Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Photo Luddite

I love photoshop as much as the next person, but in my heart of hearts, I miss the old photography, where what you saw was a record of what happened. Now, it is too easy to make the outlandish feasible.   Gullible minds (and the US seems to have an abundance of them) believe what they see.  Dennis McFarland in his novel, "School for the Blind" has a character say, "'things happen, and then you have to make sense of them.' That he explained is what a photograph is all about --'it stops things, freezes things so you can think about the implications, so you can contemplate the ramifications.'"  There is no doubt that computers have altered the landscape.  I'm not saying I don't like the new art form of photography, just that I miss the un-doctored certainty.  The above is the jacket photo of my father and two chimps for the book "Animal IQ" from 1950.  I was two at the time, but I assume the chimps were real.

1 comment:

  1. "un-doctored" is an illusion, always has been in the world of fine art photography. from their very inception, photographers have always striven to find ways to express their vision just as any artist would do... the fact that a photograph is a result of light bouncing off the subject in front of the camera is only one characteristic of the medium. However, one could argue that Photojournalism, like the above image, is a different story, though i would argue that one persons perspective is as illusionistic as any 'doctoring'. And why do people question the 'reality' of vivid color but not black and whiteness?