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    • This footage/photo of Ogden Canyon in Utah has been making the rounds on social media. It is supposed to show the amazing autumn colors. It’s bogus. I happened to ride up through Ogden Canyon the same weekend this drone operator took the footage. I was frankly disappointed that the colors were not very vibrant.

      The photographer obviously played with the color settings. When the photo/footage was picked up by media outlets, he scrambled to say something about recent rains that probably have brought down most of the leaves so that it doesn’t look like this anymore.

      I’m kind of mad somebody is even making my neighborhood fall colors fake news. 😡

    • Heh. Wow. It got 2.5 million views on Good Morning America and CNN also played it. Here it is (1 minute):

      Here's the local news interview of the photographer where he described using a polarizing filter and cranking up the color saturation:

      But here's the thing: some of the most famous photographers in history—like Ansel Adams—greatly exaggerated things like saturation in their photos. He was roundly criticized in the day by other photographers because photography was supposed to be realistic, but he considered it art. He said the negative is comparable to the composer's score and the print to its performance.

    • Yes, manipulating an image to convey a message takes some photographs into the realm of art. Ansel Adams created images that encouraged human insight.

      This guy is not creating art, he is not using his images to convey a deeper message or to challenge people’s assumptions. This guy is manipulating the image so that it becomes all saccharine. People are meant to look at that image and feel like they are missing out, not like they have tapped into a valuable human emotion or seen the world through someone’s else’s perspective. It is fake and empty. It is deceit rather than insight.

      In my book, it is akin to those photographs of staged “natural” wildlife shots. Weren’t you lamenting that practice just a few months ago...?

    • Hahaha, yes, I'm on your side in this case. Steven Spielberg said something interesting: the best fiction seems believable.

      One of my favorite photographers, Elena Shumilova, takes fantasy-esque photos of her kids and she's enormously popular. I attended one of her workshops and saw her tricks, but she doesn't pretend it's perfectly real.

    • Unless images and videos are "journalistic", and used and declared as such, no one should have expectations of any sort of color or even luminance "truth" in photography and video.

      (Many, if not most, journalistic editors and journalistic institutions even allow cropping and sharpening in post-production. Some allow exposure and mild contrast/curves if it does not change the "story/message" of the image. That was not always the case.)

      That's the way of it. Most of what we see has been interpolated using Bayer algorithms or similar, at very least. The Bayer algorithm itself is not locked in stone and it is subject to interpretation. ... And it's not "your" interpretation either (meaning all of us are subject to engineered color science)

      Sorry if anyone misunderstood the concept or the implications.

      Even the days of a true "RAW" image or video are long behind us. Everything we see now has had engineering design and technical manipulation applied. That's both analog/film and digital acquisition, and printing/display viewing.

      The crazy thing is that old B&W images are considered by many somehow better and more pure photographically than modern color images. Nonsense, I say; the world is filled with color and tones, not simply B&W. B&W is simply how we started this photographic and video journey.

    • I’m not sure it’s *old* B&W photographs that are considered more artsy—seems to me B&W photos of any age are seen as more artsy than color images regardless of how old or new they are, which is a curiosity.

      In fine art, we pay attention to a suite of elements. The most memorable masterpieces exhibit extraordinary focus on two, three, or sometimes four elements, but more than four tends to just create a mishmash that muddles the power of the work. The element of color in painting, sculpture, costume, etc. seems to convey more meaning in these media than color does in photography, which is another curiosity to me...

    • I watched a few photographers like Trey Ratcliff get very popular with HDR. A lot of photographers blanched but consumers loved it for awhile. I get the feeling that trend mostly passed because it felt too overdone, although I still love looking at Trey’s. I printed this one something like 20 feet wide and 7 feet tall at SmugMug.

    • To be clear, I cannot endorse outright fabrication of facts to the point of "lying" about validity. Anyone who lies can, and should, be held accountable.


      When I look at "entertainment" images or video I ask two questions:

      1) Does this look real?

      2) Is this pleasing or do I like it regardless of the #1 answer?

      If the answer to #1 is, "No, this does not look real." and if the answer to #2 is, "No, I don't like this.", then my position regarding the artist/author is likely to just move along and never seek out anything from this artist/author again.

      However, if the answer to both questions involves a "Yes ...", then I tend to actively seek out more from the artist/author.

      However(2), if I get a mixed message from my senses and sensibilities then the solution gets more complicated.


      For "journalistic" images or video the decision becomes much more demanding, with a "No ..." to either question causing me to avoid that particular photo/video journalist and, if the hosting agency/bureau persist with employing or supporting that particular journalist then I can question that entity as well.


      With the propensity of post-processing applications with super-saturated color processing etc. it's possible that some users don't even know how much manipulation is being applied.

      With some FujiFilm products offering a "Velvia Vivid" simulation the colors very much approach what Justin applied to his video. Should we all boycott such products and software that allow these opportunities?
      (If the companies allow these options to exist customers will use them.)

      Fujifilm XT3 Color Profile comparison

    • Interesting thoughts, @ziggy53. Thanks for sharing.


      To be clear, I cannot endorse outright fabrication of facts to the point of "lying" about validity. Anyone who lies can, and should, be held accountable.

      This reminds me of that famous statement of Picasso’s: “Art is a lie that reveals the truth.”

    • Robert Capa's Falling Soldier is one of the most famous pics of the Spanish Civil War. It was published when he was in his mid 20s and help launch his career as one of the world's preeminent photojournalists. However, in later years, its legitimacy came into question. A Spanish newspaper demonstrated that it was not shot where it was claimed, but rather about 30 kilometers away near a village that saw no combat at the time. The victim's identification was unknown at first, then claimed to be someone who died under different circumstances. Many now claim that it was simply staged, though there is no conclusive proof.

      Nevertheless, it's an iconic image that most of us have seen. I think it's reasonable to say that it's true whether it happened or not.

    • This isn't just about Landscape photography or videography going viral.... we've been doing this with people since day one. All of us are guilty of 'enhancing' our photos/videos. Where I don't see it as a big deal, there are some who make us that use it for specific purposes look bad. But I think that applies to hundreds of thousands of things in life. People need to be responsible, and at the very least, take responsibilty for adding to the objectifying of their subjects.