Framing The World Through My Photographs

Assignment 1 – When did image tampering begin

Before researching into images manipulation I hadn’t realised how far back image tampering went back, I though it was a relatively new process that was introduced along with digital age and the introduction of Photoshop.

I found that image tampering started back in the 1860’s, meaning image tampering goes back 153 years. I hadn’t realised how easily negatives could be changed to look seemingly untouched.

Early image edits were done for the use in politics and propaganda. For example:

1. 1862 – This image of  U.S. President Abraham Lincon (left image) was tampered with by placing his head onto Southern politician’s John Calhouns’s body.

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2. 1930 – Joseph Stalin had his enemies airbrushed out of his photographs (original image on the right)

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Image Tampering In Journalism

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This cover of the National Geographic is a notable case of image manipulation in journalism. The two Pyramids had been moved closer together so that the image could be portrait. This image was used as an example in Fred Ritchin’s- The Pixelated Press.

Image Tampering in the ‘Glamour’ industry

The photo manipulation industryis often accused of creating and promoting a distorted or unrealistic body image.

Photo manipulation has received negative responses from both the viewer and celebrities, which in some cases has lead some celebrities refusing to have there images published if they have been re touched, with the support of The American Medical Association who have deemed excessive photo re touching to be detrimental to your health.

In the reading “on photography” (1977), Susan Sontag discusses the objectivity, or lack thereof, in photography, concluding that “photographs, which fiddle with the scale of the world, themselves get reduced, blown up, cropped, retouched, doctored and tricked out”


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This entry was posted on February 23, 2013 by in Creative Digital Practice and tagged , , , , .
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