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Old Jan 24, 2007, 9:07 AM   #21
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Yes I know that, but thanks for reminding me. Donna
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Old Jan 24, 2007, 10:27 AM   #22
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Peripatetic,

your response to my comments were well thought out but anticipated.

However, I do take issue withyour non-specific point/s accusation of a ''strawman'' as a means unto itself to support your argument in its entirety. A slower reading will see that the accusation is baseless and therefore misapplied.


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Old Jan 24, 2007, 3:36 PM   #23
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Clearly I misunderstood what you wrote. It was not intended to be an accusation in a confrontational sense, but perhaps one in spirit of investigation.

The straw man fallacy is where one erects a position or argument that misrepresents the proponents of a particular view and then proceed to demolish that misrepresentation and claim some kind of victory.

I believed that your post implied that (at least a significant fraction of) proponents of post-processing on a computer were of the opinion that it is perfectly acceptable to be sloppy in composing and exposing their pictures because it was easy to fix them afterwards in photoshop - by adjusting exposure and cropping and cloning objects and so on.

Perhaps it was not your intention to suggest this. If it was your intention however, and I do believe it to be a reasonable interpretation of what you wrote, then it is a straw man; I don't actually know any serious photographers who believe that to be the case, even those who believe that a thorough knowledge of photoshop and RAW processing is essential to the art and craft of digital photography.

One of your claims was certainly that good photography is not about being rubbish with your camera and sloppy in composing your pictures.

I agree wholeheartedly, but this is not a relevant criticism of the majority of those who favour working in photoshop as compared to "printing" your pictures inside the camera and discarding the RAW data.

You responded to DarkDTSHD's wanting "to know how good it was before PP".

The correct answer is that before post-processing it is essentially a collection of data that is not a proper image (as we would recognise it) at all. The RAW data must be processed into an image. During that processing some decision must be made about white balance, sharpening, saturation, contrast, etc. You may choose to abdicate that decision to the Canon engineers or the Adobe engineers, or to exercise some personal judgement by intervening in the conversion process and moving away from the default settings.

Though you may have anticipated such a comment, you did nothing to address it. And I would be interested to know your position in this regard.

Is it somehow more "authentic" to limit oneself to the conversion process running on a computer inside the camera? Is it "cheating" to use features like HDR that the Sony camera has for example? Is it cheating to dial up the saturation or contrast or sharpness? Where do you draw the line?

I don't say that such a position is indefensible. I would be interested in hearing an argument that says that one ought not to use photoshop at all. At this point however I do not believe you have made an interesting case, merely repeated a common forum lament at the loss of the authentic documentary nature of photography in the digital age.

Please feel free to regard that as a friendly conversational challenge to explain your position more fully. (Or alternatively feel free to ignore this post as pretentious drivel. :-))




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Old Jan 24, 2007, 11:46 PM   #24
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Peripatetic said:
''The straw man fallacy is where one erects a position or argument that misrepresents the proponents of a particular view and then proceed to demolish that misrepresentation and claim some kind of victory.''

I believe that to be an accurate interpretation of a strawman argument.

That said, I see no evidence of a strawman argument here. You will be right in suggesting my comments had reference to post-production making some photographersa bit careless in their interpretation of a photographed sceneand how it can be corrected after the fact. However, this says nothing for those who aren't so inclined to carelessness, whomever they may be, thereby giving much less weight to your ''significant fraction.'' There will be no way todetermine a significant fraction. Some do take advantage I'm sure.

There was no claiming of victory for myself (alluding toyour strawman), just statements of fact from my perspective. In an earlier comment, particularly regarding the landscape photograph itwill be understood to mean an unnecessary manipulation of a photograph that, subjectively of course (this may yet explain it all), stood by itself without further help because it was fully obvious to me the original was superior. Theissue becomes, in whose eyes is it that sees fit to do the digitaldarkroom; at the expense of what.? Removing or rearranging importantcomponents of a scene because it can be done digitally, because of not having the patience (maybe)on location,just to satisfy the eyes long after the fact?Obviously any photographer can do whatever it is they wish when it comes to their project. Yet this still says nothingfor the capture of a scene inthe originaland then determining how color or some kind of correctionshould be added later because of its subjectivity. WhatI am saying ishow much. Is it the photoshop software that drives it all, simply because it's there? Because it's there and not a compliment to the original? You will recall I said removing defects in a photograph that a photographer didn't see in the original framing can work wonders and I will agree wholeheartedly with post-production in this sense.I believe each and everyone strives for 'perfection'' in a photograph but what lengths to go to toachieve it andis it at the expense of what was seen on location. This is said (with my) ''knowing'' the benefits of RAW capture and how well things can and will be added later. Speaking of RAW, I understand it has much more to offer than JPEG. Since this is the case, and a lot of people here use it more often than not, then what technical explanation can be offered why JPEG is even offered on a more sophisticated camera? Is it offered to appeal to the lesser photographer, like me, but who will become dissatisfied with the results in short order and then see fit to move up to RAW? I'm simply curious on this score because I've seen a JPEG of a motorcycle rider captured in fine resolution and an 8x10and I was amazed at the sharpness of it considering it is a ''cousin'' and not a ''brother'' of RAW. Well he said it was JPEG. I had no other comparison.

Peripatetic said: ''You responded to DarkDTSHD's wanting "to know how good it was before PP".

The correct answer is that before post-processing it is essentially a collection of data that is not a proper image (as we would recognise it) at all. The RAW data must be processed into an image.''

On a technical note (and I may not be saying this right), is this RAW data you're referring to a captured Raw or is it simply a way of saying JPEG is raw too, initially? In other words, RAW and JPEG are one and the same , initially? Then they're hustled off to their respective positions later, to be claimed as separate entities?

''You may choose to abdicate that decision [exposure]to the Canon engineers...''

So if I call on the engineers' expertise will it be clear, given a tweak or two in camera,that I have no need for RAW. Or, with the attitude that most DSLR owners will want to shoot RAW, will I see no benefit from shooting JPEG at all? If the latter is the case then why equip a camera with potential ''point and shoot'' capabilities when the results may force you to use RAW? Or is it that the manufacturers don't want to give too much point and shoot capabilites in their DSLRs for fear it may detract from RAW? After all, I've seen some brilliant pictures from those pocket cameras; not enough to turn me away from the DSLR though.

''...or the Adobe engineers, or to exercise some personal judgement by intervening in the conversion process and moving away from the default settings.''

Again, in your opinion, how close can I come to RAW if I moved away from ''default''? Or am I destined to play ''catch up'' because JPEG is just a cousin and not a brother of RAW. In other words, I know a sharply focused picture when I see one. I do believe I can recognize colors in their natural setting and, barring a potential discrepancy between the two settingsbecause they are ''different,'' then JPEG offers the same as RAW if the settings are tweaked to satisfaction, in camera? Then if this be the case, then RAW is subjective?


Peripatetic: ''Though you may have anticipated such a comment, you did nothing to address it.''

Chidingly, if I anticipated comment/s (without being specific), then how could I have known how to address it without more specific information from you? I anticipated your comments in the sense of some kind of reply regarding further comments.

Peripatetic:
''Is it somehow more "authentic" to limit oneself to the conversion process running on a computer inside the camera? Is it "cheating" to use features like HDR that the Sony camera has for example? Is it cheating to dial up the saturation or contrast or sharpness? Where do you draw the line?''

To some degree it looks like a manufacturer or two, or three, is trying to let the user do more ''in camera'' doesn' t it.

Peripatetic: ''I would be interested in hearing an argument that says that one ought not to use photoshop at all.''

And that wouldn't be my argument given context in my previous post.

Peripatetic: ''At this point however I do not believe you have made an interesting case, merely repeated a common forum lament at the loss of the authentic documentary nature of photography in the digital age.'' Frankly speaking, I thought I was alone on this issue since this is the only place I stop by. Now I know I haven't read enough; gotta catch up.

Peripatetic: ''Please feel free to regard that as a friendly conversational challenge to explain your position more fully.''Another conversation? I love to talk. It's good therapy.

My daughter's boyfriend (Jpeg Motorcyclepicture mentioned above) showed me his photoshop, or at least something similar, on his pc ( a few months ago) and interestingly enough I did say hmmmm. I have to tell you I was amazedat the razzle-dazzle of it all. Maybe I'm growing up.








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Old Jan 25, 2007, 3:47 AM   #25
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I find we are not in substantial disagreement. I believed you to be representative of a position that after some discussion it seems you are not. Some straw-manning on my part perhaps. :-)

Allow mea metaphor: think of RAW as the "body of an animal you have shot when out shooting" and JPG, TIFF or PSD as the burger or cooked steak. The camera has a built-in"field-kitchen"that can produce ameal for you as you gather the ingredients with a few parameters you can set in the field. Or, alternatively you can simply gather the ingredients into their separate baskets at the time of the shot and have greater freedom and control by going into a fully-featured "chef's kitchen" when you get home.

Shooting RAW and processing on the PC instead of in the camera provides a marginal improvement in quality for most pictures and additional degrees of freedom in how you cook the fleshdepending on the type of animal you have shot. This marginal improvement results quite simply from the fact that far greater computing power can be brought to bear on the conversion of the sensor data into an image format. (JPG or TIFF) When you shoot in JPG mode, the camera starts by capturing the RAW data into the buffer and then processes that data and produces a JPG output. It then discards the RAW data. The cameras give the option of capturing only the RAW data and doing no internal processing (RAW mode), or processing and not discarding the raw data (RAW + JPG mode). So in all cases you start out with the RAW data and must then apply some processing.

The JPG format (although ubiquitous) has some very real shortcomings however, you might think of it as a burger, compared to a 16-bit TIFF file which would be a fillet steak.

Consider the problem of sharpening for a moment. The real problem with shooting JPG is that you have to decide on the appropriate degree of sharpening before the shot is taken. In fact the "best" sharpening to be applied can depend on a wide range of factors, some of which you may not know before shooting. The form of output is important, one sharpens differently for inkjet prints to web output for example, and differently when printing at 240dpi v 400dpi. It also depends on the subject matter; usually one is looking for optimal sharpness without the appearance of artifacts. This can differ quite markedly between different subject matter. If you set your in-camera sharpening to +2 you can end up with some rather nasty artifacts in certain types of picture. Once they exists it is almost impossible to take them out.

Considering colour; you lose colour depth from 12 down to 8 bit. Effectively saying that you limit yourself to representing each pixel in steps of 1-256 instead of finer gradations of 1-4000.

There are additional complications that can arise from compression, etc.

The default settings generallydo pretty good job, but in the same way that one might wish to put great care into exposing and composing the shot, one might also wish to obtain the best possible output at each step in the process from raw data to final output.

Having said all that there is great convenience for having the conversion engine (field-kitchen)in the camera. Sometimes one does not have a PC available, sometimes the search for "fine-art quality" is simply not relevant, as in family snapshots or photojournalism, where the required resolutions are relatively low and the occasional artifact will not be important. The marginal improvements under those conditions are simply not worth the effort.

Additionally, there are some very fine photographers who are franklyhopeless withor disinclined to use computers (just don't like cooking although they may enjoyhunting and eating - actually when it comes to real [not metaphorical]food I'm that sort of person myself). For such people the marginal benefits of using PS may indeed not be worth the genuine frustration and effort that the use of the PC entails. For such people, themore sophisticated the options available in-camera (better field kitchens), the better.

[Edited to change the metaphor slightly - you could substitute fishing for hunting if that makes it more palatable. :-) ]

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Old Jan 25, 2007, 3:14 PM   #26
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Looks like all I needed was a firm commitment to an in-depth explanation.

I'm thoroughly satisfied. :-)


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Old Jan 28, 2007, 7:41 AM   #27
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well I have had my 30D set on +1 sharpnesssince I got it but I have until recently been shooting in jpeg format. Ive left the rest of the settings alone and have not changed the settings for RAW as Im under the impression that it makes no difference anyway. So im leaving the settings as is so if I do shoot in jpeg the settings have not changed. i dont mind PP at all.
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Old Mar 20, 2007, 1:30 PM   #28
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I seem to recall reading in the review, that the 30D needed to be set to +2 sharpness to equal the 20Ds 0 (default) sharpness.

Seems no matter what, post production sharpness is always better?

I really need to start practicing my PS skills,
seems that even after dumping thousands on a camera, PP is where it all comes together.

~John
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