What really counts in a photograph Locked

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tomhongkong Veteran Member • Posts: 3,667
What really counts in a photograph

A couple of days ago I was fortunate enough to attend an exhibition of photographs taken by Basil Pao during the making of Bertolucci's 'The Last Emperor'.

These were taken on film 30 years ago and many were absolutely stunning (to my eyes)

What made them so great?

Not the resolution, depth of field or dynamic range. I hope Basil would not object if I said that I think a modern digital camera would be much better in all of these areas.

What made them great was:

The choice of subject and photographer's eye to select viewpoint and composition

The use of colour (obviously only in the colour shots)...generally what I would call 'vivid' relative to our M4/3 cameras normal settings

The amount of contrast...much more than I would apply in PP. especially in B&W, sure some highlights were blown and some shadows blocky, but where the image counted they were spot on

These beautiful photographs put all the threads on ultimate IQ into perspective.

When I look at modern 'photographs of the year' I see the same characteristics, (combined with technical quality but that is not what makes the photograph)

I know this is a forum for gear heads and we just can't help talking about Mps., equivalence, noise, dof, etc. but those are not the things which make someone say 'WOW what a great photograph'

It would be nice if we got this forum back on photography!


PS the photographs are on display in the Foreign Correspondents' Club in Hong Kong


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