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Author Topic: End of traditional photography?  (Read 15716 times)
fredjeang
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« on: January 28, 2010, 03:31:24 AM »
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Is "traditional" landscape photography as we knew it, about to be  obsolete?

Let's have a look here.

Renders have, and are, moving the position of architecture photography, and it seems that this tendency brings more general questions about photography's place in image creation. The camera as a tool in the form that we know, seems to be floating in a medium depth. In fact, digital cameras have just adapted a new technology to an old design that was not made for it. Too much conservatism may cost a high price to the industry. Why? Because we will see soon or later better tools to achieve photographic images.

I read in an old post that Michael was ready to eat his hat if Red cameras would not bring soon all a revolution in image industry. He may be true, but I see about the same problem:
what is the main subject on and on since digital photography appears? Resolution, pixels, IQ unsatisfaction, Bayer, compromised, etc... it is all about how bad it is and not so much how good it is.
Soon, and probably sooner than photo industry will have the time to react, dedicated software applications will be able to achieve every photographic image a creator could think about, with a precision, realism and flexibility that simply does not exist (or is too costly) with current photographic tools. And with no resolution limitation, non sense Bayer artifacts, horrible noise polution and so on...

Maybe the traditional photographer will end as a nostalgic collector, a sort of artist image maker of pre-historic times, let's say in 15 years? It is hard to divine what will happen, but it seems that the revolution is not likely to come from the photographic or cinematographic industry but from kids how are currently programing in their garage. Unless they stop thinking that adapting digital to old designs is enough.
By that, we'll have all the time to wonder about pixels problems, post production brain-teasers, and printings insecure color profiles at scandalous costs per month.

Do you think it is the end of photography as we know it?  

[attachment=19799:Terragen___Erat.jpg]

[attachment=19800:terragen_desert.jpg]

[attachment=19801:A_Brand_...Day_Full.jpg]

[attachment=19802:golden_okt_1024_2.jpg]
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Christoph C. Feldhaim
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« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2010, 03:56:07 AM »
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Reality ?
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EduPerez
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« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2010, 04:55:13 AM »
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OMG! I was browsing the the gallery, and must confess that some of the images there could fool me...
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fredjeang
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« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2010, 05:40:31 AM »
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Quote from: ChristophC
Reality ?
Yes ou course, (des)information. Although reality seems to matters less and less. Sure there will always have a niche for reality transcription, but I'm not so sure the next generations will have the same perception as us about the importance of reality, as we know that it is already a mystic imposible to acheive.
Reality is just real for one observer point of view that involve personal feeling, cultural programing and so on. So in itself the concept of reality is vague. As soon as there is a tool between physical observer and reality, the last one can only be an interpretation.

Fred.
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fredjeang
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« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2010, 06:51:48 AM »
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...and the thing is that created images actually coexist with real images without a clear distinction. I like to watch documentaries about space tecnology, universe etc...in those documentraries, the 2 types of images are mixed in a way that sometimes it is very hard if not impossible to determine what is reality and what is not. Very rarely, production would put and advice saying: "(re)created images" because it is part of the overall language. This is information but also desinformation. If sofwares are going that way, a photographer, an artist, anyone with sense of taste and habilities will be able to produce absolutely stunning landscape images (and others) from home, and if it is not mentioned anywhere that it is a created image, who will notice? It might be a serious revolution that I'm not sure we can evaluate at this point its impact in image langages and styles. So photography industry will have to reply soon or later if they want to stay in the train.

Fred.
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Christoph C. Feldhaim
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« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2010, 09:22:57 AM »
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Quote from: fredjeang
...... Very rarely, production would put and advice saying: "(re)created images" because it is part of the overall language. This is information but also desinformation. If sofwares are going that way, a photographer, an artist, anyone with sense of taste and habilities will be able to produce absolutely stunning landscape images (and others) from home, and if it is not mentioned anywhere that it is a created image, who will notice? ......

One day we will hopefully have forgotten that nature ever existed and we will live happily in our self created illusions ... nothing will get in the way then, like bad weather, frost, bears or our inability to take a good photograph under harsh conditions and whatsever ...

I remember reading Orwells "1984" long ago ...

/me hides and shudders ....
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fredjeang
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« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2010, 09:36:23 AM »
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Quote from: ChristophC
One day we will hopefully have forgotten that nature ever existed and we will live happily in our self created illusions ... nothing will get in the way then, like bad weather, frost, bears or our inability to take a good photograph under harsh conditions and whatsever ...

I remember reading Orwells "1984" long ago ...

/me hides and shudders ....
Oh yes, and as you point, the impact will not be only in images creation, it has  social, environmental and political implications.

Cheers,

Fred.
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walter.sk
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« Reply #7 on: January 28, 2010, 10:08:12 AM »
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Quote from: fredjeang
Is "traditional" landscape photography as we knew it, about to be  obsolete?

Do you think it is the end of photography as we know it?  
9802:golden_okt_1024_2.jpg]
Verrry interesting!  But I don't think programs such as Terragen will be the end of photography.  I am sure, with the invention of the camera, that painters asked, "Is this the end of painting?"  I think that the camera freed painting from some of the roles that painting used to fulfill, leading to more and more abstract and expressionistic areas of painting.  But, in the chain of innovations, despite the original fears, movies did not replace theater; t.v. did not replace movies; the internet has not replaced t.v.; and computers and synthesizers have not replaced musical instruments.

There will always be a cross-borrowing of techniques, and styles will be mutually influenced.  However, if photography is described as capturing and interpreting a scene or object as well as a moment in time, I believe there will always be people  challenged by that idea who will take camera in hand (whatever the form of that camera will be) and stalk the scene, the weather, the bird, etc,  and there will always be an audience for the results.


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RSL
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« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2010, 10:31:28 AM »
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If you're worried that simulation may eliminate photography, go get one of Cartier-Bresson's books, or Helen Levitt's books, or, best of all in my estimation, Elliott Erwitt's Personal Best. If you looked at Planetside's stuff you'll notice that it's all landscape. It completely ignores what's always been photography's most important use: recording the human condition. Simulation can produce a Shrek, but it can't record the kind of human interactions that people like HCB, Levitt, and Erwitt capture with photography. Simulation probably can outdo Ansel Adams, but it's not about to outdo Levitt. It can't even outdo Ansel if you consider some of his best work: pictures of people. I'm thinking specifically of his "Woman Behind Screen Door," which I consider to be possibly his finest shot.
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ckimmerle
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« Reply #9 on: January 28, 2010, 10:35:17 AM »
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We need to have more faith in the viewers. While this sort of imagery is going to be great for advertising and commercial purposes, it's not going to have much of an impact on fine art photography (whatever you definition of that genre may be). Most art viewers want to see images of reality (photography's strength) they can, on some level, have a personal connection with. That is why, IMHO, much of contemporary photography, with it's emphasis on pictorialistic fantasy, has failed to reach the same level of mass appeal as has traditional landscape photography.

Quote from: RSL
....what's always been photography's most important use: recording the human condition.

That is surely ONE of the photography's great strengths, but there are surely others of equal validity.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2010, 11:14:12 AM by ckimmerle » Logged

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Christoph C. Feldhaim
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« Reply #10 on: January 28, 2010, 10:46:35 AM »
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I feel more and more tempted to buy a Zeiss Ikon and a 4x5" and shoot film, ....













... scan it and postprocess and print digitally.
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Justan
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« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2010, 11:52:34 AM »
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It would be fun to have the time to learn Terragen or other similar programs.

Air brushing in all it’s forms has brought a lot to photography. Rendering is an extension. As the tools continue to evolve so shall the techniques and end products. But the goal is mostly to add tools rather than direct the nature of the craft. A world of 6+ billion souls craves variety, after all.

On the other hand, no one does daguerreotypes anymore because they suck compared to what we’ve learned to do since …..
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fredjeang
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« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2010, 11:55:43 AM »
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Quote from: walter.sk
Verrry interesting!  But I don't think programs such as Terragen will be the end of photography.  I am sure, with the invention of the camera, that painters asked, "Is this the end of painting?"  I think that the camera freed painting from some of the roles that painting used to fulfill, leading to more and more abstract and expressionistic areas of painting.  But, in the chain of innovations, despite the original fears, movies did not replace theater; t.v. did not replace movies; the internet has not replaced t.v.; and computers and synthesizers have not replaced musical instruments.

There will always be a cross-borrowing of techniques, and styles will be mutually influenced.  However, if photography is described as capturing and interpreting a scene or object as well as a moment in time, I believe there will always be people  challenged by that idea who will take camera in hand (whatever the form of that camera will be) and stalk the scene, the weather, the bird, etc,  and there will always be an audience for the results.
I agree totaly with your points and many of the arguments in the other posts. But I see a different situation this time: the beautiful bird you are talking about may not be real, and in a close future it will going to be absolutely impossible to distinguich in the hand of a real artist. Cartier Bresson used simulated situations to create what people thought it was snapshots, real moments. Some of them were truth, some of them were not. But in people's mind this is more true, and it was not always. The point is that the pictures where outstandings, but not always "trues".
For me, the future of photography, and specialy nature and reportage is going to be an integrated language between stills and movies. The photographer as we know now is likely to disappear ( I mean by that, it is gonna be something else). I may be totaly wrong but I am also ready to eat my hat, like Michael, if it does not happen in a close future.

Fred.
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ckimmerle
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« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2010, 01:07:45 PM »
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Quote from: Justan
On the other hand, no one does daguerreotypes anymore because they suck compared to what we’ve learned to do since …..

Actually, neither part of that statement is true. There are not only photographers practicing the craft, there are also a handful of associations for through which they can connect. As for sucking, the quality of the old images can certainly suffer (primarily due to age), but much of the contemporary images are beautiful and unlike any other traditional printing media.
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fredjeang
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« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2010, 02:36:48 PM »
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Quote from: ChristophC
I feel more and more tempted to buy a Zeiss Ikon and a 4x5" and shoot film, ....
So do I, and that is exactly what I'm planning to do.  
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ckimmerle
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« Reply #15 on: January 28, 2010, 03:13:52 PM »
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Quote from: ChristophC
I feel more and more tempted to buy a Zeiss Ikon and a 4x5" and shoot film, ....

Out of curiosity, what would that accomplish?
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"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeing new landscapes, but in having new eyes." Marcel Proust

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Justan
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« Reply #16 on: January 28, 2010, 03:23:03 PM »
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Quote from: ckimmerle
Actually, neither part of that statement is true. There are not only photographers practicing the craft, there are also a handful of associations for through which they can connect. As for sucking, the quality of the old images can certainly suffer (primarily due to age), but much of the contemporary images are beautiful and unlike any other traditional printing media.


Well there you go. I did exclude the society for collective anachronism from my considerations. My bad.

What do you think the implication of that factoid is upon the topic at hand?
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Jonathan Wienke
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« Reply #17 on: January 28, 2010, 03:31:17 PM »
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Quote from: Justan
What do you think the implication of that factoid is upon the topic at hand?

Most likely that people do things simply because they enjoy doing them, even if they are not the most efficient or economical way to accomplish a task. People still ride horses in spite of the fact that cars are cheaper, faster, and more convenient form of transportation, and people still listen to vinyl records, too. There are areas where CG can supplement or replace things currently done with photography, but that isn't ever going to kill photography. If nothing else you're still going to need a camera to capture textures...
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NikoJorj
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« Reply #18 on: January 30, 2010, 06:14:30 AM »
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Quote from: walter.sk
There will always be a cross-borrowing of techniques, and styles will be mutually influenced.
Indeed!
And moreover there ain't such thing as photographic truth - framing can always be some kind of lie by omission.

I can't resist to post this to feed the... debate : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cOPw1R5yRQ . Captioned in French, but I'd think images speak for themselves.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2010, 06:16:07 AM by NikoJorj » Logged

Nicolas from Grenoble
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fredjeang
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« Reply #19 on: January 30, 2010, 07:08:28 AM »
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Quote from: NikoJorj
Indeed!
And moreover there ain't such thing as photographic truth - framing can always be some kind of lie by omission.

I can't resist to post this to feed the... debate : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cOPw1R5yRQ . Captioned in French, but I'd think images speak for themselves.
Verrry interesting indeed!! Thank you for this post.

cheers,

Fred.
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