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Florian Freimoser
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Hello, I think that this is a very interesting article and discussion and I also have difficulties understanding why the illustrations shown in the post qualify as photographs. I have been thinking about this for a while and tried to define for myself what I think a photograph is. Here is a short version of my answer: In my opinion, each photograph has content and qualities. The content is the actual subject that was photographed; a tree, a person, an animal a cloud or a complex landscape for example. For me, this is the YES or NO in photography; the bird that you wanted to photograph was either there or not (even Schrödinger's cat was either dead or alive and not both at the same time, despite quantum mechanics). As a viewer, I expect that the entire content of a photograph existed at the location and the moment where and when the shutter was released. In contrast to content, the qualities of a photograph are subjective, vary on a continuous scale and reflect the vision of the photographer. The qualities are those characteristics that everybody sees differently and comprise the color, contrast, sharpness, exposure or saturation, to name a few. Every photographer, lens or accessory displays a subject slightly differently or emphasizes another aspect of the same subject. But there was a subject (which became the content) in the real world, outside of the photographers imagination, as the source of all of these aspects. Just because the grass is greener or the sky is bluer for some people does not mean that the grass and sky do not exist or are something else. And even if a glass is half empty for some and half full for others, there is still a glass with something in it. I think that this leads to a rather simple definition for what a photograph is: For me, an image qualifies as a photograph if only the qualities were adjusted while the content has been left untouched after it was captured by the camera. This answer to the question "What is a photograph?" is part of a slightly longer text that you can find here:
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Oct 26, 2011