I agree that bonsais shown in photographs have to show the real thing. No artistic corrections should be done to the tree by the use of Photoshop or other programs, which with the speed of a mouse click can enhance the tree to a higher level than it really is.
In the circles of press photographers in Denmark, there has been a discussion the last years, about rights and wrongs, when pictures are being cleaned and manipulated. Is it ok to remove disturbing objects in the picture after it has been taken, or not? The first and foremost answer is a clear no. But if you look at the case from another point, the disturbing object might have been cleaned away from the picture anyway, if the photographer had just chosen another point and angle from which to take the picture. Which method is different from the other? What is more right or more wrong if to choose between methods? The result is the same. The object that disturbs is removed from the framing.
My point is to tell, that I don?t at all find it alright to manipulate with the tree. That would be a lie. But I do find it totally all right to set up proper flash lights, and a good background i.e., in order to make the best possible result of a photograph taken. In this case a photograph of a bonsai.
In the case of virtuals, it has to be clearly underlined, that the picture is a virtual. No lies. But as we want to present our bonsais at their best at an exhibition, we also want to present our bonsais at their best on photos. And this can be done by proper light, the right exposure, a good background i.e. By enhancing background, dark areas, and so on by post adjustments, it is possible to make a good quality picture, that gives a good impression.
As long as we show the bonsais as they really are, this is absolutely no problem for me.
A final point is, that a photograph newer will be the same as to watch a bonsai on the spot. It is two different ways of observing the same thing. Observing a bonsai close up in ?the real world? will always give the biggest impression and best experience. A photograph will stay two-dimensional, and without the possibility of viewing the tree from different angles to see the details.
Photographs of bonsais are very inspiring though, and I believe our common interest develops, and is spreading widely, exactly because it is possible to share photographs of beautiful bonsais at the Internet for example.