Call me old fashioned! But...

randyspan

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Call me old-fashioned but I like level horizons. Black blacks. Highlights with just a touch of retained detail. Guess I'm complaining...I see so many pictures on this, our site with washed out blacks, blown out highlights, and canted horizons. To me it's photography 101. I could go on, but I won't!

(forgive my rant and complaining)
 

jamesgehrt

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Call me old-fashioned but I like level horizons. Black blacks. Highlights with just a touch of retained detail. Guess I'm complaining...I see so many pictures on this, our site with washed out blacks, blown out highlights, and canted horizons. To me it's photography 101. I could go on, but I won't!

(forgive my rant and complaining)
For myself, I would agree with you. My work is traditional. However, those rules can be broken, if you are aware you are breaking them, for your own photographic style. I think the unintentional tipped horizon, especial with a body of water, can look really bad. Also, if I know that the shot could have had more detail in the highlights and shadows, I find myself thinking about how much better the image could be.

That being said there are many photographers that have developed a dynamic rough style. Contrasty, grainy, edgy portrait work can be engaging and add a lot to an image.

I think it is important for beginners to learn the basics, then go out and experiment. Find out why tonality and frame are important. Why do you want the the camera tipped? How does it benefit the images message? Why do you want the tones high or low? What effect does it have on the viewer? It comes down to intent, in my book. Is it someone experimenting with the limits, or is it just a mistake. Sometimes mistakes can be cool, but I hope that I learn something from them so I can repeat it in the future.

My two cents
 

QualityBuiltIn

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Hi Randy,

I have absolutely no training and I really appreciate it when constructive criticism is directed at my postings, however basic that may be. I'm sure that most of my variances from the norm are errors and often they are because I know no better.

Your help and guidance is very welcome.
 

yakky

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I'm personally a huge fan of the blue filter effects, especially a warm beach scene. /sarcasm.
 

pdk42

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Artistic deviation done on purpose is OK (even if it doesn't work), but I'm guessing OP is referring to incompetence. Personally, I'm hopeless with straight horizons, even with the electronic level so nearly always have to correct in LR.
 

Hyubie

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It's a forum open to all people of varying skills so of course you get the good with the bad. Comes with the territory.
 

fransglans

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we all start from somewhere. And we try things out. imo i like crushed blacks and those instagram sortofthings. but maybe i feel different after two years. u cant tell a kid to skip the learning curve. i like to try and move on.
 

OzRay

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Many people seem to like extreme tilting in photography of people etc and I guess that's just a taste thing, but tilted horizons in landscapes, cityscape, architectural photography etc is generally considered bad form. As for blacks and highlights, that too can be situation dependent and a matter of taste; high-key, low-key photography has been going on forever (even with colour photography).
 

Fmrvette

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Guys, I'm just happy if The Princess of the Exchequer can recognize our grandkids in the shot...and horizon tilt is apparently inversely proportional to the amount of whiskey left in the bottle.

(The more tilt I see, the less whiskey there seems to be...)

Regards,

Jim
 

Robert Watcher

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So i guess as an old timer in the craft of photography - I'll pipe in on this one. Firstly, I have no problem understanding that everyone has different tastes. It's a good thing. Photography can be whatever we want it to be. It is our expression or outlet, Just like sculpting, painting or playing a musical instrument are to some.

That "traditional values" don't include crooked horizons, crushed backs and no detail in highlights however - - - must be based on a very narrow definition. I realize that at any specific time period, there are styles and trends that are popular and that some "professional organizations" claim as pure or traditional. But those opinions are never defacto.

I know that when I started out in the wedding and portrait trade in 1979, I chose my own path based on quirky candid photography methods that I based on photos from obscure photographers and images in books of masters I saw at the library. For the most part, I chose to not follow the path of the composition and aesthetic standards set by the organized groups. I used small amateur cameras at times - where medium format and large format was mandated. I figured if 35mm and polaroid and even point and shoot was good enough for old masters of photography - it was good enough for me.

So it is within the right of any person to determine what "tradition" is. But for me, I also include some of these fellows in the tradition of photography. Do they follow the standards of straight horizons, detail in blacks and whites?:

Henri Cartier Bresson - http://cloud.lomography.com/576/368/a2/aa3cc751695db6449f18472d08ca7d34ddfd87.jpg

Garry Winogrand - http://img.scoop.it/BYvgDVZN1kWoJdXTYubP1Dl72eJkfbmt4t8yenImKBVvK0kTmF0xjctABnaLJIm9

elliott-erwitt - http://assets.coolhunting.com/coolhunting/mt_asset_cache/2013/11/the-macallan-masters-of-photography-elliott-erwitt-edition-shore-thumb-620x418-70199.jpg

Don Mccullin - http://filmcamera999.files.wordpress.com/2012/05/003_don-mc-cullin_theredlist.jpg

Bill Brandt - http://www.billjayonphotography.com/BillJayWebSized/BillBrandt.jpg
- http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-QhfLS1Md1Tg/T2nSouk2uxI/AAAAAAAAAKQ/q3oOBOgjeT8/s1600/IMG_6762-2.jpg
- http://fc05.deviantart.net/fs71/i/2011/041/2/f/bill_brandt_by_kaigalph-d397sqm.jpg


So I'm not saying that the original posters opinion is wrong - - - just that it is simply his preference and his view of traditional photography. And he certainly isn't old fashioned based on the photographers images that I have linked to. :thumbup:

I'm not trying to be confrontational - just educational. :smile:
------
 

GFFPhoto

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I can appreciate the faded look, which will make the blacks look washed out, and I can be forgiving about the highlights. Current digital still doesn't have the smooth transitions into highs that we used to see with film. But I do like a level horizon!
 

fortwodriver

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I don't get some people. They complain about low dynamic range, but then when they get their hands on a camera with wider dynamic range, they seem to be happy with very flat images. The whole point of that extra DR is to give you more choice where to put your black and your whites - not to have grey soot and white-wash. I love rich blacks in my images and whites with a nice rounded compression to them.

Sometimes, images are so washed out they look like Talbottypes...
 

MarkoPolo

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This brings up a corollary point. I notice most photo topics are only answered with a "Thanks" and are almost never replied as to a specific photo. I know the forum topic might be a certain lens or dragonflies or whatever, but is it against forum etiquette to respond with constructive criticism? Seems to be less interaction about any given photo on this forum than others I frequent. I see photos that I feel I might have something constructive to add, but have not responded as I'm not sure what this forum expects.
 

fortwodriver

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This brings up a corollary point. I notice most photo topics are only answered with a "Thanks" and are almost never replied as to a specific photo. I know the forum topic might be a certain lens or dragonflies or whatever, but is it against forum etiquette to respond with constructive criticism? Seems to be less interaction about any given photo on this forum than others I frequent. I see photos that I feel I might have something constructive to add, but have not responded as I'm not sure what this forum expects.
I'm generally hesitant because I'm not where the photographer was. If I recommend something, it might not be possible, or practical. I tend to use the photo sharing threads as a way to see what sort of colour, contrast, and framing the photos have. I've been taking photos for a long time and I still keep seeing new things in the posts I follow.
 

OzRay

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When I see something that I like, I respond personally and give reasons why I like the photo/s or whatever it's about. I'm just used to giving more than a thumbs up.
 

randyspan

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I'm thinking 'to thine own self be true'... I look at some of our photos and think: is that really what the author wants to present? And thank goodness for postprocessing, OOC jpegs done well take a lot of skill.
 
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