Introduction: DRAFT 1
Documentary photography is considered to be a reliable resource to collect data and document events in real time. Many historical events and important issues have been captured through photography to help share narratives to the world by both truth and fictional photography. We rely on documentary photography to show us the truth and to set aside false claims. Staged photography is not often associated with documentary photography due to the scenes that are physically constructed, but it has been used to help share real-world issues and historical events just as well as factual photography. In this essay I will discuss the importance of documentary photography and how staged photography can help compile visual evidence that accurately represents a person’s livelihood as well to help tell narratives of real-world issues just as much factual photography.
Introduction: DRAFT 2
Documentary photography is considered to be a reliable resource to collect data and document events in real-time. We rely on documentary photography to show us the truth and to help set aside false claims. Digital and photographic manipulation is often associated with fashion along with other promotional photography and is not something most documentary photographers openly use as it can then be classed as an unreliable resource to document the truth. Because of this, staged photography is also considered to be an unreliable resource when it comes to documentary photography due to the scenes that are physically constructed. In this essay I will discuss the importance of documentary photography and how staged photography can help compile visual evidence that accurately represents a person’s livelihood in addition to helping tell narratives of real-world issues and historic events just as well as factual photography. I will show evidence that will support this and prove that the stigma of all fictional documentary photographs being an unreliable resource for showing truth, is not always entirely the case.
This project is about using narrative in photography and showing that in a series of images, I will turn the series into a photobook alongside quotes and sentences to help tell the story. Conceptual, emotive and fine art photography is something that I am very interested in and that I am going to use in my shoot. I really sway towards staged photography and have used this method for years. Staged photography can be used in a variety of ways to show and tell many stories. Documentary photography can even be staged. For my essay, I am going to write about photography as fiction and how staged photography can be used to tell narratives in both imaginative stories and real-world issues.
Possible essay questions
How does staged photography help tell real-world issues?
Discuss how staged photography has helped share wold problems in ways documentary photography hasn’t, show ideas of this.
Discuss how staged photography can be used to tell narratives in both imaginative and real-world issues
Documentary photography vs. fictional documentary photography.
Discuss how both documentary photography and fictional documentary photography help share world issues.
How has staged photography helped tell the narratives of real-world issues and historical events?
Use photographs and events that will help your argument
How has staged photography helped tell personal stories and issues?
Research (books, websites)
Photography as Fiction by Erin C Garcia
Garcia, E. (2010) Photography As Fiction. Los Angeles, California: Getty Publications.
‘Photography is commonly associated with fact, yet it has been a medium for fiction from the very beginning. Since its inception in 1839, artists have explored photography’s vast creative potential, which included the capacity to convey deliberately crafted “untruths.”‘
- Staged Photography
- Photography associated with fact but commonly used as fiction
- Staged photography to help tell the narrative of real world issues
- Photography as fiction
- How staged photography is used to tell narratives of world issues vs made up world issued
- How fiction photography can be used as both good and bad
I have always been drawn into staged photography, there is so much freedom that allows you to bring what is in your imagination to life by constructing scenes. The works of photographers such as Gregory Crewdson and Cristina Otero mesmerise me and has continued to do so throughout my artistic education and career. They both have played a massive part of why I have such a passion for staged photography and they will inspire my work for the rest of my life.
Staged photography not only allows you to turn a thought into a reality, but allows you to document events in a way that factual photography cannot. It allows you to get awareness of an event within a safe environment. Many documentary photographers risk their mental health and/or lives whilst capturing certain events such as war photographer and photojournalists. Staging the events that do occur in situations like that not only keeps the subjects safe, but raises awareness of the event. In the storytelling essay I want to discuss how staged documentary can be a reliable resource for documenting truth just as well as factual documentary.