NY Times – Cameras Are Racist

The Racial Bias Built Into Photography – The New York Times

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15 Responses to NY Times – Cameras Are Racist

  1. arn says:

    They must be – all cameras I ‘ve seen so far are black
    just as most of a photo-negative generally is.

    And thx god, after almost 200 years someone, of course a POS from NY,
    made this extraordinary discovery.
    What would this planet only be with NY dogooder intellectualis?
    Probably less crazy,less perverted,less parasitic and less vaccinated.

    And if photography is racist – what is Hollywood?
    Racism 24x per second and even 60x with digicams.

  2. Richard E Fritz says:

    still a Rag always a Rag

  3. D. Boss says:

    Well if you read the entire article, this low functioning Harvard professor, who is black makes a tortured path to explain that the physical properties of light and capturing images via both film and digital photography, is somehow to blame for not making persons of color more visible in portrayals.

    She uses an example of being on stage for a video shoot, and the female lighting technician called out from the back of the auditorium that it was going to be difficult to light her, because her jacket was lighter than her face. A simple statement of fact. (i.e. if you have something bright and highly reflective on your torso, and a dark face, to get enough light reflecting from the face, the jacket will be overexposed and make a blooming effect – conversely to stop down so the jacket is not overexposed, the face will be too dark to see the details)

    This is simply woke gibberish. With very low budget for a video of a dumba$$ conference on wokeness, the lighting tech and videographer did not have the means to light the scene to mitigate this high contrast condition. The simple solution would have been to wear a darker colored jacket.

    I speak from a position of knowledge, having worked in motion picture production for 15 years, on sets. It is the epitome of “hurry up and wait” because all the departments have to hustle to get prepared for shooting, then sit on our asses drinking coffee while we wait for the lighting and photo departments to get the scene lighted. It takes hours to get the lighting, shadows, colors and screens and flags, and color gels on lights just right to shoot a 30 second scene.

    I once worked on a low budget B movie starring Peter Fonda, where the Director of Photography was Jack Cardiff, who shot “The African Queen” – a master at light and shadow. We were shooting in a defunct strip club and he was taking hours and hours to light the scene just right. We kept hearing him call out for a 150 watt pepper light here, or such and such flag there, and we said amongst ourselves “WTF is he doing???” Until he was done and then holy crap, it was the most amazing scene any of us had ever seen. This man could use the lights, etc as a his palette to paint a masterful rendition of what the mood of the scene required.

    Photography is a tool, and in inept hands, or with limited time and money can look terrible for any color skin. Or it can be a masterpiece in skilled hands with sufficient time and money to set up the conditions so the film or video captures the desired essence.

    • oeman50 says:

      Thanks, Boss, for the insight.

      I put this NYT article in the same category that automatic water faucets in restrooms are “racist” because a black woman had difficulty in getting one to work. Guess what, I have had the same problem and I aint black.

      • Conrad Ziefle says:

        Most white people I know don’t pay any attention to skin color, and are too busy dealing with their lives to invent ways to mess with other people.

    • arn says:

      I’d have never thought that a B movie = which means Peter Fonda :),
      would give a camera guy the opportunity to light a single scene for hours,
      especially when the budget is already stretched thin to pay an top class camera guy.

      My guess is Roger Corman was not involved in the production.

      • D. Boss says:

        Even low budget B movies take hours to light a scene. This was actually a decent script, and could have been a decent TV or direct to video piece, however the producers lied to everyone, and didn’t have the money to finish it. And Peter Fonda actually pulled the plug partway through shooting as he did not want the crew to get stiffed on their pay.

        He was a very personable and down to earth guy. We did special effects, practical not computer crap. And one of our guys did special effects make up, and we needed to get a cast of Peter Fonda’s face to make a large scar prosthetic. So on a Saturday he came up to our shop wearing a T shirt and carrying a case of beer and told us stories for the several hours it took to make the mold,

        He was one of the most down to earth, descent celebrities we’d ever met. Hated his sister with a passion, and told us how he and Dennis Hopper made Easy Rider. The studios wouldn’t fund it, so he ran up his American Express and Diner’s cards to produce the film. And retained all rights to the film, and to that point (early 1990’s) it had made him 250 million. Daddy did not leave him anything, but he did alright.

        I’ve worked with 3 Fonda’s, Peter, his daughter Bridget and Hanoi Jane. Bridget was pleasant and courteous, but Jane is an annoying, condescending bitch in person. She’s a really good actress, but terrible personality.

  4. Mac says:

    I knew it. I woke up one night to find my camera burning a cross on a neighbor’s lawn. I’ve been very suspicious ever since.

  5. Conrad Ziefle says:

    I think Boss nailed it, but it is too hilarious of an idea to not say anything. Well, I’m at a disadvantage, because I won’t read an article with such a spurious title. I’ll just point out that, cameras, like most other inventions valued by all the people of Earth, was invented by white people and used extensively in white society before leaking out to the rest of the peoples, who all enjoy and love its use. Hence, they love us white folks for giving it to them. Since it started in white lands, maybe the recommended settings for portraits are suggested based on white people, but as anyone who is familiar with a camera, a real one, knows there are many settings and adjustments, which a good photographer knows to change to get a the best photo of his subject. There is even this idea called “bracketing” where you pick an ideal setting and then take photos one stop above and also below, just in case one of those settings is actually better. Now I have in my house copies of absolutely gorgeous photos taken of Native Americans. I have seen many exquisitely defined photos of Black folks. So someone knows how to adjust the settings for the best result for varying shades of skin color. It may just be that the author of the article is a horrible photographer, and has foolishly offered the thesis that the nature world, particularly the spectrum of radiation called light, hates black people. What a really dangerous idea that is.

    • arn says:

      Black people have the simple disadvantage of reflecting less information back –
      dipshits who do not know how to compensate that,
      or your average lowIQ NYT journalist who makes 5-8 photos a year with a smartphone while only pushing a single button(they let the autooptions and standardsettings do the rest),
      and if the results ain’t good,
      especially amongst less educated people, the it is racism.

      And they can’t be bothered with the fact that many lenses and almost all sensors and chips,the software and standard settings are made in Asia.
      But blaming Asians can never be the intention of a virtue signal – this could be considered racist.

  6. Gamecock says:

    “We have a problem. Your jacket is lighter than your face. That’s going to be a problem for lighting.”

    A statement of fact. To which people holler, “Racist!”

    The result will be the technician won’t alert people in the future. Which begs the question, “How much must you hate someone to not correct them?” Correction is an act of love. The tech was trying to help them. He won’t in the future.

  7. Russell Cook says:

    “Clima-Change™” causes increasing numbers of hernia injury hospitalizations resulting from people pulling the race card too hard.

  8. Christopher Witzel says:

    Maybe Biden was right, no one should own a Canon.

  9. Tel says:

    Out of curiosity … where in Africa was the camera invented? Who were the early subjects for portrait photography?

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