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Author Topic: The Art of Editing: When is Editing your photo too much?  (Read 17287 times)
Rob C
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« Reply #20 on: March 14, 2013, 04:21:05 PM »
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Declining hormone levels.


It's a myth: the hormones remain but have problem's finding gainful employment.

Rob C
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k bennett
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« Reply #21 on: March 14, 2013, 06:17:06 PM »
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for my own workflow, PhotoMechanic is the best editing software.

Yup. Love Photo Mechanic.
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Equipment: a camera and some lenses.
louoates
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« Reply #22 on: March 14, 2013, 09:27:30 PM »
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Great topic. Editing is simply getting to where you want an image to be. I have zero reservations about using all the tools possible. Many of my best sellers are drastically manipulated, often with several features added, landscapes stretched or compressed, sky swapped, time of day altered, etc. No, nothing is "sacred" to arriving at the final image.

I tend to keep nearly all my images, rather than cull them because I often go back through the crap pile and see what images can go together. I do lots of composites and find the old moldy stuff valuable.
   
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Schewe
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« Reply #23 on: March 14, 2013, 11:32:20 PM »
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Patience comes with age; trust me.

Slowness comes with age...Patience comes with wisdom (which is different).

Editing is the act of doing "something" to the image be it selection editing, cropping, color correction or massive image retouching. The question is, does your edit help or hurt the image and is the image worth the effort in the first place. Yes, Photoshop can help make a silk purse out of a sow's ear (and actually, the concept of making a silk purse from some sow's ears has been proven–read this: Report: "On the Making of Silk Purses from Sows' Ears," 1921).

So, you can...but it doesn't mean you should which is the bottom line, just because you CAN do something doesn't mean you SHOULD do something. It all depends on whether or not it helps...and that's on you.
« Last Edit: March 14, 2013, 11:34:01 PM by Schewe » Logged
kikashi
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« Reply #24 on: March 15, 2013, 03:37:00 AM »
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Apparently, the meaning of editing has been subverted.

I don't agree. Editing has always meant more than simply culling. If I edit a book, or a scientific publication, or a newspaper, do I merely delete parts of it?

Jeremy
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Rob C
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« Reply #25 on: March 15, 2013, 04:15:01 AM »
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I don't agree. Editing has always meant more than simply culling. If I edit a book, or a scientific publication, or a newspaper, do I merely delete parts of it?

Jeremy


Of course it has, but it's usage is usually supposed to be specific to the medium in which it's employed. Here we are chatting about photography, not making a movie or running a newspaper. Each has a specific, generally understood meaning within its application. So yep, we can subvert anything we like - as per this thread.

;-)

Rob C
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Rob C
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« Reply #26 on: March 15, 2013, 04:29:25 AM »
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Slowness comes with age...Patience comes with wisdom (which is different).




That's a bit optimistic, Schewe; lots of older people are patient but that doesn't denote wisdom: often, lack of wisdom gives rise to patience that is dedicated to lost causes and borders on masochism.

On today's news there's an item about ex-servicemen under thirty being more prone to violence in civilian life after having had battle experience. On the strap line it claimed three times the chances of being violent and yet on the sound, it was five. One source, two versions running concurrently. Reading and listening demands a lot of patience - wisdom dictates it's often all bullshit.

Truth is, patience and wisdom should prevent a lot of posting on the Internet, especially prevent one from becoming embroiled in hopeless threads rooted in unclear original thought.

Maybe that's a new definition of contemporary humanity.

;-)

Rob C
« Last Edit: March 15, 2013, 09:26:57 AM by Rob C » Logged

eagleyepro
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« Reply #27 on: March 15, 2013, 07:40:42 AM »
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Great topic. Editing is simply getting to where you want an image to be. I have zero reservations about using all the tools possible. Many of my best sellers are drastically manipulated, often with several features added, landscapes stretched or compressed, sky swapped, time of day altered, etc. No, nothing is "sacred" to arriving at the final image.

I tend to keep nearly all my images, rather than cull them because I often go back through the crap pile and see what images can go together. I do lots of composites and find the old moldy stuff valuable.
   

OK for the sake of getting a bit back on topic a little bit and moving back to photography and away from wisdom, patience and civilized actions in life ( credit Rob C and a couple others Smiley ) I agree with Louoates. With the original question "when is editing your photo to much?", it looks like this is great topic with many layers of responses. From a wedding photographers view where I make my living with my personality and photos, I agree that editing can be an amazing thing that has the ability to bring a photo from 0 to hero. That crosses the line when our beloved love for editing actually hurts the image and sets it back, not forward.

Eagleyepro
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RSL
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« Reply #28 on: March 15, 2013, 08:13:27 AM »
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Any digital photograph needs sharpening, and often, especially if it was shot in mixed light, minor color adjustment. But in the vast majority of cases, if it needs more "editing" than that to be good, then it's never going to be good. Yes, I know all about AA and "Moonrise over Hernandez," but Ansel nailed the guts of that shot in the beginning. It's one of the few pictures that falls outside "the vast majority." Same thing with Gene Smith's Haitian mental patient and Tomoko in her bath. But if you need to do extensive "editing" (other than culling) on your run-of-the-mill photographs you need to check both your equipment and your vision.
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Isaac
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« Reply #29 on: March 15, 2013, 12:17:47 PM »
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I'm posting this thread because...

...I'm interested in doing a promo for my website :-)
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eagleyepro
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« Reply #30 on: March 15, 2013, 01:40:59 PM »
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...I'm interested in doing a promo for my website :-)

lol, Isaac,  great comment but your unfortunatley incorrect.  The question and thread was 100% legit and a honest question because it's been a topic of my career and interest of mine for years. I absolutely love photography and editing. Because This is not about my self promotion i'll remit/remove that last post. I just thought that it might help people who are interested in this topic like myself.

My apologies for the misunderstanding.

Eagleyepro
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Slobodan Blagojevic
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« Reply #31 on: March 15, 2013, 01:50:07 PM »
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Let me put it this way: the best (photographic) edit is the one that the viewer does not perceive as such, especially non-photographers.

By that I do not have in mind non-distinquishable before/after, but non-perceivable when viewed alone. For that reason I agree with previous posters who thought it is not such a good idea to push before/after comparisons.
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Slobodan

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eagleyepro
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« Reply #32 on: March 15, 2013, 02:10:10 PM »
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Let me put it this way: the best (photographic) edit is the one that the viewer does not perceive as such, especially non-photographers.

By that I do not have in mind non-distinquishable before/after, but non-perceivable when viewed alone. For that reason I agree with previous posters who thought it is not such a good idea to push before/after comparisons.

Slobodan,    Great comment and I appreciate the perspective and opinion.  With my personal experience on this topic which is completely subject to my opinion, is that I have had an amazingly positive response from all of my clients. That's not to say that it's going to work for every client. When I started actually presenting this to my clients a while back, I was under the same opinion that it may not be taken or received well. But after showing clients and explaining the role of editing in many photographs (as an educator) it has only supported and solidified the hopeful positive response.

The beauty of this whole topic which is one reason why started this is that " i'm learning that Photography is completely subjective from all perspectives from the client to the photographer. What I like may not work for you and what makes me money may be a complete flop for someone else. It's so interesting how this has played out. Smiley....."

Question for you: (Slobodan) In photography there are many parts and areas that need to be considered or take place to produce a great photograph. One of those is editing/processing the photos you take. If we as photographers can sell or make light of our abilities (to produce excellent photos) from style to equipment, then why would we not want to show the client the process/art of editing because (in my experience) it appears to be almost as important as actually taking and composting the photo. (This could be a new perspective for the digital area we are in)

I would love to hear what you think.  (great photos on your viewbug by the way)

Eagleyepro  
« Last Edit: March 15, 2013, 02:14:22 PM by eagleyepro » Logged

DennisWilliams
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« Reply #33 on: March 16, 2013, 01:00:03 AM »
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 If it wasn't in the viewfinder, and it's in the finished photo,  it's probably too much. I'll remove a blemish if it would have been gone on a different day, but I leave a scar. I might even remove an out of focus bird that looks like a blob from an out of focus sky in a worse case scenario,  but if there is any semblance of reinvention afterwards,  it is too much.  My original transparencies and negs on a light box are immediately recognizable as the digital versions on the computer screen. My adjustments are minimal. What would be the point of designing, directing and executing the shots  right to begin with? If I want a red leather chair,  I just take a red leather chair to shoot,  I don't take a blue vinyl one and fix it after.  I want to be out having fun shooting, not sitting alone at a computer fiddling.  Smiley
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jjj
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« Reply #34 on: March 16, 2013, 03:02:35 AM »
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Any digital photograph needs sharpening, and often, especially if it was shot in mixed light, minor color adjustment. But in the vast majority of cases, if it needs more "editing" than that to be good, then it's never going to be good. Yes, I know all about AA and "Moonrise over Hernandez," but Ansel nailed the guts of that shot in the beginning. It's one of the few pictures that falls outside "the vast majority." Same thing with Gene Smith's Haitian mental patient and Tomoko in her bath. But if you need to do extensive "editing" (other than culling) on your run-of-the-mill photographs you need to check both your equipment and your vision.
So all B+W digital photos are automatically rubbish then?
As what you are basically saying is 'all images that need work on them after capture are crap, except of course the ones I like.'





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Tradition is the Backbone of the Spineless.   Futt Futt Futt Photography
jjj
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« Reply #35 on: March 16, 2013, 03:40:32 AM »
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That the sun, hitting the right side of the pillars, could be that orange is actually believable. Anything else, given that it is in the shade, isn't - shades are typically cooler, bluish.
Shadows are relatively bluer to the camera, as cameras can only cope with a single colour temperature at a time. But our eyes are smarter and adaptable than that. So I think there is no problem with the shadows.
There's this perception regarding how film looked, that informs what we perceive as truth in photography. The reality is that film lied all the time and is the main reason it looked so good. But because film came first, it set the standard.
« Last Edit: March 16, 2013, 05:34:36 AM by jjj » Logged

Tradition is the Backbone of the Spineless.   Futt Futt Futt Photography
jjj
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« Reply #36 on: March 16, 2013, 03:47:56 AM »
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If it wasn't in the viewfinder, and it's in the finished photo,  it's probably too much. I'll remove a blemish if it would have been gone on a different day, but I leave a scar. I might even remove an out of focus bird that looks like a blob from an out of focus sky in a worse case scenario,  but if there is any semblance of reinvention afterwards,  it is too much.  My original transparencies and negs on a light box are immediately recognizable as the digital versions on the computer screen. My adjustments are minimal. What would be the point of designing, directing and executing the shots  right to begin with? If I want a red leather chair,  I just take a red leather chair to shoot,  I don't take a blue vinyl one and fix it after.  I want to be out having fun shooting, not sitting alone at a computer fiddling.  Smiley
So what if you only have a blue leather chair? Do you spend days tracking down a red one or shoot the blue one, change colour in PS in a few seconds and then go and have fun taking more pictures?

Also do you go out shooting in with other people as most photographers work alone when shooting? Not a lot more sociable than being at a computer. Which could be in a busy office or studio and even if it isn't you can be chatting to friends all over the world on say FB, Skype or here on LuLa whilst editing.  Grin
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stamper
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« Reply #37 on: March 16, 2013, 04:36:37 AM »
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At the end of the day all that counts is the final print/internet image. If you don't show someone what the original was then all they have to look at and judge is the final output. What you do to get there is up to the photographer and his conscience. Try your best to get a good image out of a camera and then try to edit it to match your vision. It is a simple concept but difficult to achieve. Wink Smiley 
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kikashi
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« Reply #38 on: March 16, 2013, 06:03:33 AM »
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At the end of the day all that counts is the final print/internet image. If you don't show someone what the original was then all they have to look at and judge is the final output. What you do to get there is up to the photographer and his conscience. Try your best to get a good image out of a camera and then try to edit it to match your vision. It is a simple concept but difficult to achieve. Wink Smiley 

Precisely.

Jeremy
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eagleyepro
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« Reply #39 on: March 16, 2013, 07:40:43 AM »
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At the end of the day all that counts is the final print/internet image. If you don't show someone what the original was then all they have to look at and judge is the final output. What you do to get there is up to the photographer and his conscience. Try your best to get a good image out of a camera and then try to edit it to match your vision. It is a simple concept but difficult to achieve. Wink Smiley 

I definitely agree that the end result is the most important thing and that your client is more than happy with your work. That applies despite the light or heavy editing that has transpired.

Eagleyepro

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