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Q is for Quality, and Quantity…

Hmmm… I feel a bit ambivalent about all the technological advancements in photography these days – it no longer holds true that the camera never lies as digital darkroom image manipulation helps us concoct the most creative chimera, developing each of us into a virtual Doctor Frankenstein. Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s great to be able to correct faults and flaws to improve the quality of an otherwise disappointing shot, but sometimes for me that ‘correction’ seems to be taken too far, with the resulting image becoming almost monstrous in its attempt to appear real.

Although not a photographic purist, personally I’m not really one for utilising too much digital manipulation – I’ll crop an image if and when it needs it, or change it to greyscale, but that’s about it – with my images it tends to be what you see is what you get, warts and all. At heart I want to be a photographer, not a computer software wizard. Hyper-reality can be used to great deliberate effect though – I do love these over-saturated images I took of Neal’s Yard in Covent Garden, London, taken using a ‘pop-art’ filter on my old Olympus E-450, my very first DSLR… OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

And another thing, with digital cameras being built in to our ubiquitous mobile phones, I find that photography favours an almost throwaway feel nowadays in that some people (usually of the younger generation – God I’m getting old!) no longer put any thought into the sheer quantity of shots they fire off, or care about how bad the resulting images are, because they can all be so easily discarded and replaced with something new along the way. I mean, I too take loads of pictures all the time, but always with my eye on achieving that elusive image that takes my breath away, that I can maybe even print out and frame on my wall – alas I’ve still a long way to go yet before finding it.

I’ve taken some perfectly presentable shots with my ever-present smartphone (more of that when I get to ‘S’), so I know that modern phone cameras are quite capable of achieving surprisingly decent pics and it’s great always to have that option available. But flying in the face of built-in image-obsolescence, for me the aim of trying to produce at least one good quality photograph to keep for posterity wins hands down over littering copious quantities of badly-composed, thoughtlessly-snapped, blurry images all over Facebook… sigh!

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14 thoughts on “Q is for Quality, and Quantity…

  1. Instant gratification – it has seeped into all walks of life. Sometimes it is nice to wait in anticipation of a great shot – other times I like to tweak it a bit to suit my mood. Very occasionally I just go right away from reality (like my post yesterday) and find satisfaction in making some photographic “Art”. I don’t see them as photos as such, more “artified” versions of my imagination. It can be fun, but the perfect shot is still hovering in the background – that’s the lure of photography I think.

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  2. Hmmm… Claudette I’ve just found your post from yesterday, and I do love those creative effects, very artistic, very inspiring… I might just have to expand my photographic repertoire beyond the scope of my camera, after all – the inverted negative has treally captured my imagination! 🙂

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  3. Like you I don’t do much in the way of editing photos on the computer, I do use filters on instagram on the phone because I do find sometimes my phone camera is a bit dull on capturing colours but I am guilt of taking hundred of photos on my digital camera, partly it is because I usually have a good idea of what shot I want but take a couple of shots to make sure there is not blurring from camera wobble if I don’t have my tripod but also I like to take lots of shot of details as well as the whole as I always spot something I want to zoom in on. To be far though I was just as bad when I had an old fashioned film camera just finances restrained me.

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  4. I used to work for a newspaper and our photographers were brilliant – but obviously they were recording the world around them, not enhancing it in any way. I love the way you have lifted an everyday photograph and turned it into a work of art.

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