Yes, it's true! I'd never done it; never even thought about it! My pictures were absolutely pure and untouched, before I joined Newsvine Photographers.
Of course, I'd heard about editing software, but I just didn't think it was the right path for me. I thought it was unnatural and saw no need for such forced creativity. And certainly, I'd never enjoy it.
Lots of people were doing it here, using all sorts of programs to alter and improve their images, but I just couldn't see spending so much time and effort to change the appearance of my photos. I wanted my images to be realistic reflections of the world I could see; not some fantasy illusion of perfect pictures.
For months, I ignored the hints and suggestions from my fellow photographers, steadfastly refusing to participate in their displays of altered images, but eventually the temptation was too much, and I asked Mal to remove an unwanted flaw from one of my favorite photos.
It was just a phone line -- no big deal, but it wasn't long before I agreed to try color enhancement. I not only liked it, I wanted to do it for myself. So I downloaded Paint.net!
NVP showed me which buttons to push and how to experiment with dials and levels, and soon, I was completely addicted to the rush of adjusting hues and saturation; adding light and shadows. And I wanted to do more!
So I bought Photoshop Elements! I promised myself that I'd only use it for simple crops and adjustments on pictures that were damaged from age or degraded by scanning. I was certain that I'd only use it on photos, that I would have otherwise deleted.
But I hadn't counted on HollyKL, who was constantly posting abstracts; strangely compelling images that had been radically altered with filters and effects. They whispered to me of potential and possibilities.
So one day, I just did it! I took a perfectly good picture, and I changed it, creating something totally new and different! It was awkward and lacked finesse, but I had crossed the line! I was no longer a purist!
A year has passed, and I do it all the time now. I freely confess that I even enjoy it! Some days, I prefer subtle alternations that are barely visible, but others I go extreme with vivid color contrast and massive crops. Every picture is an undefined possibility just waiting to be explored.
I would never tell others what to do with their photos in the privacy of their own computers, but if you find yourself wondering what it would be like, feel free to join us at our Thursday Virtual Vine Meets. It's completely anonymous, and it doesn't hurt at all.