I look at it from two catagories, photography vs graphic arts. Where is the boundry and how wide the gray area.
All cameras are basically the same; a lens, a light tight box, and a light sensitive medium. It really does not matter whether the image is recorded on film or digitally. The image right from the camera is essentially unmanipulated. In the darkroom, the traditional photographer will use what ever means at his disposal to achieve a print for the intended use, be it gallery, newspaper, magazines, etc. He can dodge, burn, control contrast, flash, color correction, tone, bleach, control exposure.
Now the traditional photographer can scan his images, digitize them. Here is where the digital and the traditional photographer merge. Now both can go into Photo Shop and do the very same things to images done in the traditional darkroom.
It would seem, the real problem is just how much manipulation can one do where he crosses the line between photography and graphic arts? How much manipulation, how far can you alter an image where it becomes something alien, different from the original image?
I believe you can manipulate an image far more once it is digitized in Photo shop then in the traditional darkroom. Even add and remove elements, like that news photographer did. Or even form abstracts as in what Gordon Parks did in one of his books of digital art.
The commercials for Ford with the photographer lugging his LFP camera around are digital and look heavely manipulated, super imposed, montaged. You can sure put a twist on reality with digital.
</span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (dnmilikan @ Apr 9 2003, 07:42 AM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'>
Does there exist, today, any guiding body within the photographic community that would become involved in the establishment of this defining process? </td></tr></table><span class='postcolor'>
as a matter of fact there is a "governing body"--or rather a professional organization for news photographers. The NPPA, and they've been around for over 50 yrs and have a code of ethics that began including statements about digital manipulation back in 1990. The core is in accurate representation and any altering of editorial content is strictly a breach of standards...
There's a difference bewtween how papers handle illustrations and news, but I don't think would anyone argue that LA Times story was anything but "news" though. There have been other instances over the years, like the National Geographic cover with the Wailing Wall or the Day In the Life books--like CA, where digital alterations were made to "editorial" type images used in a commerical way. The day in the Life books, took the track that the book covers were used to sell the product,, not as a true editorial type image. But there have been discussions about this stuff for years...I've been a member for almost 18 yrs now, and remember going to conferences back in the 80s when they were talking about this sort of thing. Nothing new, but this guy was incredibly stupid to try that, this day in age--he'll probably never work in the industry again. I worked with a guy who was fired from a paper once for falsifying a name in a cutline....it'd been almost twenty years now and I don't think he's worked for another paper since. It's a small world & word gets around.
I can think of one area where the amount of manipulation - whether the image starts out as film or CCD - is of *vital* importance - when a photograph is used as evidence in a criminal - or possibly marginally less important - civil trial.
Once I was contacted by Lawyer representing a teen-ager who had been accused by the police of reckless driving. My photographs, taken as a bystander - I happened to be there - showed that a stop sign that he supposedly violated (there was an accident) was, in fact, screened from view by shrubbery. I supplied a number of 8" x 10" black and white prints - I know the case was dismissed upon presentation of these photographs - but I wasn't called to testify.
There must be some criteria where opposing legal practioners can argue over the validity of the photographs and the prints ... but I have no idea what they might be.
Anyone out there have any experience/ thoughts about "Evidence" photography?
Ed, I believe for court you need to have the negs as well as the prints. I also think the photographer has to swear that these are in fact his unmanipulated work.
</span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (Aggie @ Apr 21 2003, 07:11 PM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'>It does need to be like you said Michael, ...
Sometimes there is enough common sense amoung attorneys to know when the evidence will kill their case and move before go on further.</td></tr></table><span class='postcolor'>
There ARE times when there is "common sense" among atorneys? My daughter is a Legal Secretary ... and she just giggled a LOT when she read that....
My daughter's fiancee is a Police Officer, and he uses a Digital Camera in his work. I'm not sure whether those images are ever used as evidence or only as "tools" in the investigations ... I'll ask him when I get a chance.
Hmm ... " the negative would be necessary?" What safeguard could there be against a secondary - manipulated - negative?
I guess it comes down to "under oath". A person or witness could also lie about what they see. That is essentially the same thing as a manipulated image.