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Arnold Newman thought that, "Photography is 90% moving furniture and 10% inspiration." That late great photographer, like the bulk of artists I've discussed it with, felt that much of his finished work was discovered during the process of creation. Notice... not intentionally sought out, then revealed by technique and craft, but discovered during the application of craft. Yet, there's an organic movement among photographers who cannot abide post processing PhotoShop techniques (PP in PS) which "add stuff" to the picture.
Odd that the greatest artists believe in the creative abilities of process, and yet there are others, mostly amateurs attempting to master their grandfather's photography, who are anxious to replicate the discoveries of say... 1930, or 1960. It's as if generals were brought onto a new battelfield with the ability only to fight the last war.
Look at Marsh#10 I've posted today. It's one of those chestnuts I hid away last Fall so that I could gnaw at them during the fridgedest days of February and March. And as I moved about the furniture in that frame (and as you can see, the frame itself) I discovered the nuances which attracted my eye during that October sunrise over the great Wellfleet marsh. That's not a library sky... nope... it hung up there just like that. This isn't HDR. Nope, that was the tonal range captured by my Canon 20D. I haven't cranked up the color intensities or added polychromatic washes. In fact, I haven't even sharpened the print. It's what my Canon's 10-22mm captured.
But I did create multiple layers of ideas. I have blended and masked them together into this final image which my craft was able to discover among them. Is this "manipulation" or "enhancement"? You know what? It doesn't matter. I brought PS tools to bear in PP which never existed before this moment in time. And I've discovered an image which couldn't have existed before now. The relevant question isn't about PS in PP. The relevant question has to do with whether the image resonates with you and how.
If it does. And does it properly. The photographic based image works. Anyone who denies him/herself those tools - is fighting the last war with grand-daddy's furniture!