Sunday, 21 June 2009

Natural pictures for the natural world

Footbridge, Swaledale, Yorkshire, June 2009

In an interesting coincidence, Howard Grill has just posted about a contrast enhancing processing technique that is often used in landscape photography. the coincidence is that I was reading though my copies of the Landscape Photographer of the Year books from the UK competition. The selections seem a barrage of high contrast, high saturation techniques.

I'm sorry, but the world I live in doesn't look like that. Even at "dramatic" times (the 3 esses - sunrise, sunset, storms), lighting and contrast are usually a lot subtler. Where's the realistic photography. the world looks good enough without having to juice up the processing. I appreciate photography that looks like the world around me, not that tries to reflect the world that you'd like to see.

As a result, I found the books somewhat disappointing - very limited selection of lighting conditions, locations or presentation. The best seem to be the foggy shots, because low contrast is the aim, so the photographers don't juice up the shots so much. that said, I might have a go, and try and challenge that accepted aesthetic.

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