Steven Jungerwirth  

Nauset Lighthouse by Steven Jungerwirth

November 2023 - Nauset Lighthouse

November 2023 - Steven Jungerwirth


About the Image(s)

During a recent trip to Cape Cod I photographed the Nauset Lighthouse in Eastham. This image was taken 20 minutes prior to a foggy sunrise. I like the image - but am not sure how to better edit it; keeping the natural low light/mood. I didn't want to brighten it too much or remove noise. I want it to look realistic. Any suggestions to improve it?

Technical: Canon R5, 24-105 lens @ 30mm and f5.6. ISO 1600, 1/8 sec.
Removed the house with PS. Other minor edits in LR.

This round’s discussion is now closed!
9 comments posted

Cindy Smith   Cindy Smith
I think it is a lovely image. I do have two questions: why did you reverse the image, and why did you remove the house?   Posted: 11/01/2023 11:38:17
Steven Jungerwirth   Steven Jungerwirth
I thought the upper part of the house was a distraction - didn't seem to add anything to the image. And since my brain usually goes left-to-right, I decided to flip the canvas so a viewer could follow the red beam from the center to the upper right. What do you/others think?   Posted: 11/01/2023 17:14:55

Will Korn   Will Korn
WHAT?? You were here and didn't get in touch with me. Dang. Nice shot.   Posted: 11/01/2023 21:45:13

Jennifer Marano   Jennifer Marano
Lovely! I think flipping it was a good idea, and also getting rid of the house. I love how the steps are just visible in the predawn light. Perhaps adding a little contrast by bringing up the highlights in the light beams a tiny bit and darkening the sky an equal and opposite amount might have added a little more drama, but it would have to be very subtle to not destroy the dreamy fogginess you have captured.   Posted: 11/01/2023 22:10:49

Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
Conversation: Categorizing and Identifying Photographic Compositions: this relates to both Jennifer and Steve's featured work. Both works are very nice, pleasing and enjoyable, indeed!

"Points to Ponder"

I think the power of Digital Photography is wonderful and has brought many new ideas/techniques in which to create Art. However, I also argue we must help maintain Photography's genuine long-standing status as a proprietary art genre by introducing/using new ways of identifying the wide scope of images being presented to the masses.

If I read the title and saw Steve's featured image without seeing the original (knowing the scene has been extensively altered) I would appreciate the work in a most straightforward way: perhaps wishing to visit and experience the scene for myself ... to experience this particular reality. However, my experience or appreciation was affected by the knowledge the work did not depict reality as seen through the lens of the camera.

This knowledge directed me to "appreciate" the work from a different (or added) perspective: the knowledge the artist photographer had to carefully digitally-sculpture to create the presented photographic scene.

If we are going to recreate reality using photography, then, as I have suggested many times before, the work needs to be presented in such a way as to alert viewers' to its epistemic value: allowing a viewer to judge how they appreciate a work in virtue of how authentic the works is ... or how authentic its depiction: this is most important within the art genre of photography in virtue of photography's long standing representation to "the real" ... compared to a painting of the same scene, for example.

So, the essence of my argument is, we are not seeing an evolution of photography, instead, the birth of sub-genres within it. In this sense, we can embrace the new avenues being afforded to the artist photographer, at the same time by identifying when salient features within a frame have been rearranged, added or deleted, (through identification or categorizing the image), thus helps maintain photography's inherent epistemic values, and perhaps in the future, squelching, what I term, "viewer apprehension", or skepticism when approaching and contemplating photographic work in galleries, museums and online exhibitions. Thank you.

  Posted: 11/02/2023 08:12:10
Steven Jungerwirth   Steven Jungerwirth
Thanks Lance for your thoughtful reply. For me much of the solution hinges on disclosure (as Jennifer and I have done) and as you encourage. Various competitions have introduced rules for specific genres - which I think is appropriate, but almost impossible to "police."

There was an interesting debate in my camera club re creating competition categories for AI altered images. Two comments are pasted below. I'm sure the debate will go on! Clubs in my area have dwindling memberships, a median age likely above 70 and are not very diverse. I'm not suggesting AI is the solution - rather that photography needs to continue to evolve.

Comment #1:
We are photographers first, not painters, not creators of images using others' works. This goes against the very idea of what this is all about. Why encourage the very thing we are trying to stop in photography competitions?

The argument about camera clubs dying is spurious in this case. The reasons for the death of camera clubs has been discussed many times, but has nothing to do with the development of AI. (Clubs in general are going away, younger people do not have time, the popularity of camera phones and computational photography has dropped the need, etc.) The evolution of digital photography has nothing to do with this version of AI. I was one of the founders of the first all-digital camera club, and there was different reasoning involved. People were being luddites, but in this situation, this also involves ethics. But wait, to paraphrase someone I know who had a comment about this: Why don't we just skip Adobe Generative AI and other AI generative software, and just steal other members' images, make some changes, and call it our own work? Yes it is an interesting concept to explore, but not in a competition.

Comment #2
"I must stop AI from coming!" - the Grinch Who Stole Photography!
OK, it's a joke but I think it makes a point: you can't hold back the future! I think the issue depends on "who are our members"? Are they amateur hobbyists who shoot for themselves, or for awards or likes on Instagram? Then AI is irrelevant to them, and they may not be interested. But we'll never know unless we try.
On the other hand, many professional photographers (though not all) see the writing on the wall and want to get ahead of the curve before their jobs disappear. Yeah, we'll always need photojournalists, sports photographers, astrophotographers, wedding photographers. But portrait, product, street, nature, landscape photographers may be in trouble (well, they already are)! Who needs a portrait photographer if you can take a selfie, and have AI put you in any location? OK, it may not be as good as a good portrait shot, but it may be good enough (and the price is much better!)
I think our membership is mostly amateur hobbyists, and are not enticed by AI generated images. But I see nothing wrong with trying something new, in limited Special categories. We don't want to look like "get off my lawn" old fogeys, right? Trying it may or may not attract new members, but with the way things are now, what do we have to lose?   Posted: 11/02/2023 10:15:49
Lance Lewin   Lance Lewin
Oh, yes, the good and bad of within the newest discourse of where/how AI should be incorporated into photography! Well, actually, it has been for some time, however, within a less prominent role: Pre-sets, Sky-replacement, ....etc). AI algorithms have been part of the digital photography revolution for some time, indeed.

I agree on a lot of your assessments regarding the less than robust membership at local and online clubs/institutions; that was a very interesting digest, Steve.

As stated above, I think the digital photography revolution has brought many new ideas/techniques and the resulting wide scope of visual narratives: if only more such work be properly identified, as many of the techniques/tools to produce (these) images lay beyond the norms of "classic tradition" in photography.   Posted: 11/03/2023 06:34:41

Chan Garrett   Chan Garrett
Steven, I am sorry that your entry resulted in the age-old discussion concerning new technology. My limited study of the history of photography revels to me that from the very first cameras until today, photographers found development and printing variations to improve the image captured on the glass or metal plate, the film, or the digital senser. Few, if any accomplished photographers ever took their plate or film and placed it in a standard developer for a standard period of time. Then took the plate or film negative and used it to expose the photographic paper for a standard period of time, and called it finished. Therefore, I fail to understand what is meant by, "...the norms of 'classical tradition'."
I feel that AI generated images will find its greatest use by commercial photographers who have for years used stock photographs as a regular part of their work. I use it only to remove objects from a photo. We have been able to do this prior to AI, but it is so much quicker in Photoshop to use Generative Fill.   Posted: 11/06/2023 15:35:59

Dale Yates   Dale Yates
Excellent photo! I like the flipped version as well as the house removal. This photo has that early morning feel and allows the viewer to contemplate the story line here. It makes me want to get up early, grab some coffee, and go out there to this lighthouse. Thanks for sharing!

As far as the discussion regarding AI, I have mixed feelings about it. We are already using elements of AI in our post processing (LR has a great noise removal tool utilizing AI) and we seem to be utilizing this (and other) newer technology for creating images that we want to present to the viewer. Utilizing newer technology has been going on since the beginning of photography. My fear (perhaps based on lack of full understanding of AI) is it could possibly remove the photographer completely out of the picture (pun intended) and have a total computer generated image. I am not in favor of this. I guess I will understand this better as the use of AI develops further.   Posted: 11/06/2023 18:14:28