Edit daft.........

Photoshop........that semi little word that everyone these days knows about and expects a lot from at times.

I get asked by folk after taking a picture more often than not that - 'you can fix me in photoshop' or 'mind and photoshop me good'.....what does it all mean to photographers these days.  Is there still room for a plain, unedited (apart from a wee brighten up etc) photo or are peoples expectations when they get a picture taken by a 'professional' that they will go photoshop daft and make them magazine front cover material?????

So if people expect so much, should photographers go mad with it and edit the bejesus out a picture or should the photo be as the the person taking it captured it initially?  There was obviously a reason they took the particular shot and why they composed it in the first place - surely they didn't look at it and then go 'its cool, i'll fix it all in photoshop'....

My particular style and look i aim for in all photo work is a certain vintage/sleepy/soft approach and the editing is no different as I knew at the time of taking the picture exactly what i wanted to achieve, leaving me with little and sometimes no editing to be done but there are some photographers i follow (and have respect for still.  whoever takes the photo, took it for whatever reason they chose and thats all that matters) who completely change the look and feel and set up of the original shot in photoshop, some to amazing effect, creating beautiful and spectacular photos and some to not so great success and positivity and again it is entirely to each photographers style, purpose for the shot and mind as to why they chose to edit it that way but sometimes the initial shot and composition has the more breathtaking impact than the completely obliterated one.

Now, as a photoshop user  I cannot completely say editing is not needed, required at times or a must (especially in some shoot situations) but what got me thinking of this has a two fold story.  The first was using my iPhone to take a random snap in the street and seeing the huge amount of option to edit and change how it was taken all from within the phones software, meaning all that can take a photo can edit it to make it either better, worse or different so therefore are we surprised that everyone expects touch ups of a photo when professionally taken and should we as photographers accept and not get miffed that clients or subjects in a photo will also expect it from every photo (the big dramatic skies or the completely flawless skin) even when its just a wee wander down the street for milk.  The second part of this rambling regarding editing photos is down to the fact I decided to break out an old 35mm film camera my dad gave me and see what can be done.  Given this camera is 40 years old and needs some repairs and given my basic knowledge of how to handle the wee beast, I was pleasantly surprised with the results and that it took me back to getting into photography all those years ago with my dad and the excitement of taken a film along to be processed and waiting with bated breathe on the results or potential lack of.  No real editing other than whoever processes them can lighten or darken the film but mainly a possible hit or miss on an entire roll of film.........Should I now try and approach my photo taking with the same anticipation as the old film camera or should I continue to rely on the fact that i can check the picture straight away and then rely on photoshop for the rest.........the jury is undecided at this stage.

 

As always I will finish with a quote (two actually)  The first I have no idea who said it but it made me chuckle and the second is a photographer who knows his stuff...

 

"you were beautiful.......until your photoshop 30 day trial expired"......

"Somehow photoshop and the ease with which one can produce an image has degraded the quality of photography in general".....Elliott Erwitt

 

 

Ross xx