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Thursday, June 4, 2015

My Thoughts on the Presentation of This Blog Part 3

Here is the question I ask myself to guide me every time I upload an image: Given the restrictions and parameter set by this blogging program, is this the best possible way to showcase this image?
If not, how can I manipulate it?

The most often used tool of manipulation for me is cropping...

Here is a picture of Tim Robards. Sexy, huh?
If you click on the image and download it, you'll get a get a very nice image that is 1600x1066. That's 1,705,600 pixels! Pretty impressive, right?

The sad thing is...that's not the biggest version on the net. The original image that I found was 2000x1365, which is 2,730,000 pixels altogether.

The reduction in size meant a loss of 1,024,400 pixels! That's 37.5% loss of pixels. And thus, Tim Robards is 'smaller' in comparison.

That is when I make the judgement call to crop the sides of the image beforehand. Now the 2000 width becomes a 1600 width. So that when the image is uploaded, there is no reduction in image size. Thus this is a picture that is 1600x1365, a total of  2,184,000 pixels.
With this method, I did not lose any height. The loss of 546,000 pixels (20% loss) is acceptable. Most importantly, 100% of the pixels that make up Tim Robards from the original image is still present in this version.

I am well aware that cropping an image is like watching a fullscreen DVD version of a movie that was meant to be seen widescreen. I understand that by cropping an image, I am cutting away a photographer's creative vision...so I wield the cropping tool with great care! When I crop, three criteria must be met 1) the picture size is too big 2) there is too much 'dead space' and 3) cropping the image will not drastically hurt the qualities that the image is trying to convey.

If I can't with good conscience crop an image, I usually provide two alternatives for my readers to choose from.

Today and tomorrow, I'll showcase more cropped photos along with its uncropped counterpart...so that you (the readers) can decide which version is the best.

And I am still not done with my thoughts on my presentation of this blog...So I'll continue with my thoughts on Friday! Scratch that...make that Monday!

1 comment:

Rex said...

I applaud your efforts to bring some "philosophy" into the blogging experience, and I think this discussion if important. I sense that people are following this, even if the number of comments is small.

It is a delicate balance to determine whether the artistic integrity of the photographer will be compromised with cropping or other modifications (reduction in dimension of the entire image is also a change, as you say). I think you have always balanced this very well, which is one of the reasons your blog is so popular.

Although some may site principles such as the rule of thirds, the golden mean, or other geometrically based principles used in composition, I don't think that most of the images we post follow those principles to begin with, or they have done so to the deteriment IMHO of the subject they are portraying.

I would urge you to keep up your excellent work, as you have become an artist yourself, in blog presentation, AND keep bringing fascinating discussions such as this before the blogging community!