Photoshop is often noted as a point of derision when talking about art. Whether it's being used to “perfect” models in magazines or make a landscape that much more beautiful, there's a fairly vocal group of people who see it as cheating.
All that hating is misguided. Digital photo-manipulation is just an extension of something photographers have been doing for ages, with chemicals, optics, rephotographing, and even their trusty X-acto knife and some rubber cement. There are some things that just can't be captured in a single photograph, no matter how skilled a photographer is.
Jane Long is an Australian photographer who is skilled both with a camera in hand or a keyboard in front of her. When she discovered an archive of WWI-era photos on Flickr, she began the “Dancing with Costica” series, intending to hone her digital skills but ending up with incredible works of art.
The pieces each take a very old, black-and-white photo ...
And turn them into something vibrant and beautiful.
The subjects are transported to a new realm that feels just right, but also slightly surreal.
Every item has that subtle fantasy element.
While they’re all so fantastical, they’re also just a little bit dark. There’s a certain, unplaceable intensity in these images.
Why is she burning photos, for instance?
What does that mouse have to say to the boy?
Just like the originals, there are no sunny, serene days to be found.
And yet they’re all just so beautiful. This star-laden, infinite fabric is an in-house favorite. Is she sewing up the universe?
For more eerily gorgeous imagery, be sure and visit Jane’s portfolio.