Reading Log Week 6

Analog to digital: the Indexical Function of Photographic Images

Digital photography turns photos from objects into data which makes them easier for editing. I have only ever worked with digital photos, having been a digital editor before taking photos of my own. This does come on to an interesting topic which I must consider in my work. Previously, when seeing an image, whether the subjects were constructed/set-up or not, you knew you were looking at reality, with digital photography and editing this is skewed.

As the article argues, “With digital technology, it is arguably easier to edit and create images of objects that never existed in reality, thus casting doubt on the reliability of photography’s connection to the real.”

I will be incorporating image editing into my final photos as I believe it is another key element to add meaning to a photo. I would argue most (to all) photos that are being used now for any purpose have been edited to some degree.

Another important aspect of digital photography is that it means a photo can be stored in multiple places and can be sent instantly. If the physical photo is needed it can be printed out but with everything moving online, newspapers, peoples blogs etc. digital photography allows for the immediate sharing of photos. The only issue with this I can see is ‘fakes’. Newspapers have been known to share images that are in fact lies, just to try and break the story before other newspapers do.

The article goes on to talk about other applications of digital photography. One I hadn’t even considered which is scientific analysis. With digital technologies, it is possible to enhance photos, for example, boost the exposure and see darker sections of an image.

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