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Monday, December 13, 2010

A View to a Shoot

Its a kind of 'Captain Obvious' thing to say when you declare that PhotoShop has changed photography irreversibly. No matter who you are, what kind of photography you do or how long you have been doing it, PhotoShop inevitably alters your shooting style and your end result at some time in your life as a photographer. There are some shoots wherein I intend little if any post processing. Then there are others in which I intend the image to actually be made possible by the utilisation of a PhotoShop process. The images I took on Saturday were definitely in that category. It was just the place I was in that day. I saw everything I shot as the end process, and then shot accordingly.

This is not the norm for me. I love PhotoShop, don't get me wrong. Lightroom too, for that matter. But my process is to create all that is possible in the camera. It always has been, and it is what I continue to teach at the workshops I run. I suppose I did the same thing on Saturday but I have to admit that my head was in a different creative space. After all, there was only so much I could do in camera. The rest had to be a post capture process. The images I saw in my head were simply not possible in the camera alone. But that is still the best place to start. I am not a believer in fixing images in PhotoShop, only enhancing or completing them. Its certainly not a new approach either. The great Ansel Adams is only one of the many photographers I could name who prepared his images at capture for the darkroom process. His metering and negative chemical process were all arranged with one final process in mind - printing. These days, PhotoShop is the darkroom of choice for the overwhelming majority of us. But the images themselves still require the process to be correct at time of capture. Fixing photographs is not what photographers do. We take them and complete them where necessary later. 

Glynn and I found ourselves without a workshop to run on Saturday, so we organised a model, the funny and lovely Maeva, and drove to Victoria's Goldfields region for a shoot. We had already scouted the area and knew that our first port of call was going to be the apparent birthplace of AFL legend, Ron Barassi. This old stone home is now in ruins and is such a wonderful backdrop for some really creative photography. Blessed by clouds and good weather, Glynn and I were able to work through some dynamic images in preparation for a workshop event we have planned for that area in the first weekend in March 2011. Stay tuned for an announcement on our photography workshops website. 

The Life, Times and Images of photographer, Shelton Muller

Images on this blog are copyright Shelton Muller