Should Images Be Post-Processed?

30th June 2011

Once again the question that has to be asked before providing an answer is, “Is photography art or is it just a technical process?”

If it is art, as I believe, then post processing is almost mandatory as no image is as one would truly like it to be straight out of the camera.  If you think it’s just a technical process then the question has been answered for me on many occasions, NO, the image should speak for itself without tampering.

If justification is needed for my assertion that post-processing is almost mandatory, then I would say to the questioner, “Does an artist from any other discipline actually portray EXACTLY what they see?”  The answer, if they’re honest has to be a definite no.  So then why does a photograph have to?   A truly great picture will look so much better with some adjustments, and I certainly don’t know any great photographers, past or present, who hasn’t adjusted something in the darkroom or on the computer.  When it comes to some forms of photographic art, then they surely cannot be produced without enhancement, posterising for instance or dodging and burning and some of these techniques have been used almost since photography began.

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