Photojournalism: Photography and Real Life Perspective

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Photography’s Effect On Journalism

Since photography has been incorporated into the world of journalism, it has aimed to portray particular images and provoke a feeling or emotion in the reader of the article. The two work together in the goal of creating impact. A photo allows for a “real life” perspective of the story or event and can add aesthetic pleasure, which in turn draws in the reader. Photography is used in news articles, feature articles and can be categorized as “iconic” often capturing a moving moment in history. However, journalism that incorporates photography does not necessarily depict a more realistic account of the story. Iconic photographs project a specific image and can add impact to an article. They usually document significant periods in our history. A popular example of this being “The Great Depression”. (Locaites & Harimon, 37) Photographers see potential for their photo to be considered iconic and historical and will often manipulate the photo to project an image of intensity and significance. The photo with Barack Obama hugging the War veteran with prosthetic legs is an example of this. We assume it is a war veteran though it simply could have been someone who was born handicapped. Photojournalists lead readers into the direction they want the article to go. It is much more beneficial for the Journalist if the reader is dramatically moved by the photo and believes it is in some way a staple of history.

War and terror are common themes in many recognizable iconic photos as these traumatic events in history have been present in almost every generation. Such subject matter is often applicable in someway to the reader despite their age or cultural background. This is due to War’s effect on society as a whole, not exclusively the people and communities it targets directly. Michael Griffin writes regarding the many effects of Photojournalism during the Vietnam War, “Vietnam War coverage...
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