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Is this image digitally altered?

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Another quickie, hopefully. If you apply presets in Lightroom (filters, effects etc.) does this mean that you should/must specify that the image has been digitally altered - i.e. In answer to the question: Is this image digitally altered? Yes/ No.

 

Many thanks in advance. :-)

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No.

On that basis any RAW would be "digitally altered" the instant it came out of the camera.

Edited by spacecadet

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If you do a search on the forum over the past month there was a really good chat about this

 

It looked at what the camera picked up against the human eye and if was altered

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Most of what you would normally do in LR would not result in digital alteration unless you very drastically change the image (turning day to night for example). Black and white or toning conversions, merging to panorama or HDR are not considered to be digital alteration.

 

The following is a good summary by Regen from the thread that Matt refers to of what most photographers would regard as digitally altered or not:

 

If the customer could do it using the available programmes without materially changing the picture e.g. colour shift, brightness etc then its not digitally altered.
 
If its something the customer would not want e.g. dust spots then their removal is not digital alteration.
 
If removal would not materially alter the picture or change its general meaning as taken e.g. a small seagull in the sky which may be taken as a dust spot then its not digital alteration.
 
If it will materially effect the picture but make it more saleable e.g. dog poo on the pavement then its digitally altered as would be adding dog poo which was not there.
 
Adding any pixels whatsoever from another file is digital manipulation and should be declared as would be any fancy cloning.
 
Its just common sense really and many customers are not bothered as they buy the pic as seen unless its news of course.  If in doubt I would declare it as its only a tick box and lifes too short and the fees too low to agonise over.
 
None of the other agencies I supply even ask the question although they may contact me from time to time with a client specific question regarding the veracity of the file.

 

This is the link to the thread although some of the arguments have been deleted

 

http://discussion.alamy.com/index.php?/topic/6079-digitally-altered-yes-or-no/

Edited by MDM
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Most of what you would normally do in LR would not result in digital alteration unless you very drastically change the image (turning day to night for example). Black and white or toning conversions, merging to panorama or HDR are not considered to be digital alteration.

 

The following is a good summary by Regen from the thread that Matt refers to of what most photographers would regard as digitally altered or not:

 

If the customer could do it using the available programmes without materially changing the picture e.g. colour shift, brightness etc then its not digitally altered.

 

If its something the customer would not want e.g. dust spots then their removal is not digital alteration.

 

If removal would not materially alter the picture or change its general meaning as taken e.g. a small seagull in the sky which may be taken as a dust spot then its not digital alteration.

 

If it will materially effect the picture but make it more saleable e.g. dog poo on the pavement then its digitally altered as would be adding dog poo which was not there.

 

Adding any pixels whatsoever from another file is digital manipulation and should be declared as would be any fancy cloning.

 

Its just common sense really and many customers are not bothered as they buy the pic as seen unless its news of course.  If in doubt I would declare it as its only a tick box and lifes too short and the fees too low to agonise over.

 

None of the other agencies I supply even ask the question although they may contact me from time to time with a client specific question regarding the veracity of the file.

 

This is the link to the thread although some of the arguments have been deleted

 

http://discussion.alamy.com/index.php?/topic/6079-digitally-altered-yes-or-no/

Cheers MDM - very helpful.

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Thanks all, useful to know.

BW

John

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Adding any pixels whatsoever from another file is digital manipulation and should be declared as would be any fancy cloning.

 

 

A few potential exceptions here.

  • Combination of several images of same scene with differing focus to increase depth of field (focus stacking)
  • Combination of several images of same scene with differing exposure to increase dynamic range (HDR - providing it's not excessive)
  • Production of a panoramic by combining multiple images taken from same viewpoint
  • Removal of transient unwanted by combining two images of same scene (e.g. removal of lone pedestrian walking across scene, removal of flies on cow's nose) 

I wouldn't necessarily call any of those digitally altered. It's all a question of degree. Excessive HDR, or excessive scene distortion =  digitally altered.

Edited by M.Chapman
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Adding any pixels whatsoever from another file is digital manipulation and should be declared as would be any fancy cloning.

 

 

A few potential exceptions here.

  • Combination of several images of same scene with differing focus to increase depth of field (focus stacking)
  • Combination of several images of same scene with differing exposure to increase dynamic range (HDR - providing it's not excessive)
  • Production of a panoramic by combining multiple images taken from same viewpoint
  • Removal of transient unwanted by combining two images of same scene (e.g. removal of lone pedestrian walking across scene, removal of flies on cow's nose) 

I wouldn't necessarily call any of those digitally altered. It's all a question of degree. Excessive HDR, or excessive scene distortion =  digitally altered.

 

 

 

I agree and did mention pano merges and HDR merges at the top of my post before quoting Regen. I didn't include focus stacking as it can't be done in Lightroom as yet to my knowledge but I do agree that it doesn't qualify as digital alteration. Similarly with perspective correction - it's not DA. As you say, it's all about degree snd this could equally apply to major changes in brightness, contrast, saturation etc.

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I would (do) mark the combining of multiple images as digitally altered.  I don't submit many but panoramas and focus stacked shots are, to my mind, shots where it is reasonable to mark as digitally altered but explain in the description field exactly what has been done.  Let the customer decide whether they are acceptable.

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Adding any pixels whatsoever from another file is digital manipulation and should be declared as would be any fancy cloning.

 

 

A few potential exceptions here.

  • Combination of several images of same scene with differing focus to increase depth of field (focus stacking)
  • Combination of several images of same scene with differing exposure to increase dynamic range (HDR - providing it's not excessive)
  • Production of a panoramic by combining multiple images taken from same viewpoint
  • Removal of transient unwanted by combining two images of same scene (e.g. removal of lone pedestrian walking across scene, removal of flies on cow's nose) 

I wouldn't necessarily call any of those digitally altered. It's all a question of degree. Excessive HDR, or excessive scene distortion =  digitally altered.

 

 

 

I agree and did mention pano merges and HDR merges at the top of my post before quoting Regen. 

 

Oops, so you did. My apologies.

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Adding any pixels whatsoever from another file is digital manipulation and should be declared as would be any fancy cloning.

 

 

A few potential exceptions here.

  • Combination of several images of same scene with differing focus to increase depth of field (focus stacking)
  • Combination of several images of same scene with differing exposure to increase dynamic range (HDR - providing it's not excessive)
  • Production of a panoramic by combining multiple images taken from same viewpoint
  • Removal of transient unwanted by combining two images of same scene (e.g. removal of lone pedestrian walking across scene, removal of flies on cow's nose) 

I wouldn't necessarily call any of those digitally altered. It's all a question of degree. Excessive HDR, or excessive scene distortion =  digitally altered.

 

 

 

I agree and did mention pano merges and HDR merges at the top of my post before quoting Regen. 

 

Oops, so you did. My apologies.

 

 

No worries Mark.

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I would (do) mark the combining of multiple images as digitally altered.  I don't submit many but panoramas and focus stacked shots are, to my mind, shots where it is reasonable to mark as digitally altered but explain in the description field exactly what has been done.  Let the customer decide whether they are acceptable.

 

It's an interesting one this but I regard merged panoramas, focus stacking and normal HDR (i.e. dynamic range extension) as techniques that have been made practically possible by digital technology but are not digital alteration.  The reasoning here is that one is not materially altering the depiction of the scene itself but simply using digital technology to render images that would have been previously very difficult or virtually impossible to produce by tradional technology.

 

I do quite a lot of panoramas and I always make a note in the description field about how they were produced but I don't mark them as digitally altered. I've only recently been experimenting with focus stacking and have not uploaded any images here yet but intend to do the same when I do. I don't do HDR but don't consider it to be digital alteration any more than developing a high dynamic range single image to open up shadows and bring back highlights would be.

 

However, I think one should declare any of these techniques or anything else where there is doubt. For example, how would double exposures made in-camera be classified? This was perfectly possible in the days of film as was double exposing in the darkroom.

Edited by MDM
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Adding any pixels whatsoever from another file is digital manipulation and should be declared as would be any fancy cloning.

 

 

A few potential exceptions here.

  • Combination of several images of same scene with differing focus to increase depth of field (focus stacking)
  • Combination of several images of same scene with differing exposure to increase dynamic range (HDR - providing it's not excessive)
  • Production of a panoramic by combining multiple images taken from same viewpoint
  • Removal of transient unwanted by combining two images of same scene (e.g. removal of lone pedestrian walking across scene, removal of flies on cow's nose) 

I wouldn't necessarily call any of those digitally altered. It's all a question of degree. Excessive HDR, or excessive scene distortion =  digitally altered.

 

Thanks for that. Excessive HDR = digitally altered, useful to know. Do you think there is less or more of a market for 'digitally altered' content?

BW, John

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Do you think there is less or more of a market for 'digitally altered' content?

 

You've touched on an interesting point, and one that is the genesis of some incredible contortions of logic from some --and before we go any further, I'm not talking about any of the discussion or discussors involved in this thread thus far  :) .

 

It does seem that the degree some go to to rationalise why a particular process should NOT be marked as digitally altered is borne of a fear that an image so marked will somehow be less marketable. They may be right of course, but I for one am not convinced and have not seen any real argument for why a digitally altered image would be seen as somehow less desirable for buyers. Especially where, as some above have mentioned, a note is included in the description describing exactly what process has been applied to the image. Indeed, in some rather lucrative markets (book covers for example), digital alteration is almost de rigueur.

 

dd

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I asked a woman photographer about her experience with digital altering..."Not since high school."

 

denden

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