Ad
Ad
Ad
Pages: « 1 [2] 3 4 ... 9 »   Bottom of Page
Print
Author Topic: Rant 23  (Read 27816 times)
Steven Draper
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 147


WWW
« Reply #20 on: September 26, 2009, 11:31:50 PM »
ReplyReply

Hi.

Years ago my father painted copies of Old Master images for people who did not want a cheap print of Constable's or Turners. I wondered why we had to go to the museums to see the actual pictures when they were in so many books, until you realise that much of the enjoyment of a real painting is actually being in its presence, not just looking at the elements of the picture. I also noted that the colours and detail were different without all those little printing dots!

Yet many people never saw the real painting yet enjoyed pictures in books or cheap prints from market stands. Yet do 'wet' artists get over fussed - most I know do not have web sites - so probably not.


Is the real issue not how other people enjoy our 'online'  photographic images i - and yes folks enjoy pictures they see on the web on really old monitors with really odd colours, but a fear that our images, often created using expensive equipment and slaved over for hours and hours will just be equalized with someone who has snapped something similar on a mobile phone an sent it straight to Flickr!

I think that people who are seriously interested in buying prints are also sophisticated enough to realize that the web is really just a catalogue of work, Yes they will probably enjoy getting to know a little bit about an artists style and flavour of work, and yes they may narrow a choice of prints down from a whole collection to two or three, but ultimately they are using the web as a tool, with the experience of a print in mind.

I'll also add that earlier this year I did get an exhibition based largely on a few emailed files and web site, although in fairness the curator had seen one file as a print at a show, therefore the ability to mentally visualize the others may well have been easier. And that is why people still come to galleries to see exhibitions - although the web may provide a check as to if the concept of what is being displayed is to taste - unless you have a big reputation!! So getting work in public display IS critical if you want to build a reputation - the more real images people have seen, the better they can anticipate what a print of a web image will look like.

For people who believe that the screen is the 'end product' then you can draw your own conclusions. However I can say - as chair of a successful artist run gallery - we've actually increased our sales this year over last - with photography doing very well. So the print is a long way from being dead. The biggest selling point of an image is the connection a viewer has with it, if they like it, it goes with the furniture and the price point is about right they will purchase. The exact details of the print, paper, whether the master file is sRGB or prophoto, do not matter, infact many do not want to know because they have no need to understand in order to enjoy the print. There probably comes a point for a few photographers when their name becomes the core selling feature, but that does not always mean great prints, although many will be, just that their name means something. However for the majority of middle ground photographer, the overall image NEEDS to be more creative and technically better than what the purchaser feels they could achieve with their own camera.... and that means pretty good now days!

S



















Logged

image examples are at my website  stevendraperphotography.com   and Polepics is      "Here"
Rob C
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 12215


« Reply #21 on: September 27, 2009, 03:03:33 AM »
ReplyReply

Well, I have spent a lot of my time looking at fashion and beauty photographers' sites on the web and some have been amazingly impressive. Frankly, I doubt if any printing device can ever match the luminosity and sheer sense of life that springs out of the monitor when the original is wonderful. This is not sour grapes, either, because I have coaxed some (to me) quite impressive b/w from my B9180 with unexpected detail that I hadn't seen either. But there is something else, beyond detail - the same thing that the transparency used to have and print never did.

Perhaps there is a confusion here - is there the fear that the web image hasn't been prepared well enough for the medium? Is it the age-old defence system coming to the fore, saying that though the website looks good, my work is better, the shot the client used wasn't the best and so on?

That uncalibrated monitors don't help is beyond dispute, but are they all so bad, I wonder? My first monitor was a Mitsubishi Diamond Pro, I never calibrated it because I had neither the tools nor the desire nor understanding of digital problems at the time, but also because I was fascinated and highly impressed by the images that I did manage to raise on it: they looked stunning, straight out of the box (the monitor came out of the box, not the images). Of course I had no idea what the photographers saw in their studios, but it still looked great to me at home.

Perhaps we have to cut down on our expectations; if we sell prints via the web, then if the buyer likes what he sees there well enough to make an order, we should be happy that he will be even more happy when he gets the real print. If the theory holds good that is, that the print is going to be better, which is not always the case, even when you are trying to match colours yourself as you try for that magical, final piece of paper.

This theory would make perfect sense if control at the production end was also perfect, which for me it sure ain't, nor, I suspect, for many here, regardless of how expert they may wish to appear.

Rob C
Logged

tho_mas
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1696


« Reply #22 on: September 27, 2009, 09:32:36 AM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: Schewe
Again, Michael's point is that evaluating an image at 1:1 tells you nothing about what the image will look like printed
As we are not able to judge about how an image will look like printed that also means by implication that softproof, curves etc. etc. are pointless ... so finally (pointed) a screen is not an helpful part of the equipment.
Of course the screen view never looks exactly as the print, especially regarding noise. But infact I feel that I can estimate quite well how a certain image displayed on screen will look like when printed (on different papers). That also means that I can judge about files of other cameras (within limitations of course).
Logged
Quentin
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1088



WWW
« Reply #23 on: September 27, 2009, 11:14:42 AM »
ReplyReply

While I agree with Michael's point for prints, if you shoot for stock, the pictures are judged and purchased based on the screen thumbnail or enlaged version.  I have many shots I'll never print and which are not that interesting in fine art terms, but they have to look noise free and sharp on screen because that is how buyers make their buying decisions - even if (eventually) the picture is destined for use in print in a book or magazine.  For these shots, appearance on screen is all that matters

Quentin
« Last Edit: September 27, 2009, 11:16:13 AM by Quentin » Logged

Quentin Bargate, ARPS, Author, photographer entrepreneur and senior partner of Bargate Murray, Law Firm of the Year 2013
Graeme Nattress
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 582



WWW
« Reply #24 on: September 27, 2009, 03:18:17 PM »
ReplyReply

I can see how comparing prints is meaningful to the photographer taking the shots and doing the printing. They know the scene, the lighting conditions and have the final image that they wish to achieve in their heads. They can figure how this camera or that camera helped or hindered them on their journey from scene to print.

However, for judging dynamic range, say, it's hard enough when you were at the scene yourself. Eyes are not light meters. Even harder still for someone who was never their to infer what the lighting conditions were. That's where calibrated test charts come into their own. Even resolution and detail are tricky to judge on real world scenes.

Even with careful measuring, the test you do yourself is the one you should trust.

Graeme
Logged

www.nattress.com - Plugins for Final Cut Pro and Color
www.red.com - Digital Cinema Cameras
David Mantripp
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 686


WWW
« Reply #25 on: September 27, 2009, 04:26:29 PM »
ReplyReply

Michael,

I think this sidewsipe:

“Now, if judging a camera or lens' performance by means an image on-screen is your idea of a good time – well, fine. But, except for the Flickr crowd that's not what fine photography is about – at least it isn't for me“

was pretty uncalled for. There is a scary amount of talent on show at Flickr, and frankly if it's good enough for Art Wolfe....   There are some very fine photographers out there who's work is actually very adapted to the online space, indeed in embraces the medium.

There is no single "Flickr crowd". Far from it. There are many. And frankly, the amount of time they spend "judging a camera or lens' performance by means an image on-screen" is approximately zero in my experience. Flickr ain't DPreview - or even The Luminous Landscape.

David


Logged

--
David Mantripp
http://www.snowhenge.net
Bill VN
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 35


« Reply #26 on: September 27, 2009, 04:52:20 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: michael
No, the point isn't to turn the print into a means of technical measurement. Anything but.

What I was trying to get at is that it's what ends up on the final print (however it's made) that is the ultimate arbiter. If I can see the difference in the final work of art, then the difference is meaningful. If I can't, then it may be there but of only academic interest.

Michael

I am a little confused on the purpose of Mike's rant. I thought the essay's point was that you cannot evaluate the performance of a camera or lens from samples posted on the web, which is valid.

However, saying that you can evaluate a camera or lens from the output of an inkjet or laser printer is equally untrue. All laser and inkjet printers are halftone devices that print very fine multi color dots to produce an image. The resolution of a print is not directly dependent on the 1s and 0s a digital camera generates, but on the printer's halftone screening process, the inks and printheads used, the raster image processing (RIP) algorithms and the paper's ink dispersion rate.

On another note, if you are working in Photoshop, or any other pixel-based program, keep in mind that Apple displays can only accurately show a pixel image at a halving or doubling  of 100%--i.e. 100%, 50%, 25%, 200% 400%, etc. At other magnifications, which is usually the case if you type command-0, the screen image is dithered and inaccurate.
Logged
Schewe
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 5415


WWW
« Reply #27 on: September 27, 2009, 05:57:48 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: Bill VN
On another note, if you are working in Photoshop, or any other pixel-based program, keep in mind that Apple displays can only accurately show a pixel image at a halving or doubling  of 100%--i.e. 100%, 50%, 25%, 200% 400%, etc. At other magnifications, which is usually the case if you type command-0, the screen image is dithered and inaccurate.


Actually, to be accurate, if you are using Photoshop CS3 and earlier, this is true. If you are using Photoshop CS4 then not true depending o n your GPU settings. If you are using Photoshop CS4 and you have GPU turned on, then resampling for screen display in Photoshop is being done using Bilinear. If you have GPU turned off then it's using Nearest Neighbor. So, one should be precise regarding the version you are using...
Logged
michael
Administrator
Sr. Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4782



« Reply #28 on: September 27, 2009, 07:01:55 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: Bill VN
I am a little confused on the purpose of Mike's rant. I thought the essay's point was that you cannot evaluate the performance of a camera or lens from samples posted on the web, which is valid.

However, saying that you can evaluate a camera or lens from the output of an inkjet or laser printer is equally untrue. All laser and inkjet printers are halftone devices that print very fine multi color dots to produce an image. The resolution of a print is not directly dependent on the 1s and 0s a digital camera generates, but on the printer's halftone screening process, the inks and printheads used, the raster image processing (RIP) algorithms and the paper's ink dispersion rate.

On another note, if you are working in Photoshop, or any other pixel-based program, keep in mind that Apple displays can only accurately show a pixel image at a halving or doubling  of 100%--i.e. 100%, 50%, 25%, 200% 400%, etc. At other magnifications, which is usually the case if you type command-0, the screen image is dithered and inaccurate.

David,

I meant no offense to Flickr or the people that use it. I was simply using it as a metaphor for web based photographic display.

Michael
Logged
Tyler Mallory
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Posts: 62


WWW
« Reply #29 on: September 27, 2009, 08:51:37 PM »
ReplyReply

Sir Edmund Hillary's comment about why he climbed Mount Everest "Because it's there." comes to mind. We look up close because we can. This was not such a thing with film because it was a pain in the butt to look at so many frames under such magnification.
I think what Michael's saying is that, just because we can, doesn't mean we must. And when we do, take what we're looking at with a grain of salt.
Logged

Gordon Buck
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 409



WWW
« Reply #30 on: September 27, 2009, 09:53:20 PM »
ReplyReply

I like prints.  Our house is full of (our own) large prints; in fact, we need a few more walls!

What if the cost and availability of large flat "monitors" changed favorably so that I could hang (framed?) monitors instead of framed prints?  Would the display and resolution need to be even more HD than current HD monitors?


Logged

Ray
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 8847


« Reply #31 on: September 27, 2009, 10:55:37 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: gordonsbuck
I like prints.  Our house is full of (our own) large prints; in fact, we need a few more walls!

What if the cost and availability of large flat "monitors" changed favorably so that I could hang (framed?) monitors instead of framed prints?  Would the display and resolution need to be even more HD than current HD monitors?

It depends on the viewing distance. We should always bear in mind, if you walk up close to an impressionistic painting in an art gallery, it generally looks like crap. It's made to be viewed from a distance.

I like big photos on my wall so they can be appreciated from the average distance in the room that I find myself most of the time. It's why I bought an Epson 7600 some years ago.

My partner has a 50" Panasonic plasma TV which sits on a stand close to a 23"x35" print of mine hanging on the wall. Out of curiosity, I downsampled the same file from which the print was made, to around 2.5mb (converting also to sRGB) and displayed it on the 50" plasma through its built-in SD Card slot. I was amazed.

The image on the TV screen is about the same size as the print on the wall. From a comfortable viewing distance of 3-4 metres, there is no greater detail to be seen in the print, and the image on the TV monitor looks clearly more vibrant and generally preferrable, but not always. The print can be seen only through reflected light. As the nature of the light changes, so does the appearance of the print. There are changing subtleties as the ambient light changes, which result in changes in mood as reflected in the print.




Logged
pegelli
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 581



WWW
« Reply #32 on: September 28, 2009, 03:28:54 AM »
ReplyReply

I agree 100% crops is nowhere near a guaranteed "end-all" to judge qualities of a lens or sensor, however I object to the addition of the italics words "(at least in part)" on the WHAT's NEW page. Some useful information or comparison can be had from these crops. Even Michael himself has posted 100% crops, for instance to point at noise characteristics. I believe with proper care it can still serve a useful purpose, even when posted on the web.

I still got good value out of this page, or should we conclude from this rant that this is a useless comparison, since the only thing that matters is how the images look in print  
« Last Edit: September 28, 2009, 06:30:49 AM by pegelli » Logged

pieter, aka pegelli
Bill VN
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 35


« Reply #33 on: September 28, 2009, 12:30:17 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: michael
David,

I meant no offense to Flickr or the people that use it. I was simply using it as a metaphor for web based photographic display.

Michael

I am not David.
Logged
JohnKoerner
Guest
« Reply #34 on: September 28, 2009, 12:56:41 PM »
ReplyReply

With all due respect, there was a lot of simplistic thinking and overly-simplistic generalizations in said article, if not outright falshoods and self-mockery.

For starters, as has been suggested above, if the physical printed image is the end-all, be-all judge of the value of any given camera, then pray tell what is the point of Michael's own page-after-page, year-after-year articles and posts on the web ... all of which are replete with "digital, internet" images being used as 'proof' for his own voluminous takes and positions on said products? If this new article isn't self-mockery, then I don't see what is.

That being said, this entire tirade begs the question as to "on what" physical printers may a camera's quality be accurately judged? All of them? Or only a few? After all, if the printed image is the 'only' image on which a camera may be judged, then does this statement hold true for every photo printer available---or does this statement hold true for only just a hand-selected few? After all, can anyone seriously declare that the print quality produced on a cheesy multi-function devise, printed-out on cheesy paper, gives a better inclination of 'camera quality' than does the highest-resolution, color-calibrated monitor available today? I doubt that very much.

So aside from the problems with reality that the above scenarios represent, is another fact, which is simply that MORE images are seen, evaluated, and judged online, via the internet, than are seen, evaluated, and judged in person on fine art paper. Further, more images are seen, evaluated, and judged in simple magazines and books, too, than are done so on fine art paper. If anything, fine art photos are actually the LEAST-purchased, LEAST-used applications to which the majority of photos are in fact put and judged. There are more photos in books, in any one major city, than there are photos in all of the collections of the world put together.

Further, notwithstanding the additional simple-minded posit that 'all' Flicker contributors put out the same-quality images, captured on the same-quality cameras, there is the point to be reckoned with that the value of any image isn't in it's 'absolute pixel (or printed) detail and quality, but on the overall impact (or significance) that the image conveys. There are too many 'technically-great' mediocre images to mention, and too many fabulous images that have technical problems to resolve.

There are simply too many variables to consider, to be able to completely dismiss the value and power of the online internet image. Moreover, I would say the future suggests, if anything, that the physical medium of 'paper and ink' are in fact the "dying dinosaurs" on the decline, not the digital image. If anything, all evidence suggests it is the digital image that is ever-growing in importance overall, in most people's lives, than is the physical printed image. For example, my girlfriend and I are in a quandary as to which of our images we would like to display in our own home. Thus the question becomes 'which one' makes for the best presentation? Ray alluded to this also. My girlfriend and I decided that we would rather purchase a 40" x 30" LCD monitor, on which we could 'flash' a thousand of our very best photos ... each flashing every few seconds ... than we would to "print and display" any one of our images on paper. I mean, let's be real, which presentation would ultimately prove to be the greatest "display" in one's home?

Thus, in the end, I think the printed image will ultimately be the least-used, least-desired form of display for the majority of people in the not-too-distant future. This is not to say that the digital print has no value; it is simply to suggest that digitized, computer-monitor-viewed images are more ubiquitous and important to most people than what is being acknowledged in this article.


Jack

.
« Last Edit: September 28, 2009, 01:05:53 PM by JohnKoerner » Logged
Rob C
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 12215


« Reply #35 on: September 28, 2009, 01:10:41 PM »
ReplyReply

Old men obviously get confused, but I sort of miss where the OP made the statement that has carried the thread into the current mood of taking up positions.

I hadn't realised that, all along, it had been an either/or proposition.

Silly me.

Rob C
Logged

michael
Administrator
Sr. Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4782



« Reply #36 on: September 28, 2009, 03:14:48 PM »
ReplyReply

I'm not sure why the central thesis of my argument is proving so difficult for some people.

I am not saying that people shouldn't display their images on the web, on screens or in any other manner. I am simply pointing out that the full quality of a properly shot, edited and adjusted image from a high quality camera simply can not be properly seen electronically.

Point: The web is sRBG and images displayed are compressed JPGs, while a print can easily exceed Adobe RGB in gamut.

Point: A print from, say, an 18MP camera (certainly not the biggest) is some 5200 X 3500 pixels. A 30" display is just over 2 million pixels. Something has to give, no?

An 18MP camera file can produce a roughly 16X20 print at optimum printing resolution, allowing one to see everything that the camera and lens have to offer. To produce an image with comparable resolution on a screen would require  a 240-300 PPI screen, which do not exist. Yes, a 50" LCD or Plasma can show the image at 100%, but to view it properly one has to sit across the room which means that the resolution isn't properly visible the way it is on a print.

So my thesis isn't that prints are a superior means of showing ones images (though for me they are). I realize that many people never print. But, simply that with today's technology they can't show you everything that's in the file the way a print can. Or, if they can, they suffer from very high cost, the extremes of technology, or other impediments.

Michael
Logged
ErikKaffehr
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 7241


WWW
« Reply #37 on: September 28, 2009, 03:31:03 PM »
ReplyReply

Hi!

Making RAW images available may be the best choice in my opinion, than you can download and print.

Regarding "scientific data" like Imatest and DxO-mark I'd suggest that they are probably correct, but not necessarily relevant. The reason they may be less relevant may be that we don't know how to interpret them.

My own testing seems to point in the direction that we need to go beyond A2 size to clearly see advantage for "full format" over APS-C, and this also applies to "medium format".

Subject may matter a lot, it's note really obvious which subjects are most demanding and in which respect they are demanding. The issue is quite complex. It's a good proposal that you should test with rental equipment, but that can be both impractical and expensive. Renting a Phase One equipment for two days here in Sweden is same money as a Canon 5DII, and there is no warranty that the equipment you rent is properly aligned.

There was some comparative shooting on different systems on Flickr, here:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/dos-chin/sets...6120567/detail/

I downloaded the sample image for Nikon 3DX and Hasselblad HII-50 and printed both in A2-format trough my standard processing pipeline. In my view the Hassy image came out on tops when "pixel peeping" but the Nikon image was actually sharper in general.

I asked a friend of mine who has been working at one of Swedens top professional photo labs about his opinion and he was quite affirmative that the Nikon image was sharper. Looking on screen at actual pixels in the area of maximum sharpness there was no question that the Hassy image was sharper. My friend did not know which was Hassy or Nikon and I could not talk him into changing his mind that the Nikon image was the better one.

My explanation for this is:

- Subject was not really suitable for this test, much because lacking high frequency detail.
- Distance to subject was to short, longer distance would give smaller detail and larger depth of field
- Color and tonality was better for the Nikon image
- DOF was in favor of the Nikon image, but the lens was also stopped down beyond optimal aperture

The conclusion I draw from this:

- If sharpness is good enough for a certain size of print other factors will dominate.
- The benefit of larger formats is not obvious for sizes up to A2

Best regards
Erik





Quote from: Rob C
Old men obviously get confused, but I sort of miss where the OP made the statement that has carried the thread into the current mood of taking up positions.

I hadn't realised that, all along, it had been an either/or proposition.

Silly me.

Rob C
« Last Edit: September 29, 2009, 12:02:13 AM by ErikKaffehr » Logged

Ray
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 8847


« Reply #38 on: September 28, 2009, 10:10:24 PM »
ReplyReply

I made a mistake in my previous post by writing that I downsized a large file I used for a 23"x35" print to about 2.5mb for display on a 50" plasma TV screen.

Of course I meant 2.5mp. One doesn't have to be precise because the TV will downsize a larger-than-necessary file to the exact size to fill display, although it helps to crop the image to the 16:9 aspect ratio.

Perhaps the time has come for Canon to go full circle and produce a D30 MkII using all the latest technology to provide those 3mp with the maximum DR and lowest noise possible, even better than a D3X image downsampled to 3mp. This is all one needs for a full HD display.
Logged
pegelli
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 581



WWW
« Reply #39 on: September 29, 2009, 02:14:56 AM »
ReplyReply

Quote from: michael
I'm not sure why the central thesis of my argument is proving so difficult for some people.

I am not saying that people shouldn't display their images on the web, on screens or in any other manner. I am simply pointing out that the full quality of a properly shot, edited and adjusted image from a high quality camera simply can not be properly seen electronically.

Point: The web is sRBG and images displayed are compressed JPGs, while a print can easily exceed Adobe RGB in gamut.

Point: A print from, say, an 18MP camera (certainly not the biggest) is some 5200 X 3500 pixels. A 30" display is just over 2 million pixels. Something has to give, no?

Quote from "What's New":
We've all done it. There's a photograph or a 100% crop of an image online, taken with a camera or lens that we're interested in, and we judge its image quality capabilities (at least in part) on the basis of that screen image.

Wrong!


I think I'm getting the central thesis of your argument and even agree with it, however the words "(at least in part)" suggest you find absolutely no use of comparing 100% crops which I don't understand and is not supported by your points.

I'm not trying to argue, I'm just trying to understand the whole logic better.


Logged

pieter, aka pegelli
Pages: « 1 [2] 3 4 ... 9 »   Top of Page
Print
Jump to:  

Ad
Ad
Ad