Human Involvement

As a photographer I am used to certain ways of producing my work. I generally am set to explore the world without much consideration for how images can be produced without direct human intervention and how current state of technology allows for this to happen.

This week’s activities made me think about other ways images are captured and how we, humans, are ALWAYS, involved in this process, whether we like to admit it or not.

When I pick up my camera and make a photograph, I feel I am directly responsible for that process. I am in the driver’s seat. But what happens where there is another driver’s seat? A seat for a technology, developed by humans of course, that can create as good images as humans can by using their cameras.

Looking at how images can be made without direct human involvement made me realize that photography is a complex discipline. Evolving at super fast speed, it provides us practitioners with many resources to tap into in order to follow our own vision. After all, what is stopping any of us from acquiring images made by other sources and use it for our purpose?

Watch Me

This image was captured by one of our security cameras. While it was not made by a human directly, humans were involved with developing the electronic system and setting up the equipment to capture such images. 

Technical process of image production through security cameras is quite interesting. Connected to a central monitoring system, the surveillance cameras send footage back to a monitor that displays what the cameras see. The system then sends a closed signal to the receiving monitor, allowing viewing to be strictly observed by the connected equipment only.

In my case, when I am away from home, I can also access it through my phone and have the ability to view and/or capture images of the security camera shots at anytime. 


I must say the current advancement of technology scares me a little. Are we going too far with monitoring and the intervention into private moments? After all, all the equipment in the world doesn’t have the “human decency” to think, stop and change the thought process of making images. It is set to monitor and capture images without the emotions.

I rely on my camera and have a very intimate relationship with it. I feel that my Canon, through capturing my images becomes this source of secret information, almost like a witness to my travels, my personal moments, my everyday activities. Someone that sees it through the lens, and someone that sees me and my reactions as well. I very rarely leave it at home. When I do, I feel like a part of me is missing.

There is no substitute for the apparatus of my choice, yet , sometimes I use other ways to capture images and come out with very unexpected results, like this image below that we took using a cell phone to catch our reflection in a part of the coffee maker.

After all, photography is about making images and creativity. For me, it is about finding different ways to capture that moment in time and try to differentiate myself from others. Am I able to do that? Sometimes I feel I do. Sometimes I feel that many practitioners before me explored this medium so much that there is not much left for me. Notwithstanding, I will continue to explore and look for ways to be different in my work as for me that is one of many reasons photography continues to fascinate me.


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