrasty filter yields scenes no pair of sunglasses will render for a person.
What about multiple exposures? What if you take two exposures, a flash exposure of the foreground object and then a second long exposure for the stars with a driven mount? That could work yet it would still be fake.
Apparently your perception of color has been atropfied by the all consuming blandness of the midwest. Most of my work is shot with VS, and while I am the first to admit that no scan or digital representation can approach the color intensity and fidelity of this wonderful film, the scans are as close to the originals as the limitations of the technology will allow. If you're ever in Dallas, stop by and I'll pull out the slides to show you what the real colors of nature looks like (and, BTW, I don't use photoshop).
Originally Posted by chriscrawfordphoto
--> Since I only work with transparencies, all the talk of printing is interesting but misses the point. Maris really hit at the core of this issue. A photograph implies visual truth. You should be able to look at a photograph and know that some combination of medium, aperture, shutter speed, time of day/year comprise the image, and that you could reproduce the image by reproducing those parameters.
It's like a jackalope. It's one thing to present it as a joke, a fanciful chimera that exists only as the result of the taxidermist's art. It is entirely different to insist that jackalopes are real animals, and oh, by the way, I shot that one myself on a hunting trip to west Texas.
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I lived in Santa Fe for several years. Honestly, the midwest is much more colorful than the southwest. You scans look like they have the saturation boosted in an editing program. You do use some editing program, if not Photoshop, because you are posting scans..digital images. If your scans don't really look that way, then you need to calibrate your screen. On mine, which is a self-calibrating monitor made for graphics work, they look bizarre. I've shot E100VS and it scans just fine. If you cannot get scans that match its look, you just don't know what you're doing. I've found a lot of the 'digital anything sucks' crowd are just that, people who never learned to work with digital and since their results suck, they assume everyone's results suck.
Originally Posted by thuggins
I'm here because I shoot 100% film. I don't even own a digital camera anymore, but I get tired of the ignorant bashing of other people's work. Only a fool thinks a photograph is visual truth. You can make a photo lie using purely 'straight' techniques just by choice of lens and position you shoot from. Photographs can tell the truth or they can be made up, just like any other form of art. If all you want to do are make record shots for the archives, fine, but don't bash people who are making art. Seriously though, you need to calibrate your monitor or pay someone who knows what they're doing to scan your film for you.
The true original (in film) is the negative or transparency. Most people would rather view a positive so one could say that unless an
un-manipulated contact print or transparency is presented the print is the photographer's interpretation of what was seen. I guess the contact print on more or less contrasty paper could be considered a manipulation. The capture in digital is also the original but we need to view it. There have been many discussions on this subject. My personal opinion is they are all valid presentations and are images on different media of the photographer's choice. I understand that the purpose of this website is to present analog photography as close as possible to a wet darkroom print.
Jerry Uelsmann does not misrepresent his work for which he is a master at his technique and produces flawless prints that I doubt all but the masters of PhotoShop such as John Paul Caponigro can come close to.
i say do whatever you want to photographs to present your vision and enjoy that of others just don't misrepresent.
I agree 100%
Originally Posted by 2F/2F
To quote a famous American "can't we all just get along?"
Originally Posted by chriscrawfordphoto
You got it all 100% correct. These arguments are always tiring and, at the end, going nowhere/counterproductive.
And, Tim, not to pile on or anything and with all due respect, I do work on a Eizo hardware calibrated monitor and your images are absolutely not natural. Just as Chris said, something is wrong somewhere along the line, ie: poor scans, non-calibrated monitor (although I don't think that can be attributed to colors that wild).
Photography has never being a realistic rendering of reality. Reality is not in Black and white, in reality we have an optical system which behaves differently than a large wide lens or a telephoto lens, since ever photographers have put diffuser filters in front of lenses when portraying young woman, portraits have always been made with two, three, four light sources which in nature is basically impossible, polarizing filters have been "abused" in the last decades to obtain supersaturation of colours and "dramatic" skies etc. etc.
There are various levels of "truth" in photography. News agencies do not accept a scan or a negative which is even minimally manipulated. Ceremony photographers do photoretouch images to a degree that reflects the way we perceive persons and reality. It is legitimate to portray a woman with a diffuser filter because, in real life, even if we can see the single spots and wrinkles on the face, we do not concentrate on them and we do not remember them, so that in a portrait said spots and wrinkles would make the person appear "much worse" than how we remember it.
By the same token, certain scenes in HDR look quite natural because they are closer to how we experienced the scene.
What is "unethical" is, in my opinion, lying about the process. Saying it is film if it is digital, saying it is "unretouched" when it is, saying a scene was "happening" when it is posed.
Provided one is sincere about the process, any picture however manipulated is valid and legitimate within the ends and the scope which justify its existence.
Anyway, the "all-too-fake" digital wave might spur a revival for film, which in the future might be perceived as a more genuine kind of photography.