Quote Originally Posted by Barry S View Post
This couldn't be further from the truth. What's stale are are the canned photoshop effects you seem to think are better than the real thing. Original organic effects created in camera and by the process can be (poorly) imitated in Photoshop, but not duplicated. Photo editors like strong images, they don't necessarily care how they were created. Perhaps Sally Mann should have used photoshop and saved herself a lot of trouble.

Your experience sounds like it doesn't go beyond the 70's and cokin soft filters. The effects of large format soft focus lenses are complex and variable as gandolfi mentioned--nothing like one-dimensional photoshop tricks. These lenses were made between the late 19th and mid 20th centuries and their prices have been skyrocketing as photographers rediscover them.
For starters, we're not talking about Sally Mann--a personal favorite--whose work isn't on the table.To tarbrush PS "effects" as bogus or "canned" simply implies you know less than most about what someone like Pascal Dangin does. His fashion work isn't one-dimensional or trite.

The OP brought up the issue of SF portraiture,its long gone heyday in the 70s, and why it passed in favor of hyper-sharpness. I see greater inventiveness and creative latitude made possible by PS in capable hands than was ever enabled by a lens alone--whatever the format. I love analog capture but it's often only the first step to a final image for me.