Monday, May 14, 2012

When is art a deception?

For a long while I have admired a certain photographers work.
I marveled at her detail and clarity, her ability to see beyond everything she photographs and her ability to capture colours.
As an artist (of the painting type) I can, and often do wonder at the many forms of art presented in different venues and styles.
Today I was looking at her latest posted photograph and asked her how she was able to photograph a scene and have it "Look" like a painting.
Her answer was "I take pictures as I see them."
Not an answer, but the best I was about to get from her.  
I was then informed (by someone else) that her photography was retouched in a photo type program that "Puts" different slants on the original picture.
Now, to my mind, if you want a painting, you paint it! and if you want a photograph you take a picture....but No!
What you do is take a picture and then manipulate it into a painting.
You pass it off as your own creation with no reference to the computer program that really made the image as it appears. 
To my mind this is lying, cheating, pulling the wool over the viewers eyes.
Yes, I know that a lot of photographers retouch portraits, and I can agree with this.
I can even agree with some colour manipulation, but we are not talking retouching here.
We are talking about changing the integrity of a photograph, turning it into something else and then sitting back and reveling in the accolades because your work is so unique and original.

If you are a photographer so be it!
And if you are a Painter, again, so be it.
But for a photographer passing off a manipulated photo as a painting is just wrong.
Worse yet, passing of a manipulated photo as an original work by yourself is just wrong and deceitful.
Especially since you do not even acknowledge the use of a computer program that actually does your work for you.
Is it a form of plagiarism?
Maybe a form of deception?
To my mind it is wrong. But then again maybe I am out of the loop.  I must say I was very hurt when I
                                           finally realized what she had been passing off as her work for so long.