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Life is pretty hectic at the moment and I’m struggling to find time for any photography. Fortunately I was able to squeeze in an hour or so last weekend to take my camera for a walk – most people take their dogs! It was too late in the day for any decent light and landscape shots so I was scouting out potential locations and looking for ‘smaller’ images when I found this lovely old tractor. Hmmm – “lovely old tractor” …… that makes me sound a bit nerdy – still, I think there is a touch of ‘nerd’ in most of us 🙂 As soon as I saw it, it struck me that it’s the kind of thing you see on greetings cards so I decided to present it that way. It’s another HDR, processed to give it a slightly watercolour effect and a wash out border to help with the look.

That leads me nicely on to something I’ve been musing over for a while. There’s the whole debate about ‘cheating’ with digital manipulation and what constitutes a ‘proper’ photo rather than a ‘cheat’. However, that discussion goes a lot further – what happens when the digital manipulation is so extreme that the finished image bears little resemblance to the original subject? Is that cheating or is that art? Maybe that’s considered as cheating at art! Perhaps the big question is: what is photography and what is art? I think that perhaps the whole cheating debate is a battle being fought on two fronts, with traditional photographers on one front and traditional artists on the other, with both factions preferring to see themselves as somehow ‘apart’ from the mass of ‘happy snappers’ in the middle. Many people are exactly that and their cameras simply allow them to print their memories, but for many the photograph is only one step of many in their creative process. Perhaps the world of art needs to be brought up to date – and I don’t mean by pickling dead animals and tearing blank canvases! No – I mean by the inclusion of ‘photographic art’ as an accepted genre. Will this post set the cat amongst the pigeons?! Let me know what you think.

 (All images are copyright to Noeline Smith)

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