Upload & Sell: On
Every time this sort of plaint arises about a style or approach that's "not real", I try to point out again that nothing we do is real. The very act of imposing a camera between our eye and the uni-dimensional "reality" we experience and capture said minuscule slice of "reality" on a silicon sensor, it is no longer any sort of "real." It is in fact an artifact of our creation. It is only at "best" loosely related to the time/space intersection we were in when we intervened with our gadget.
Even when I'm working as a photojournalist say shooting a sports event, every pix I take is a slice of an organic whole. I pick this player rather than that, this action over another. Having captured a RAW image I then develop it to its "best" appearance. In doing so I will ignore 100s of other images take of the same contest. I'll crop it. Work with its temp, brightness, sharpness, noise in search of a photo that conveys the impact of the moment pictured.
When I move to so called "art" photography then I am clearly trying to capture the feeling, the sense, the "thereness" of the moment. I dislike many styles and such styles come and go. Like the so called "high key" or "high tone" stuff were everything seems completely washed out. Or the "gansta" school or portraiture where everybody has to be bad and the pix are only in alleys. EB-1 notes his startled response to Velvia. I remember that same thing. Wow! Weird! Interesting! Do I like it??
There is a standard rant against HDR, a perfectly valid and absolutely useful tool especially when trying to capture tonal ranges beyond the camera's very limited spectrum. A great many of my landscapes make use of the technique and generally one can't even tell unless they are aware that the dynamic range of the photo is beyond current capabilities. Sure a lot of this stuff doesn't do anything for me, but I fail to understand how it gets "bad." It has affected to some extent what some people want from me - particularly high school kids. I adapt as far as I'm comfortable with.
Yep, no doubt we are in a CGI era. Not exactly surprising. I've toyed with it a bit and in fact have a photo or two that is beyond what I normally do. A battered slag processing plant with its dust and black heaps of material after a monsoon rain - glistening wet and green sprouting up in the dust. It is pushed past reality, but to me it captures something about the light at a moment that a simple snapshot wouldn't have been able to do.
The styles come and go. Use what you like. What doesn't change is real craftsmanship, attention to every nuance, command of one's tools, and most important a vision of light.
As for dissing "Middle Earth" well if you haven't been there, really don't know what it's like
Here's an "overdone" shot.
© rsorrels 2014
Overcook, but so damp and cool.