"The contemplation of things as they are,
without error or confusion, without
substitution or imposture, is in itself a
nobler thing than a whole harvest of
(posted on Dorothea Lange's
This quote always comes to my mind when I begin to toy with photoshop. The digital age has given us the power to alter reality in profound and mind bending ways. But I prefer to take my world "as is", straight up, with all it's imperfections. I may play with the tonal range a bit, burn, dodge, crop, all the things I've always done in the traditional darkroom, but I draw the line when it comes to adding things that weren't there or importing different skies. The world, even with all it's imperfections, is perfect as it is. Perhaps I could have made this photograph more spectacular if I had cloned the heather so it completely covered the hill and I could have switched out the sky for something much more dramatic but I was satisfied with it as it was. I feel no need to play God in my photography.
|In the Most Unexpected Place - South Uist, Scotland, 2011|
Being a contemplative photographer means, for me at least, the contemplation of things as they are. I've never had any trouble with using what I find on location. The artistic dimension enters into the equation when I make my choices - composition, lighting, viewpoint, etc. I want to be sure that it reflects my feeling about the subject, whatever it is. If I was content with just anybodies feelings, I'd just buy postcards!