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SportsShooter.com: Member Message Board

Interesting "Team Photo" Composite Story
Jim Colburn, Photographer
Omaha | NE | USA | Posted: 3:03 AM on 07.27.12
->> http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/olympics/article-2179224/London-2012-Olymp...
 This post is:  Informative (3) | Funny (0) | Huh? (0) | Off Topic (0) | Inappropriate (0) |   Definitions

Chuck Liddy, Photographer, Photo Editor
PLANET | EARTH | | Posted: 8:41 AM on 07.27.12
->> I love how they call the photo "stunning".
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Al Diaz, Photographer
Miami | Fl | USA | Posted: 11:47 AM on 07.27.12
->> Remarkable what you can do with technology. Stunning if he would have been allowed to arrange all the athletes and photograph them in one shot.
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Delane B. Rouse, Photographer, Photo Editor
Washington | DC | US | Posted: 11:56 AM on 07.27.12
->> I know this was a lot of work...but I don't think stunning is the word I would use either.
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Bob Ford, Photographer
Lehighton | Pa | USA | Posted: 12:20 PM on 07.27.12
->> There are now 541 more people that think it's common for newspapers to use Photoshop to add people that aren't in the picture.
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G.J. McCarthy, Photographer
Dallas | TX | US | Posted: 12:45 PM on 07.27.12
->> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N-NrPOMBKnw
 This post is:  Informative (0) | Funny (0) | Huh? (1) | Off Topic (0) | Inappropriate (0) |   Definitions

Ross Dettman, Photographer
Bensenville | IL | USA | Posted: 1:05 PM on 07.27.12
->> I agree that the image/illustration/composite is not visually stunning (but when are these kind of team photographs) but it does solve a problem - how to create a team image when it's impossible to include everyone in a single image.

Bob - the idea of adding people to team photographs is hardly a new idea or uncommon either. However, this might be more notable because the entire image has been constructed. That said, there is no trickery or deception here. They saw a problem and solved it.

If you were faced with the same challenge, how would you solve this problem?
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Bob Ford, Photographer
Lehighton | Pa | USA | Posted: 1:12 PM on 07.27.12
->> I have yet to have to shoot a team shot with 541 people, but just two nights ago while shooting a little league team shot, 2 kids weren't there. The coach asked if I could add them to the photo. I had to explain to him that doing so is unethical.

How did I handle it? In the caption I added "Also on the team..."
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Bob Ford, Photographer
Lehighton | Pa | USA | Posted: 1:14 PM on 07.27.12
->> And for the record, I know that team photographer, and T&I guys do this all the time, but this was a newspaper photographer.
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Jack Howard, Photographer, Photo Editor
Central Jersey | NJ | USA | Posted: 1:27 PM on 07.27.12
->> First there's the Higgs-Boson particle, and then there's an Al Diaz post without a blog link! Wondrous times!
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Ross Dettman, Photographer
Bensenville | IL | USA | Posted: 1:55 PM on 07.27.12
->> Bob,

I definitely see your point. But I think this situation is different in that they are not adding people to an existing image, but rather creating something from nothing.

Would I have preferred like Al, that the image be from a single photograph? Absolutely. But since that wasn't an option, should they have said that's it - no image at all. Or does it make sense to do something like this as long as it's fully disclosed, which it clearly has been here?

If we consider their methods to solve this problem unethical, then what's the solution? How would you solve the problem of creating an image that includes all of the athletes?

For the record, I strongly believe in the integrity of the photograph. I've been this way throughout my career. So there's no need to rake me over those coals. I'm just inclined to look at this situation as solving a problem vs. tricking the general populace. Correct me if I'm wrong.
 This post is:  Informative (0) | Funny (0) | Huh? (0) | Off Topic (0) | Inappropriate (0) |   Definitions

Bradly J. Boner, Photographer, Photo Editor
Jackson | WY | USA | Posted: 2:10 PM on 07.27.12
->> I'd be fine with this as long as it was clearly labeled somewhere that this was a composite image of all the athletes, however the manipulation apparently didn't stop with just stitching together the team members...

"It was our most famous cyclist, Sir Chris Hoy, who presented us with one of the biggest challenges. He was so muscly that his jacket wouldn't do up all the way so we had to use some computer trickery on that too."
 This post is:  Informative (3) | Funny (0) | Huh? (0) | Off Topic (0) | Inappropriate (0) |   Definitions

Andrew Brosig, Photo Editor, Photographer
Nacogdoches | TX | United States | Posted: 4:01 PM on 07.27.12
->> I'm with Ross and others: I don't really see a problem with this. Rather than condemning the group who conceived, proposed and accomplished this image, I think they should be applauded for a creative solution to a problem. There was no attempt to deceive the public - the nature of the final image is out there for all to see, even talked about with a bit of pride at the creation and the obstacles which were overcome. I, too, an all about the integrity of the image and have faced my share of "well, they'll just change it in photoshop anyway" comments, along with "can you get rid of my double-chin" or "can you make me look 20 again?" requests. Those are two completely different critters. Nicely done, Andy Hooper and the Daily Mail staff.
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Delane B. Rouse, Photographer, Photo Editor
Washington | DC | US | Posted: 6:36 PM on 07.27.12
->> Who condemned the group that created the image?
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Bob Ford, Photographer
Lehighton | Pa | USA | Posted: 6:46 PM on 07.27.12
->> If I was faced with coming up with a solution it would have been 541 headshots, or an obvious collage. I wouldn't have attempted to fake a group shot.

I have always been told that photo illustrations should be obvious illustrations, not an attempt to fool or trick the readers. The crew did an incredible job on seamlessly composing this photo to look like a group shot that would fool most people. Even if they clearly mark it an illustration what happens when a print shows up years from now out side of the newspaper?

Our photos aren't only seen by people today, but they become a record of history. If this photo shows up in 20, 30 or even 100 years from now the viewers will assume that 541 of the UK's best athletes got together for a group shot in 2012.
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Chuck Liddy, Photographer, Photo Editor
PLANET | EARTH | | Posted: 7:29 PM on 07.27.12
->> There is no way I would look at that photo and think it's anything but a composite. It looks cut and pasted (which it was).
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Gregory Greene, Photographer
Durham | NH | USA | Posted: 11:55 PM on 07.27.12
->> I thought it was well done to be honest. It's not like they are trying to pass it off as anything other then it is. Sounds like they had fun doing it and the athletes were very enthusiastic about it.

I seriously doubt that in 100 years people will care that much about how it was made given that it was well documented. It's not like there was some controversy around it such as a person added to the composite that wasn't a team member. Beyond that, who knows what the common practices of photojournalism will be in 20, 30, or 100 years. Technology is advancing at an ever increasing rate and no one knows what kind of affect that will have on standards over time.
 This post is:  Informative (0) | Funny (0) | Huh? (0) | Off Topic (0) | Inappropriate (0) |   Definitions

James Durbin, Photographer
Accra | Ghana | Africa | Posted: 5:05 AM on 07.28.12
->> Wasn't there a time when we were supposed to call these images "graphic illustrations?" Are the lines becoming that blurred that we can get away with calling it an "image?" My view is; just don't hide the truth.
I once made a composite portrait of the same athlete wearing three different outfits because she was a master of all three, we ran it as a "photo illustration." I suppose it is easier to tell it is a composite when the same person is viewed multiple times though.
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Thread Title: Interesting "Team Photo" Composite Story
Thread Started By: Jim Colburn
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