Which photograph came first? A fascinating blog by Errol Morris

Discussion in 'Philosophy' started by Glenn McCreery, Oct 25, 2007.

  1. A fascinating blog by Errol Morris may be found in the New York Times web
    edition at, http://morris.blogs.nytimes.com/2007/10/23/which-came-first-
    He examines in great detail how to prove which of two photographs by Roger
    Fenton of cannonballs in the Crimean War was taken first and if the second
    photo was staged. This is actually a lot more interesting question than my last
    sentence would indicate.
  2. Try acessing the blog at http://morris.blogs.nytimes.com/ rather than the above address. You may need to register first (which is free).
  3. Interesting. A couple of points. Before Roger Fenton and his contemporaries took these photos all newspaper illustrations were engravings from artists drawings so possibly moving the odd cannon ball may not have seemed a problem.

    Also when you think that these guys had to take a whole dark room around with them I reckon they cold take a few liberties. When they wanted to take a shot the had to set up the camera, frame it and focus it under their dark cloth, then coat the plates in the darkroom, load the wet plates into the film holders, remove the camera focussing screen, replace it with the plate holder, withdraw the slide, make the exposure, close the holder, remove the plate from the holder in the darkroom, develop it and fix it - all while the emulsion was wet. And all in a war zone. Inpressive.

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