Faking It — Before Photoshop
The term “Photoshopping” has these days become synonymous with photo manipulation. But the practice is much older than the computer software — about as old as photography itself.
An exhibition now on display at Washington, D.C.’s National Gallery of Art is exploring just that: The collaging, cutting, pasting and coloring that preceded digital photography.
The exhibition raises questions about truth in photography. Is there such a thing? Even if you don’t physically alter the image, isn’t composition itself a form of manipulation?
"Sometimes a photograph can be posed because it excludes something," film director Errol Morris once said. "Isn’t there always an elephant just outside the frame?" (The Picture Show : NPR)
Photo: Man in bottle, c. 1888 (J.C. Higgins and Son)

Faking It — Before Photoshop

The term “Photoshopping” has these days become synonymous with photo manipulation. But the practice is much older than the computer software — about as old as photography itself.

An exhibition now on display at Washington, D.C.’s National Gallery of Art is exploring just that: The collaging, cutting, pasting and coloring that preceded digital photography.

The exhibition raises questions about truth in photography. Is there such a thing? Even if you don’t physically alter the image, isn’t composition itself a form of manipulation?

"Sometimes a photograph can be posed because it excludes something," film director Errol Morris once said. "Isn’t there always an elephant just outside the frame?" (The Picture Show : NPR)

Photo: Man in bottle, c. 1888 (J.C. Higgins and Son)

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