Photography is essentially collage (by which art results from an assemblage of different forms, thus creating a new whole, thank you Picasso) a manipulation, digital or otherwise, of 3-dimensional visual elements on a 2-dimensional plane. These elements are generally agreed to be line, shape, tone, colour, texture and rhythm. With an emphasis on refined elegance, subtly in a clever and indirect way, in order to achieve something aka, fine art.
Unrestrained by traditional boundaries, the digital artist possesses more license to express and has more control over the development of the work. This can allow for a more spontaneous and individualized poetic art.
We use a box with a hole in it to gather pixels so we can mess with them. This is based on many years of informal, and formal education or years of teaching fine art at a university level. Whether we are gathering pigments to smear around in oil or pixels to process in photoshop, it’s ALL about the editing decisions. Don’t let overly techy morons drive the art bus. :)
Hint: when you compose a photo, choose a lens, choose a camera, choose a setting, choose a printer, choose a matte and frame, choose a position on the wall of the type of gallery and show you choose to be in, these are all editing decisions, but if you crop you cheating bastards I will be horrified and outraged and call you nasty names on the internet. As Monty Python said, ‘I fart in your general direction!’
Seriously tho, the question is sophomoric. You just criticized the brush used and the artist’s trained and professional eye. Critique is: what were you going for, how close did you get, how to get closer, and how does the work compare to genius in the field, not ‘should you crop or not.’