Which is "truer" - still or video photos?


Arowana blogger
Here is an interesting question I have not seen asked yet. Which give a "truer" representation of Asian arowana - still photos or videos?

To my eye, some overseas promotional photos have been photoshopped or re-worked so as to accentuate the yellow tones in the gold. I do not think they have been extensively re-worked, just somewhat "enhanced". I feel that an unedited video of the same fish in the same hand held positions would not look quite as enticing; that is, the gold might not have quite the degree of yellow sheen to it. Sometimes the apparent addition of colour may go too far - the yellow can almost take on a greenish tone. I have noticed that in some past series of photos, not so much in recent ones.

There is no doubt that the fish in the photos are very high quality; see the same kinds of fish in videos and photos posted by others and they still look fantastic. Just different.

And so I pose a couple questions:

One, to what degree have such overseas promotional photos been photoshopped? What settings have been applied? How much can photoshop be used to adapt or modify the basic colour qualities of a fish? Is the photographer the only one who can answer?

Two, does video necessarily provide a "truer" representation of a fish and its colour? My understanding is that it is harder to photoshop or edit video than stills. If so, should this mean that video becomes the global standard for the showing and "judging" of fish?

Of course, if video becomes the standard media used for judging fish quality, then the next issue becomes what kind of lighting is used, and what kind of video camera? :rolleyes:

Given the near 100% reliance on still photos and video footage for the global marketing of Asian arowana, these are important questions to answer I think.
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I always prefer video.

First, you can do some pretty amazing things with photoshop if you've got the skill. Second, and far more common I think, pictures most often don't show the true color/shape/beauty of the fish. Attribute this to lack of photography skill (in my case :)) or the complexity of the fish.


Super Moderator
I can do some pretty amazing things with iMovie and that's basic video software. I can't compare my photos to HD video because I don't have a 10K sony HDcam. I've seen photos extracted from high quality HDvideo and they're pretty darn good.

I do think that photoshopping pictures would give better fake results that trying to edit average quality video.