Back Lanes of Mysore II

Back Lanes of Mysore II


In Victorian England there were two apposing watercolour societies, the one that allowed the use of body colour……opaque white….. and the other, perhaps more purist group, that decreed that the ‘proper’ watercolour technique should only be built up from transparent layers of paint. To me it doesn’t matter which technique you use, it’s the end result that matters more.

Photography had similarly apposing viewpoints and the rhetoric was full of vitriol. At this distance in time we can only stand in awe at those early photographers who used multiple exposures to construct their images and we hold up the work of more recent photographers such as Ansel Adams for his painstaking dark room editing.

I have never presented one of my photograph straight out of the camera and yet still I am challenged in exhibitions by photographers who have a camera slung around their necks with a zoom lens that reaches to their knees who fiercely dismiss any photo with the merest hint of post processing. Now I’m not getting at those who use long lenses, in fact, I would dearly love to own one, but there must be status in having a big one; status in only ever working in black and white, status in claiming that you never edit your pictures.

If  being true to yourself means doing the above, good for you.

If using any means at your disposal to create the sort of photography you like is your modus operandi, that’s your choice……and that’s my choice. I admire those who have achieved first rate work with minimal editing but it irritates me to hell when they claim that their approach is more honest and more truthful.

Ah well, it’s true, my pictures are all lies and I’m a dishonest photographer, but so was Ansel, and Walker Evans, and Roger Fenton, and Camille Silvy, and countless others……

…… Oh, and my camera lies too….. but I forgive it.



10 thoughts on “Back Lanes of Mysore II

  1. I have written pretty much the same thing on my blog. The out of camera folks have no idea what processing their camera does let alone have any familiarity with Ansel Adams.

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