One rule idea to submit photos to SB. Photographer

/ 1 decade ago (27 January 2007 03:46)

All of you do know that I am a very strict photographer. Because I think photography should be a strict art. Let me explain.

When you submit a photograph to the web, you should have the option of declaring that the photograph is "unmanipulated". Why is this, and what does it mean? Why declare that an image is not manipulated?

In many applications of photography, it is extremely important that a photograph be created through as as straight-forward a transfer as possible from what was recorded on the film or the imaging sensor of the camera to the image the viewer sees. Obvious examples would be photographs presented as evidence in a court case, as part of a medical record, with an insurance claim, or as an illustration of a news article in a newspaper or journalistic article. Photographs presented in such contexts are assumed by their viewers to be literally true, to be non-fictional documentation, testimony or reporting. A photographer breaks faith with the viewer and violates important canons of professional ethics if he manipulates the photographs so that they are not what he or she witnessed and what the camera captured. Other photographic genres, such as wildlife and nature photography have equally strong ethical strictures against manipulated images. Presenting a manipulated photograph in such an context is the moral equivalent of lying, and may literally be perjury.

In other domains of photography, non-manipulation of images is less of a moral imperative than in these examples. Nobody is morally outraged to learn that an advertising photograph has been manipulated, and indeed, most of them are elaborately staged pre-exposure and manipulated post-exposure.

While there is not always a moral imperative to present unmanipulated photographs, many people who are primarily interested in photography as an art form believe that knowledge of whether or not photographs have been manipulated is of critical importance when looking at and aesthetically appraising them -- that unmanipulated images which faithfully represent what the photographer witnessed are aesthetically very different from images that were synthesized in the darkroom or in an image-editing program like Photoshop or others. The many adherents of this view hold that there is a completely different aesthetic involved in venturing into the world with a camera and recording and documenting what one finds, than in going into a darkroom, or sitting at a computer and synthesizing images from various bits and pieces of photos and other image resources, using one's imagination and lith masks, chemicals, drawing and painting skills, or software. For people holding such views, the unique and special feature of photography as an art form is its ability to record meaningful images from what is found by the artist in the world, and that manipulating images reduces photography to just another tool for creating imagery. Some exponents of this view would even deny that manipulated photographs are photographs at all, and would urge the use of a different term for them. ( I confess I am one of these guys...) What I do not know is waht term to apply to them.

I think that SB should wish to provide viewers with accurate information as to whether or not images are manipulated so that those viewers who consider this critical can make their own judgements about the images.

Accordingly, I would ask photographers submitting images to check a box or field ( could be one on the "type of photography" we are submitting ) that states that an image is "Unmanipulated", provided of course that it is indeed unmanipulated. If the box is not checked (which should be the default), viewers should assume that the image is manipulated.

What is an unmanipulated image?

My definition is very strict; I would ask that people checking the box do not mentally create their own definition, or take the following only as guidelines or suggestions. If the photograph does not literally meet these requirements, the user should do not check the "unmanipulated" box.

An unmanipulated photograph is one that could be presented in a court of law or printed in a newspaper, without dishonesty or perjury by the photographer, as an accurate record of what the photographer saw and the camera captured, with the absolute minimum disturbance of the capture during the processing and finishing stages. A slide processed through standard chemistry is the paradigm for an unmanipulated image, and other types of photographs should strive, within the limits of technology, to be as close as possible to slides with respect to manipulation.

Futhermore, the image should be the result of a single exposure (shutter release) by the camera. Therefore, stitched panoramic images, multiple exposures, or composites of more than one image are all manipulated images for our purposes here.Contrast adjustments and color balance adjustments may be made in enlargement and printing, scanning software, image editing software, etc, as may selective darkening or lightening of areas of the photograph (dodging and burning). But these should not be so extreme as to render the image an inaccurate or unrealistic representation of what the photographer saw. (It is not intended that this be interpreted in some psychological way -- for example that Van Gogh's colors were in some subjective sense what he "saw".) Features may not be so darkened or lightened or changed in color that the effect is the same as if they were removed by a cloning tool. All images are digital files, and most of these go through post-exposure color space conversions.I would not state what transformations are allowed, but the emphasis should be on realism and the result should be as true to the original as practical, or at least should not be any more unrealistic than the effects produced by selecting normally available films.Sharpening tools are OK. Cloning/airbrushing tools may only be used to remove miniscule processing artifacts, such as produced by dust, not to add features that were not captured by the camera or to move or remove unwanted features that were captured. No use of blurring tools should be allowed.
No use of perspective correction tools should be allowed. Any perspective correction must be done pre-exposure through camera movements or PC lenses.
Cropping is OK. Images created by processing film through non-standard chemistry such as "cross processing" are manipulated images.Pre-exposure manipulations such as staging scenes before the camera are OK, but should be disclosed in the Technical Details if the "unmanipulated" box is checked, and the caption should not lead the viewer to any false conclusions, such as implying that an animal is in the wild, when it was actually photographed in a zoo. Colorizing a black and white image should be not allowed. Desaturating a color image to make it black and white is OK, provided the desaturation is complete and not selective.

It should be emphasized that there is no requirement that all images submitted to SB meet these requirements. These standards apply only to images that are declared by the photographer to be "unmanipulated". Also, all images should have their original EXIF info appended to them, if their are unmanipulated. Please do not get me wrong: I have nothing against manipulated photography, what I think is that viewers should be told by the author, if the presented captured was manipulated or not.

I know that SB is a Skins site but if it has a photo " department" this should be a "transparent" and true one. Be well.Photographer

Post replies:

1 decade ago (27.01.2007 03:58)
Reply by: Captain America
Well put my friendWink Peace be with youHappy
1 decade ago (27.01.2007 04:09)
Reply by:
Artur - you already know that we are on the same page with this. I agree with you - whole heartedly. All of my images are what I see. None of the other stuff. I seek, I find, I share. Well written, and wow - a great effort.

Photographer Photographer Photographer Wink Congratulation
1 decade ago (27.01.2007 04:13)
Reply by: Susan
Again i agree with you,im not a pro but i want also to show to people that all my photos are not manipulated .
1 decade ago (27.01.2007 04:14)
Reply by:
Do not get me wrong: altough I do consider heavy manipulated photography rather more than am "imagery" than a real capture, I do not have anything against it. What I believe is that the viewer should be informed by the author, wether the final result was or was not manipulated. That´s all. Happy Photographer
1 decade ago (27.01.2007 04:16)
Reply by:
Again, I agree and share that view. I have nothing against them either. Grin
1 decade ago (27.01.2007 04:18)
Reply by:
Susan....a Pro is a photographer that makes money with photography...and sometimes their work is so it? Photographer
1 decade ago (27.01.2007 04:30)
Reply by:
Another important thing about what I wrote: I am here a SB because I love the community being that all my works are for public view in my own site.My gallery here, does have manipulated images - some of the ones I submitted first, back in 2003 - being that even without telling that they are manipulated, one can see that they are.Make no mistake: I can also see when a photograph is manipulated or not.In my own site, those manipulated ones are not there.Why ? Because for myself..they are not real photographs, they can be nice images, but no photographs at all. Also I would suggest to the admins, that the maximum size of a submission should be 1024x768 pixels.And now I go for a rod-bicycle ride. Be well my friends. Photographer
1 decade ago (27.01.2007 07:37)
Reply by: DjDomiNatorX
yeah, but i fix some of my photos bec its bad contrast in the top or in the botm. so im sry.. but its the same picture! tnx Congratulation
1 decade ago (27.01.2007 07:54)
Reply by:
Fixing is one thing, manipulating is another. The problem is when "fixing" becomes " manipulation".Ultimately we could put all the guilt on the softwares that are in the market, as they are everything but no photo softwares in the real world.These software , instead of making better " real photographers", they just do the contrary: they incentivate poor photographers to become great software users. Is this photography? It is not. But even worse is when you are in a photography school and the school tell the students that they should be masters on the software side before they even grab a camera and they do know how to use it. My youngest son is now on photography and he is more concerned how to handle Photoshop ( yeak ) than to master the use of his camera. Luckily, his father is a crazy kind of guy that told him: grab the camera, read the instructions, make photography,put your feet on the street, go photo hunting and afterwards we will see if Photoshop - or anyother"heavy" photo software - is so necessary.If you do not get things right with the camera, you´ll get everything wrong on post processing. Got it? Photographer
1 decade ago (27.01.2007 08:05)
Reply by: DjDomiNatorX
hehe yeah yeah... ^^ my camera have 10mpx, but the lins is broken, and its comming dark spots and white spots thefore i fix them with some frames.. so yeah i get it.. hehe :p Happy Happy
1 decade ago (27.01.2007 08:08)
Reply by:
Get a new lens.... Photographer
1 decade ago (27.01.2007 09:39)
Reply by:
I was kidding DJ, but if ou have a broken lens, you should repair or substitute it, and meanwhile do capture with a spare camera if you have one. Happy Photographer
1 decade ago (27.01.2007 11:32)
Reply by: DjDomiNatorX
hmm you are scary brr.. hehe.. yeah i know they cost to much. bah.. in NOK: 1,699 kr, hmm i dont have so much money^^
i will by it, and its not all lens who ate fitting, but i look for it.. bah..^^
Spare is crap, its 1,4 mpx,, heh.. but i see if i can fix it, hmm cya Congratulation Congratulation Happy Happy
1 decade ago (28.01.2007 12:17)
Reply by:
My friend...pixels are not everything.Pixels are directly related with quality of printing. When I do not have nothing at hand, I even take captures with my cell phone. So...go for it. Photographer
1 decade ago (28.01.2007 06:03)
Reply by: Keeko
I agree with you Artur, photos posted here should be put into two classifications. Until then, maybe the author could write "unmanipulated" or "manipulated" in their descriptions. Photographer lol
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