Assignment 1 – 151mc- Digital Truth –

Notes from todays Lecture –

In our own image – By Fred Richin-The Pixellised Press – out of date text but talks about the early age of manipulation. Need to understand the history behind it as it makes what is present relevant.
Changed the way that we look at images, we can no longer trust images. Due to manipulation. Is the old adage “the camera never lies still true, or relevant to today’s digital society? what is true? We look for the truth in photographs. To an extent the camera never lies, in its basic function it can’t in itself, it records events. But the photographer can and so can post editing.

Immanual Kant (1724-1804)  Moral Philosophy. -Moral thought requires rationality. -Immortal thought requires irrationality.
Consequentialist – Locates the morality in the consequences of the an act

Categorical  – Locates Morality in certain duties and rights.

as a photographer can we be objective and impartial.  – photographers have the power of representation. Is it a duty to represent a truth in the photograph , or to make a decision based upon the consequence that such an images may have, and thus altering the truth of the image?

Digital Truth  –
photomontage – early 20th century – dadaist, created the term photomontage – use of found images – referred to themselves as mechanics – scissors and glue to use appropriated images.


The Executioners
1989, 32 x 40 cm

Shaun Hillen

Marriage IV  2006  Collage  29.5 x 24 cm

Marriage IV 2006 Collage 29.5 x 24 cm

John Stezaker 

Industrial photomontages –  (analogue) Clear lines and borders of images – The medium used is clear to see – Physical presence and evidence of the ‘mechanic’
Digital photomontages – Breakdown of Borders -validity  The medium is information (digital age) made possible by sharing of information . physical tools have been replaced by digital tools.

Kennard Phillips rough021-500x258 reaction to war in Iraq in 2002 . untitled 2011 – shows tony blair and a child in front of a pool of blood . 2 images put together to create a representation of a fictitious event. IRAQ Blair in Iraq – 2006 –   ‘the visual arm of protest”

Lancome Teint Miracle julia-roberts-lancome-uk– Julia Roberts – was banned . claimed that it was scientific but it was photoshop. raises questions about where the line of acceptability is. Jo Swinson MP campaigning against digital retouching .

Context is King –  how do we decide what is authentic? the more context that is given to back information up the better.

Nathan Pearce –  work in process with hundreds of images  of different situations., however if you cherry pick certain images you could end up with a certain view of Nathan that does not represent his true character . Books contain context. Cannot change the representation of the artist . East of new eden.- nathans book.

When searching for images on Google the, for example when searching for artworks from famous artists. Different websites/photographers will treat photographs in a different way and do not necessarily portray a true image. What is a true representation?

Amateur – with the advent of camera phones almost everyone has the ability to take snapshots of particular instants etc. people have trust in real images from real people.
examples of unpolished, gritty film.. paranormal activity and so on. people believed that it was real because it was “real” –  Authenticity in the amateur image .

Footage of Fred Richin talking about photography in the digital age.

Asks about where photography is going? digital world , the pixel – he argues little to do with analogue photography, gave analogy to how cars were called horseless carriages.  gives examples of early use of composed images in new publications.
tried to get new standards for photographic representation in the media. wanted to introduce icons that clearly show whether or not an image has been altered.
What is the role of the professional photographer with the rise of the amateur. Amateur is more authentic. more believed. for example , atrocity in Iraq that was shot by soldiers more likely to be believed rather than official army photographs.

Photographers role is to be a reliable source, to be authentic, particularly in photo documentary.

Remember Context! Very important to remember, reference the work of others in context. give them credit for work that is theirs.

Doug Rickard & Mishka Henner. Use images from Google street view. to recreate work that they call their own.

Authenticity of the alien device.

*Mini Task – Visit Odessa Texas, – oil industry – 10 images to represent this area. research the area. use google street view. present this on blog.


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