All categories wining images are not Photography yet digitally edited to the point of surreal. Photographers can not compete with that!

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Monitor Submissions Better. If you look at every category the top "Photos" are digitally edited to a point of surreal. A photographer as myself, who attemps to take the best photograph instead of heavy edits can not compete with digital edits. Its not right for a photography site. They are miss categorized and looks like it has been this way for years.
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Brooke Simpson

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  • Over it!

Posted 6 years ago

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Bridgette Rodriguez

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I agree, but this topic and suggestion was raised before and Pixoto has not changed. They allow heavy editing on photos as long as it doesn't look like "digital art".

You can find their rules on editing at http://blog.pixoto.com/category-descr... at the bottom, where it says, "Photography Photoshop/Post Processing Rules...
In an effort to find the best, and most striking imagery, extensive use of Photoshop or other post processing techniques is allowed in all categories. However images that look like “digital art” rather than photography should be categorized as such."

Also, they define Digital Art as "Digital Art – This includes photo montages, fantasy scenes, constructed landscapes, artificial scenes and any photo compilation that is surreal or unreal. If it isn’t even trying to look real – put it here. IMPORTANT: all components must be your creations. NO STOCK PHOTOS. Subcategories: People; Places; Things; Abstract; Animals"

Good luck with your suggestion.
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Renos Hadjikyriacou

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Since all users right here, or at least a big majority of them, are supposed to be photographers it should be in their hands to regulate this. When they vote in several duels, all they have to do is to give there vote to the NON digitally edited image. Only we photographers can stop this state!
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Bridgette Rodriguez

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And that is exactly what I do, but I don't think many others do.
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Renos Hadjikyriacou

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Unfortunately not Bridgette, otherwise we wouldnt have this problem. ;-)
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Janet Rose

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i certainly vote with my non digital head on
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Lisa Hendrix

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I refuse to vote for these type of images. I like images that capture something real, not something I could see as an illustration in a children's book. I do have Lightroom and I use it, but I don't over process my shots. I want them to look like "real" life. I have photoshop but have never used it. And to be honest I get bored trying to learn how to use it!
(Edited)
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Brooke Simpson

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Thank you! That is where the frustration comes in. For example I mostly take photos of flowers. I can not compete with the glowing flowers that are at the top...lol They are surreal and still in the category of flowers where to me they should be under digital art. I would be able to compete with them if I heavily edited my photos but that is not what I strive to do when I go out and shoot.
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Brooke Simpson

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I have been watching the voting thing too. One I posted yesterday flew up to 650 and then today lost just about every single dual even to some pretty bad photos. now down to 616. http://www.pixoto.com/images-photogra... Almost like revenge. Sadly the ones who do it keep doing it because they are allowed to keep posting them because nothing is done about it and stay at the top. I wonder how many people leave for this reason.
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redwar

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Brook,

The way this is set up is simple. Have images you took 10 years ago, look for the same work moving up and then flood this site with exactly the same types of images.

Honestly, this site is a visual poker game and the players who have the "track record" images trump today's fresh new stuff. But do you blame them?

I don't. Many of these "photographers" are retired folks making literally millions of dollars per year. The accomplish this by working the technical information required to take an image, research locations where these images are, take the images and ten run them through their presets in both lightroom and Photoshop to enhance the images they take.

And they have to be better than life.

They run around in 500,000 motor homes, go to all the art shows and sell one image for more than you and I make in a year in one day.

Do you think this kind of clout is going to allow you to erode their turf?

Try submitting to shutterbug, travel mags or for that matter any trade or commercial publications out on the market today. They will come back to you as fast as you submit them.

Truth is, the market is flooded is the "Photoshop" frenzy.

I took 100 images yesterday. Posted them here. During the time I was out taking them, two hours, I did not see one professional photographer or journalist.

Now either this was a rare occurrence or the images of the subjects I was taking have been so over worked and overdone, the stock images of the same subjects have been taken and cataloged.

Saw the same thing with the outdoors images I took depicting a wide assortment of cloud formations rolling over the mountains. No professional photographers were seen taking images.

I guess if you take one image, you've taken them all.
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James Michael

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I have looked at your photos and they are really good but you are probably at the limits what your COOLPIX L310 can do compared to a DSLR you are at a major disadvantage , you don't have manual focus you don't have full manual control over the exposure , you can't go and buy a dedicated macro lens and you have a compact sensor which limits what detail it can capture in the first place ,

In short before you even get to editing your pics your hardware just can't compete even with a basic DSLR with a APC sensor let alone a full frame 24mp or 36 mp camera with a macro lens on it . maybe what pixoto needs is category based on camera type a compact like yours , a APC DSLR and a full frame DSLR with your camera , you are competing in F1 race will a family car

there is also a photographic method known as focus stacking i think a lot of the shots are using this.For this you need a DSLR this method is similar to HDR but done with different images with different focus points combined to make one image with great death of field your camera would find this nearly impossible ,
so what I am saying is close focus / macro is not what this camera is good at

yes they are editing there photos to make them even better but if the detail just in bot there you can not create it unless you go for full fledged digital art and that does not require a camera at all
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Brooke Simpson

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I know. My camera is a $100 cheapie as it is all I can afford. I can not imagine what I would be able to do with a good camera! I do have some of the focal control with this camera. I play with it tons. Lenses I can not change. But im crazy and pic up lenses that are way bigger and hold them over my lens...lol

If you go to the flower section of the Leaderboard it is the same photos over and over again to push people out. And most of the single flowers have a glowing center done from editing. Between that and the overused photos of a rose with water drops etc it is hopeless...ugg.

Just whining.
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Lenore

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Art is subjective. Of course you can compete -- if people like your photos, they will vote for them. If people don't like them, they won't vote. If you don't like a photo, don't vote for it. Plain and simple. Everyone has different tastes and styles. It's all photography.

If you want to be a purist, they buy a film camera and set up a darkroom. Digital cameras are all little computers and you can alter many settings RIGHT IN YOUR CAMERA to obtain many different styles and effects. The effects on the photos we see can have absolutely nothing to do with post-processing and software.

Give it a try. Alter the saturation levels on your camera and then take some photos.

It's all a matter of opinion. Pixoto does, and should, cater to all photographers, of every style. Like I said, if you don't like a photo, don't vote for it. Simple.
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Brooke Simpson

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In pixoto's guidelines though if it is post processed to the point of surreal it belongs under digital art and not the photography section. These are the photos I am talking about. The flowers with glowing centers or fake water drops with reflections of other flowers. I could certainly do this to my photos to get to the top but then it would not be a photograph it would be digital art derived from a photograph.
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ChrisGR

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Brooke Simpson, if you feel they should be under Digital Art then hit the Report button under each photo, use the drop down category of Wrong Category, and then in the "comments" put something like "Appears to belong in Digital Art". Pixoto will eventually review the photos, but they don't get back to anyone who reports. You just have to keep checking the photos in a week or two to see if their category changed. Or, in a separate and new post, you can start a new thread as a PROBLEM and then give the links to all the photos you feel should be in Digital Art and probably Jasenka will get back to you as I have seen her do with some posts here.
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Lenore

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What's wrong with the reflections in the water drops? It's legit macro photography.

Some of this stuff is beautiful.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetec...
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Brooke Simpson

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Im talking the fake water drops that are added where each water drop has he exact same reflection even it it is put in a place where it would not have the reflection that it does.
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RJ Photographics

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sorry people its no reflection of water drops its refraction , same physics that makes your lens work :0)
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Michael Krivoshey

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its not about a pixoto or other websites ... its about people ... last 10 years people are accustomed to images processed in Photoshop and can not live without them

So in most cases all other photos are losing them even if they are made well
add from myself - we can not compare the photo made with compact camera and full frame monster with a lens from Carl Zeiss
Should be a mechanism of selection and awarding based on the class of camera (best image in compact camera, DSLR and a Full Frame)
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Lenore

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You can give a bad photographer the best camera in the world and they will still take bad photographs. You can give a good photographer a crappy compact camera or a cell phone and they will still take great photographs.
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RJ Photographics

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Brooke has a good eye but a basic camera I couldn't do better with what she has ,
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Brooke Simpson

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Thanks!
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Jasenka, Official Rep

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Hello, please check category description page: http://blog.pixoto.com/category-descr...

"Photography Photoshop/Post Processing Rules

In an effort to find the best, and most striking imagery, extensive use of Photoshop or other post processing techniques is allowed in all categories. However images that look like “digital art” rather than photography should be categorized as such."

I hope this helps.
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Bridgette Rodriguez

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Jasenka, her points within her post thread, in my opinion, are well taken. So, I will offer it as a suggestion in a separate post at the end of today, since I will be off the computer for this morning.)

It is unfair to have Image Duals in categories between photographers who have (and can only afford to pay for) lower end cameras and simpler/minimal editing programs and those who have higher end cameras and Photoshop and other types of sophisticated editing programs. That is like holding a 10 mile road race between a Ferrari and a Fiat! (I think we know who will win that one providing their equipment is in proper working order!)
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Renos Hadjikyriacou

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Pixoto does not have any restrictions which Kameras are necessary to take the submited photos and thats good so!
It is regrettable when some people can not afford better equipment, but maybe they just dont want to afford it.
And a better equipment does not automatically mean that you become a better photographer.
When you can afford the best casserole dishes, this does not make you to a five-star chef cook!!
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Tim Hall

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Well said Renos!

I'm 60 years old, I started taking pics when I was a kid in the 1960s with a plastic kodak Instamatic camera that was FREE if you bought a roll of film. It had a plastic lens and produced a tiny 24mm negative and a 3 inch square print!

I have recently scanned some of those 40+ year old pics I took with that free plastic camera to digital and uploaded them to Pixoto and they are winning awards and challenge contests, and beating a few pics taken with modern large format and full frame sensor cameras along the way.

I can't afford Photoshop and I don't have lightroom, only Windows 7. Right now I have an older Nikon upper end entry level camera, I learned a lot about what light to shoot in with my free plastic kodak because it only had one shutter speed and one f/stop. I figured out I could change exposure values by loading different speed/ISO film. I studied basic composition rules and applied them to my free plastic camera photos as well. And 40 years later they are winning a few awards here on Pixoto...(who'da thunkit)

In other words if you are not learning how to get the most out of what you have now, you won't know how to get the most out of what you get next either.
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Brooke Simpson

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So here is a great example...http://www.pixoto.com/images-photogra...

Absolutely beautiful piece of art and of coarse people are going to vote on it, it is stunning. But it is in the wrong category. It belongs in Digital art not a single flower because it is digitally altered to make it to this point the unaltered photo would not look like this with any camera and being minimally processed as the rules say. But because it is so beautiful people do not realize and automatically click on it. They do not think ok this is the wrong category. They vote it because it is gorgeous. And the person who did it will continue to put it there because they get to the top with them and get away with it.
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Jasenka, Official Rep

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Brooke, I'm sorry but as explained in category description page, we do not limit in rules that photos should be minimally processed (if it say somewhere please let me know where so we can change it), we allow extensive use of post processing techniques in all categories.
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Brooke Simpson

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It says that it is a photography contest not a post-processing contest website. Falsely advertised!
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Brooke Simpson

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The problem is that the photos that are being processed are not being categorized as digital and being allowed to stay in the photography categories with out penalty. This will never allow a photographer to win off of photography.
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Tim Hall

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Brooke...You mentioned that "photographers" can't compete with folks who post process their images. Just for clarification, are you saying that folks who take pictures with cameras and then use software to process their final images are not "photographers"?
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Brooke Simpson

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There is a definite difference between a photographer. Once they edit the photo beyond to the point of surreal it is no longer a photograph and it is digital art. There are to totally different categories for that. I am entering photo contests not digital art contests. I am not an editor. Big difference.
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Tim Hall

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If you have ever snapped a pic after choosing a wide aperture your depth of field was shallow causing the background to be blurry, right? I checked out your Pixoto images and you are very skilled and talented! But your backgrounds are blurred out, those backgrounds are not blurry in real life, Your choice to "edit" your depth of focus is causing your backgrounds to appear so out of focus they look surreal.

What's the difference between you editing your images with your camera's internal processor, or someone else editing their images with a computer's internal processor? Either way you are editing your images. You snap a shutter you are an editor.

There is no such thing as an unedited image. Computers and digital cameras are both nothing but image editors! That is the only thing they do.

Change your shutter speed and you are editing your image, change your f/stop and you are editing your image. Change ISO, or your white balance, then you are editing the reality of your image. Your camera's sunset mode, vivid mode, night mode, even manual mode, etc, etc, etc are all examples of editing your image. If you use a digital camera you are an image editor.

Maybe the only possible unedited photos I've ever seen are most likely the ones taken at the Department of Motor Vehicles that end up on your driver's licence, and who wants a Pixoto profile full of driver licence pictures?
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Brooke Simpson

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What I am talking about is if you look at the leaderboard for flowers. The top are all clearly post edited and heavily. Flowers do not glow from the center. On some of them you can see where they painted on the yellow. It is the surreal that I am talking about and also per pixotos own words in their categories if it is surreal it does not beling in categories other than digital art.

Might be entertaining to see a contest of DL pictures. Especially if you see what I did in mine...;)
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Brooke Simpson

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So get this now that I said something my photos are being re-categorized by pixoto. I am losing my points and having to start over on them. Not right Pixoto..not right. I have a Fern pic that was under other plants and it was moved to trees and bushes it is neither. Loosing all of the points on it. Not only that I sat here for hours and days on end earning points voting on photos for you to be petty? Not right!
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Bridgette Rodriguez

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If you could upgrade your camera to something you would like to have next (but not too expensive) what camera and lens would you want?
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Brooke Simpson

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Oh boy. I have not even thought about it since it has never been a reality. I love nature macro since, I can usually find some where to access it and would for sure need to be something that takes good night photos. I love the night but this camera is horrible for the night.
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Bridgette Rodriguez

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I will contact you at your Babbling Brooke Photography website email. Do you receive email there (http://www.babblingbrookephotography....)? (I've seen your photography and would like to help you purchase a new camera.)
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Brooke Simpson

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That is the sweetest thing that I have ever heard. Made me cry. I cant let you do that though. You are an amazing person to even think that thought!
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Bridgette Rodriguez

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Ok, I will send you a message through your Facebook website messaging, in case you change your mind, as I have a Facebook account, but not a smugmug account and can't just message you on smugmug. I tried to message you at smugmug but I have to signup to do it so I messaged you on Facebook instead.
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RJ Photographics

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someone here had to complain about ( report ) about you pics it would seem petty some people in here don't post pics they just report the real photographers for sometimes small or vague infringements of rules
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redwar

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Brooke,

You are a fine photographer. So, what I'm about to say should be taken with a grain of salt.

Photography is 10 percent inspiration and 90 percent perspiration. Granted some people here overuse Photoshop -- in fact over use it. But the bottom line is they enhance their work with Photoshop.

I love lightroom. It gives me the ability to "work" my images in such a way that they come closer to my vision of what I saw.

But then, I used to do the same in a darkroom. No one complained and my images got published.

But I'm not adding things to my images that weren't there just to win contests or make my images so insanely obvious that they have been post production Photoshopped or Lightroomed to death..

However some are and their work -- while needing a home -- have no place competing with images that are "straight out of the camera".
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Shooting America

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Welcome to the digital age! Since the birth of the digital camera, and the "digital darkroom", photography has become more popular than ever. Compounded by the cellphones now being able to take pictures, everybody effectively has a camera wherever they go.

I remember the expense that go with every shot, the 36 shot rolls, wait for your images to develop and I say good riddance! I'm a creature of instant gratification! Presently I can shoot thousands of photos as much as my battery and my memory card take me.

Today, DSLR's, Mirrorless and Micro-Four-Thirds can "process" the image for you. You have black and white settings, or vivid if you want more saturated colors shooting JPEGS. Or if you're a control freak, shoot RAW and digitally manipulate the pixels yourself to your liking.

The bottom line is you can't produce an image without any post-processing.

How much post-processing depends on the photographer. It could just be a simple crop, and sliding up the saturation, or the whole HDR shebang!! I do both depending on the shot I see on my RAW file. And that makes us artists (in my humble opinion).

To manipulate an image into something so different, surreal and dreamlike is a gift of the digital age! This is what the art of modern photography had become and might as well embrace it and rid ourselves of the notion that photographs had to be realistic because photos are never realistic in the first place.

P. S.:

Photographs used to be just black and white and our eyes never see in black and white.
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Lenore

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Really? If you were running a stock photo site, where you want ad agencies etc to find wonderful, high-quality shots to use in their business, you would expect your clients to search for Flowers in categories other than Flowers? Really? That's nuts.

I have been in the publishing industry for a long, long time and, even now, I occasionally have need for stock images for shots that I don't have in my personal portfolio -- most recently, a few months ago, I needed dinner party images. If I need flower shots for a gardening story and chose to purchase them from Pixoto, guess which category I would choose to search through? Guess. (Hint: It bloody well wouldn't be in Novices or Mobile Devices.)

This conversation is going to go nowhere, as it always has every time this topic has come up in this forum (I've been here since 2013 and seen this one run its course many times). Pixoto encourages post-processing -- that is its philosophy. For a tiny handful of users to expect a site to change to satisfy them when there are thousands of users who are not in here complaining speaks to an incredibly sad sense of entitlement.
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Bridgette Rodriguez

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Lenore, I will get back to you later tonight. As noted above, I am on the road and only have my cell and limited internet.
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Brooke Simpson

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The edited flowers that are surreal looking should still be surchable as a flower but yet as digital art. Which goes back to my original point that the person that goes out and takes a photo of a flower can not compete with the person who goes out and takes a photo of a flower and then turns it into a piece of digital art by making the center of it glow. The glowing flower should no longer be considered a photo and instead an image. I am not saying exculed them. I am saying thought that it needs to be be better monitored so that the people submitting to the photo contest have a shot winning the photo contest based on their photo and not editing abilities. I think those images are amazing but it is not something that anyone could shoot with a camera.

I do not run expensive software to edit my photos and I do everything that I can to take the best photo possible while out shooting. This is no matter what equiptment. Thousands of photos that I take do not make it to photo contests because I judge myself and they are not worthy. Could I take one of my sub par photos and edit it to the point of surreal and then enter it? Yes...to me it is not then a photo and it is not what I strive to do. I am a photographer not an editor. As a photography contest site I expect to be entering photography contest not editing contests and if you look at every single category the top spots belong to images not photographs. They are heavily edited to win. There is a big difference.
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Lenore

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Brooke, "editing ability" has always been a crucial element of photography. I'm not sure you understand that. In the film days, photos had to be processed in a darkroom -- image editing is just the digital version.

Ansel Adams is widely regarded -- and rightly so -- as one of the great photographers. He would spend a week or so in his darkroom, working on just one photo -- dodging and burning, etc, to get the photo to just where he wanted it. He would erase elements he didn't like. The Ansel Adams photographs we all love are heavily edited. By the standards you propose, his landscape photographs -- all true classics -- could not be in the Landscape Category here.
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Johnny Thomas

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Whatever Ansel Adams used doesn't even begin to compare with today's software programs and what they offer as it relates to not only to correcting deficient photography, but, more importantly, greatly altering them.
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Shooting America

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Brooke, if you're fairly new, I think you should regard Pixoto as a learning tool (though all of us don't need to stop learning) and not think about not being able to compete "because you don't have an expensive camera" or "you don't post-process".

Anyway,you can get a fairly decent camera that can let you compete competitively for around $400. There are Nikon and Canon models around this price and they're pretty good. There's the Nikon D5000 and D5300 for example and the Sony A6000 (judged by some quarters as the best camera of last year) that can fetch just around $500. And these can be bought cheaper if you buy used on some sites.

With regards to software, if you bought Nikon, you'll get in the package the View NX and the Capture NX softwares. But you have to buy the Capture NX later after a trial period of some a month or two. It goes for about $175.

I'm just trying to say is just enjoy the site and take it one at a time- a new camera here, a tripod there or maybe a flash. In the meantime just submit whatever you can come up for now and most importantly, don't forget to enjoy the site (though it could be trying sometime, LOL!).
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Brooke Simpson

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I understand and to you that is cheap to me like a million dollars...lol I am not complaining about my equiptment. To me I do better than most would with a $100 camera. Some day I will own better equipment. Like I said I am just thankful to have a camera. I have had 16 surgeries through out life so owing any camera is huge to me. As long as I can go out and see the beauty in this world no matter how big or small. I just want my photos to have a shot against other photos and not digital images. I can not get a good gauge on how I am doing even because it is not photos that I am judged against. I am not even saying that mine are better than other photos. There are some that I look at and go oh wow!!! What a great photo!!! But they do not have a shot at winning because a digitally edited image will win it every time.
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Shooting America

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Then, do as much as you can with what you have. Not everybody here has the state of the art camera equipment. But they make do, but the most important thing is to enjoy the art of photography. Don't get too hang up with competing with the big guns. Some of them have sophisticated studio equipment and learned so many techniques through the years.

And again, all photos are post-processed. Even the ones you had shot. Canon just processed it for you.
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Bridgette Rodriguez

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I agree.
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RJ Photographics

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I have found a good example for you Brooke this shot is number one in the flowers in the wild today first of all this" flower in the wild" someone has taken a spray bottle to it and it look a bit like studio lighting from the front as well a mask layer showing bokeh ball with rear lighting . a really great shot but not flowers in the wild . though from what I can see all the other entries are flowers in the wild . With all the post processing it is very good digital art but not flower in the wild
http://www.pixoto.com/images-photogra...
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Brooke Simpson

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See exactly what I am talking about. Is that image wonderful? For sure! It is Amazing. Totally wrong category but people will vote on it because it is stunning! This is something that Pixoto needs to fix. Or it will chase the people out who are trying to be photographers and show the beauty in the world and not creat something that is surreal.
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Robert Rod

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Good example.
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Robert Rod

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I agree that those who use Photoshop and similar programs to extensively process and/or alter their photos (including to alter them in ways the lady spoke of in one of her posts about a flower) should be put either in a different category than photos that are natural and/or minimally processed for dual purposes, or there should be a different category for natural and/or minimally processed photography for image duals purposes so that duals will be amongst those type of photos.
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redwar

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Okay, here's an example of an image seen with the eye but taken with a cell phone.



After downloading a free copy of Lightroom, here's the Lightroom version:


.
What's the point?

The subject is a good one. But the image is not clear enough, There are no real sharp details and it was taken with the light at a 45 degree angle.
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Bridgette Rodriguez

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Lenore, as it relates to some of your comments under this thread,

1. I will provide my reasons for some of my comments in agreement with some of Brooke Simpson's in a separate post/Suggestion I will make to Pixoto.

2. As is apparent at Pixoto and other (true) stock photo sites, their sites offer SEVERAL ways for people and businesses to find photos on their site: By Category and by using their website's Search engine. So your comment about finding great photos of flowers by looking only at the Flower category in Pixoto is inaccurate—people/businesses can and will find photos (and worthy photos) of flowers within Pixoto not only by looking at Pixoto's Flower category, but also other categories where they are properly found. (e.g., B&W, uncategorized, Instagram and Mobile.) And, they can best find the FULL range of available flower photos by searching the word “flower” or “flowers” in each website's Search engine. (And with Pixoto, they will even find flowers in categories they shouldn't be in – like Nature Up Close. LOL)

3. The Get Satisfaction/Pixoto community is for customers/members and potential customers/members to connect with Pixoto and provide their questions, feedback/comments, problems, and suggestions. And, of course, they have every right (entitlement) to provide their questions, problems, comments and suggestions relating to ISSUES they believe negatively impact Pixoto and its members.

4. There are no customer/member survey results from Pixoto shedding light on how they feel about extensively processed/edited photos going up against minimally processed/edited photos. So, based on this and especially when understanding 3., immediately above, your comment “...For a tiny handful of users to expect a site to change to satisfy them when there are thousands of users who are not in here complaining speaks to an incredibly sad sense of entitlement...” has no basis in fact.

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