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Art Liefke Wins November 2020 Work Share “Competition” SOOC (Straight Out Of the Camera) [See Photo]

©2020 Arthur Liefke

Congrats to Art who wins this month with a dramatic and beautiful view of our favorite place in Kings Park, the Bluff.

This month’s contest was a little different.  Usually the theme is open ended with no requirements specified.  For November, there were strict requirements on the participants:  There could be no editing or “post-processing” done on the images captured. The only creative changes to the photo had to be applied in-camera before the photo was taken.  So, in a sense, this exercise was similar to the old-school film photography that many of us grew up with.  

If you do digital photography you know this can be a challenge.  The nature of the digital process, or “capture” of the image, often requires editing or post-processing after it is taken for it to look its best. It’s just the nature of the beast. 

And moreover, the “digital darkroom” of the computer allows for an almost unlimited application of creative improvements.  That’s why most photographers I know use editing techniques and post-processing on their photos after they are taken.  Who wants to be limited?

But, amazing things can happen when you do accept technical limitations.  You have to really think hard how you can apply creative techniques to get a great picture before you ever press that button.  And, boy, did our folks come through!  It was a stunning collection of photos.

In the end this photo got my vote.  It’s a beautiful, evocative, and haunting photo of my favorite place in Kings Park. It gives an emotional gut punch, yet is so technically proficient, you could print it off the memory card and hang it on the wall.  It’s also a familiar real world color scene rendered in Black and White:  An extra layer of difficulty to get right in camera.

Art Liefke is a true artist. No, I mean a true artist.  He uses brushes and paint to create gorgeous landscapes, cityscapes, wildlife, and people portraits.

He’s also a true photographer.  No, I mean a true photographer:  Carrying around a big box camera on a tripod and using sheets of film like they did in the late 1800s and early 20th Century.  Developing the film in stinky chemicals, the whole nine yards.

More recently he’s delved into digital photography, with all the benefits of the digital darkroom. Which, remember, were not used here.

This winning photograph shows how you can be a true artist and a true photographer, even if you use a small electronic box that captures light and transforms it to into nano-electric charges on a tiny sheet of mineral coated plastic.

You just have to accept and work around the limitations.