Photoshop image deblurring

My concentration at University was in photography so I’ve always been fascinated, and sometimes confused, with image manipulation software. Two of my favorite photographers are Paul Strand and Alfred Stieglitz who were driving forces behind the art of photography as we know it today (at least, that is what I remember). Both were active in promoting straight photography, i.e. manipulation free photography. The idea was to capture a scene as it appeared.

This seems simple and obvious, however, it is neither. There are numerous ways to manipulate a photo, even outside of software, which deviates it from this idea. Cropping. Dodging and burning. Double exposure. Over exposing. Off focusing. Retouching. Coloring. Etc. These actions change a photograph and even the act of photography into something else. Not better or worse, just something else.

What straight photography is great at is forcing the artist to focus on the scene he is presented with and manipulate himself to get the most interesting shot. He is to think of the light as his paint and adjust his camera accordingly. Imagine if the paints resting on a palette were changing a mile a minute. Would a painter just start slapping his brush wildly around the canvas hoping for something to materialize?

To a straight photographer, 80% of their job ends once the shutter flickers. The remaining 20% is done processing the film and printing prints that stay in line with capturing the scene as it appeared.

This is all just a long winded way of saying that I do not know what to make of Photoshop’s deblurring plugin. I have more questions than I do answers so I find the video below both absolutely amazing and painfully annoying.