It might seem conceited, but I’m not ashamed to say I’m not often blown away by many photographs anymore. It’s probably the same for experienced magicians when they see other magicians at work. When you know how the illusion is performed, it loses its, erm… magic. …At least, some of it.
When I was in school, I used to collects clippings of photographs that made an impression on me, from newspapers. But it seems that today I can browse a hundred thousand images in newspapers, magazines, and certainly online, before finding one that offers a similar level of fascination, intrigue, entertainment, enlightenment, or simply sheer astonishment.
The mechanics of digital photography are little different from the film era, however digital photographers tend to rely far more heavily on computer software to achieve their “perfect” images. This unfortunately means that in the majority of images, less attention might have been paid to the authentic in-camera capture of the image. Another way of saying this is that the reality aspect of photography is neglected as photographers favour fantasy. Authenticity is a far lesser-valued commodity in photography than it was even 15 years ago.
However, there are still times when, despite these blurred lines between fact and fantasy, “photographers” are still able to create images that capture the imagination and convey information captivatingly. Here is an example of just such a project that I feel blends some of the best aspects of the new form, with the old.
The Cape Times Newspaper, together with Lowe Cape Town created this campaign of iconic press images, convincingly altered to look as though they have been captured in the all-too-familiar self-shot style that rampantly polut… sorry, populate the internet today.
The message, is two-fold: “We were there when it happened.”, and “You can’t get any closer to the news than this.”
It’s a statement that reaches back to the past, encapsulates present trends, and makes one wonder about the future.
I think it’s very clever. …And fun.