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Author Topic: The Art of Editing: When is Editing your photo too much?  (Read 29514 times)
eagleyepro
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« Reply #40 on: March 16, 2013, 07:49:40 AM »
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In photography there are many skills and processes that need to be considered and take place to produce a great photograph. That can include but not limited to experience, equipment, artistic perspective and so on.  One of those skills is editing/processing the photos you take.

As a professional photographer we sell or make light of our abilities (to produce excellent photos) by highlighting those skills and abilities. My main question is that if we highlight are skills and ability as a photographer 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)

Whats your take?   Highlight only our abilities in taking a photo and the end result or highlight everything including our ability to edit/process as well?

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« Reply #41 on: March 16, 2013, 08:46:41 AM »
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My "take" is that most sane clients couldn't care less about your "ability in taking a photo" or your "ability to edit/process." They don't want a course in commercial photography; they want a product. Does a gastrointestinal patient want a course on colonic surgery? Does a car buyer want a course on metal press work or industrial painting? Does a guy about to eat a hamburger want a course on cattle farming?
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Rob C
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« Reply #42 on: March 16, 2013, 09:23:30 AM »
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My "take" is that most sane clients couldn't care less about your "ability in taking a photo" or your "ability to edit/process." They don't want a course in commercial photography; they want a product. Does a gastrointestinal patient want a course on colonic surgery? Does a car buyer want a course on metal press work or industrial painting? Does a guy about to eat a hamburger want a course on cattle farming?


Quite, Russ, but it does litter forum space with a load of old bullshit.

This world is overflowing with great, mediocre and lousy photographers; do we require any more telling us what a splendid transformation they make in magicking sheep into goats? Heysoos, everybody can do that these days! Even when they can't.

;-)

Rob C




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eagleyepro
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« Reply #43 on: March 16, 2013, 10:41:05 AM »
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Quite, Russ, but it does litter forum space with a load of old bullshit.

This world is overflowing with great, mediocre and lousy photographers; do we require any more telling us what a splendid transformation they make in magicking sheep into goats? Heysoos, everybody can do that these days! Even when they can't.

lol, thanks for the comment Rob.

Now even though I completely disagree with Russ he is entitled to his opinion and I understand that. I asked the question knowing that there will be some contradictory or unsupported opinions. Smiley  Nothing wrong with that.

At the end of the day, you have to do what works for you.  Oh and Russ despite your opinion (which is completely ok) on not giving a client a lecture on the process of where their service has come from, in my line of work this perspective has made me an excellent living and client following.  As a professional photographer it has blessed me in many ways.  Smiley  After all it's not about forcing it on clients, but providing them with that information if they show interest and not shying away from it.     Transparency.

To each there own.  Smiley

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jjj
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« Reply #44 on: March 17, 2013, 06:21:48 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.
Russ - I see you completely ignored my previous reply to this post,
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.'

I bring this up again as whilst looking for a particular B+W photo by a photographer whose name I annoyingly cannot recall, I came across W. Eugene Smith talking about how he produced 'Tomoko in the bath'. His explanation really underlines your daft double standards.

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The photograph of Tomoko in the Bath from the Minamata story represents another one of those impossible lighting situations. There were high windows almost the length of the picture. If I had used only the light that was entering the room, I would have had no shadow detail on the near side of the mother’s body at all. In this photograph I also happened to use a small, battery-operated strobe, this time bounced off a fairly clean brown ceiling instead of a dirty brown floor.

There is a basic exposure for the whole picture, in which I dodge the area of the mother’s right breast. This is all the dodging necessary, except for the water at the edge of the tub. I burn in various sections of the white towel around the mother’s head, something like sixteen times the original exposure, giving the face just one extra shot. Then I burn in the face of the child, maybe six, eight times the original exposure. In other words, the child’s face takes much more exposure than the face of the mother or the main body of the picture. And I give the iron edges of the tub a very narrow exposure. I burn in both ends of the picture to make sure there is no grayness creeping up from the edges — it must get darker toward the sides. I burn in the stomach and chest of the child just once or twice. In the upper-left-hand part, you see some boards, or lines, going along. This is where the edge of the bathtub meets the back wall. I give three or four exposures just to that area, and then I give the whole bottom part (masking off all the body sections except a touch of the child’s left foot) maybe another four or five exposures, so this would get progressively darker. Then I burn in the top highlight on her right leg as steadily as I can, but it’s very awkward. I use either a formation of my fingers or a cardboard cutout. Mostly I use my hands, even the fingers that are misshapen.

I burn in the left leg to some extent, but I never burn in the top area long enough because it’s so strenuous that at this point I’m too tired. I use a 250-watt bulb in the enlarger with a heat-absorbing glass negative carrier. It holds the negative flat, which keeps it from buckling when the basic exposures are short and the burning in long.

That's a lot of jiggery pokeberry going on with that image. So why is is acceptable for that shot or for people whose work you like to do a lot of work in darkroom/computer, but not for others to do the same thing?
Plus how is tweaking shot using flash, which Smith also used or any lighting aide for that matter whilst taking a photo any different from tweaking shot once out of camera? It's all manipulation.




« Last Edit: March 17, 2013, 06:46:43 AM by jjj » Logged

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« Reply #45 on: March 17, 2013, 06:34:25 AM »
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This world is overflowing with great, mediocre and lousy photographers; do we require any more telling us what a splendid transformation they make in magicking sheep into goats? Heysoos, everybody can do that these days! Even when they can't.
The thing you seem to be be missing Rob is that you should only judge the end result, not the unfinished article.
If end result is good, then it is good. The fact that the halfway stage in say the case of photography where the raw file looked a bit dull, is not actually relevant.  The raw file is not the finished article or even close to it on occasions - particularly if your end goal is say a B+W print. It's like complaining about a neg not looking good because it's a negative image.

You wouldn't judge a richly layered oil painting by looking the pencil sketch the artist first put on canvas.
Then again some people here would.  And witter on for days about how sharp the pencil was or wasn't.
And that you needed to use a particular type of blade to get pencil to the correct amount of sharpness.  Grin
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« Reply #46 on: March 17, 2013, 08:12:25 AM »
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Russ - I see you completely ignored my previous reply to this post

I'll have to confess that I did, J, but in my defense let me point out that it was irresistibly ignorable.

Quote
I bring this up again as whilst looking for a particular B+W photo by a photographer whose name I annoyingly cannot recall, I came across W. Eugene Smith talking about how he produced 'Tomoko in the bath'. His explanation really underlines your daft double standards.

That's a lot of jiggery pokeberry going on with that image. So why is is acceptable for that shot or for people whose work you like to do a lot of work in darkroom/computer, but not for others to do the same thing?
Plus how is tweaking shot using flash, which Smith also used or any lighting aide for that matter whilst taking a photo any different from tweaking shot once out of camera? It's all manipulation.

It appears you need to work on reading comprehension, J. Yes, I've read Gene Smith's explanation of his Tomiko photograph many times. Are you suggesting that when Gene made that shot he screwed up and had to correct his error in the darkroom? How about AA's "Moonlight Over Hernandez?" When Ansel slammed on the brakes and rushed his camera up to the platform on top of his van, forgetting his light meter, having to guess at exposure, are you suggesting he blew the shot?

I think not. Both these guys knew exactly what they were after, and when they tripped their shutters they got everything their equipment was capable of getting. That's not the same thing as the guy who bangs away in wild abandon, not really knowing what he's after but hoping he'll be able to make a picture in his darkroom.

As far as artificial light is concerned, it's a no-no on the street, but there are cases where you can't avoid it. Here's an example. I wanted a readable picture of a local gravestone. The inscription was barely scratched into the surface of the stone, and has been worn away over the years. The sunlight never gets to the stone except in patches. But with a light stand and an SB910 zoomed to 200mm, I was able to bring out the surface detail. But this is an unusual situation
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Rob C
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« Reply #47 on: March 17, 2013, 08:53:53 AM »
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"This world is overflowing with great, mediocre and lousy photographers; do we require any more telling us what a splendid transformation they make in magicking sheep into goats? Heysoos, everybody can do that these days! Even when they can't."

Rob C


The thing you seem to be be missing Rob is that you should only judge the end result, not the unfinished article.




JJ, do you really think I can possible miss that, not know it? Can you imagine I'm referring to anything but what I see as the pomposity of the OP?

But credit where it's due: he manages to laugh and roll with the punches and keep this tedious thread alive. Not all bad, then!

;-)

Rob C

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eagleyepro
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« Reply #48 on: March 20, 2013, 07:35:52 AM »
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I think you done fabulous job in both photos. The first photo is great because the you catch nice moment. and your editing was great in sense of sunset  lighting.

ibecamewe,

Thanks for the comments and kinds words. I had a blast shooting that couple and you are right that I wanted to highlight the sunset lighting and warm feel. Compositionally the photo has a really creative feel with a shallow depth of field and an almost 3D look as the differently elements at the same depth as the couple are highlighted. Unfortunately it's a small sample to actually see that.

A larger version of that is here: http://www.theartofediting.ca/rustic-fence-detail-pose/    If your interested in any more photos that highlight the before and after check out http://www.theartofediting.ca

Thanks again,

Eagleyepro
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eagleyepro
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« Reply #49 on: March 20, 2013, 07:41:07 AM »
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ibecamewe,

I just checked out your website and you have some awesome shots as I never really get to see any Indian weddings. Wow the details and really interesting rituals in a marriage.

Very Cool.

Eagleyepro
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jjj
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« Reply #50 on: March 20, 2013, 10:21:22 AM »
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I'll have to confess that I did, J, but in my defense let me point out that it was irresistibly ignorable.
Is that because it showed up your hypocrisy?

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It appears you need to work on reading comprehension, J. Yes, I've read Gene Smith's explanation of his Tomiko photograph many times. Are you suggesting that when Gene made that shot he screwed up and had to correct his error in the darkroom? How about AA's "Moonlight Over Hernandez?" When Ansel slammed on the brakes and rushed his camera up to the platform on top of his van, forgetting his light meter, having to guess at exposure, are you suggesting he blew the shot?.......
Nope not at all.
Maybe you cannot read your own writings correctly. I pointed out that you say anyone who changes anything more than basics in post didn't get it right in camera - your words not mine, yet somehow people you like can tweak the image  as much as they want after shutter is released. Adams and Smith certainly liked to spend a lot of time manipulating their images in darkroom.
Also it's W. Eugene Smith or can't you even read that part without getting it wrong.  Tongue

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......I think not. Both these guys knew exactly what they were after, and when they tripped their shutters they got everything their equipment was capable of getting. That's not the same thing as the guy who bangs away in wild abandon, not really knowing what he's after but hoping he'll be able to make a picture in his darkroom.
Good photographers using digital capture do exactly the same as the two photographers you mentioned. They capture the best raw file under the circumstances and then develop the image as best they can using modern tools. Nothing has actually changed other than the tools we use, which thankfully are much better than they used to be
It seems that just because some people aren't very good at photography and try and fix it in post, then all work in post [other by the scant few people you approve of naturally] is bad.
So I'm curious, who put you in charge of all photography?


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As far as artificial light is concerned, it's a no-no on the street,.....
Funny as Magnum's Martin Parr uses flash very obviously when doing his colourful street photography and Satoki Nagata does some interesting B+W street photography using strobes. Not to mention all those press photographers.

Quote
but there are cases where you can't avoid it. Here's an example. I wanted a readable picture of a local gravestone. The inscription was barely scratched into the surface of the stone, and has been worn away over the years. The sunlight never gets to the stone except in patches. But with a light stand and an SB910 zoomed to 200mm, I was able to bring out the surface detail. But this is an unusual situation
Yeah freaky unusual! Shocked  Strobe lighting, wow! Not many people use that!
But hey isn't that cheating? Adding lighting is not real photography after all, as flash was not the natural light present in the scene. [/sarcasm]

Now something that I've noticed over the years is that the people who constantly berate others for using Photoshop or who dare to move more than two sliders in LR are without exception in my experience, awful at post production. And most of the time, their basic photography is severely lacking too, with scant evidence they have any eye for catching a photograph.
Though not surprisingly, quite a few armchair critics choose not to show their photography whilst they casually slag off other people's work.
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« Reply #51 on: March 20, 2013, 10:57:58 AM »
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Eagleyepro - this web page may interest you as the photographer has a page showing typical non skilled shots next to those lit/framed professionally.

Crappy Vs Snappy
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Rob C
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« Reply #52 on: March 20, 2013, 12:51:35 PM »
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"As far as artificial light is concerned, it's a no-no on the street,.....
Funny as Magnum's Martin Parr uses flash very obviously when doing his colourful street photography and Satoki Nagata does some interesting B+W street photography using strobes. Not to mention all those press photographers.
jjj"



Unfortunately for your argument, in Parr you've chosen to illustrate your point with my least favourite photographer of such genres. I think his renditions of the British Working Class Dream are hideous. If anything, I see them as insult to the poor sods trapped in the life. But then, I suppose we all have to pick our lunch much as do lions, tigers and even hyaenas.

You have no idea how I dislike exploitative people.

Rob C

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eagleyepro
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« Reply #53 on: March 20, 2013, 02:52:07 PM »
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Eagleyepro - this web page may interest you as the photographer has a page showing typical non skilled shots next to those lit/framed professionally.

Crappy Vs Snappy

JJJ,

Thanks for the link and that's a pretty cool site. I'm definitely on point with the concept and it really does show. 

On a side note, I started this thread asking "when is editing your photo too much". I soon realized that within actually getting people to respond to that question, there has been ton's of comments on people's opinions of genre's and "counsel on wisdom and cheeky comments from as you put it "side chair critics" that I didn't expect. Smiley  It's a learning process that in a public forum, I may actually only get about 10-20% of genuine comments of real value and pertaining to the question.  Priceless and learning that's part of the process.

As you can see i'm not afraid to give my opinion and share my work.   Smiley    Thanks for the comments and ideas.

Eagleyepro
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Rob C
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« Reply #54 on: March 20, 2013, 03:33:01 PM »
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JJJ,

Thanks for the link and that's a pretty cool site. I'm definitely on point with the concept and it really does show. 

On a side note, I started this thread asking "when is editing your photo too much". I soon realized that within actually getting people to respond to that question, there has been ton's of comments on people's opinions of genre's and "counsel on wisdom and cheeky comments from as you put it "side chair critics" that I didn't expect. Smiley  It's a learning process that in a public forum, I may actually only get about 10-20% of genuine comments of real value and pertaining to the question.  Priceless and learning that's part of the process.

As you can see i'm not afraid to give my opinion and share my work.   Smiley    Thanks for the comments and ideas.

Eagleyepro



I’m surprised at your surprise. In essence, your question was nothing more than yet another version of ‘how long is a piece of string’, an open and impossible subject for any meaningful discussion, which is why you imagine that you failed to bring one about. All you managed to air was that you felt you had a great personality (for your business) and the feeling that came across to me was that you felt you were far more intelligent and visully aware than your clients, whom you implied were thrilled to discover your powers of Photoshopping.

And that may all be perfectly true. But the problem is, this is LuLa, and it is a relatively sophisticated site where people alread know the power of their toys and tools fairly intimately. In effect, you are preaching to the wrong audience.

Whether or not only ‘ten to twenty percent’ of the responses are of value (to you) is just subjective judgement; to that remaning ninety to eighty percent of souls who took the trouble to reply, you display nothing but scorn by writing that.

What you have forgotten is this: LuLa offers a lot of very different things to a vast spread of personality types: some are here for the joy of seeing photographs, some to enjoy the company of like-minded others; some people like to write and express their world views where others prefer to wiggle around in semantic duels. Others find pleasure in measurbating with the best, and yet more find the whole thing very funny and remain on the sidelines having a giggle at the dramas of others. In that reality, getting what you think to be ten to twenty percent of public interest isn’t such a bad score: be happy; you survived.

Rob C
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« Reply #55 on: March 20, 2013, 03:49:17 PM »
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"As far as artificial light is concerned, it's a no-no on the street,.....
Funny as Magnum's Martin Parr uses flash very obviously when doing his colourful street photography and Satoki Nagata does some interesting B+W street photography using strobes. Not to mention all those press photographers.
jjj"

Unfortunately for your argument, in Parr you've chosen to illustrate your point with my least favourite photographer of such genres. I think his renditions of the British Working Class Dream are hideous. If anything, I see them as insult to the poor sods trapped in the life. But then, I suppose we all have to pick our lunch much as do lions, tigers and even hyaenas.

You have no idea how I dislike exploitative people.

Rob C
Whether you like Parr's work or not, is not at all relevant. He's just an example of a street photographer who uses flash.
Not a huge fan of his current style myself. His B+W work from the 60s is completely different however.
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eagleyepro
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« Reply #56 on: March 20, 2013, 03:58:47 PM »
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Rob,

Interesting and well put.  (Giving context, i'm saying this in a jovial tone and completely unargumentative) For the record I meant no judgement and scorn for anyone's (80-90%) responses that I may not have perceived as value pertaining to the question. All opinions are important despite correlation to the thread topic. As I stated I had no idea what to expect with responses when posting and this had been a great experience for me despite the naive understanding of what to expect on a forum.

With your very winded and lengthy response I am all but educated now on the way that I should be thinking when posting on this (LuLa)  forum.

I have no regrets and I'm quite excited to continue and post comments and learn what others have to say. It's been a very liberating and satisfying experience regardless what anyone says.  Worthwhile.

Thanks for your post comments and I hope that you continue to share your wisdom in the forum world.

Eagleyepro
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« Reply #57 on: March 20, 2013, 04:13:55 PM »
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I’m surprised at your surprise. In essence, your question was nothing more than yet another version of ‘how long is a piece of string’, an open and impossible subject for any meaningful discussion, which is why you imagine that you failed to bring one about. All you managed to air was that you felt you had a great personality (for your business) and the feeling that came across to me was that you felt you were far more intelligent and visully aware than your clients, whom you implied were thrilled to discover your powers of Photoshopping.
Alternatively that only describes what you thought Rob. As that's not what I thought. And the truth may well be something else again.

Quote
And that may all be perfectly true. But the problem is, this is LuLa, and it is a relatively sophisticated site where people alread know the power of their toys and tools fairly intimately. In effect, you are preaching to the wrong audience.
as some people on LuLa love to slag off modern working methods.

Quote
Whether or not only ‘ten to twenty percent’ of the responses are of value (to you) is just subjective judgement; to that remaning ninety to eighty percent of souls who took the trouble to reply, you display nothing but scorn by writing that.
Or maybe he accurately described armchair critics who love to sneer.  Tongue
When you ask for feedback online and you get 10-20% useful info that's pretty darn good in my books, given the nature of how humans work.
Rob - LuLa despite your claims to its sophistication can, like many part of t'interweb, at times be a quite unwelcoming. As illustrated by some posts in this thread.
Nothing wrong with an alternative point of view to one's one, but some attitudes here need tempering at times.
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« Reply #58 on: March 20, 2013, 04:26:42 PM »
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Though not surprisingly, quite a few armchair critics choose not to show their photography whilst they casually slag off other people's work.

No kidding. For some reason I can't seem to find your web site.
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« Reply #59 on: March 20, 2013, 05:40:18 PM »
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Though not surprisingly, quite a few armchair critics choose not to show their photography whilst they casually slag off other people's work.

No kidding. For some reason I can't seem to find your web site.

Is the reason the fact that you are a complete buffoon?  Tongue
After all, it being at the bottom of every post I make and also being in my LuLa profile would indeed, make it rather tricky to find.

And once again you ignore the points I made about your double standards and your contradicting yourself. Too busy trying [and failing] to be a smart ass it would seem.  Grin

Just in case you are still struggling try

www.futtfuttfuttphotography.com
or
www.futtfuttfuttphotography.com/herrang
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