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Author Topic: When is a Photograph a Cheat?  (Read 20640 times)
Rob C
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« Reply #100 on: November 24, 2011, 04:05:58 PM »
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Apparently, you have never chased a two-year old around with a camera trying to get a decent portrait.... Grin




In the case of the paparazzi it's a blood sport.

Rob C
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Peter McLennan
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« Reply #101 on: November 24, 2011, 04:10:23 PM »
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Apparently, you have never chased a two-year old around with a camera trying to get a decent portrait.... Grin

Well said, Bryan.  Like dance, photography is a real-time art.  Comparisons to sports performers are equally apt.  We are athletes - photographic athletes - subject to many of the constraints that face sports athletes.  We need training, endurance, agility, lightning reflexes and practice, practice, practice.
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Bryan Conner
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« Reply #102 on: November 24, 2011, 11:45:09 PM »
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Well said, Bryan.  Like dance, photography is a real-time art.  Comparisons to sports performers are equally apt.  We are athletes - photographic athletes - subject to many of the constraints that face sports athletes.  We need training, endurance, agility, lightning reflexes and practice, practice, practice.

I remember this one two year old back in 1997...I was strongly considering taking up martial arts...LOL.
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Slobodan Blagojevic
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When everybody thinks the same... nobody thinks.


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« Reply #103 on: November 29, 2011, 10:34:55 AM »
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Why debate... there is an app for that.


P.S. ...and perhaps even a legislation coming soon to photoshopped images near you Wink
« Last Edit: November 29, 2011, 10:38:13 AM by Slobodan Blagojevic » Logged

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Isaac
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« Reply #104 on: November 29, 2011, 11:30:08 AM »
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Why debate... there is an app for that.
To explore my understanding of when I and others think a photograph is a cheat ;-)

It's difficult to tell from those tiny thumbnails what exactly the retouching was in each case, but the background color change of the "drastic" retouching 5th photo seems like a don't care to me.

Edit:
Given a decent size image the "drastic" retouching obviously is drastic.

Here's the full article pdf "A perceptual metric for photo retouching".
« Last Edit: November 29, 2011, 01:26:16 PM by Isaac » Logged
Slobodan Blagojevic
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« Reply #105 on: November 29, 2011, 03:12:26 PM »
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Or even better comparison.
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Slobodan

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Isaac
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« Reply #106 on: November 29, 2011, 05:57:50 PM »
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In the spirit of "Not only is it not right, it's not even wrong!" some of those examples seem to be not even a cheat.
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Les Sparks
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« Reply #107 on: November 30, 2011, 10:38:34 AM »
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The only reason we get this discussion about photographs and cheating is that we remember the important photos we've seen of the American Civil War, the civil rights struggle, the demonstrations in Egypt, etc. that move us because they are "real".  Paintings and drawings of the same events don't normally move us in the same way because they are not "real". We then assume that all photos are real in a way that other art is not. We see a portrait photo and assume that the person really looks like that--there might be a few blotches retouched out, but by and large we expect that the photo is what the person really looks like. But we don't hold the same belief for a painted portrait--we (or at least I) assume that the painter took pains to make the subject look as attractive as possible and did more than retouch a few blotches.  This expectation that a photograph represents reality is just something we have to face. It's OK if we retouch or manipulate to better represent our vision, but we have to expect a few to object--how many object often depends on what our vision or intent is.


Defining cheating is not easy and depends on the photographer's intent and our conventions and expectations. I don't think anyone really expects advertising and clamor photographs to represent reality and we accept a great deal of manipulation in these. Journalism photographs we expect to be real and un-manipulated.

For example: Assume that I'm out hiking and come across a beautiful small stream and think what a great picture this will make.
As I'm setting up, I notice that someone has left a dozen beer cans, several fast food bags, and an old tire that pretty much destroy the beauty. If I'm taking photos for the chamber of commerce to show of the beauty of the area I can:

1. Change my viewpoint by moving slightly and changing the lens and the mess disappears and I've got my beautiful picture--is this a cheat?
2. Take the original photo and clone out the mess--is this a cheat?
3.  Remove the mess, take the photo, and carry the mess to the dump--is this a cheat?
Or assume that I want to show what slobs are doing to destroy the beauty of the countryside and I change my viewpoint by moving and changing lens to emphasize the mess--is this a cheat? If I manipulate the photo to add more emphasis to the mess, is that cheating?


Les



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Isaac
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« Reply #108 on: December 01, 2011, 12:39:17 PM »
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We then assume that all photos are real in a way that other art is not.
I think we find it difficult to escape immediately responding to a photograph as-if it were a frozen reflection.

Sometimes as-with a distorting mirror we experience both the apparent reality and unreality of the photograph; other times we only experience the apparent reality and, without further examination, will not discover that we're looking into a mirror-world.

Defining cheating is not easy and depends on the photographer's intent and our conventions and expectations.
"When does a photograph document reality. When is it propaganda? When is it art? Can a single photograph be all three?"

I don't think anyone really expects advertising and glamor photographs to represent reality and we accept a great deal of manipulation in these.
In general, I don't think we realise just how distorted those photographs have become. In general, I don't think we get the opportunity to see just how distorted those photographs have become.

2. Take the original photo and clone out the mess--is this a cheat?
Mark Schacter's essay was somewhat defensive on this point. We might read PERSON 1's "Isnít that sort of cheating?" as - isn't that sort of cheating other photographers who actually did the hard work to be there for those fleeting moments when the landscape was luminous.
« Last Edit: December 01, 2011, 02:29:35 PM by Isaac » Logged
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