Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Post processing and editing is not cheating.

Let's talk photography. Photography as a craft has the characteristic that it requires both artistic and technical skill. A consequence of this is that it gathers a huge amount of hobbyists to it, attracting all different kinds of people. A lot of these people end up in general groups.

There are the pixel peepers, who spend all their time reading about, writing about, and testing gear, from sensors to lenses to straps. There are the photography bloggers (the irony), who spend more time writing quips about photography and doing workshops than they actually spend taking photos. There are the fauxtographers, who recently got a DSLR, and now think that they are professionals. Then there are more fauxtographers, who think that 3 months of practice equal 5-10 years of experience and education. And then there are the purists.

I cannot explain how much I dislike the purists. They are everywhere in photography. They are professionals, they are amateurs, they are experienced, they are beginners. And they think that they're doing it right, and everybody else is doing it wrong. They will tell you only to use primes. They will tell you to always use full manual control. They will tell you to shoot JPEG, and never edit your photos. They will tell you exactly how you should shoot a certain photo, because their method is the "right one", and everything else is wrong. And they are limiting themselves and those who heed their advice, by never exploring the possibilities present in new technologies or methods.

This post is about post processing. The main reason I will talk about this is that a large portion of people I know are purists when it comes to post processing. Some photographers are too. These people believe that post processing or editing a photo is some sort of cheating. They will take pride in their photos being SOOC (straight out of camera), meaning that they shot in JPEG and didn't do anything to the file afterwards. There are many good reasons that post processing and editing are essential parts of photography. Here are some of them.

Tuesday, February 04, 2014