It is believed digital image manipulation does not affect the value of images as the image is still classified as a image, a genuine production as it is not copying the idea of another image but enhancing its features. According to “dictionary.com” image is defined as: a physical likeness or representation of a person, animal, or thing, photographed, painted, sculptured, or otherwise made visible. According to Oxford’s The Australian Dictionary, manipulation is defined as: to arrange or influence cleverly or craftily, to alter or adjust them to suit one’s purposes. Therefore a digitally manipulated image is still considered a image as it a edited photograph, it may be considered a photograph or a image that has been made visible that has been altered to suit a specific purpose.
Humans have always wanted something more advanced than what they already had, at first humans were excited when the camera was invented. They then wished to manipulate the photos as they were not satisfied with them, therefore they manipulated the images by retouching with ink, paint, double-exposure as well as piecing photos or negatives together in the darkroom and scratching polaroids. (extracted from en.wikipedia.org) As humans advanced to inventing computers and the ability to manipulate images using computers, people start to wonder whether digital image manipulation affects the value of images when image manipulation has been around since the early 1860’s. Why question the ethics of manipulation when it has been used for such a long time without complaint and people were at first eager for the invention of image manipulation? Although the image may not be digitally manipulated, the manipulated image has its own value as it is no longer the same image it was before it was altered. Although some people may prefer to see the real unaltered images, altered images give people a sense of imagination. It brings people into a world of perfection and lets people see into the manipulator’s idea of a perfect image. Therefore it is unreasonable to question the art of digital image manipulation when image manipulation has been around for as long as photographs.
In some cases people require to digitally manipulate their images due to their reputation. For example Vogue fashion magazine would edit their images if it is unsatisfactory due to consumer’s high standards for the magazine. Humans are a very criticising race, if they see something that they disapprove of it will be published all over the media. A primary school’s crossing supervisor was banned from high-fiving students and parents (Herald Sun newspaper 10th March 2009) people can even get outraged at a crossing supervisor high-fiving students! Everybody has different opinions and as it is best to side with the opinion of the larger population to avoid media attention, many magazines and websites will manipulate their images to achieve the required outcome. Although magazines and websites mainly manipulate images to achieve their required outcome, they should only manipulate images that are their own. One should never manipulate an image owned by another and claim the image as their own as this can violate copyright. Manipulating a image owned by another and claiming the image as their own does affect the value of the image as it may be classified as ‘in-genuine’ as the image is not being produced from scratch by the manipulator who may broadcast their own image however they wish. Therefore although manipulating self-created images does not affect the value of the image, altering another’s images may not only affect the value of the image, but also the manipulator’s own reputation.
Although digitally manipulating a self-created image does not affect the value of the image as self-created images can be broadcast however the manipulator likes as it may be required due to reputation and in order to avoid unwanted media attention. The manipulated image is still considered a image, the only difference is the image has been altered to suit its specific purpose.
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