Ethics in photography


Ethics in photography may shake your mind for a little. Yaa we do have ethics in the photography. Normally people do not discuss this important education of photography’s ethics. It is a duty of every photographer to understand the ethics of the photography. Which is quite important to know before to go very far in the photography.

It is a photographer duty to capture and show the reality to the viewers. But due to technology involvement, Now reproduction, manipulation started capturing viewers mind to believe it or not to believe it. We have to define a thin line between real photographs and manipulated photographs. We should create the set of ethical guidelines that help all the photographer to follow. What is acceptable or what is not acceptable.

Due to the technical revolution, technology is ready to mould your images, edit your image, a copy of your image or reproduction of your image.  These are all major problem happening in today’s photographer life. Let us discuss & focus on the ethics of photography and must start practising to follow all the possible ethics.

It is all photographer duty to see his photograph or artwork as a viewer also, Means viewer should not be cheated after viewing your photographs. There is a slight difference between creative and manipulation the images. As a photographer, we should never manipulate the images unnecessarily. We should always try to show the real photographs, not the super editing images. The photographer should always know well, how much manipulation, editing is always required in the images. Creative must be limitless but editing also must be in the limit. photographs should never be altered in any way – that they should retain their originality. Sometimes when your images are going to leave an impression on the mass public and your photographs are the only highly strong base of the information to circulate in the public than in this case, you should not manipulate the images, like newspaper genuine photographs, photographs of VIPs, Political people, Celebrity, any country’s achievement etc. Sometimes photographer should feel as a viewer point of view. This will really help to maintain the originality of the images.

The photographer should never take the liberty to use other photographer’s image or work, never reproduce, never reediting and put it on the sale or any photography business. It is a simple case of theft. So avoid this habit and believe me this habit can put you behind the bars. Respect other’s photographer’s job and never ever misuse the work of other.

Never copy the idea, creatives, and other content of the photographs. Which is not shot by you. Never shoot identical shots. This is one of the important ethics in photography and we all should respect others creative shots. Create your own perspective and tell your story rather than copying other’s idea.

In the fashion world, you must have noticed that there is always a big scope of editing the portrait and fashion photography. Up to a certain limit, These images are marvellous. Models go through the complete transformation as per the requirement of the shoot or project. They make normal model to wow model. This is just to let to know the different world in a different and creative way about their products, fashion, or a film. In this case, the photographer must know what is going to accept by the public and what should be the limit or out of the limit. Means there is always a thin line between creative and absurd. It is photographer duty or his ethics which allows him to retouch, adjust colour, create something natural image than highly manipulated or editing images.

Not only in fashion photography but in Nature, travel, wildlife photography, photographs highly edit the images, they edit blue sky to red, yellow xyz colours. this kind of edited images disappoint the viewers because no one would accept the yellow sky. We must fallow the ethics in our photography genre. What is a creative work or what is an absurd work? We should know both of them and do justice with the images. It is all depending upon the photographer to do justice with the viewers.

Understanding the ethics, limit of editing, the height of manipulations, acceptance and non-acceptance of the creative or absurd work. What to copy or what not to copy, copying an idea, difference between genuine or fake images, transformation required for which product & project, Touch up and highly makeup. This will take time to understand ethics to proceed further, but knowing them may educate you to stop following wrong things in the photography. I hope, this article may help you to follow ethics in the photography.

Keep experimenting and have a happy photography to you all.

Photographer & blogger Prasenjeet Gautam ( has captured the above image. India


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