There are those among us who think if you do anything to your photo after you take the picture then that’s cheating.
If one painter only has a dozen colors to work with and one has 64 colors
to begin with, are they cheating to use the extra colors they have available?
Do I cheat? Yes, I do and I’m proud of it. I will lighten eyes, darken skin, remove pimples, increase contrast, increase color saturation, and occasionally do something creative like this.
I create images to give an emotional response to the viewer. I consider Photoshop and other computer programs like it as tools of the trade. This argument is not something new. I remember when some argued that it was cheating to use filters, or electronic flash. The only thing that I consider cheating in photography, is when the photographer closes his or her mind and stops trying to be as creative as possible.
See also: Photography Discussion