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Archive 2013 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.
  
 
Tom K.
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


Heart wrenching story about a class photo gone wrong. Very wrong.

http://www.theprovince.com/news/photo+that+broke+mother+heart/8523150/story.html









Jun 19, 2013 at 02:26 AM
shmn
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


I can understand the families anger. And I also think the photo company was slow to react properly. Rather than quickly say, "We were wrong. What can we do to make things right?"...they stalled.

However, without knowing more info about the photographer, I would not judge him harshly. Many of us have difficulty dealing with the handicapped mainly due to inexperience. Sometimes we just don't know what to do so we proceed "normally" which may not be the right answer. In this case, my suspicion is that the photographer didn't intend to discriminate in any way or intend to cause pain for the family. He probably just didn't know what to do. Mainly due to ignorance. And I think this can happen to any of us. Especially if we've never been in this type of situation. And I think it's a good lesson learned for the company and the photographer and anyone reading the article.



Jun 19, 2013 at 03:17 AM
Mataz426
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


Ok, here's my thought on this photo. Clearly the kids are centered on the bench in the bottom row, same empty space on both sides, the child in the wheel chair would have had to be behind part of the bench obstructing his wheel chair. I think whoever took this photo did no harm, and I think people are over reacting. Oh and it's always easy after the fact for people to say (they should have done this, or I would have done that)

Edited on Jun 19, 2013 at 03:50 AM · View previous versions



Jun 19, 2013 at 03:42 AM
bbourizk
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


This was posted earlier in another thread.
While it looks bad I don't think it was deliberate, in hindsight they probably wish they shot it better.

Hopefully next time they will know better.

Regards
BUd



Jun 19, 2013 at 03:42 AM
Tom K.
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


I find the picture absolutely heartbreaking. There are multiple ways to group people together.

The photographer could have chosen not to use the risers and found a more creative solution to the problem. It would not have been difficult.



Jun 19, 2013 at 06:07 AM
Ravitej
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


It would have been better for the photog to place the teacher on the right side of the group right next to the child in the wheelchair. Would have not only solved a potential problem but would have felt like it was honoring that child.

And to fix this problem, I would simple copy and paste the teacher on the right side behind the bleacher horizontal. Done well in photoshop, it would be quite a satisfying image. If someone would only have recognized the problem and simply fixed it before it hit the news. Personally I would go ahead and do the PS work and ask if this would work for everyone. And simply apologize and say this is the way it should have been.



Jun 19, 2013 at 07:15 AM
Cableaddict
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


Ravitej wrote:
.... I would simple copy and paste the teacher on the right side behind the bleacher horizontal. Done well in photoshop, it would be quite a satisfying image. .


Agreed. Alternatively, just clone the kid over.

But the basic photo quality would still be pretty bad. Lousy photographer.
If they added a little vignetting it would have tone down that harsh background, and given a little intimacy. - And might as well pop the colors a little, while they're at it:








Edited on Jun 19, 2013 at 07:04 PM · View previous versions



Jun 19, 2013 at 08:01 AM
Jim Rickards
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


I've got another beef.

Why are two faces not blurred when the others are?
Blur them all, teacher included. It still shows the situation. Why "identify" the child in the chair?



Jun 19, 2013 at 02:59 PM
Bones74
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


I'm sure no malice or discrimination was intended in any way. That said, between the teacher and the photographer they could have thought to place her on the opposite side or would someone then claim she was separating him from the rest of the group?


Jun 19, 2013 at 03:12 PM
Bones74
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


I'm sure no malice or discrimination was intended in any way. That said, between the teacher and the photographer they could have thought to place her on the opposite side or would someone then claim she was separating him from the rest of the group?


Jun 19, 2013 at 03:12 PM
 



liamh
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


Apart from the obvious issue, I can't believe people still shoot class photos like this. School photography moved on from this type of lazy posing many years ago.


Jun 19, 2013 at 04:28 PM
mjk115
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


Wow. What an over the top reaction from the parents. They claim they wish to protect their child from pain and ridicule, and yet they have no problem posting his photo online and making a news item out of something that should have been handled quietly. It was a poorly composed group shot. To infer systematic cruelty and to scream it from the rooftops is more revealing of the parents anger and frustration at their son's condition than it is of any attempt to ostracize their child. Their son is different. He knows it. Every kid in the school knows it and to insist that he isn't is to ignore the elephant in the room. It sounds like they attempted to hide his condition in the second shoot. He is in a wheelchair for the rest of his life, but in the group shot, he should be removed? Did the child request that? Is he ashamed of his chair? I suspect not.


Jun 19, 2013 at 04:31 PM
Tom K.
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


The symbolism in the photo is devastating. It set off a very emotional reaction in many, many people. You can dissect the reasons for the technical composition of the image. What really matters is the message of the photo. In fact that's the only thing that matters.


Jun 19, 2013 at 04:40 PM
amacal1
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


Tom K. wrote:
The symbolism in the photo is devastating. It set off a very emotional reaction in many, many people. You can dissect the reasons for the technical composition of the image. What really matters is the message of the photo. In fact that's the only thing that matters.



Images can carry many messages. Furthermore, some images can carry completely opposing messages. If a phot doesn't have an outright statement to make, many times we must infer a message for ourselves.

Why is it wrong for a group of photographers to look at this image and infer the story of a poor photographer with poor composition skills working a long day and not doing a thorough job?

What does it say about you that you look at this image and see malice and pain?



Jun 19, 2013 at 05:31 PM
Tom K.
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


amacal1 wrote:
What does it say about you that you look at this image and see malice and pain?


That's the $64,000 dollar question. Most of humanity are not photographers.



Jun 19, 2013 at 05:56 PM
mjk115
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


What does this photo symbolize to you?
What are the emotions it elicits?
Why is it heartbreaking?
Is it because of his condition? Is it because we see him in the wheelchair and know all of the things in life that this child will miss, and we can't imagine missing these things ourselves? Is it pity, in other words. This child wants to be a part of the group, is leaning toward the group earnestly in an attempt to be a part, perhaps believing himself to be the same as the other kids, while we, the viewer, clearly see that he is not the same, that the photographer has failed to hide this fact from us, has instead only made it more obvious. Thus the anger at the photographer.
But we don't know anything about this child other than his physical disability. We've made assumptions that he needs our protection above all else, that he's fragile, a victim, that we must pretend as if his physical difference doesn't exist to prevent him from feeling separated or different, and in effect, we confirm subliminally that he is less of a person, less capable of accepting the reality that is his alone.






Jun 19, 2013 at 06:17 PM
Shiva dancing
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


Without much thought, my first impression was that the picture was posed deliberately to allow parents uncomfortable with their son's/daughter's classmate in a wheelchair to simply crop out with scissors the "disturbing" image of a child in a wheelchair. In reading the article referenced in the OP's post, I noted that in a second reshoot of the class, the handicapped child was removed from his wheelchair and posed "supported by a caregiver on a bench beside his classmates."
Could it be that the photographers and/or the business providing the photography service are reflecting our society's discomfort in being reminded of disabled people in their midst?!



Jun 19, 2013 at 06:30 PM
Cableaddict
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


Shiva dancing wrote:
... In reading the article referenced in the OP's post, I noted that in a second reshoot of the class, the handicapped child was removed from his wheelchair and posed "supported by a caregiver on a bench beside his classmates."
Could it be that the photographers and/or the business providing the photography service are reflecting our society's discomfort in being reminded of disabled people in their midst?!


Good point. Even worse, it may have been the kid's parents' idea.

So the message they send to the kid is: "Being in a wheelchair is bad, and makes you different."



Jun 19, 2013 at 07:01 PM
harrygilbert
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


The first thought that occurred to me: this is a child who might weigh all of 60 pounds. Why not simply pick him up from the wheelchair and seat him in the center of the bottom riser, so he was viewed as part of the class? That's how I handled a similar situation a few years back. In that instance, the child had leg braces, so I placed him one row up, and the braces were obscured by his classmates seated in front and around him. He was happy, and so were the parents.


Jun 19, 2013 at 07:12 PM
Tom K.
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · The photo that broke a motherís heart.


mjk115 wrote:
What does this photo symbolize to you?
What are the emotions it elicits?
Why is it heartbreaking?
Is it because of his condition? Is it because we see him in the wheelchair and know all of the things in life that this child will miss, and we can't imagine missing these things ourselves? Is it pity, in other words. This child wants to be a part of the group, is leaning toward the group earnestly in an attempt to be a part, perhaps believing himself to be the same as the other kids, while we, the viewer, clearly see that he
...Show more

Excellent post.



Jun 19, 2013 at 10:49 PM
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