I wonder if times have changed, inasfar as disclosing any digital optimization or not, and when, if ever, to announce it to the world or camera club or photo competition or publisher, et al?
One of the original digital controversies involved three, top tier, nature photographers (no names). Photographer #1 published a book and in the book was an image of a line of zebras, but when photographed, a couple of the zebras had some discoloration or some such issue….it doesn’t really matter…..what does matter in this controversy is that Photographer #1 cloned in a more viable pattern in the zebras to obviously improve the visual impact, without placing a disclaimer in the book. In other words, the image wasn’t what it looked like, but given the photographer’s experience, it was made to be what it should have looked like. This was a fairly long and contested issue only because it was at the advent of digital photography.
For those who weren’t photographing during the transition from film to digital, it was not unlike changing the national language from English to Esperanto! Well, since photography is most certainly a language, it was a paradigm shift, not unlike a change of national language. There became “sides” and…..ok, digital is ok, but it HAS to look natural, as if taken with film. Software optimizations became frowned upon, to say the least, hence the battle continued, but has simmered down.
Now, with the efficacy of modern software, we can create images that only reside in our imaginations. Personally, I view all captures as raw material, keeping the door wide open with no preconceptions or limits of what can or will be done during processing.
So, quite simply, are there any opinions out there about disclosing what was done to an image, in particular, when a heavily optimized image is being passed off as natural or mostly natural?
Take the blog images, for example, is anyone bothered, or feel fooled, by the fact that the sun and flare were added, along with a texture? Is it even an issue, anymore? Does it matter what was done to an image as long as one likes it?
Any input would be appreciated!