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Author Topic: McCurry Scandal?  (Read 21614 times)

Ed B

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McCurry Scandal?
« on: May 10, 2016, 11:34:00 PM »

Not sure how I feel about this. On one hand he made his name shooting PJ where this is not cool. On the other hand we live in the photoshop age.

http://petapixel.com/2016/05/06/botched-steve-mccurry-print-leads-photoshop-scandal/
« Last Edit: May 10, 2016, 11:38:18 PM by Ed B »
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BartvanderWolf

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #1 on: May 11, 2016, 03:54:19 AM »

Not sure how I feel about this. On one hand he made his name shooting PJ where this is not cool. On the other hand we live in the photoshop age.

http://petapixel.com/2016/05/06/botched-steve-mccurry-print-leads-photoshop-scandal/

Hi Ed,

I do not feel that creative improvements/alterations of an image should be an issue, outside of photojournalism for the news media of course. Personally I rarely change/delete or move objects in my images. But if it helps, why not?

Cheers,
Bart
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francois

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #2 on: May 11, 2016, 04:10:39 AM »

I really don't see any scandal but more something like a surprising maladroitness that borders amateurishness.
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Francois

Rob C

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #3 on: May 11, 2016, 04:16:46 AM »

Hi Ed,

I do not feel that creative improvements/alterations of an image should be an issue, outside of photojournalism for the news media of course. Personally I rarely change/delete or move objects in my images. But if it helps, why not?

Cheers,
Bart

I think that's a reasonable attitude.

I now wonder if the 'Afghan' chick really had eyes that colour - or if I even care. I find it odd that some pictures are given such iconic status for not very much. But then, that's how life works: somebody first sets the tiny snowball rolling...

One really has to guard against cynicism; if not, the conclusion is rapidly drawn that most of everything is bullshit. That shouldn't be the experience that happens to the young.

Rob

« Last Edit: May 11, 2016, 09:11:51 AM by Rob C »
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hjulenissen

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #4 on: May 11, 2016, 06:19:31 AM »

Did the great painters do "photographic justice" to their scenes?

Using white-balance and dodging & burning and grad filters to modify a landscape is hardly "accurate" to the perception of being there, but it lets the photographer express what she wants more easily.

-h
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petermfiore

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #5 on: May 11, 2016, 07:02:03 AM »

Did the great painters do "photographic justice" to their scenes?

-h

Considering that painting predates photography by many centuries, I think not...

Peter
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AlterEgo

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #6 on: May 11, 2016, 09:36:17 AM »

comparing with WMD in Iraq  ;D
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stamper

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #7 on: May 11, 2016, 09:39:37 AM »

I have no problem with Photoshopping images.....but when it is done badly I have. :(

RSL

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #8 on: May 11, 2016, 10:07:14 AM »

Depends on whether the photograph is offered as reportage or as art. If it's the former, then any change other than normal PP to adjust brightness and sharpening shouldn't be acceptable. If the picture is offered as art, it's up to the artist. I've enjoyed Steve's photographs for several decades, and three of his books grace my photographic library. Unfortunately, it seems to me his answer sort of evades the question. His books are art, and as far as I know the pictures in question were put forward as art, so I have no beef with the changes I see -- except for the screwup. But I'd be discouraged to know that his coverage of the Iraq war, for instance, was Photoshopped beyond basic PP.
« Last Edit: May 11, 2016, 10:11:50 AM by RSL »
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Rob C

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #9 on: May 11, 2016, 10:07:29 AM »

Guess it all depends on intentions.

Sometimes, I see a picture and its title simultaneously, and then, when it gets back home, I do what I can with PS to make the title seem fit. Perhaps that's why I like to title pretty much everything: it gives it a sense of purpose... I'm afraid that the older I get the less patience I have for snaps without some sort of basic meaning, if even for the photographer alone. A photograph without meaning of some kind is somewhat like a scream in the dark, except that such a scream might at least arouse curiosity, whereas the image does not...

I walked backwards for about 50 yards down the friggin' marina today after lunch, barked at by a pitbull sort of animal; as the weather is poor, I was armed with a furled brolly, for which doubtful comfort I felt rather glad. I would have preferred a swordstick or the 9mm Beretta I never had. But then, I never had the swordstick, either. Bloody mutts.

Rob C

AlterEgo

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #10 on: May 11, 2016, 10:59:30 AM »

Unfortunately, it seems to me his answer sort of evades the question.
that will be just a David Cameron moment... offshore ? what offshore... just give him few days to assess the PR.
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ErikKaffehr

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #11 on: May 11, 2016, 11:53:59 AM »

Hi Russ,

Very well explained, I see it the same way.

Best regards
Erik

Depends on whether the photograph is offered as reportage or as art. If it's the former, then any change other than normal PP to adjust brightness and sharpening shouldn't be acceptable. If the picture is offered as art, it's up to the artist. I've enjoyed Steve's photographs for several decades, and three of his books grace my photographic library. Unfortunately, it seems to me his answer sort of evades the question. His books are art, and as far as I know the pictures in question were put forward as art, so I have no beef with the changes I see -- except for the screwup. But I'd be discouraged to know that his coverage of the Iraq war, for instance, was Photoshopped beyond basic PP.
« Last Edit: May 11, 2016, 03:48:09 PM by ErikKaffehr »
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Otto Phocus

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #12 on: May 11, 2016, 11:58:46 AM »

Depends on whether the photograph is offered as reportage or as art.

That's the way I feel about it.

But, then it is up to McCurry to make this difference clear about his photography.
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MattBurt

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #13 on: May 11, 2016, 12:09:42 PM »

I'm a big fan of his work and hope this doesn't blow up into a huge deal. It doesn't appear that his edited photos are edited for deception but for aesthetics. I occasionally need to do that too and understand. Especially for art images but even reportage imagery can get a little cleanup without being dishonest (like an arm coming into the side of the frame that doesn't relate to the rest of the photo). I understand that's not officially accepted by organizations like NG or Magnum but I can personally overlook it although being dishonest about doing it is another issue.
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ripgriffith

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #14 on: May 11, 2016, 04:31:31 PM »

I don't know if his Afghan Girl is offered as art or documentary; it is, without question, a stunning image, but I've often wondered if it isn't just a tad too coincidental that her eyes and her tunic (not her scarf) are an almost exact match to the background color of the tent.
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elliot_n

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #15 on: May 11, 2016, 05:58:35 PM »

'A Too Perfect Picture' - An interesting essay that appeared before these photoshop allegations:

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/03/magazine/a-too-perfect-picture.html
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Rajan Parrikar

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #16 on: May 11, 2016, 07:44:12 PM »

Does he even do the post-processing himself or is it handled by his assistants?

RSL

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #17 on: May 11, 2016, 08:21:57 PM »

I don't know if his Afghan Girl is offered as art or documentary; it is, without question, a stunning image, but I've often wondered if it isn't just a tad too coincidental that her eyes and her tunic (not her scarf) are an almost exact match to the background color of the tent.

Try converting that picture to B&W, Rip. I did that for a demonstration for a photo club group. The B&W is even more striking than the color version.

ripgriffith

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #18 on: May 12, 2016, 11:42:54 PM »

Try converting that picture to B&W, Rip. I did that for a demonstration for a photo club group. The B&W is even more striking than the color version.
Interesting take, but not my point.
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Slobodan Blagojevic

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Re: McCurry Scandal?
« Reply #19 on: May 13, 2016, 01:34:44 AM »

I find the whole question of documentary vs. art, when it comes to McCurry, utterly ridiculous. Of course it is documentary. If it walks like a documentary, if it quacks like a documentary, it is a documentary. Especially since most of his images first appeared in the National Geographic, which goes (or used to) to great lengths to preserve authenticity. If it turns that the Afghan girl's bulging eyes piercing stare is a result of the Photoshop's Liquify filter or Lightroom's Iris Enhance brush preset, the whole universe might implode.
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