Thursday, June 18, 2009

Action pictures (Reflection papers)

Photography is all about an action. Everything happens at one moment. A photographer captures that action by clicking a button of a camera. Such decisive moment comes to a news photographer once. He/she should decide quickly whether or not to take this picture. Often times photographers do not hesitate to take pictures if they can smell news. They can’t go from source to source as news writers to verify information before and after that action took place. They can’t organize everything like art photographers. It is a really big opportunity to take pictures of that dramatic action. Most photographers use this chance if they are really dedicated to their profession. But such kind of dedication have brought many debates in a society.

Debates were based on various understanding of photography and news values. Goldberg talks about action photos giving background information for each one. She emphasizes how powerful photography is. In contrast, Lesley Wishmann talks how unethical photography is. However, both of them talk about using the photography to do propaganda. People from different countries with different culture can use the same photography for different purpose like Americans used them in anti war movement or Romanians used in anti government protest.

Photographers can’t predict whether that particular photo will be used for propaganda. Primarily, they take pictures to inform people. Even sometimes they can’t predict if those photos will be published. All public debates and interpretations start after publishing photographs or using them frequently. The most of criticism comes from victims and their relatives because there is a privacy issue. But can a photographer think about a privacy of everybody when he faces an action. If he starts to think about it, he/she misses that action. But a photographer can do some accuracy checking after capturing that action by staying at scene for a while and asking people as a news reporter. I believe that most photographers do that because Lesley Wishmann talks about not wrong caption or accuracy of a photographer. I think a photographer should give more interpretation to his/her pictures instead of a short caption before other people start to interpret his/her photos in their own ways and use them.


March, 2001

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