ASMP — American Society of Media Photographers

T. J. Thomson: To See and Be Seen

By October 22, 2019 ASMP Bookshelf

To See and Be Seen Book CoverThe Environments, Interactions and Identities Behind News Images

Editor’s Note:  T. J. Thomson is a Lecturer in the School of Communication, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane.

Whether inscribed in physical media, projected on surfaces, or viewed on digital devices, we find ourselves constantly inundated with streams of visual data. Yet, we know surprisingly little about how these images are made, especially in journalistic contexts where representations are long-lasting and where repercussions can be dramatic.

To See and Be Seen considers some of the ideological, aesthetic, pragmatic, institutional, cultural, commercial, environmental, and psychological forces that consciously or otherwise shape the production of news images and subsequently influence their reception. T. J. Thomson examines the expectations, experiences, and reactions of those depicted by visual journalists and considers other relevant factors: how do everyday people perceive cameras and those who operate them? How are identities visually represented and presented to different audiences? And how does the physical and the socially constructed environment shape those depictions?

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