Is It Natural?


darkskies

Link Posted 24/10/2012 - 20:44
David, the image should look how you want it to look.
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Pentaxophile

Link Posted 24/10/2012 - 22:15
darkskies wrote:
David, the image should look how you want it to look.

I have a lot of sympathy with that point of view, but unless we take photos purely to view them ourselves, other people's perceptions do matter. Thinking about this and the other thread, it strikes me that being 'true to life' is less important than plausibility / attractiveness. As long as the image is plausible, and attractive, it will be pleasing to other people. Sometimes you might improve the image by 'rebalancing' the colours. Alternatively you might alter the colours in a blatantly unrealistic way, which can be successful if it's artistically justified and / or attractive.
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simonkit

Link Posted 25/10/2012 - 12:35
I have a shot that I took only last week that is very similar, infact with stronger pink mist/cloud...it's completely natural if that includes having a polariser attached to the lens at the time??

I'm not one for spending time altering photos in photoshop, although have a couple that are quite heavily processed - I've no problem with it even though it's not really to my liking most of the time..my only problem is when people are dishonest about the process they went through..obviously not the case here. For the record I like the modified shot

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Last Edited by simonkit on 25/10/2012 - 12:36

pentaxian450

Link Posted 25/10/2012 - 15:30
johnriley wrote:
if somebody gave us a Cadbury's chocolate wrapper that was printed the wrong colour, we would probably notice that.

It depends how far off the color is.

That's why standards exist. When printing, you have different standards that apply to different type of printing, like Gracol or SWOP, to make sure you stay within very defined color parameters.

Without using a densitometer or colorimeter while printing, it's almost impossible for the color to stay consistent from beginning to end of run, and the change is next to impossible to see while printing, but it clearly shows when you pull sheets at different time during the run, and put them side by side.
Yves (another one of those crazy Canucks)

darkskies

Link Posted 25/10/2012 - 16:08
Pentaxophile wrote:
darkskies wrote:
David, the image should look how you want it to look.

I have a lot of sympathy with that point of view, but unless we take photos purely to view them ourselves, other people's perceptions do matter. Thinking about this and the other thread, it strikes me that being 'true to life' is less important than plausibility / attractiveness. As long as the image is plausible, and attractive, it will be pleasing to other people. Sometimes you might improve the image by 'rebalancing' the colours. Alternatively you might alter the colours in a blatantly unrealistic way, which can be successful if it's artistically justified and / or attractive.

That's what I said.
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marklj

Link Posted 30/10/2012 - 19:29
I do a fair bit of split toning at the moment. Sometimes I see a slight different in tones matching the mood of a scene better than keeping it 'au naturel'. It depends how we see things in our minds eye. We are also in the realms of the 'Death of the Author' where we all bring our own experiences and thoughts into our interpretation of the image. I think we all need to do our own thing in order to develop our skills. If we all did things exactly the same way I would be bored to tears.

McGregNi

Link Posted 30/10/2012 - 21:00
Globally applied photographic filters or software colour toning are not as versatile as the human perception. If a dominant cast in a photo is prevalent over a wide range of different surfaces and objects, then it won't be perceived as natural, because the photo will not benefit from the ability of a viewer actually present to compensate automatically when scanning around the scene.

For example, taking some comments from the shootout, the blue was seen by some as unnatural where it 'spilled over' onto parts of the scene that wouldn't actually be blue, despite the time of day.

In the shot in this thread, personally, I find the magenta tinge 'natural' in the sky areas, but not so on the stonework, where I am aware that if I were present my colour perception would 'filter' it out when I glanced in that direction.

We have a great advantage now with digital where we can recreate this human 'auto-correction' function by making selective colour toning choices.
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Link Posted 31/10/2012 - 10:23
I do like this thread and the other one but I am confused again. f64, pictorialist, realist, or fantasy, to me it really doesn't matter. If a photograph captures a moment and moves me, I don't give a jot whether it has or has not been manipulated in camera or during some form of processing. All the aforementioned images are technically superior to anything I've been able to produce so far and they are all 'nice' images, but they don't move me. And what is this 'true to life' thing anyway?

Lacking the intellect or language to fully express what I mean, I refer you to this text:- link
As for me, all I know is that I know nothing.

Dodge69

Link Posted 31/10/2012 - 10:31
Yeah it's a tricky issue... maybe the answer is to all this is to take a camera along when your out photographing, then you can take a picture of the scene so you'll know what it looked like when you get home and process your photo.


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DrOrloff

Link Posted 31/10/2012 - 10:34
Actually having a point of reference like that is a pretty good idea. Another use for the Q.
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davidstorm

Link Posted 31/10/2012 - 22:16
Thanks to everyone that has contributed to what has become a really interesting thread. More opinions please!!!!

Regards
David
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Last Edited by davidstorm on 31/10/2012 - 22:16

Smeggypants

Link Posted 01/11/2012 - 05:41
davidstorm wrote:
Well, what a week it's been on the Forum, lots of heated discussions about processing images and all that stuff. In a way, I wish I hadn't entered into the challenge with Nigel on the processing front, but in another way I've really enjoyed seeing how hot under the collar everyone gets about a couple of simple images!

It wasn't the images people got hot under the collar about, it was the agenda of the 'test', which was to see which software produced the best output and was totally flawed in that agenda. It only served to show that people will edit a picture subjectively different.




Quote:

I have just two questions:

1. Does it look natural?

2. Does it really matter?




I'm in photography simply because I enjoy it and I don't have any pretentions of grandeur. I know my limitations and accept them, but I still try to do the best I can to take the best images possible within my limited set of skills. What I would like to know is whether you have strong opinions about whether or not an image should look 'natural' (whatever that means). I would bet my last fiver that many of you do have the said 'strong opinions'.........

Best wishes
David

1. Not being there, I don't know

2. It doesn't matter anyway

I think it's a lovely image and would have been proud to have taken it and processed it like that.
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Smeggypants

Link Posted 01/11/2012 - 05:42
Dodge69 wrote:
Yeah it's a tricky issue... maybe the answer is to all this is to take a camera along when your out photographing, then you can take a picture of the scene so you'll know what it looked like when you get home and process your photo.


LOL - Like it
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dcweather

Link Posted 01/11/2012 - 19:59
I can't get too wound up about this. To me everything is ok as long as there is no deliberate attempt at deception outside of the picture itself. By this I mean it can be as purple as one likes, as long as there is no written or verbal or implied statement to say that's how it was when I took it. This would include entry into a competition where something wasn't allowed but had taken place. I do all my PP to my own satisfaction then if someone offers me an alternative I will take it if I think it is an improvement, ignore it if I don't.

davidstorm

Link Posted 01/11/2012 - 22:33
Smeggypants wrote:
I think it's a lovely image and would have been proud to have taken it and processed it like that.

Sincere thanks Smeggy for the comment, I appreciate it. I always find your forum posts interesting, with forthright opinions given. I also agree with you on the flawed nature of the 'processing shootout' thread, which whilst very interesting probably ended up serving no useful purpose. However, it's always good to stimulate some debate.

Regards
David
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