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12/30/2006 10:28:24 PM · #176
Originally posted by kirbic:

Originally posted by ursula:

Originally posted by kirbic:

As I had responded to in BradP's ticket, we ruled that it is not out of bounds in Expert Rules to hand-draw small elements, such as the birds in Bear's shot from "Sky." This has apparently confused many, who thought that this hand-drawing was strictly prrohibited. In Expert, it is currently not prohibited, but is on the borderline and should be used with extreme care.
The logic behind this ruling is this: we do allow use of other source data that is outside the "digital camera with EXIF" and challenge date rules, that source data being textures. This much is true even in Advanced. Therefore the ruling on hand-drawn elements does not break any new ground in this respect. The probihition on clip art in Expert is only meant to close the loophole through which someone could submit an image made up entirely or substantially of out-of-date, created artwork.
I hope this explanation clarifies why this ruling was made the way it was. Time will tell whether this ruling stands or is modified. "Bear" in mind that the Expert rules are in trial, and not cast in concrete.


Even bearing in mind that expert rules are being used on a trial basis, this seems a bit like an answer made up on the fly ;-)


Ach! This reply is for the birds! ;-)


Something for you, Captain! for the birds
12/30/2006 10:32:07 PM · #177
Originally posted by ursula:

Something for you, Captain! for the birds


Hehehehehehe!
12/30/2006 10:41:44 PM · #178
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

I mean, I guarantee you we have (or will have) people using filters to create shafts of light illuminating key objects in their images

Could be ... ' . substr('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_challenge/85/thumb/16944.jpg', strrpos('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_challenge/85/thumb/16944.jpg', '/') + 1) . '
12/30/2006 10:54:02 PM · #179
I would like to add to the debate in relation to how the rulesets are currently named. I had a thought that it is possible to be an expert at basic editing or advanced editing and it made me realise that the word expert in the title of the "expert editing" ruleset is really refering to what is expected to be done within those rules. Something like saying "An expert can make best use of these rules"

I would suggest that it might be clearer to rename all three rulesets to something like.

Limited Editing Rules
Moderate Editing Rules
Liberal Editing Rules

This moves the focus onto how the rules act as various levels of restrictions on all the possible things we can do to an image in post processing. Does this make sense to anyone else?

Message edited by author 2006-12-30 22:54:33.
12/30/2006 10:55:59 PM · #180
Before starting to talk about the names of the editing rules again, could it at least be clarified wether this rule can be ignored:

"You may not: add graphics ... to your entry ... during editing. "
12/31/2006 12:50:09 AM · #181
Here's something else to chew on:

There are available a plethora of filters and plug-ins for Photoshop, that do an amazing number of things. The one I am thinking of right now is actually pretty simple: it renders a shadow from a selection.

Now, think about this carefully: the rules clearly allow the importation of other images you have made with a camera in the challenge time frame into your image, and combining all of them into a single image. Now, suppose I take a picture of Brad and import it into my beach sunset shot, to have him posing on the beach. But it doesn't quite look right... why? Because there's no shadow, or the shadow is not aligned properly. What to do? Ah yeah, use that filter to render to render a shadow!

But wait? The way this particular filter works, the angling and placement of the skewed, perspective shadow I have just added causes it not to be connected to the Brad-image on one of the feet. No problem! This is expert editing, after all, I'll just burn some more shadow down there and it will be fine.

Anyone have a problem with this? To anyone who does, I ask in all seriousness "What kind of lame-ass 'expert' editing rules have we got here, that allows me to bring in elements from multiple sources but not do what is necessary to perfect the insertion of them into the composite image?"

Okay, so we all agree (hopefully) that it's ok to use this filter to render a perspective shadow and futz with the shadow to make it work. That being the case, can anyone give me a logical reason WHY I can't just draw the damned shadow by hand? I mean, it wouldn't make any sense to forbid that.

And so, thinking like this, I decided there's nothing in the rules as written to keep me from making a bird-shaped selection and burning it black to make a bird silhouette. I asked SC, and they gave me the go-ahead on it. And to me this seems entirely consistent with what I had thought the ruleset was trying to do.

Here's what I was thinking: the proscription against clip art and the requirement for exif data on all photographed elements was put in place to be certain that all aspects of the work being submitted are original and timely. It never really occurred to me that anyone (least of all our rulemakers) would think it made sense to open up this relatively unlimited editing field and then slam the door on simple photoshop techniques because "they are not done with a camera".

As far as I'm concerned, whatever you can do within photoshop, using photoshop tools, to home your image ought to be perfectly OK. I can understand not importing any form of graphics from outside. I can understand requiring that all photos used in the composite be taken by the photographer within the challenge timeframe. But I don't see how we can say making and filling selections, within photoshop, is not allowable in this ruleset. If you carry that to it's most logical/consistent level, you are utterly crippling the ability of people to create and perfect their scenes.

Here's one more question for ya: I have a picture of a forest, and a picture of a sunset. I want to cut a circular hole in the forest and reveal the sunset behind on a lower level. That's absolutely OK, right? But can I cut the hole in the shape of a very large animal instead? Or even a large bird?

See what I mean? Are only regular, geometric knockouts allowed? How irregular can I get before I have to start worrying? There's NO way to nail this one down, in this ruleset. You can either do it, or you can't do it. It's either legal to burn some portion of the image to black, or it's not. It's either legal to erase some portion of the image, or it's not. You can't get us into a position where we have to decide if the "shape" of the manipulation has overt or symbolic meaning, and DQ it is it does :-)

Peace, Robt.

Message edited by author 2006-12-31 00:51:29.
12/31/2006 12:59:58 AM · #182
Ahhh - but as I normally reside where the sun don't shine, there wouldn't be any shadows.
:P

Actually Robert I'm not casting any wrong-doing on your part. Just trying to understand how the rules say one thing and the SC allowed another is all I was bringing to light. You do literary editing and should understand being the Devil's Advocate at times.
12/31/2006 01:40:29 AM · #183
Originally posted by Bear_Music:


Anyone have a problem with this? To anyone who does, I ask in all seriousness "What kind of lame-ass 'expert' editing rules have we got here, that allows me to bring in elements from multiple sources but not do what is necessary to perfect the insertion of them into the composite image?"


I'm just curious why you didn't composite in some photos of flying birds rather than drawing them in then? If your intent was to create a composite, why not create a composite. One would think that rules specifically allowing the use of multiple images for composite purposes, and specifically disallowing the addition of graphics, would have seen this go another way.

Requiring that elements of the composite be actual photos, and actual photos taken within the date of the challenge is what keeps this from tipping over the edge and becoming pure digital art. Think some birds would look good in that shot? Well, go take a picture and then show what an expert editor you are by seamlessly blending them in. Don't have a picture of some birds? Can't get a shot of some within the challenge week? Them's the breaks. There are a few thousand people here who didn't get that great shot into Challenge X because the opportunity didn't present itself within the challenge dates.

The idea that the rules are evolving is a solid one. However, I don't see how that means that right out of the gate the rules as published are ignored. If the first case that comes along means a rule gets tossed, one wonders what the logic was behind the rule in the first place.

edit to add: Hopefully evolving does not mean that it is up to submitters to keep pushing the envelope until someone gets DQ'd and a line in the sand is drawn. Rules should establish a clear framework within which people can safely operate and not have to worry about getting blindsided by 'interpretation'. This is a good example. What was a very clear rule as written is now a matter of interpretation, nebulously described as a 'borderline' case, and apparently left to the submitter to roll the dice on wether or not they have strayed across the line.

The 'we allow textures, so...' logic doesn't make sense. The rule regarding textures says:

You may: use images that do not meet the source or date requirements as textures in your entry if they function specifically as textures and not to circumvent other rules.

"Other rules" presumably meaning not adding major elements to the photo. In this case, with a list of comments along the lines of 'the birds really put this over the top for me', obviously this was more than the application of some hand drawn texture for effect.

Which then bumps up against this rule:

You may: include existing images or artwork as part of your composition as long as the entry does not appear to consist entirely of a pre-existing photograph in order to circumvent date or editing rules or fool the voters into thinking you actually captured the original photograph.

Obviously those birds were not captured in any photograph, original or otherwise.

Anyway, grats on your ribbon. I'm not bashing on your photo out of spite. It just happens to be at the heart of the issue being discussed, so it must be referred to.

Message edited by author 2006-12-31 02:20:55.
12/31/2006 10:04:47 AM · #184
Originally posted by BradP:

Ahhh - but as I normally reside where the sun don't shine, there wouldn't be any shadows.
:P

Actually Robert I'm not casting any wrong-doing on your part. Just trying to understand how the rules say one thing and the SC allowed another is all I was bringing to light. You do literary editing and should understand being the Devil's Advocate at times.


I do NOT think I'm being accused of "wrong-doing", and I'm not personally aggravated by this at all, never fear. I am going to such great lengths because I think this is a critical gray area that needs to be addressed in this new ruleset. It's all good :-)

R.
12/31/2006 10:17:30 AM · #185
Originally posted by routerguy666:


I'm just curious why you didn't composite in some photos of flying birds rather than drawing them in then?


Two reasons:

1. I got the shot itself the day before the deadline, and the weather shut down on me big-time. There were no birds flying around in the rain where I could shoot 'em on deadline day.

2. Because I honestly interpreted "add graphics or clip art" as meaning I couldn't go to a clip art library, say, or to adobe illustrator to draw/create complex graphics to incorporate as a major portion of my image.

As I said earlier, we need to be very careful how we look at this. Photoshop itself is capable of adding "graphics" that are much more sophisticated than what I did here. As a case in point, I remember discussions of adding lens flare/starbursts of light, rays of light etc via various PS filters or tools in past challenges. I really believed (and still believe) that one of the windows being opened up is the ability to use such devices in "expert editing".

In this context, can someone on SC address the issue of adding a shadow to work with an imported image of a person? If that's not allowed, it's almost silly; but if it IS allowed, then where do you draw the line so I can burn in a shadow but not a bird? See what I mean?

R.

Message edited by author 2006-12-31 10:19:18.
12/31/2006 11:38:09 AM · #186
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

where do you draw the line so I can burn in a shadow but not a bird? See what I mean?

R.


Seems pretty simple to me. Burning a shadow around an image you have composited in is an editing technique used to make the composite seamless. Burning in a few birds that weren't there before is simply adding subjects to the image by hand because, as you said, you didn't have a chance to go photograph some birds and composite them in the way that the rules allow.
12/31/2006 11:44:45 AM · #187
Originally posted by routerguy666:

Originally posted by Bear_Music:

where do you draw the line so I can burn in a shadow but not a bird? See what I mean?

R.


Seems pretty simple to me. Burning a shadow around an image you have composited in is an editing technique used to make the composite seamless. Burning in a few birds that weren't there before is simply adding subjects to the image by hand because, as you said, you didn't have a chance to go photograph some birds and composite them in the way that the rules allow.


Excuse me? The image has been validated. The concept was validated pre-challenge. As things currently stand, the rules allow what I did. Apparently there is some discussion of changing that, but that's neither here nor there.

R.
12/31/2006 11:50:24 AM · #188
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Originally posted by routerguy666:

[quote=Bear_Music] where do you draw the line so I can burn in a shadow but not a bird? See what I mean?

R.


Excuse me? The image has been validated. The concept was validated pre-challenge. As things currently stand, the rules allow what I did. Apparently there is some discussion of changing that, but that's neither here nor there.

R.


The rules as written don't allow what you did. As already mentioned, about three different rules address it. Now you said you weren't taking any of this personally, and hopefully that remains the case, but the bottom line is the rules were tossed when you got the pre-challenge OK and then ignored again when it was validated post- challenge. We heard again and again how this expert editing ruleset was not a sign that DPC was going to digital art, and the rules seemed to reinforce that idea. All the compositing has to take place using photos you shot during the challenge week, textures can only be used as textures, etc. Rules that keep things photographic in nature while still catering to those who want to make tripped out images.

First image that comes along where the "compositing" is acheived by penciling in major elements of the image, the rules go right out the window.
12/31/2006 12:10:04 PM · #189
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

[quote=routerguy666] [quote=Bear_Music] where do you draw the line so I can burn in a shadow but not a bird? See what I mean?

Excuse me? The image has been validated. The concept was validated pre-challenge. As things currently stand, the rules allow what I did. Apparently there is some discussion of changing that, but that's neither here nor there.

R.


I have no problem with what you did Robert... you did indeed seek validation prior to the competition. The crux of the problem from my limited perspective is that you were the only one that had that knowledge.

I am certainly not casting aspersions in your direction, but it seems that it this instance the SC might have, or perhaps should have, held their decision in abeyance, witness the comments made by Kirbic when he stated: [b][Time will tell whether this ruling stands or is modified. "Bear" in mind that the Expert rules are in trial, and not cast in concrete./b]

It might have proven prudent by the SC to simply say NO to your request, rather that render a decision that they could possibly in time overturn.

Just a thought.

Ray

12/31/2006 01:19:44 PM · #190
Let me repeat, I'm NOT taking this personally. I just think this is an issue that needs clarifying. Let's consider a hypothetical:

I take a full-face portrait of a gal, let's call her "Mary". It's my intention to put a mustache on Mary's face, to make her look like a caricature, like someone desecrated a poster or something. Now, obviously I can take a shot of myself, then copy my own mustache and paste it on Mary's face, right? Not only that, but having created a mustache layer out of my own (photographic) mustache and having layered it on Mary's face, I am free to TRIM that mustache into a regular shape, and I am certainly free to burn that mustache as dark as I wish to, right? I can make my gray photographic mustache jet black if I wish to, no problem, right? I mean, if it were my OWN portrait I were entering and I burned in my own hair and mustache to make them black, this would be legal under advanced editing, let alone expert editing, right?

But according to this interpretation that's being expressed here, it is NOT legal for me to burn that exact same shape onto Mary's face using the selection tool to define a mustache shape and the burn tool to darken that area to black, right? Because THAT mustache is a "graphic"... Do I have that right?

Here we have two identical results: in one of them I paste a "real" mustache on Mary and burn it to black, legally. In the other I create an identical selection and burn it to black, illegally. But riddle me this: in the "legal" version, I can paste the mustache on Mary's face, then create a selection out of that layer mask, then create an overlay layer with that selection loaded on it, and do my burning on the overlay layer. Now, think about this carefully:

I have now three layers: 1: Mary's face. 2: Mustache mask layer. 3: Overlay layer with burn tool applied to mustache mask selection. And here's the thing: I can now discard the actual mustache layer and have only the face layer and the overlay layer, and the result will be indistinguishable from the 3-layered version!

Does anyone see the problem that has me stumped? How do you define what is a "graphic" and what is not? The way I understood it, the purpose of the graphics/clip art clause in the expert rules was not to limit how people used the tools within Photoshop, but to keep them from using art created by others or created outside the timeframe of the challenge in their submissions.

In the case of this hypothetical Mary image, everything was created in the challenge timeframe by the submitter of the image. And it is impossible to tell the difference between the two workflows...

In the case of my own image, if I had happened to have three bird pictures shot during the challenge timeframe, I could have laid them in and burned them to black silhouettes and it would have been perfectly acceptable to everyone. I could have laid them in, created a layer mask, discarded the actual birds, and burned them in and it would have been indistinguishable. Yet, by some peoples' reasoning, it's NOT kosher to create the mask by hand, lacking the original birds.

I don't see how it's going to be possible to draw a line in the sand here, if that's what people want. There are all sorts of Photoshop effects that create new elements non-photographically, and they have been consistently disallowed in advanced editing; "rays of light" in the sky come immediately to mind, as do specular starbursts.

If the hand-drawn mustache and the hand-drawn birds are disallowed, then you cannot allow the rays of light or the PS filter-created starbursts, or the PS filter-created drop shadows, and so forth and so on ad infinitum. Does anyone see a flaw in that logic? Each of these effects (and there are many of them) involves creating, non-photographically and within photoshop, a new element in the image.

How do we get around that?

Robt.

Message edited by author 2006-12-31 13:21:17.
12/31/2006 01:21:36 PM · #191
FWIW, if we had said "no" to Robert on this, it's also possible that that decision might have been overturned in time. All I was saying is that the Expert rules are in the trial stage, and thus could potentially be modified.
I'm personally in favor of any and all discussion that adds value here; what irks the bejeezuz out of me is certain people stridently, repeatedly claiming the "rules were set aside." Bullshit. The rules were interpreted, the call was made, get over it, get on with life. Whining does not add value.
12/31/2006 01:23:26 PM · #192
Anyone want to catch me up on what the heck you guys are talking about? ;-) Or at least give me an approximate place to start reading.

Message edited by author 2006-12-31 13:24:43.
12/31/2006 01:24:01 PM · #193
Originally posted by kirbic:

FWIW, if we had said "no" to Robert on this, it's also possible that that decision might have been overturned in time. All I was saying is that the Expert rules are in the trial stage, and thus could potentially be modified.
I'm personally in favor of any and all discussion that adds value here; what irks the bejeezuz out of me is certain people stridently, repeatedly claiming the "rules were set aside." Bullshit. The rules were interpreted, the call was made, get over it, get on with life. Whining does not add value.


Thanks for that, Kirbic! That was irking me too :-)

R.
12/31/2006 01:24:51 PM · #194
Originally posted by fotomann_forever:

Anyone want to catch me up on what the heck you guys are talking about? ;-)


The gulls in my Winter Sunset were created by hand-drawing a mask in Photoshop and filling it with black. Since they aren't a "photograph" some people think the expert rules were broken.

Robt.

Message edited by author 2006-12-31 13:25:29.
12/31/2006 01:27:56 PM · #195
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Originally posted by fotomann_forever:

Anyone want to catch me up on what the heck you guys are talking about? ;-)


The gulls in my Winter Sunset were created by hand-drawing a mask in Photoshop and filling it with black. Since they aren't a "photograph" some people think the expert rules were broken.

Robt.


Ahh, ok... thanks... I kinda guessed that's what it was...

For the record, I don't see where they were broken... no more than me adding the zoom blur to the sky of my comp.

Message edited by author 2006-12-31 13:28:36.
12/31/2006 01:37:58 PM · #196
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Originally posted by fotomann_forever:

Anyone want to catch me up on what the heck you guys are talking about? ;-)


The gulls in my Winter Sunset were created by hand-drawing a mask in Photoshop and filling it with black. Since they aren't a "photograph" some people think the expert rules were broken.

Robt.


I think you did a good job there Robert, even better than the birds I painted in my entry :)

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12/31/2006 01:52:14 PM · #197
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Originally posted by kirbic:

FWIW, if we had said "no" to Robert on this, it's also possible that that decision might have been overturned in time. All I was saying is that the Expert rules are in the trial stage, and thus could potentially be modified.
I'm personally in favor of any and all discussion that adds value here; what irks the bejeezuz out of me is certain people stridently, repeatedly claiming the "rules were set aside." Bullshit. The rules were interpreted, the call was made, get over it, get on with life. Whining does not add value.


Thanks for that, Kirbic! That was irking me too :-)

R.


Thanks for jumping in and adding nothing to the discussion other than 'contrary opinions bother me and I consider them whining".

I'll ask again what I asked about 20 posts ago. Please clarify wether or not these rules will be enforced, if they are now moot, or if it is on the submitter to wonder how they will be interpreted on a case by case basis:

- composed only from photographs taken after the challenge is announced and before the deadline

- use images that do not meet the source or date requirements as textures in your entry if they function specifically as textures

- include existing images or artwork as part of your composition as long as the entry does not ... fool the voters into thinking you actually captured the original photograph.

- You may not add graphics or clip art images to your entry or its border during editing.
12/31/2006 01:56:31 PM · #198
Originally posted by kirbic:

As I had responded to in BradP's ticket, we ruled that it is not out of bounds in Expert Rules to hand-draw small elements, such as the birds in Bear's shot from "Sky." This has apparently confused many, who thought that this hand-drawing was strictly prrohibited. In Expert, it is currently not prohibited, but is on the borderline and should be used with extreme care.
The logic behind this ruling is this: we do allow use of other source data that is outside the "digital camera with EXIF" and challenge date rules, that source data being textures. This much is true even in Advanced. Therefore the ruling on hand-drawn elements does not break any new ground in this respect. The probihition on clip art in Expert is only meant to close the loophole through which someone could submit an image made up entirely or substantially of out-of-date, created artwork.
I hope this explanation clarifies why this ruling was made the way it was. Time will tell whether this ruling stands or is modified. "Bear" in mind that the Expert rules are in trial, and not cast in concrete.
12/31/2006 02:42:57 PM · #199
Originally posted by kiwiness:


I think you did a good job there Robert, even better than the birds I painted in my entry :)

' . substr('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_challenge/600/thumb/438571.jpg', strrpos('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_challenge/600/thumb/438571.jpg', '/') + 1) . '


Hahaha! I'm NOT the only "painted bird silhouettes" entry in the challenge! That makes me laugh :-) Glad I'm not the only one that thought of this...

R.
12/31/2006 02:46:19 PM · #200
Heaven help us if we ever have a "Hitchcock" challenge in Expert! ;-)
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