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Old 03-03-2018, 09:27 PM   #10
Dennis A. Livesey
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Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 1,985

The responses here land solidly on the conservative, journalistic, document dogma side. In other words, a photograph cannot be enjoyed unless reality grounded. Fair enough.

Just so you know, I am not speaking of adding/removing objects to a photo. That kind of "Photoshopping" is not what I am interested in.

I am interested in using all sliders in Lightroom to achieve a response from a viewer. I wish to do whatever it takes to achieve the mood or emotion I am trying to convey.

For me, the reaction I am looking for is like the one from someone who has never taken a photograph in their life and views the image for the first time. I don't want them to bring preconceptions, or knowledge of how the image must have been made, et all, for all of that is irrelevant. The image must exist to be or mean something. It must "be" in order not to waste the viewers time.

Like every artist, I work to please myself. However, I do realize that if I wish recognition or remuneration, I do have to consider if my work is reaching people. I accept that I may have to compromise or go in another direction if my work, in a word, flops.

I went to two NYC galleries the other day. At one, the artist used a camera to make beautiful, stunning images. The photographer, Murray Fredericks, says he did no manipulation of the Photoshop kind, just normal processing. They looked like paintings.

Later I went to see two new works by Adam Normandin. They are paintings that look like photographs.

So if what I do falls into what you call illustration, that is a compliment for it means to me that I am getting closer to what I want to do.

Ultimately for me, whether it is a photo or painting or illustration is beside the point. What is the point is creating a response in the viewer.

Last thought, if you wish to get better as a rail photographer, sure, look at other rail shooters, particularly when starting out. However, in order to grow look beyond rail. First look to landscape photographers, then sports, then portraits, even wedding or street. Then go even further, to the fine arts, to painting, to dance, to cinema, even writing. Be inspired by whatever you can find. Then you can grow.

“If you want to make more interesting pictures, become a more interesting person.” – Jay Maisel

I Foam Therefore I Am.

My pix on RailPics:

I am on Flickr as well:

"Dennis is such a God, he could do that with a camera obscura and some homemade acetate." Holloran Grade

"To me it looks drawn in in Paintshop. It looks like a puddle of orange on the sky." SFO777
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