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Author Topic: Disqualified for staging Wildlife shot  (Read 4583 times)
JMCP
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« on: January 20, 2010, 03:16:41 PM »
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Hi,

just read an interesting piece of news on the BBC website stating how the winner of the Wildlife photographer of the year has been disqualified as the judges subsequently found out that the Wolf in the photo had probably been hired to help stage the shot. The photo in question is in the article http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8470962.stm


Cheers John
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Josh-H
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« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2010, 03:22:05 PM »
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Quote from: JMCP
Hi,

just read an interesting piece of news on the BBC website stating how the winner of the Wildlife photographer of the year has been disqualified as the judges subsequently found out that the Wolf in the photo had probably been hired to help stage the shot. The photo in question is in the article http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8470962.stm


Cheers John

Very interesting...Staged or not though.. its good shot!
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JMCP
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« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2010, 04:09:31 PM »
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Quote from: Josh-H
Very interesting...Staged or not though.. its good shot!

Your right, it is an excellent shot, that's why it won the competition but, seemingly the rules were quite clear and the photographer broke the rules hence the disqualification. I wonder if he is a professional photographer and if he is, if the adverse publicity that he will receive for this will affect his career.


Cheers John
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feppe
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« Reply #3 on: January 20, 2010, 05:47:53 PM »
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Quote from: JMCP
Your right, it is an excellent shot, that's why it won the competition but, seemingly the rules were quite clear and the photographer broke the rules hence the disqualification. I wonder if he is a professional photographer and if he is, if the adverse publicity that he will receive for this will affect his career.

The point is not only that he broke the rules, but also (allegedly) misrepresented the work, which would make it an ethics violation as well.
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Roger Calixto
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« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2010, 03:31:57 AM »
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then there is always the free media attention... in 6 months more people will remember the name and not the reason... bad publicity is better than no publicity...

Still sad though. I remember reading his comments about the image. I think he said he setup and waited after noticing the wolf always came through there, didn't he?

The experts compared the winning picture to pictures of Ossian, a tame wolf that lives at a zoological park near Madrid called Canada Real. "You can see several very distinctive markings and the experts all agreed that, yes, it's the same wolf," said Mr Carwardine.

Now that's what I call busted!
« Last Edit: January 21, 2010, 03:35:56 AM by Roger Calixto » Logged

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wtlloyd
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« Reply #5 on: January 22, 2010, 06:07:33 PM »
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Not just disqualified, but banned FOR LIFE from participating further....

Ouch.
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bill t.
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« Reply #6 on: January 22, 2010, 07:11:48 PM »
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Several hundred photographers around here have an impressive shot of a cougar in mid air jumping over a crevasse, seen from below.  There's an animal reserve nearby, and the cougar will happily jump back and forth from ledge to ledge for quite some time to retrieve pieces of meat brandished by trainers on either side.

Readyyy...Jump!...clickclickclickettyclikettyclickclick click!

There is also an obliging pack of wolves always happy to stare majestically toward the photographer when so directed.

But the line may be thinner than we think.  Good nature photographers work hard and long at getting their great shots.  That is commendable.  But in the end the subject animals become rather tamed toward the photographer and in some ways it is almost like they were trained animals.
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Roger Calixto
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« Reply #7 on: January 22, 2010, 09:19:15 PM »
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I'm sorry Bill but I disagree entirely. Shooting buffalo in the northern plains, bears in Canada or humpback whales in Alaska are just a few examples that come to mind of memorable shots from many a professional. The bear would still kill you if you came between a sow and a cub, buffalo still charge and humpbacks probably don't know what a photographer is. Yet getting good shots of these animals IN THE WILD is dangerous and takes much skill and patience. I find there is no taming of the real wild.

All the more reason to ban the jerk for life for impersonating someone who went through all that extra effort to make a once in a LIFETIME shot. Ever tried finding a grizz and cub? Now try getting that AWESOME great shot without getting eaten.

just my $0.02
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Josh-H
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« Reply #8 on: January 22, 2010, 09:39:44 PM »
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Quote from: wtlloyd
Not just disqualified, but banned FOR LIFE from participating further....

Ouch.

Agreed. Whilst I do not condone his behaviour at all I still think the photograph is a very good one.
Banned for life sends a strong message - and that is a good thing.
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Rocco Penny
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« Reply #9 on: January 23, 2010, 12:01:28 AM »
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While I agree with the premise that you could get a certain animal used to your presence, that doesn't mean the animal will lend itself to having its portrait taken.
I have seen coastal blacktail that are wilder than the pride of lions I just happened to see on animal planet the other day.
The pressure is terrific to get the shot and the guys on the show I saw were chasing the poor things like they were a commodity.  Not much different than what this guy did except the lying part...
Nothing wild about that kind of wildlife shooting, and I try hard to not resent the chasing I watch the rest of the world do while me and thunderpooch walk everywhere and near have to decide to throw my camera at the danged things!
I don't see anything different from what this guy did to what the animal show guys do-
except the lie
why is it supposed to be unstaged anyway?
Natural behavior my foot
Watch a lion eat the pretty girl and then maybe we'll have seen natural behavior
« Last Edit: January 23, 2010, 12:16:08 AM by Rocco Penny » Logged
feppe
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« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2010, 02:50:22 AM »
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Quote from: Rocco Penny
I don't see anything different from what this guy did to what the animal show guys do-
except the lie

That's exactly the point. Integrity and holding onto well-established ethical standards are important values themselves. This is especially important in photojournalism, but also arguably in advertising and even art. Unfortunately integrity and ethics are often lacking as we've seen more such cases in the past few year or two than before.

Even more unfortunate is that poor ethics and lack of integrity are growing in the wider society - so perhaps art imitates life in ways we haven't realized.

Quote from: Rocco Penny
why is it supposed to be unstaged anyway?

Their competition, their rules. A reasonable rule, given that the competition is called "Wildlife Photographer of the Year."
« Last Edit: January 23, 2010, 02:51:34 AM by feppe » Logged

stamper
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« Reply #11 on: January 23, 2010, 04:20:22 AM »
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Is it not the final result that counts? What difference is there to an animal jumping over a fence by is own volition or someone encouraging it? Wildlife is imo a rather loose term and hard to define?

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The judges concluded that the wolf was probably a trained model.

Unquote

I would have thought that there would have to be more substantive proof than this to deny him the prize?

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feppe
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« Reply #12 on: January 23, 2010, 04:53:27 AM »
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Quote from: stamper
Is it not the final result that counts? What difference is there to an animal jumping over a fence by is own volition or someone encouraging it? Wildlife is imo a rather loose term and hard to define?

In art arguably that is the case - I think the end result is all that matters. But in wildlife photography (and especially photojournalism) it's a well-established custom to specify if a non-domesticated animal is captured in the wild, or in a zoo. I gave such disclosure on my site when I had a photo of a captive rhino in which looked like its natural habitat, but was shot in a wildlife park (photo is not up anymore).

Quote from: stamper
Quote

The judges concluded that the wolf was probably a trained model.

Unquote

I would have thought that there would have to be more substantive proof than this to deny him the prize?

Did you read the article? There appeared to plenty of evidence, as well as several experts, and interviews with the photogapher himself.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2010, 04:54:27 AM by feppe » Logged

Meisterman
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« Reply #13 on: January 23, 2010, 04:59:27 AM »
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Quote from: stamper
Is it not the final result that counts? What difference is there to an animal jumping over a fence by is own volition or someone encouraging it? Wildlife is imo a rather loose term and hard to define?

Quote

The judges concluded that the wolf was probably a trained model.

Unquote

I would have thought that there would have to be more substantive proof than this to deny him the prize?


Without proof it seems the judges used their power to strip the prize recklessly IMHO.
Just because the wolf may have "looked" like another doesn't mean it was.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2010, 05:03:55 AM by Meisterman » Logged
feppe
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« Reply #14 on: January 23, 2010, 05:08:50 AM »
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Quote from: Meisterman
Without proof it seems the judges used their power to strip the prize recklessly IMHO.
It may have started with some crybaby photographer who didn't win throwing a stink over the winning photo.  

Perhaps it started that way, but reckless? Consider:

Quote
"The judging panel looked at a range of evidence and took specialist advice from panel judges who have extensive experience of photographing wildlife including wolves.

"They also considered the responses to specific questions put to the photographer Jose Luis Rodriguez."
from here

and

Quote
The experts compared the winning picture to pictures of Ossian, a tame wolf that lives at a zoological park near Madrid called Canada Real.

"You can see several very distinctive markings and the experts all agreed that, yes, it's the same wolf," said Mr Carwardine.
from here
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Rocco Penny
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« Reply #15 on: January 23, 2010, 08:14:40 AM »
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Lying about the origin of an image is enough to disqualify anybody from a contest.
I'm not arguing that.  No artist should just make up stories surrounding their work!Cheesy
What confuses me is why contests are limited to captures of unconfined animals.
The animal planet guys do more to ruin the wild nature of africa than the tourists.
Tourists aren't supposed to leave well traveled routes,
the animal planet guys just drive around like it's the wild west-
disgusting in a way
 by capturing the beautiful shot of the wolf jumping over the fence, this guy probably saved some poor wild wolf the displeasure of his company.
The contests that encourage the chasing down of wildlife should be banned
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Luis Argerich
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« Reply #16 on: January 23, 2010, 09:05:27 AM »
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Besides the evidence that is quite clear in this case what convinced me is the fact that the guy refuses to say where the shot was taken.
You don't just setup an infrared barrier in some random location and magically a wolf jumps over a fence. This was planned for months so the photographer knew the location very well. If he were innocent the proof would be as simple as taking the jury to the location. Compare background, terrain etc and you have a winner.
For what reason other than taking the shot at a Zoo would a photographer that wins a big prize refuse to say where the shot was taken?

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Roger Calixto
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« Reply #17 on: January 23, 2010, 10:50:00 AM »
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Quote from: Rocco Penny
by capturing the beautiful shot of the wolf jumping over the fence, this guy probably saved some poor wild wolf the displeasure of his company.
The contests that encourage the chasing down of wildlife should be banned

If you ask any true wildlife photographer he'll say that the animals shouldn't even be aware if their presence. Take only photographa, leave only footprints. Come on, the idiots who chase the animals (endagering the animals and themselves) are the tourists and amateurs. IMO wildlife photography is about admiration and protection, not exploitation.

Photo contests of this sort should be more common and better paid! The more we are convinces of the beauty of something the more we protect it!
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brandtb
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« Reply #18 on: January 23, 2010, 11:40:33 AM »
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I'm going to be the odd man out here I think and say I think it is a lousy shot, and not sure why it won in first place.  When I first saw this picture my impressions were, but not limited to:  1.  This looks like a diorama with a stuffed wolf on the order of something you would see in  museum of natural history.  2.  This looks like a live animal that was shot in repose, or some other position, and then cut and pasted in another scene.  3.  Cheesy strobe effect...and the lighting in general  A "wolf jumping" does not a good photo make in and of itself...imo.
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Brandt Bolding
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« Reply #19 on: January 23, 2010, 12:24:52 PM »
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Quote from: brandtb
I'm going to be the odd man out here I think and say I think it is a lousy shot, and not sure why it won in first place.  When I first saw this picture my impressions were, but not limited to:  1.  This looks like a diorama with a stuffed wolf on the order of something you would see in  museum of natural history.  2.  This looks like a live animal that was shot in repose, or some other position, and then cut and pasted in another scene.  3.  Cheesy strobe effect...and the lighting in general  A "wolf jumping" does not a good photo make in and of itself...imo.

Wildlife photos seem to have different rules.  It is about 50% hunting.

I wonder if this guy hunts in the zoo...
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