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  1. #1
    Richard Sintchak (rich815)'s Avatar
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    Hmmm....How Photography Was Optimized for White Skin Color

    How Photography Was Optimized for White Skin Color

    http://priceonomics.com/how-photogra...or-white-skin/
    -----------------------

    "Well, my photos are actually much better than they look..."

    Richard S.
    Albany, CA (San Francisco bay area)

    My Flickr River of photographs
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  2. #2

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    "There are a great many things I am in doubt about at the moment, and I should consider myself favoured if you would kindly enlighten me. Signed, Doubtful, off to Canada." (BJP 1914).

    Regards
    Bill

  3. #3

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    Who cares.

    Go take pictures.
    5x7 Eastman-Kodak kit, under the knife for a bit
    4x5 Graphic View / Schneider 180 / Ektar 127
    RB67 Pro S / 50 4.5 / 90 3.8 / 180 4.5 / WLF / prism finder / polaback
    Random 35mm stuff

  4. #4
    benjiboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Sintchak (rich815) View Post
    How Photography Was Optimized for White Skin Color

    http://priceonomics.com/how-photogra...or-white-skin/
    Thanks Richard, being a keen portrait photographer who has photographed many people of different racial origins I have suspected that this is the case for years, and I find this article very interesting. I usually meter the sitters face then in the same lighting hold a Kodak Grey Card in front of their face and meter that and adjust my exposure to allow for the difference in tone.
    Last edited by benjiboy; 04-25-2015 at 10:53 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    Ben

  5. #5
    Jerevan's Avatar
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    Read the second, linked thread.

    A photograph is the result of a very long chain of events and variables and thus, if you aren't able to control most parts of it, well - you might get suboptimal results. Irregardless of it being a green, yellow, white or black person in the photograph.

    I believe the original article would have had benefitted from some more footwork and research.
    “Do your work, then step back. The only path to serenity.” - Lao Tzu

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by benjiboy View Post
    Thanks Richard, being a keen portrait photographer who has photographed many people of different racial origins I have suspected that this is the case for years, and I find this article very interesting. I usually meter the sitters face then in the same lighting hold a Kodak Grey Card in front of their face and meter that and adjust my exposure to allow for the difference in tone.

    "Quote Originally Posted by pbromaghin View Post

    The article is worthless from the first word to the last. As has been shown, the difficulty with black people's skin is entirely a technical issue of not enough light photons bouncing off it. The author is race bating, pure and simple. What a wast of time."


    QUOTE=benjiboy]True, incompetent photographers making exposure errors by not correctly compensating in calculating their exposures for black skin and how much it differs in tone from 18% Grey is nothing to do with the film or it's manufacturers and the article only goes to prove to me that racialism isn't only confined to Caucasians..
    [/QUOTE]




    You have refined your thinking over the year
    "There are a great many things I am in doubt about at the moment, and I should consider myself favoured if you would kindly enlighten me. Signed, Doubtful, off to Canada." (BJP 1914).

    Regards
    Bill

  7. #7

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    saying photography was optimized for white skin without giving context is looking for trouble. The hard truth is that in the countries where photography was developed folks of the dark brown persuasion were not often considered, and mostly in the minority, so a tendency to lean towards folks with pink skin was just what was.

    Doesn't mean anything. A good photographer always, even then, considered the subject, not the prevailing average.

  8. #8

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    Isn't photography actually idealized for a mid range tonal value? The first known photograph wasn't even of a living being, it was of a building, so you could more accurately say that from the outset photography was idealized for landscapes. It would have to be a mid range thing in order to capture the full range of what is out there (out there being outside of our heads). I don't for one instant think it has anything to do w/ race. I'm "white" and have a couple of "black" females running around the house, one w/ a tail and one w/o. Both are easy enough to photograph if you give them a little more exposure. The one w/ a tail is darker, so she needs a little more exposure in order to get anything on the neg that you might call detail. The one w/o a tail needs careful lighting to avoid reflections. No big deal. PCism Gone Wild!

    Next, I shall prove that the earth is not flat, and that gravity means that if you drop something it generally falls downward.
    Last edited by momus; 04-25-2015 at 12:01 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  9. #9
    MartinCrabtree's Avatar
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    yep
    ".............you don't see no hearses with luggage racks................"

  10. #10
    benjiboy's Avatar
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    [QUOTE
    in the countries where photography was developed folks of the dark brown persuasion were not often considered, and mostly in the minority, so a tendency to lean towards folks with pink skin was just what was.
    This only goes to prove the original premise that films were optimized for white skin which I believe there is a lot of truth in.
    Ben

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