I like my photographs like I like my food, unprocessed and real.
A photograph is always a “real” photograph but it can be a truthful or contrived photograph.
Truth is easy, contrivance takes some work.
Contrivance can happen pre-production with staging something, or it can happen post production in editing software.
Contrivances that happen from pre-production involve setting up the picture, advertising, posed portraits etc.
Contrivances that happen in post-production are usually computer manipulations and in some cases, like in photojournalism, are unethical.
I’ve always thought that contrivances made in post-production are an attempt to get the picture “right”.
I’ve also always thought that getting the picture “right” in the camera was much more challenging than creating a contrivance in post production and the sign of an accomplished photographer .