like manipulations : LUSENET : Ethics in Photography: Digital and Analog Perspectives : One Thread

OK, I'll go first.

Why is it considered OK to manipulated an image in the darkroom, but that same manipulation is considered fakery when done digitally? What is the difference between darkening or lightening the sky with dodge/burn techniques in the darkroom or with image-adjust in photoshop?

-- rob dalrymple (, October 13, 1998


I'm going to say that people think that computers make these techniques too easy. Personally I think that digital image manipulation has opened a great new gateway in the world of photography.

-- Jesse Woodruff (, May 25, 1999.

I believe that whether it is done in a darkroom or digitally as long photo manipulation is done to inhance the quality of a photo say color or image quality it would not be considered fakery, but when photo manipulation of any sort is done in photojournalism that is a different thing all together that is just like manipulation of a artical for personal or political gain.

-- michael stonecipher (, April 23, 2001.

Even darkroom manipulations have been considered fakery so the latest uproar about digital manipulations is just a variation on a very old theme. Reijlander's "The Two Ways of Life" was made in the late 1800's by combining something like a dozen negatives into a single final print. It was condemned by the purists but is one of the better known early photos. Likewise, Jerry Uelsman's darkroom manipulations were not warmly received at first.

Unless the manipulations is passed off as reality, there is no reason why darkroom or computer manipulations should be treated any differently or not considered valid.

Ron Gratz

-- Ron Gratz (, June 13, 2002.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ