Sunday, October 15, 2006

Digital Triage

With the advent of digital photography I find that a lot of people in the field photographic triage. Imagine all the pics that we thought were "bad" and promptly deleted forever. Some of the greatest pictures were "snapshots" that today would probably have been deleted because the photographer thought they were "bad" I think this really illustrates that possibly some of the greatest shots will be deleted in the future just because...

A lot of the great images of the 20th century were spontaneous and not thought out, and in the end did not come out "technically perfect." When Joe Rosenthal took his famous image of the raising of the American flag over Iwo Jima he did not initially like the image. His intention was to have all the Marines looking at him. He looked up and they were already raising the flag and the guys were not looking at him when he took the photo. If it had been done with a digital camera, he could have made the decision in the field that the second image was better and forwarded that one to the editor, and deleted the now famous image. I know that there are times I have done a shot that I thought was horrid, only to have people tell me that it was a GREAT shot. I did not see what they were seeing and I do delete images in the field.

I have great respect for Joe Rosenthal's work. It's not easy to be a photographer in that type of situation, so any image is an accomplishment, and an amazing image such as the raising of the flag is a greater feat. Basically, I think that a lot of us do on the field triage of our photographs, that one day could be considered fantastic images. A lot of famous images of the past could have easily been deleted right in the spot because the photographer deemed it as "bad" even though it was a fantastic capture.

Make one think doesn't it....

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