Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Photoshop Excess?

Photoshop sometimes puzzles me because there is so much you go can do with it artistically that I'm not sure where the lines between reality and imagination get blurred. But maybe that's the whole point of art – to continue to push the envelope of visual experience. For example, I don't really consider myself a creative photographer. I feel I'm quite competent and can take excellent pictures given the right subject, location, timing and light. But there is nothing edgy or avant-garde about my photos, whereas I admire this streak in others.

That said, however, with Photoshop I can look at my old photographs and recreate the mood I was in when I took or rather saw the picture I had in mind. Such is the case with this picture of one of my best models ever, a lovely, articulate young Taiwanese woman named Meiu (pronounced May-you) whom I knew well in Germany while I was a US Army Signal Corps photographer there in the early 1970s. What you see in the first photo is what I "felt" as I took the picture. What you see in the second, below, is what the film actually captured. The difference is my own imagination and the Hue/Saturation control in Photoshop. My question, though, is have I gone overboard, or have I indeed recreated not just a visual image but also a visual feeling (if there is such a thing)?


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