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NEWMANP 13 1.6k 574 United Kingdom
19 Mar 2009 9:50PM
i think after reflecting a while, it was the shock factor of seeing such an image in the context of all the other images that stimulated my reaction.
i am very much against violence and do not like being confronted with it. i know this problem exists and yet i dont expect to see it among robins sunsets and similar eye easy work.
i have no doubt that the photograph is a well constructed image and technically sound and has a lot to say. i havnt previously seen epz used as a vehicle for such emotive realisation and i think that added to the shock factor. it seems that most members feel there is a place for reactionary images and i seem to be the only one uncomfortable with it, although of course i dont have to agree or feel comfortable with it in the same way i might not dwell on the image in an exhibition or gallery.
Bridgelayer 14 760 United Kingdom
19 Mar 2009 10:53PM
Oh for Gods sake, LIGHTEN UP!!!

Alciabides 12 536 United Kingdom
19 Mar 2009 11:13PM
[Quote]i am very much against violence and do not like being confronted with it.

I guess that we are all generally against violence (other than when necessary) but that is quite different to not liking being confronted with it. Being made to feel uncomfortable is one of the great things that art can do - it stops us in our tracks and makes it difficult to indulge in facile gestures or pretend to ourselves that our lives are not surrounded by such things - I don't on the whole think living in states of denial is a very good place to be, and that is what not being confronted encourages.
SuziBlue 18 16.2k 10 Scotland
20 Mar 2009 12:29AM
Phil you're entitled to your opinion but I disagree about your feeling that this site is for easy, comfortable imagery. Over the years on epz there have been some very raw and powerful images used to underpin some important messages and truths about the world we live in. I think this community includes a thoughtful and very perceptive group of photographers who use photography not just as a way of celebrating the beauty in life but in showing the scars and damage that also exist in people's lives.

Photography is a means of communication, of story telling, interpretation, of exploring the dark as well as the light. Powerful images are meant to elicit a reaction and to jolt us out of our comfortable complacencies, to resonate with us.

The image resonates with me incredibly strongly. Many years ago I was beaten up very, very badly and strangled almost to death by a man I lived with. He was a professional person and a violent one in private. In professional terms I was lower down the scale than he was and I didn't have the self worth or the courage at the time to involve the police or to report him to his professional body or his (our) employer (this would have ruined his career had I told people and he is now at the top of his particular professional tree).

The reason I tell this story is that this image reminds me of how far I've come, how much courage and inner strength I have now and how much I've achieved, and it also ties in, in lateral ways, with why I am passionate about certain issues and why I will not tolerate abuse, bullying, unkindness, spite and malicious gossip. So I'm glad this image was posted, and perhaps you will understand why for some people an image like this is more than simply a dark, disturbing image. It has a purpose, and its purpose will be different for each person who views it.
Grimm 14 587 6
20 Mar 2009 12:41AM
Suzi, you are a very brave and very strong woman. All my respect...
spaceman 17 5.3k 3 Wales
20 Mar 2009 12:57AM
Although I'm a fan of the photographer in question I don't care for this photograph at all, for one simple reason - it's fake. For these type of photographs to work, if they're to have any value or meaning then they must be real.
SuziBlue 18 16.2k 10 Scotland
20 Mar 2009 1:22AM
Thanks Glenn.

I just don't think you can lock real life away when you're talking about the instinct to create images and interpret what life's about - there are going to be some hard, jagged edges that need expression of some kind whether that's through photography or music or painting - whatever creative medium one uses.

All of us use photography to express something - whether it's as an escape from the real world or a head-on engagement with it. Some choose to explore the human condition and some choose to commune with robins, with a jumble of people between the two who fit somewhere along the line. Smile
StrayCat 17 19.1k 3 Canada
20 Mar 2009 1:23AM
We are exposed to so much violence in various media outlets that I find it difficult to believe that the image in question evokes so much response in people. I'm certainly not immune to having emotions brought on by images, far from it, but as spaceman says, this is fake.

Everyone has their cross to bear, excuse the expression, but I saw a video a couple of years ago that sort of makes everything else pale in comparison. It was a documentary about the honour killings that go on in certain parts of the world, and it has stuck with me ever since; it was extremely powerful. This young woman had refused to marry the man her family had chosen for her, so her own family doused her with gasoline and set her on fire. The video showed her in a hospital bed, squirming and writhing in agony. No hair, very little flesh remaining unburnt, and she couldn't make a sound, but the expressions of pain on her face said it all. She died the following day. It was excruciating to watch.

I'm not downplaying the violence presented by the image in question here, I just wonder if people see what's happening in our world. I love everything to do with wildlife and nature in general, but sometimes I wonder about the emphasis put on protecting animals, when things like I described above are virtually unknown to the majority of people in the world.

Sometimes it just feels to me like our priorities are all out of whack.

Suzie, The Ba****d who beat you should pay, and I'm sorry you endured what you did. Don't take my post the wrong way; it's not meant to belittle anybody's experiences.

SuziBlue 18 16.2k 10 Scotland
20 Mar 2009 1:42AM
I'm surprised, Spaceman and Denny, that the image feels too fake and doesn't feel effective or powerful because of that. Sometimes a symbol or a representation of something can be just as powerful as the actual reality, and the fact that the bruising is digitally manipulated doesn't alter its effect on me one iota. But that's because it's on a photographic site - a creative forum - where I expect images to be creative, affective and effective.

It would be interesting to see what you thought if a photo were to be to manipulated to the extent that you couldn't tell if it was fake or not. If you then discovered it was fake would that alter your emotional responses .. would you feel cheated by the manipulation?

[edit] Denny no offence taken at all. I know what you're getting at with the documentary Smile
StrayCat 17 19.1k 3 Canada
20 Mar 2009 2:04AM
Suzie, do you remember the photo of the bullfighter driving his sword into the bull; it was posted on here a couple of years ago, and caused a bit of a stir, and some misguided folk seemed to blame the photographer for the whole thing, and tried to take it out on him. I haven't seen an image posted by him in a long time; I believe he left, and his name eludes me. That was real, and I could feel an adrenilin rush when I first looked at the photo; captured at the most effective moment of the action. I was amazed at the photo for its raw portrayal of what some people call a sport, but I was taken with the photo, not any message, or feeling of disgust at what the picture showed; just the power that the captured moment had over my emotions; like I was there in person.

It's difficult for me to draw an analogy here; we all see things differently, I guess. It doesn't mean that violence against a person doesn't affect me, it's that the photo in question doesn't do it for me. When I went in to see my eldest son who had been beaten by a gang of thugs one New Year's Eve, and I looked around the ward and didn't see him, till he mumbled "Hi Dad." and my other son, who was with me, just collapsed onto the floor when he saw his brother; that hit me between the eyes.
Carabosse 18 41.7k 270 England
20 Mar 2009 2:10AM
I certainly remember it. As I recall the photographer was set upon for his support of bullfighting rather than the photo itself!
StrayCat 17 19.1k 3 Canada
20 Mar 2009 2:21AM

Quote:As I recall the photographer was set upon for his support of bullfighting rather than the photo itself!

It was only an assumption by the people on here that he supported it. He claimed he was a journalist, and it was probably his job to report on the spectacle. It doesn't make any sense to attack the person who took the photo, but that's what happened.
Carabosse 18 41.7k 270 England
20 Mar 2009 2:43AM
Was this the discussion we are thinking of?
StrayCat 17 19.1k 3 Canada
20 Mar 2009 3:11AM
Yes, CB, thanks. Quite an education to read those comments again. As I said, raw violence. It's a shame that the photographer was attacked the way he was. He made a good point about photographing war; we don't judge war photojournalists morals or beliefs on the photos they take.
StrayCat 17 19.1k 3 Canada
20 Mar 2009 5:06AM
Well, since everyone's gone to bed, I'm off to the Whammy Bar and Grille.Wink

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