Let’s face it, Photoshop is as much a part of photography as a camera to most photographers nowadays. People use Photoshop to do everything from basic retouching to advanced composites that stretch imagination. In a recent article by Declan O’Neil on Digital Photography School he makes the argument that Photoshop is ruining landscape photography.
O’Neil’s article begins with a story about how the winner of one of Britain’s most prestigious photography awards had his award and $16,000 in prize winning taken back after it was discovered how much Photoshop he had used on his submission. He goes on to discuss the main points to the battle over the future of Image manipulation, including thing like when enhancement crosses over into alteration.
I think that on a case by case basis Photoshop can and has been used excessively, but overall I feel that it has not ruined Landscape Photography. Though there are some great parallels with the current fight over retouching advertisements. For example; we all know the story about women who have issues over their appearance due to always seeing retouched models. These women can’t look as good as the models simply because the models have been so ‘shopped that it’s not even natural anymore.
The same can be said about budding landscape photographers. They spend all their time looking at over ‘shopped images and they think that their work is inferior. When in reality their SOOC (Straight Out Of the Camera) image may be just as good as these retouched images had been SOOC. O’Neil makes the point that there is a difference between removing a power line and changing the color of the sky from grey to orange and purple. The former is acceptable in his eyes, the latter is not.
What do you think? Is Photoshop ruining landscape photography? Let us know in a comment below.