I'll pass on RAW, except for Sushi!

Discussion in 'Casual Photo Conversations' started by Sandy Vongries, May 4, 2017.

  1. Ed, while I understand your main point and respect the way you work and think, I'd question how clear it is that Rembrandt was painting over either mistakes or "mistakes." I don't paint, but I've lived with painters and watched many such artists at work. The painting over seems often to be part of a process, a building up of depth on the canvas and a way to allow under colors to influence over colors. Just like, as I've said above in this thread about RAW usage, post processing is simply part of a process for me and not something I use to cover over or deal with mistakes (even though it can be used that way). "Mistake" is a term of judgment that I don't think necessarily applies to artistic process. "Mistake" implies something is wrong, which means something else is right. I don't think art is about right and wrong.

    I think of art as living, so in that sense the composer who revisits a passage and changes it, whether before or after publication, is allowing his art to grow. This is how I think of the painter who covers over a portion of his painting. Growing and changing does not imply the previous state was a mistake. The composer and painter may not have made mistakes the first time. They may simply see and hear differently now or have different needs or desires now.

    As for dissatisfaction driving art and invention. Sure! Good point. I'll wager that art and invention also drive dissatisfaction. Art is not always the passive partner . . .
  2. Sandy Vongries

    Sandy Vongries Moderator Staff Member

    Dissatisfaction, staying "hungry" as an "artist", a sure yes. Absolutism, not so much!
  3. Double Plus Good on that!
  4. HoofArted

    HoofArted SE Ohio

    I'm also mainly a JPEG'er but am still in the learning stages. I occasionally shoot raw/jpeg so I can play around post processing the raw files and attempt to learn more about pp. On the other hand I make no money from my pictures and am pretty much happy with what I turn out, so the only reason I've been experimenting with the raw files is for my own desire to turn a picture into a photograph.

    If I miss a shot it's not a big deal. A picture of, say, a Cardinal in my Ohio back yard is indistinguishable from a picture of a Cardinal in Wyoming, and if I miss a shot the bird is still there or will certainly be back tomorrow. If I were taking lots and lots of pictures of landscape, sunsets and things along that line it would obviously be a horse of a different color (sorry).

    We're not all on the same level, either. Some are into the meat and potatoes of photography while others are still feasting on the milk. I'm kinda in the baby food stage.

    I enjoyed this thread.
  5. A mistake in painting is a whole different bowl of cornflakes from a mistake in photography.
  6. I
    Is that a technical mistake, or an artistic? In my professional creative process as an architect I frequently go through many iterations before I arrive at a final solution, one that is frequently (if not always) a collection of compromises seeking to find the most effective balance. I don't count the first iterations as mistakes, but only as "process". I approach my photography the same way, and working in RAW provides the widest latitude in developing the desired outcome. I also shoot in JPEG, frequently, for specific and intentional reasons, including to simplify my life and process, much like Sandy. The best portrait I have yet made was captured as a JPEG, but there are many, many of my landscapes that required capture in RAW and substantial pp to render my vision. I most often shoot in both RAW and JPEG, just to see if I can improve on the JPEG, at least as a learning process if nothing more.
  7. Wow! Quite a discussion.

    I shoot RAW, for all the reasons enumerated and I also expose in anticipation of RAW conversion to JPG, which generally means that I "Expose To The Right", which would produce a washed out JPG, if not corrected. Comparing file sized between "proper exposure for JPG" and ETR files, the ETR files are considerable larger, containing much more data.

    However, forgetting all of that, everyone should realize that the in-camera JPG is the result of a committee of Japanese engineers, deciding which compromises to make in the conversion from RAW to JPG, in-camera. If someone is happy with that, then they should have at it. Yes, potential is left on the table, but so long as that's considered, then it's a legitimate way to go.
  8. In-camera JPEG is simply the in-camera RAW file, converted to a JPEG, using compromises determined by a committee of Japanese engineers. EVERY JPEG is a compromise. We can use grey cards and color cards to try to get very close, but there will still be compromises vs. what our eyes see.
    sjmurray and DavidTriplett like this.
  9. "Growing and changing does not imply the previous state was a mistake. The composer and painter may not have made mistakes the first time. They may simply see and hear differently now or have different needs or desires now:.Fred

    True, photographers will also do the same when editing photographs. However mistakes do happen, and the vision can change....and the more flexible the palate helps/enables these changes to happen. .

    To my mind photography is as much about editing as artistic impression.
  10. For years I shot in jpeg but moved over initially to RAW + jpeg and then eventually to just RAW. The other day I revisted some of my images from about 8 years back and was disappointed I had no RAW images to work with. Processing the jpeg's was far inferior to working with RAW. I now wish i had kept dual versions of all My older photos. At the time I was concerned with storage space I wish I hadnt been,
    Charles_Webster and HoofArted like this.
  11. HoofArted

    HoofArted SE Ohio

    Good points.
  12. This thread goes on so I will dip my oar. I am convinced about the merits of RAW and its ability to stretch the digital medium. Shooting RAW offers more opportunity for post play. I do as much fore play as ever. I will stick to JPEG for now ( no vows no vows). (Same reason, by rough analogy, I can manage with MP3 and AAC audio files vs WAV. though I love digital as a storage medium vs vinyl). I am satisfied- or comfortable- with what I see via the JPEG as adjusted and tweaked a wee bit, and really please only myself, I know, I know, small ambitions. I do try to get the "flavor" right as I look in the finder. I have revisited images shot years ago, and can juice them up. If I cannot squeeze more in five minutes, I am out of here. Either naivite/ or stubbornness, who is to say. Though I am thinking of buying a variable density ND filter. Likely I may change my mind one day. But I doubt it.
  13. I am not defending raw processing but I use it. As digital came out in 2002 I was leaving the wedding business which I shot all with film. I lost a lot of pictures with film because it was too hard to timely fix errors when mass processing for over five hundred pictures a wedding. Since I left the wedding business I have continued shoot a lot of sports including swimming. In the thousands of pictures I have taken in these endeavors I have saved a lot of decent pictures that would be valuable to individual swimmers because of the flexibility in using raw processing. Shooting indoor swim meets is difficult because of mixed color temperatures, bad lighting and the need at times for high ISOs. When I do a meet can load all raw pictures into Lightroom and make global or group changes to account for color temperature and exposure differences etc. I can then do cropping and any other changes I was to make. I can ready a meet inLightroom for publication and printing in a couple of hours. The main thing is that I can save some good pictures. For me raw processing is a valuable asset as I am trying to make individual swimmers happy. I am not doing this for art although I get personal satisfaction from it. I am doing this to make swimmers pleased with the product. Raw is very helpful n bringing pictures up to a satisfactory standard for use.

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