I think a lot about the onslaught of iPhone images - about all the Hipstamatic and Instagram pictures that are streaming in front of our eyes these days. I wonder whether or not the ones I make could be considered "fine art" or "photojournalism" by editors, publishers, gallerists and/or museum directors (I'll find out when I show the new work to reviewers in Santa Fe later this month!)
This morning I ran across an article by Kathy Ryan (from October, 2011) about iPhone pictures. (Ryan is the director of photography for the NYT Magazine.) I love what she has to say about the choice that was made by the mag to run iPhone shots from Afghanistan by photojournalist Ben Lowy. Here's an excerpt :
"Some might argue with our choice-as in, 'hey, isn’t snapping away with a camera phone cheating?'-, but we’re believers in trying out new ways of image-making, in the hope that we might come up with original and evocative pictures. The history of photography is the history of new technologies and tools. The fact that Hipstamatic is a phone app doesn’t detract from its photojournalistic potential — in fact, that may even make it more valuable in that regard. As Lowy says: 'iPhones enable a greater intimacy with a subject in a way that traditional cameras can’t. People are so used to seeing you pull out a huge camera and then acting a certain way. iPhones are still new enough that you get more realistic, less subjective, images contentwise because you aren’t pulling out this huge camera.'"