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01-30-2013, 03:08 PM   #1
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Photo Posting Etiquette

Hello! Just wondering if people tend to post raw photos or edited photos. Basically, just wondering if it is looked down upon to post photos that you have edited. Thanks!

01-30-2013, 03:17 PM - 1 Like   #2
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No shortage of edited photos posted here, including many highly processed ones. PP or SOOC, your choice, and in general there's no expectation that you indicate which, although PP details are certainly of interest to many readers. Welcome to the forums!
01-30-2013, 03:18 PM - 1 Like   #3
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RAW (the format) should generally always be processed.
JPG photos have some processing already applied in camera.

But generally, process the photos how you like unless there is some reason you shouldn't.

A photojournalist, for example, shooting pictures for a newspaper/etc., might be asked not to process photos to prevent editorializing or otherwise misrepresenting something that is presented as "truth". For example, in the following link you can see the original OJ Simpson photo run by Newsweek, and the edited Bad OJ version run by Time. The edited one makes Time look like idiots, so to avoid this many publications don't allow retouching.
O.J.‘s Darkened Mug Shot

If you are shooting test charts, you probably shouldn't edit the photos much.

But I think most people do all sorts of editing, from basic touchups to heavy duty.
01-30-2013, 03:29 PM   #4
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Aegon, Thank you for the clarification on RAW vs JPG. I am new to everything photography especially terminology
. So, just for my own knowledge, I should have said processed vs. not processed is that correct? Thanks!

01-30-2013, 03:46 PM   #5
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RAW files are too large to post anyway, although it's possible to extract the JPEG preview that is embedded in every RAW file and post that. Also, if you say "unprocessed" you can usually count on someone piping up that any JPEG image is, by definition, processed, by the camera if not deliberately by the user. SOOC, for straight-out-of-camera, is a pretty common way of describing minimal processing.

As Aegon points out, certain types of photography have very particular ethics as to processing. Here on the forums it's pretty much liberty hall. By way of exception, any non-standard manipulation of a shot that is journalistic or scientific in nature (purporting to record an event of general significance or newsworthiness) should be clearly stated. Wildlife shots are a bit of an in-between area IMO. I'm sure there are other cases worth discussing too.

All that said, for the vast majority of shots there's nothing to worry about.
01-30-2013, 03:50 PM   #6
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I just use the terms process/processed because a lot of others around here use the same terms. I think people know what you mean, however you say it. Many people say "post processing" or "Post Processed" or just "PP" for either. An unedited photo might be called "no PP". Or you might see "light PP" or many other terms.

You can see some examples of RAW vs. JPG here:
RAW vs JPEG (JPG) - The Ultimate Visual Guide Free Photography Tips Tutorials Reviews and Wordpress Themes | Photography tips and photography tutorials and more

The JPGs are generally usable without PP. The RAW file is ugly until it is processed, and then it can look better, sometimes much better. The visual guide above has good examples.

RAW/JPG aside, whether you want to post process and how much PP you want to do will vary depending on your taste.

Trey Ratcliff does tons of PP. Some people love it, some hate it. It is a matter of taste. Just like adding salt to soup. Trey adds a lot of salt.
Trey Ratcliff | Stuck In Customs | HDR Photography Portfolio

As another example, Keitha McCall does some great PP work and blogs about it too:
A Scenic World

I think you should process your best photos. Start small, keep building your toolset, and soon enough you'll learn what you like.

I was recently at Adobe for a Lightroom presentation by Stu Maschwitz where he said, paraphrased, that processing is like MSG at a Chinese restaurant; you want good tasting food, but not so much that you know it is there.
01-30-2013, 03:52 PM   #7
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Everyone is different but I for one NEVER post anything, even if only to Facebook, that hasn't had at least some tweaking. Many are fairly highly processed as they start out as RAW files.

It is a very rare image that looks its best straight out of the camera.
01-30-2013, 05:33 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by QueenKiss Quote
Hello! Just wondering if people tend to post raw photos or edited photos. Basically, just wondering if it is looked down upon to post photos that you have edited. Thanks!
Feel free to post everything you want, at least I want to see your pics and not a forced carbon copy of others and I'm sure that most agree. This is a really friendly and open-minded forum.

01-30-2013, 05:47 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by QueenKiss Quote
Hello! Just wondering if people tend to post raw photos or edited photos. Basically, just wondering if it is looked down upon to post photos that you have edited. Thanks!
All images are processed - either by the camera or you. Hopefully they are looked at in an editor to at least level the horizon and clone out dust if nothing else.

People often say their shot is SOOC (straight out of the camera), which is mostly meaningless. Either they think post processing is hard (not), time-consuming (no more than jpgs) or do not see the benefit which is marginal in the best case and significant in others.

I would never even post a jpg that I haven't opened and at least considered making improvements to.

I've shot only raw for years and I find the file handling is even easier as I do not have to make backup files of the original, nor worry about overwriting them.
01-30-2013, 11:32 PM   #10
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Depending on how old you are, it may be helpful to think of a RAW file as a negative, a JPEG as a print, and a JPEG produced by the camera as a Polaroid print. The computer is your darkroom. (Not many would consider it somehow purer or more virtuous to share only Polaroid prints!)
01-31-2013, 07:59 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by QueenKiss Quote
Hello! Just wondering if people tend to post raw photos or edited photos. Basically, just wondering if it is looked down upon to post photos that you have edited. Thanks!
I think we need to define the terms. "Raw" does not mean unedited. A raw file is raw data. You can't see or post a raw image, because a raw file is just a bunch of one and zeros. You need software to translate the ones and zeros into a viewable file.

Viewing a raw file through different softwares will produce different results. Some softwares show the raw file as a very bland image, with contrast, sharpness, saturation all turned down low, which some people like to start with for processing. Other softwares attempt to incorporate the camera settings when they display the file, some with greater success than others. Regardless of what software you use, you must convert the raw image to a jpeg before you can post it. All posted images have been processed, whether they were shot in raw and processed via software, or shot in jpeg and processed by the camera.

I believe what you are asking is, are we purists who only want to see a realistic kind of processing, or is heavy post-processing acceptable? I can assure you, either is acceptable for posting here. In fact I can think of at least one thread where only heavily processed files are allowed. Processing is a matter of taste. Take High Dynamic Range images for example, where several photos taken at different exposures are combined into one. Some people love HDR images. Some people dislike them, even when they're very capably done. As long as a photo is well done, it's sure to appeal to someone.

Last edited by audiobomber; 01-31-2013 at 08:09 AM.
01-31-2013, 04:20 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by audiobomber Quote
I think we need to define the terms. "Raw" does not mean unedited. A raw file is raw data. You can't see or post a raw image, because a raw file is just a bunch of one and zeros. You need software to translate the ones and zeros into a viewable file.
Another Internet myth being perpetuated. All digital photos are just ones and zeros, even JPEGs. RAW files can be easily viewed with programs such as RawAnalyze or RawDigger.
01-31-2013, 07:31 PM   #13
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Long thread on this very topic just recently - https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-beginners-corner-q/207192-most-pos...ssed-pics.html
01-31-2013, 09:45 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by kh1234567890 Quote
Another Internet myth being perpetuated. All digital photos are just ones and zeros, even JPEGs. RAW files can be easily viewed with programs such as RawAnalyze or RawDigger.
A jpeg is a finished file. It contains a rigid set of rules which define how the image must look (hue, saturation, contrast, sharpening, etc). It will look the same regardless of which software is used to view it. A raw file has no such rules. Since there are no rules for making an image out of a raw file, then any view of it is not the actual raw file, it is only the software's interpretation of the raw file. The interpreted view will look different in RawAnalyze than it will in Lightroom or Capture One. Clear now?

Last edited by audiobomber; 01-31-2013 at 10:01 PM.
01-31-2013, 11:20 PM   #15
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Thanks!

Thanks to all...your comments and links have been very helpful.
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