When is a photograph not a photograph?.
Much controversy surrounds this issue and has the capability of inviting the displeasure of many who read about it. Let's start at the very beginning, it concerns the word photograph which is derived from two Greek words, PHOTOS which means light, and GRAPHEIN which means write. So we now see that it literally means 'to write with light'. The word photograph was coined by Sir John Herschel on March 14th, 1839. In our modern world where most photography is digitally enhanced on a PC can it be said that we are 'writing with light', because this concept surely only applies at the moment of capture of an image, where the photographer uses his/her skills to manipulate the available light to produce an image. To then transfer the images to an editing software program where they are then enhanced beyond what was captured originally could raise many questions. There is of course nothing wrong with this new technology and how glad we all are that it is available to us, and how fortunate we are to have the capability of rescuing an image that if it was on film, would probably have ended up in the trash bin. Perhaps it is time for some brilliant academic to coin a new phrase for our beloved pastime which would reflect the amazing technology we have at our fingertips, or is it a case of the term 'photography' being synonymous with all the wonderful imagery we see of landscapes, people, sport, wars, et al. Take the word 'Hoover', don't most of us say we will 'hoover' the carpet, when we use our vacuum cleaners, I guess it's because this was the first brand we heard of, after W.H.Hoover,(1849-1932). So the word photography will probably be around for eternity, and who can argue against that?.