Do we get too obsessed by "real"?

Started 3 months ago | Discussions thread
OP MOD Tom Caldwell Forum Pro • Posts: 43,382
Re: Do we get too obsessed by "real"?

petrochemist wrote:

Chris LL wrote:

Take a waterfall as an example. A slow shutter speed gives a smooth blurred look to the water while a fast one can freeze every drop. Our eye will generally be somewhere in the middle. Which is real? All? None?

A great example. I would say all three are real, but only the middle one would look real & would very probably be the most boring version!

Perhaps we are talking more about the “impact”of an image to our senses as much as much as perfect rendition is so highly sought after.

I agree that perfect realistic rendition can have impact but argue that perfection of rendition is not necessary for some illustrations posing as based on photography to have impact also.

On this forum we often talk about one of our cherished lenses that whilst having some issues has redeeming “character”.

And yet much discussion centres around lens faults and whether one lens reproduces better than another.  There is no doubt that some lens faults make an image look ugly and some focal lengths are better for certain subject matter than others.  Yet other such as circular fish-eye will distort any image in various levels of not-real.

But to my way of thinking the best gear is not necessary to make all images have impact.

But with good composition a fish eye image can look quite pleasing even though some would, and do, de-fish a fish eye to try and make the capture look real without distortion.  Just like cliche images of frozen water it is almost expected that the water looks unrealistically-frozen.

Therefore in the Broad Church surely there is room for photographic art taken to the point where it channels painted art as long as it has its own impact. No one should even pretend that this represents painted art. Photography is at its most fundamental a simpler process than painted art but still requires at least two out of three skills: good equipment, learned or native skills (compositional?) and the photographic opportunity. Having all three and we are blessed or have just made a lucky shot

“Phart” can access all artistic genres (to a point)  whereas painted art will devolve into a personal style - often by necessity in order to sell enough paintings to pay for the hobby and if blessed actually make some money from it.  Here we are talking where photography and art are in the same church.  Professional photographers work for their employer or their market just as much as successful artists.  Amateurs can do their own thing.

I admit that Phart is not normally a subject for this forum except in the narrow sense of an extension of the use of Adapted Lenses but more a separate discipline of all photographic output.

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Tom Caldwell

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