Thursday, November 19, 2015

Reuters Bans RAW Photos (and Yarn-Craft Updates)

This is a fairly off-topic post from the usual fare, but I suppose photography is a "craft", too, so it fits well enough.  In any case, it's something that interests me, as an amateur photographer.

Maybe it's not readily obvious in my recent photos-- because I tend to take fairly blah WIP and FO photos, lately-- but I do enjoy photography.  Particularly nature photography and macros.  Part of the hobby is editing the photos.  Post-processing.  Polishing them to show them at their best.

Some years ago, Donald introduced me to shooting in RAW (instead of "just" JPG), and now that's my preference.  (Actually most of the time, we shoot in RAW + JPG, but if a RAW version is available, that's the one I'll choose.)  RAW allows you much more control and flexibility in post-processing than JPG does.  There are times when a JPG is simply not usable, but if you have a RAW version of the same photo, you can correct the exposure and tone (warmth, coldness, etc.) more effectively and end up with a decent result.

Well, one international news organization (Reuters) has announced that its freelance photographers (of which I am decidedly not a member (g)) will no longer be allowed to use RAW photos.  They're only allowed to use JPG.  This is supposedly an issue of speed and ethics, with a heavy insinuation that photos taken in JPG are less "manipulated" than those in RAW format:
“As eyewitness accounts of events covered by dedicated and responsible journalists, Reuters Pictures must reflect reality. While we aim for photography of the highest aesthetic quality, our goal is not to artistically interpret the news.”
The thing is, there's no reason why a RAW photo should be less a reflection of reality than one taken in JPG.  The JPG is the exact same photo, just with less options for fixing things like problems with exposure (lighting, basically).  Also, it is completely possible to digitally manipulate ("Photoshop") a JPG-- even to the point that it's a blatant lie.  RAW photos, at least to my knowledge, are not more easily "Photoshopped" in that way.  So... I'm just puzzled by this move-- and I'd really love to see some of the photos Reuters thinks were over-edited.

As a hobbyist taking photos for my own amusement, I do sometimes push the boundaries of strict realism ever so slightly.  But bumping up the warmth or richness of some colors is sometimes required to more accurately capture the feeling of the place or subject.  I'm just very curious about the kinds of photos Reuters has been receiving.  Where are some of these photos that "artistically interpret the news"?

. . . . . . .

To get back on topic...

I finished the brioche cowl.  (Ironically, there are no photos.  ;o) Or is that an incorrect use of "ironic"?  I'm always a bit nervous about using that word!  I usually wimp out and reword my sentence to avoid it entirely.)  It's squishy-soft and plush, and I'm looking for an excuse for more brioche knitting.

Next up is a project pulled out of hibernation.  I started my Old-Fashioned Sampler (afghan) in summer 2013.  From what I can recall, it was going pretty well until puppy Luna got into my workbasket and made a big mess of the yarn.  After untangling the yarn, I disgustedly put the project into time-out.

Finishing that last partially-crocheted block didn't take long, and then I spread all the squares out on the bed.  There seemed to be enough of them to make a nice-sized afghan, so I began the joining process.

I'm following Cherry Heart's (Sandra's) tutorial.  After all, it was her afghan that inspired this sampler, and I love the look of her join and edging.  Since she so generously shared her pattern, it's available to the rest of us.  (Just remember that it's written in UK crochet terms, so if you're used to US terms, you'll need to do a little translation.  It's not complicated, though, and once you're familiar with the terms, you can probably just translate it in your head.)

I imagine I'll be working on this afghan for days to come.  Photos will follow!