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Delaware Bay Lights

A forum to discuss lighthouses Mid-Atlantic Region of the US
(New York, New Jersey, Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Delaware)

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Postby Grover1 » Wed Aug 29, 2007 7:51 pm


Dave ...

Funny you should say that becasue that's exactly what I was thinking after reading it about an hour ago ... here goes ... with the preamble that this just happens to be Gary's shots ... it could have been anyone's of a light of which I had first hand visual knowledge ...

First thought ... how great is it that the "out of the camera" image looks no different than so many of mine :wink:

Second ... what prompted all this ... the first picture was just wrong ... and anyone who has seen the light would know that ... someone who hasnt would never know ... and it reverts back to the discussion once had ... "do we see what the photographer sees or do we see what the photographer wants us to see" In this case, in no way could the first image represent anything seen that day ... "Big Red" is red ... Muskegon is red (I think) ... and Gary's signature shot is red ... Ship John is not red, not like that ...

Third ... if you take all that Gary patiently and painstakingly took the time to explain, it sounds like what the novice does, to a far lesser degree, when he doesnt like the result so he (me!) uses the "auto-color" and "auto-exposure" mode of a program, maybe the "sharpener," ... somewhat pleased with the parameters of the program ... and who doesnt wander into the "saturation" modes becasue grass isnt blue, the sky not green

Fourth ... this could just be me ... but it seems there is just a whole lot of manipulation going on "before" hand so that will allow you the ability to do a whole lot of manipulation "after" hand ...

Fifth ... I, too, hate biased pixels

Lastly ... if the "finished" random shot used to take me through the process was posted first instead of the one that started the thread then I would be talking about how wonderful a shot that is ... the composition of the lighthouse, the rocks and birds ... I thought this just a great picture of a favored lighthouse ...

I think ... when you become accustomed to a standard as high as the one Gary holds himself to, when a result slips by that by subjective measure doesnt reach it, or by objective measure is inaccurate, it glaringly stood out ... to me ...

Gary ... I do appreciate the time and effort it took to put that together and I thank you for it ... Terms and measurements and settings, nah, not quite ... but I did get a feel for the process ... and I did get a better understanding of how you do what you do ... and for that, I thank you much ...

Barry
Last edited by Grover1 on Tue Oct 02, 2007 4:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Biggy » Thu Aug 30, 2007 8:55 am


Barry ... First, I have to say this. It seems you directed your statements toward me, and (as befuddled as this may sound) I don't know why. I only asked if you got all that because I simply wondered if you really wanted to know all the ins and outs of Gary's process, mainly because I already had an idea of what the process was -- even though I do mine a slight bit different than Gary with regard to the digital image.

As for the age-old question ... Do we see what the photographer sees or what he wants us to see? ... I don't recall my statements, if there were any, from the previous thread to which you are referring, but if I didn't say it then I may as well now. My opinion ... Nobody ever truly sees what the photographer sees, and nobody ever has a true understanding of what the photographer is trying to translate, unless the photographer flat-out tells a story about it.

Why do I take a shot at a different angle than another photographer -- whether or not he or she is professional or amateur? Why do I take a shot with one bird flying here and another photographer take another shot with a bird flying there? And does it really matter to anybody but the photographers?

As I have said countless times to countless amounts people, one viewer always has a different feel about a photograph than somebody else, and has a different taste as to what he or she wants to "see" in a photo.

And believe it or not, Barry, most photographers tend to manipulate the process in some sort of way, if for no other reason than to experiment and come up with something a little different than somebody else's "plain old shot" of a particular subject. And I'm not just talking digital guys. Even die-hard film guys do it, whether that be with pushing their equipment to do things those machines ordinarily wouldn't do, using a strobe lighting system to highlight something, to testing with varying films, filters, etc., or a combination of many things.

Procedural manipulation is par for the photography course, I think. Digital post-shot manipulation really is no different than using varying degrees of chemicals in a dark room to achieve a certain look to a photo as it is being processed from negative to paper. But every photographer tests the waters, so to speak, to achieve what he or she perceives as a desired look. Whether somebody else sees it that way is another thing.

Anyway ... Enough from me right now. 8) Catch everybody later.
David
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Postby epona » Thu Aug 30, 2007 1:25 pm


David,

I so totally disagree with you!!!

Epona
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Postby Rob143 » Thu Aug 30, 2007 2:02 pm


epona wrote:David,

I so totally disagree with you!!!

Epona


Not to be a wiseguy here, but if you so disagree as to use three exclamations, could you tell us why you disagree?
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Postby Gary Martin » Thu Aug 30, 2007 4:35 pm


I have to agree with Rob... so what DO you disagree with so vehemently, Carole?
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Postby Gary Martin » Thu Aug 30, 2007 5:18 pm


Since we're talking about photography and what the photographer wants the viewer to see vs. what the viewer "sees" or thinks they're seeing, what do folks see in the following image? By that I mean do you see a lighthouse in the sparking light of a full moon?

Image

BTW, this image was shot with a Nikon F5 loaded with Provia 400-F professional slide film.
Last edited by Gary Martin on Fri Aug 31, 2007 4:52 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Grover1 » Thu Aug 30, 2007 6:33 pm


Gary ... is this one of those shots you took at 12 noon to simulate 12 midnight? And while a lighthouse it does appear to be, it also bears a faint resemblance to the outline of an incoming ... or outgoing ... ferry of some kind ...
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Postby Gary Martin » Thu Aug 30, 2007 6:38 pm


The lighthouse is the Manitowoc, WI pier light. The near dark part is the pier before it bends to run out to the light.

But you didn't say what you were seeing, Barry, you asked a question instead of answering one...
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Postby Grover1 » Thu Aug 30, 2007 7:00 pm


Not for nothing ... its been a real ... real long time since we've stretched our opinionated muscles on such a topic and it feels real good ...at least from this end ...

Dave, befuddlement doesnt become you ... perhaps a little more separation was needed needed between my agreeing with your assessment and then expressing my thoughts ... but no ... nothing was directed at you and I apologize if you thought it was ...

For sure ... and especially since becoming active here ... I realize some sort of processing (the word "manipulation" Gary introduced has such a negative connotation) always goes on ... from the first time I realized I could crop something it started the wheels turning ... then I realized my bad shots could be made less bad just by an auto-exposure correction and an auto-color correction ...

THEN ... I got these cool emails through Yahoo! ... even before THE ULTIMATE LIGHTHOUSE MESSAGE BOARD ... from a wizard from Michigan inviting me to view his work and I was hooked on Gary Martin Photgraphy and whatever it took to reproduce those images ... they were unique and they were spectacular. This may be parsing but I thought they enhanced reality ... and I am still boggled by his storm shots from Harbor Beach ... those oranges still are imprinted in my psyche ... and I am forever glad he chose to share them ...

But never before did I think reality got distorted as I (and I always said I) saw with that posted shot from Ship John ... mostly becasue I had seen this lighthouse and that structure was always a favorite of mine and it was being protrayed in a manner I knew just didnt exist and I just got curious as to how such an image slipped in ... especially in light of the other Ship John shot posted later in "lesson to Barry." (and let me say ... when I write "distorted reality," I mean without an explanation as to what was trying to be acomplished)

To me, this is the danger in manipulation ... sometimes the reality can get lost in the process ...
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Postby Grover1 » Thu Aug 30, 2007 7:13 pm


I have a recollection of a series of shots you posted that were shot in the middle of the day and gave the appearance of the middle of the night ... I forget the explanation but I was in total awe of your power and majesty of turning day into night ... I am guessing that this is one of those shots and that we are probably looking at sunlight causing the shimmer and not moonlight ...
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Postby Gary Martin » Thu Aug 30, 2007 7:17 pm


Reality... is what the mind wants it to be.

The shot of Manitowoc, Barry, was taken at noon on a brilliant sunny day... the exposure was to at 1/8000th of a second to force the film into severe reciprocity failure rendering the visual impression of a moonlit night... Sorry, quarter moon that night while I was out crossing Lake Michigan on the SS Badger headed for Ludington.

I have shots of Sandy Hook where the tower is some color in the range of vermillion or orange.... we all know that Sandy Hook is white. Was the image manipulated to render the tower orange... no, it was shot in the dying light of the day when the light was orange and the tower was simply the canvas to catch that color. I have shots of Big Red where the sky is a deep violet color... I pushed Velvia 50 into severe reciprocity failure on purpose because I knew that's how it would render the sky....

Image

We should be cautious labeling an image "wrong." Ship John Shoal last Saturday had a strong color dependence as a function of the angle I shot form. I shot from about three different angles about 45 degrees apart and got a lighthouse that was three different colors ranging from something that was essentially red on through to brown or something like that. Which one a given individual might think or "see" as right is based on their own experience, whatever that may have been. They might see the one that agrees with their mental picture of the light as "correct" and the others as "wrong" but in fact, none of them are wrong unless, for example. you go in and select the lighthouse and tell Photoshop make the lighthouse fuscia or something of that Ilk.

Just food for thought....
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Postby Biggy » Thu Aug 30, 2007 8:48 pm


First, I must address Carole, since you chose to yell at me 8O ... What that I said do you disagree with? :lol:

How can you say, "I totally disagree" without saying why you disagree? Am I supposed to read your mind? I'm interested to know what exactly you disagree with. And I think I'm going to await your statement before I make any more regarding this subject.

Barry ... I only asked if you addressed your statements to me because you prefaced them with "Dave ..." Forgive me for saying so, my friend, but if you print someone's name followed by an ellipsis that usually means you're directing statements to that person. And I only know that because it's something I do frequently. 8) No matter. On we go.

And yes, I too am finding this matter of differing opinion quite interesting, even if somebody (Carole) or a bunch of somebodies (Anybody else want to jump on Carole's bandwagon when she releases her statements, feel free :lol:) disagrees with mine.
David
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Postby epona » Fri Aug 31, 2007 2:41 am


I got my point across.

Carole
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Postby Rob143 » Fri Aug 31, 2007 2:48 am


epona wrote:I got my point across.

Carole


:?: :?: :?:
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Postby Biggy » Fri Aug 31, 2007 5:26 am


epona wrote:I got my point across.

Carole


I totally disagree. :P

And not because I just want to say I totally disagree, but because I didn't see any points you made. :lol:
David
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