How far are you willing to go to create a photograph?
How far is too far?
For my landscapes, the more intimate portraits in particular, I have no problem doing a little light “landscaping” to clean up the composition. Without hesitation I’ll remove a piece of dead wood from a stream, and I even keep a couple of small bungy cords in my bag to hold errant branches out of the way.
But what about adding something to the scene that wasn’t there in the first place?
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Take a good long look at these two photographs, what do you think? Personally, I like them both. But then again, I’m kind of biased aren’t I?
Ok, now let’s assume that you like them, maybe you even really really like them.
Now, what if I told you that in one of them the scene was staged, and the other is just as I found it.
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In one of these images the red maple leaf, or leaves so as not to give any clues as to which is the “staged” scene, was placed where you see it. In the other I was lucky enough to find the leaf, or leaves(again, no clues), as you see it/them.
Tell me, do you enjoy either one, or both, any less knowing one of them was staged?
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What have you added or removed from a scene to create a photograph?
Would you add or remove anything?
(In case you’re wondering which image has the added props, and which is the way I came upon it, that’ll remain my little secret 😉 )