Here's a couple of pics for you to look at and say what you think. I know Bob may not agree with the second one because it's heavily doctored in Photoshop.
I took the pictures some time ago at the maritime museum at Buckler's Hard in Hampshire. The model maker's workshop was separated from the public by a huge plate glass window through which I took the pic with a Kiev 4A using FP4. For a long time I felt it needed something, and I wasn't happy with the jumble of old shelves etc through the windows behind him, so I decided in the end to get rid of that, and while I was about it add some colour. I like the result, but If you don't, and think I've gone too far from the original, please say so!
If any of you have visited the Zenit Collectors Club Zemlya project you may have seen them before, but I don't recognise many names from there on this board.
Ron, I know you favour black and white for documentaries, but if I'd posted the coloured one by itself, and you didn't know the colour was added in PS I wonder what you would have said? Probably that it would have been better in black and white . I like it, anyway.
Peter, if I didn't know it was fixed I wouldn't have known. I can relate to the man in the photo, I've spent many an hour over Locomotive Models and Car Models detailing the pants off of them. I've been Modeling in some form or another since 1958. You guys stop pickin on Peter.
I like the cleaner lines of the colored one, makes it much easier to focus on the man and the model Not so sure I care for the color.... Yet there's something about the color that tugs at a memory somewhere. Something vintage, something nostalgic, but I can't quite figure out what it is. almost looks more like an illustration than a photo I think.... Sherri
Peter-- I like the desaturated PS one better than the colorized one myself! My eye keeps jumping to that slightly differently colored "edge" around the trees in the background! But the original B&W (except, possibly, for the difficulty of separating the mast from the background) is the best of all.
In the PS versions (both of them) the perspective is off just enough because of the angle of the door frame over the gentleman's shoulder - in relation to the wall behind him - to throw the whole thing off somehow...lending the "illustration" look that Sherri mentions. Perhaps if it was cropped a little closer to the top of his head? You would cut off the top of the center mast, but you would also lose that distracting perspective problem with the door frame!
Don't know why the perspective looks different in the PS version. It was a 'save as' of the original. Maybe it's because I cropped it a shade tighter at the top and took out the window immediately behind his head?
It was taken with the Kiev's standard 50mm Jupiter 8M lens. Don't remember the aperture, but it was fairly large, partly to throw the background out of focus and partly because although the lighting was nice and even it wasn't all that bright according to my meter and I didn't want his face to be in too much shadow; f/2.8 comes to mind but I'm not certain. The exposure was 1/10 sec hand-held. I remember that because I was quite pleased with myself for holding the camera steady . Flash wasn't allowed in the museum.
I also remember I waited ages for him to move along towards the stern of the boat so his face was between two masts instead of being bisected by one.
Great - thanks for opening the discussion, which is really an aspect of the digital v film debate. Personally I believe the picture is the thing, and I don't have a problem with what is done to obtain the result. To me, there's no difference between using a filter, 'pulling' the development of the film, and using PS's manipulative techniques. They are all tools that we may or may not choose to use = the important thing is the choice.
Again, personally, I tend to choose not to use filters, I rely on our local fully automatic print processing service (which incidentally means that I will never achieve a decent shot of the moon!) and limit digital manipulation of the scanned image to brightness and resizing. My choice.
As far as your pics are concerned, I would have been proud to have produced any of them. The de-saturated PS image has sharpened up details of the masts of the boat, so I would tend to give it the edge for that reason alone. All I can say is that you must have the patience of Job to have put the colour and shading in the second picture. I wouldn't have attempted it because I wouldn't have confidence in my memory of the scene (or the skills to carry it out).
Ron wrote: But looking back to the great photogs of the eras, a lot of manipulation was done in the chemical darkroom.
That's the reason why, in the Press Photographer of the Year Awards in the UK, a credit was (and is) always given to the printer as well as the photographer. With a digital photograph I suppose the 'printer' is the person who adjusted it in PS.
. . .But looking back to the great photogs of the eras, a lot of manipulation was done in the chemical darkroom. The new tech digital darkroom adjustments are no different in my opinion. . . .
Good point. Dodging and buring isn't anything new. I don't think Weston ever printed a picture than wasn't manipulated in the darkroom.
I try to keep images pretty much as they were taken, although I have occassionally removed a phone pole from someone's head in family portraits. I did one remove all the signs of human habitation from a landscape photo used in a book cover. But in the photo sescription we noted what had been done.