Lately, I’ve been having quite the internal debate over how much editing is too much on my photos. I’m guessing you all know what I’m talking about. When shooting in RAW, it is so easy to fiddle around with your exposures etc, and then with programs like photomatix it’s easy to slam a preset on it and tweak some dials. I wonder if this is taking it too far for it to be called photography once there is so much post production. It is like microwaving spaghetti sauce and saying you made dinner from scratch…

I also need to learn more photoshop technique, I feel that would push it into the realm of graphic design.

anyway, here is a shipwreck, unmodified and modified, I’d love to know your stanceIMG_0813


and here is one processed using photomatix pro:




    • Sorry, I suppose I really should explain. This is a beached boat we spotted from the road just north of Astoria, OR, but on the Washington side of the border. We had to slide down a muddy embankment and didn’t linger too long, but there were two pretty nifty ships stranded there. If anyone knows what type of ship it is, that’d be great.
      thanks for checking it out

  1. Thought – provoking post, I too have the same dilemma when editing photos (not that I am a photoshop genius by any means). Going from mere cropping to changing the whole layout of the image can enhance or completely destroy a photo. I guess the trick is finding the right balance, that just comes from practice! If I hadn’t seen the natural photo first I would have liked the photomatix one more, but there’s something natural and understated about the original – just my personal preference. Looking forward to reading more of your posts 🙂

    • Thanks for checking them out.
      Yeah, I really do struggle about the line between photography and graphic design. As of now, I nearly always increase the contrast on my photos, which I suppose is already going beyond mere cropping. Maybe the line is what was possible in a dark room counts as photography, but more likely, the line is pointless to begin with.
      With this one, I think I also like the original a little more. In some regards I like the feel of an illustration, but the boat was so peculiar it nearly looks like a drawing in its own right.
      Anyway, thanks again for coming through, I look forward to more of your comments!

  2. Hi. The modified version makes a greater statement. It looks almost like a black and white drawing. I ‘see’ the ship more plainly (of course) but I also didn’t see (or pay attention to) the fishing weir in the background, or the distant islands. If I had to choose one to be on my wall, it would be the black and white. Interesting post. You should do a few more examples like this. Jane

    • Thanks for taking a gander Jane. I like the black and white too, but I have trouble coming to terms with the feeling of an illustration. It’s a striking technique, but maybe takes it too far for me. I think you’re right though, I like the lighting on the black and white more than the top one. More detail makes a big difference. Perhaps I should try a brightened b+w without the illustration… If I do I’ll add it to this post.
      Thanks for the input!

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