December 10, 2012 § 4 Comments
I recently saw a discussion about the use of Photoshop in photography today. Many of the people participating in the discussion had a very negative view, even to the point of asking “are we photographers or Photoshoppers”. I look at Photoshop as a wonderful tool, and as with any tool, it can create wonderful images or create really lousy looking images…depending on the skill of the person using it. I hear people saying that something is “over the top”…especially when discussing HDR. I may not like what someone does, but if that’s the look they were going for, then I guess it wasn’t “over the top”. I learned the Zone System in school, but I have a feeling if old Ansel was alive today, he’d be trying to create the perfect HDR. As far as creating special effects, check out Jerry Uelsmann, Duane Michaels, and when I started out in the early 70’s, Pete Turner. These guys were “doing Photoshop” before there was a Photoshop. Another complaint I hear, is when it appears some photographers do not pay close attention to details when shooting an image be it the lighting or composition because they can later, “fix it in Photoshop”. Being someone who shot nearly 100% transparencies when starting out(except for the occasional B&W), I learned that you really had to get it right in camera, and then you still bracketed your ass off. Sometimes though, you just have to do your best under the circumstances and what you get still needs a lot of help. Here are some examples. The “County Fair” shot was something I just walked up on and I had to take the shot right then and there…even though there were people, and other things cluttering up the scene. The “Chicago Skyline” and “Chicago Bridge” were shot holding my camera out of our car window while driving down the interstate…no chance to really compose the shot the way I would have wanted. Finally the “Maine Bay” was nice as is, but I decided to add some color. Back in my old film/transparency days, if I hoped to save some of these shots, I’d be lucky if one of the great transparency retouchers could help. Anyhow, I for one can answer when asked if I’m a “photographer or Photoshopper”, “A little bit of both!
Till next time, thanks for letting me share this!