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Thread: Photo Assignment: Weekend 12/15/07

  1. #16
    Registered User tourunigo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rocketman View Post
    which is why I'm cleaning out my old Nikon F and gonna load it with B&W film, still not quite happy with the B&W stuff I've done in digital.

    I remember the smell of a darkroom, fumbling with the film trying desperately not to touch the surface while you load it into the developing can in pitch darkness, fearing every second that someone will open the door ( we never got around to putting a lock on it) during those oh! so critical moments when light is now your enemy when just a few hours ago it was your friend that fed the film you now hold so dearly.

    As you feed it to the spool and crank it then feel the film catch and slowly wind its way onto the spool and finally you slip it into the canister and seal it with a sigh of relief ......

    Then comes the process of making the exposures after the film had dried ....

    dodging the image that is as yet merely a play of shadow and light on paper in a red lit room, correcting for bright spots or glare from a street light from a night of shooting,

    and still all you have is just a ghostly inverted B&W negative image that only hints at the truth that lies within....and that only lasts as long as the exposure from the enlarger.

    then finally the rush of satisfaction and excitement as the print you've just exposed sits in the bath and the image slowly emerges......as if being pulled reluctantly from some other dimension....you actually find yourself talking to it.....coaxing it forth.....as if you need to convince it its OK to be......and be seen.....

    kool stuff indeed....

    RM

    Digital is a breeze indeed.
    Good discussion with so many off ramps. I just want to say that your replay of the photo process drama provides the reader with a sense of the technical artistry involved. As I often say "the closer you get to the edge the better the view". Let's stay as close to the edge as possible just to keep us hungry and act, as you say , in reference to film, .... "as if (our pictures) are being pulled reluctantly from some other dimension". Geez I hope all of that was not to freakin' esoteric! -Bob
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  2. #17
    looking for a coal mine knary's Avatar
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    If you've ever developed your own film and photos, you know that the darkroom is an integral part of making the photo. The camera is just one piece of the puzzle. Photoshop is the darkroom in the context of the digital image.

  3. #18
    R12ST bricciphoto's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lamble View Post
    If you need to crop, you aren't learning to frame your picture.
    Sorry to barge in, but this simply is not a correct statement. Consider focal length and a subject that is beyond the reach of the lens to be perfectly framed. Even in the days of silver bromide, almost everyone cropped their images in the darkroom--if for no other reason to compensate for the different proportions that could exist between negative and paper. On many occasions a shot is made deliberately with the intent to crop. You're assuming the proportions of the sensor/film is an ideal proportion. Not to mention action shots, where most often "success" is more a matter of timing rather than framing.

    Scott makes a valid point regarding film versus digital imaging. Plenty of enhancement occured in the darkroom with filters, frames, retouching negs, etc. It was a secondary process which is absent from digital. I shot photojournalistic work in the film era. The film was digitized for production. Acceptable corrections were sizing, cropping, removal of scratches/dust, and appropriate sharpening (unsharp masking--which is a film technique and not unique to Photoshop, who borrowed the term). Anything else was "manipulation." I don't think it matters if a shot is posted here under the journalism standards. Negating them seems somewhat arbitrary in my opinion.

    All that said, most of what I have submitted has been untouched, but I have submitted a couple cropped and resized shots to the prior threads.

    The progression from film-era technique/thinking to digital is not linear.

    Some good points pro and con have been made in this thread.
    Last edited by bricciphoto; 12-14-2007 at 08:22 PM.
    Ben Ricci

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  4. #19
    Gravity Hurts aerialfilm1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rocketman View Post
    I remember the smell of a darkroom
    an all day love affair in a red lit secret room of smells......

    kool stuff indeed....
    I think I'm gonna make and market an air freshener that smells like D-76 or Rapid Fix, that can sit up on the shelf by the Epson.

    Yea I'm a nerd!

  5. #20
    Living in exile Threeteas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bricciphoto View Post
    Sorry to barge in, but this simply is not a correct statement. Consider focal length and a subject that is beyond the reach of the lens to be perfectly framed. Even in the days of silver bromide, almost everyone cropped their images in the darkroom--if for no other reason to compensate for the different proportions that could exist between negative and paper. On many occasions a shot is made deliberately with the intent to crop. You're assuming the proportions of the sensor/film is an ideal proportion. Not to mention action shots, where most often "success" is more a matter of timing rather than framing.

    Scott makes a valid point regarding film versus digital imaging. Plenty of enhancement occured in the darkroom with filters, frames, retouching negs, etc. It was a secondary process which is absent from digital. I shot photojournalistic work in the film era. The film was digitized for production. Acceptable corrections were sizing, cropping, removal of scratches/dust, and appropriate sharpening (unsharp masking--which is a film technique and not unique to Photoshop, who borrowed the term). Anything else was "manipulation." I don't think it matters if a shot is posted here under the journalism standards. Negating them seems somewhat arbitrary in my opinion.

    All that said, most of what I have submitted has been untouched, but I have submitted a couple cropped and resized shots to the prior threads.

    The progression from film-era technique/thinking to digital is not linear.

    Some good points pro and con have been made in this thread.
    Good point...so treat it as a metaphor instead, then it works.

  6. #21
    SNC1923
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  7. #22
    RandallIsland
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    ... and not 24 hours after agreeing upon their name, the EyeRiders encountered their first squabble with semantic technicalities.
    Stay tuned for more...

  8. #23
    Living in exile Threeteas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RandallIsland View Post
    ... and not 24 hours after agreeing upon their name, the EyeRiders encountered their first squabble with semantic technicalities.
    Stay tuned for more...
    No squabble. Bricci is right. Exactly and precisely right. He's correct, irrefutably.
    He missed the point, but he was very, technically, correct.

    Ironically, it just goes to reinforce how valuable this forum is.

  9. #24
    rocketman
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    I too agree on the cropping issue as I too often "crop" while composing for the self-same reasons stated. However the removal of scratches etc would seem to me to fall under a gray area and I am not sure translates to digital, esp. since those that use a P&S should never have to deal with dust on the sensor, for the rest of us learn to clean it, it is really not very difficult to do. So again I would go with allowing cropping and resizing and leave the rest alone. That said I will go with whatever ruling is made and continue to enjoy participation in the assignments.
    I would suggest that rules be set by Tom as this was/is after all Tom's idea.
    And should a bit of a finger show up in the edge of a frame assume it was NOT that kind of finger motion!

    Either way lets have a ruling so we can get back to business before we run into 20 pages and still NO PHOTOS or we may send Tom screaming from the thread never to return. (with popcorn in hand)

    RM

  10. #25
    CRUISIN
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    old school

    I vote keep it "old school" as if you were using a totally manual camera; like my Olympus OM-1 that I still use frequently or like the photos taken by Ansel Adams. If the focal length of the lens/digital camera is not sufficient to frame the way you want then move to a location so you can frame the shot you want. If the light is not right, then learn to use fill flash or no flash; or maybe wait for the sun or a cloud to get in the right position. Fine photography, (for me anyway), is an art of seeing and capturing an image in the instant you snap the shutter. Granted some of Adam's images went from so-so to prize winning in the dark room but most of his work was un-altered in the dark room. For me, striving to emulate one of the greats like Adams is the ultimate challenge. I see this thread / assignment as a challenge to capture the image you (and the camera) see without alteration in the computer. just my $0.02 worth.

  11. #26
    Hogaan! testinglogin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SNC1923 View Post
    This week you are invited to take a picture of that sums up the Holiday Season and motorcycling. Could this be a motorcycle parked in front of snow?
    How perfectly timed. While I got a nice ride in today, the weather is supposed to turn more "Christmas festive" around here:

    Saturday: Periods of snow, mainly after noon. High near 29. East wind between 11 and 15 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible.

    Saturday Night: Periods of snow. Low around 25. Blustery, with a northeast wind between 15 and 23 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New snow accumulation of 3 to 7 inches possible.


    After I run the snowblower on Sunday I should have a good chance of getting that "bike in the snow" shot.

  12. #27
    @ the Big Muddy & I-80 bluestune's Avatar
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    Ansel Adams said, ÔÇ£The negative is the score, the print the performance.ÔÇØ

    My favorite photography instructor would grade us not only on our prints but also the processed film and contact sheets of our B&W or color negatives. The rational was to learn how to make consistently good exposures and compositions, creating a more efficient and productive darkroom and hopefully better photographers. Other reasons for examining our contact sheets were to see just how efficiently we used our film, meaning, shooting to fill the frame so we would need as little cropping as possible and to see how many exposures we used to get ÔÇ£theÔÇØ shot.

    What IÔÇÖm saying is SNC 1923 has set up a great template for learning the most basic, often difficult, but essential step in creating a photographic image, that is to look at and constructively critique photos before any manipulations occur. Ansel Adams was a master of negative processing and print manipulation, but it all started with ÔÇ£the score.ÔÇØ

    Its really difficult to not crop or tweak a photo before posting, but it is a terrific learning experience. Perhaps we could consider leaving the original guidelines in place, that is, post only one photo with no alteration (other than sizing for the forum.) And then those that want to could take there one image and re-submit a processed, altered, posterized, dodged, burned, cropped, split toned or just tweaked image for a second critique. Discussion of image alterations and techniques could follow the second submission. The second submissions could be on the same thread the following week or on a different thread. Just my two cents worth.
    1976 R90/6

  13. #28
    @ the Big Muddy & I-80 bluestune's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bricciphoto View Post
    Sorry to barge in, but this simply is not a correct statement. Consider focal length and a subject that is beyond the reach of the lens to be perfectly framed. Even in the days of silver bromide, almost everyone cropped their images in the darkroom--if for no other reason to compensate for the different proportions that could exist between negative and paper. On many occasions a shot is made deliberately with the intent to crop. You're assuming the proportions of the sensor/film is an ideal proportion. Not to mention action shots, where most often "success" is more a matter of timing rather than framing.

    Scott makes a valid point regarding film versus digital imaging. Plenty of enhancement occured in the darkroom with filters, frames, retouching negs, etc. It was a secondary process which is absent from digital. I shot photojournalistic work in the film era. The film was digitized for production. Acceptable corrections were sizing, cropping, removal of scratches/dust, and appropriate sharpening (unsharp masking--which is a film technique and not unique to Photoshop, who borrowed the term). Anything else was "manipulation." I don't think it matters if a shot is posted here under the journalism standards. Negating them seems somewhat arbitrary in my opinion.

    All that said, most of what I have submitted has been untouched, but I have submitted a couple cropped and resized shots to the prior threads.

    The progression from film-era technique/thinking to digital is not linear.

    Some good points pro and con have been made in this thread.
    ThereÔÇÖs a famous photo of little John John Kennedy saluting his fathers casket as it passed him on the street during JFKÔÇÖs funeral procession. That image was shot from across the street with a normal lens, meaning that the image we all remember was made from a very small portion of the negative. Severe cropping made that an iconic image we can never forget.

    Darkroom manipulation and Photoshop alterations have a permanent place in photography, IÔÇÖm a big fan of both and use Photoshop almost every day, but to create a really good photo itÔÇÖs always easier to start with a really good image. I think one of the goals of the thread was to level the playing field for those without Photoshop to be able to play with those that have image processing abilities. I like that premise, it keeps things simple and keeps more players in the game. Again, just my 2 cents worth.
    1976 R90/6

  14. #29
    Slowpoke & Proud of It! BRADFORDBENN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SNC1923 View Post
    I'm going to go out on a limb here and hope that Brad corrects me if I'm wrong.

    On this thread, we should go with no photoshop because if an image is selected to be used for a holiday card, the designer may want to do a little work on the image her- or himself, without having to undo our best intentions. I'm also going to guess they should be shot in RAW or--if that is not an option--in the very least compression possible.

    As far as our weekly photo assignments go, I've been wondering if we should distinguish between "light photoshopping" as Gail refers to, that is fixing little problems, and "major photoshopping" where a work of art is created from the basis of a photograph. I agree that we don't want to get into the latter, but maybe the former would be OK.

    Anyone else care to chime in on this?
    Okay, I will chime in here on this one. First, Thanks to Tom for organizing this effort.

    I think that there is a fine line between Computer Correction and Computer Alterations. The key here is to avoid Computer Alterations and Mutations. I have some photos that I have done cropping and straightening on, as well as red eye correction. To me that seems in the spirit of it.

    Here is an example of why I have that feeling. I currently shoot with a P&S camera with a 10Megapixel sensor. I turn off the digital zoom so at times I cannot zoom in as much as I want. There are times I want to crop out some of the picture but I know that I do not the ability to do it on the camera. An example is this photo.

    I knew I was going to need to crop it to remove some of the building structure. I did not have a way to do it there while taking the shot. So I cropped it in Photoshop. To me that is fair.


    I also know that at times what appears straight in the view finder or display is not straight on the bigger display of a computer. Especially if you are like me with an astigmatism.

    However what would be improper Computer Manipulation would be a photo of a Christmas Tree that was taken and then a separate photo of a Motorcycle and then compositing the two together.

    So if you feel you must Computer Correct, please post a link to the original and be ready to explain what you did to it and why.

    Any questions, just ask.

    Remember the goal of this thread and process is to get better at the process of photography and not digital manipulation. Also try to have fun.

    I am looking forward to seeing the photos and hopefully having some cool things to pick from for next year's Holiday Card.
    -=Brad

    It isn't what you ride, it is if you ride

  15. #30
    Master of Digitation
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    Cropping

    I'd like to chime in on the cropping issue. I used to shoot with TLR (Twin Lens Reflex) cameras because I love the square format for framing. Unfortunately, they all use medium format film (120 or 220) that is now pretty expensive to process. I don't have room for a darkroom so I had to get my film processed in a lab.

    Anyway, I switched to digital for the economy of it. But guess what. There are very few square format digital cameras. You can get digital backs for Rolleis and Hasselblads, but they are big dollar items. So I use "normal" digital cameras with rectangular sensors. But when I compose the shot I do it for a square and crop to that square on the computer. I don't consider this a crop per se, as it is what I intended the moment I pressed the shutter. Now, if I make that square even 1 pixel shorter than the height of the frame, then yes, that is a crop that alters my original framing.

    Now I realize that a square picture is not going to be very good for a Christmas card, so I guess I won't start my active participation this week. But for future reference I'd like to know if correcting the format to what I intended (ie: a square), is cropping.

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