|On the left is the original from a point and shoot camera, the middle is just filtering and adding a bit of saturation to colors and shadows and the final is just playing with colors and saturation.|
|lens flare versus same filters with more subtle effects.|
A well used filter will allow just the right amount of highlight or low light to a scene or work and allow the over processing or under processing of an original, it gives the creative professional an opportunity to push an effect or allow more options to the original image. Of course this is all subjective and my idea of overuse or contrived is anothers' masterpiece so allow for opinion and personal style to dictate what is too much. I happen to love subtlety and I believe there is not much that we can improve on images of nature which are to me, pretty amazing and perfect in their own way. For the abstracts and non-representational creatives, of course you decide what is perfect and what is too much but we have all seen the overuse and cheesy effects it is up to creatives and their own vision to decide what is over the top and where cheese becomes genius.