Painting represents mankind better than Photography
Last updated: March 9, 2017
When the invention of photography was announced in Paris in 1839, the artist Paul Delaroche stated that, “from today, painting is dead”. 169 years of painting since that time have proved Delaroche wrong however the initial announcement did change the way painters approached their art. They moved away from realism and evolved new ways of looking at the world – Impressionism, Cubism and Surrealism to name a few. In Modernism the subject was dropped completely and painting became all about the ideology of the aesthetic and the autonomy of the painted surface. Photography was now the purveyor of truth and painting was just the old man at the end of bar who stories may be listened to but are never believed. But what of photography? It may have become the primary visual currency within society, but how objective and transparent is this magical medium, and is it really even art?
Professional Photographers still have to work hard to develop the skill to produce emotion and to convey a meaning in their works. Photography is is as much of an art as painting.
The Inspiration Factor
Many people prefer photography to paintings, or like them similarly, or like neither.
More than just Vision
Movements such as Pictorialism, in the area of photography, aimed to bring it firmly into the category of 'art'. A wide variety of techniques were employed, from extensive use of filters to etching prints with fine needles, in order to make the resultant images resemble sumptuous oil paintings.
A photograph can be taken in an instant - a painting can take years to finish. A lucky, candid shot can reveal more about a person's inner self than they even realised themselves, whereas a posed portrait will simply show the angle they want the world to see.
What about the Technology?
What about the Accessibility?
Entry-level photography equipment is cheap - and even today, most people have cameras on their cell phones or other mobile devices.
With modern digital cameras, it's easy to share images - Paintings, on the other hand, are usually one work, and cannot be easily shared, like photos can with their digitalization. Granted, people can "paint" on their computers in art programs, but in terms of accessability, paint programs and photo programs are either one and the same, or equally costly. Most people, however, make do without a photo manipulation program.
Without electricity (e.g. in the middle of the jungle), photography is not accessible. Analogue photography also requires photo labs.
Everyone is able to paint - its quality differs from person to person but the case is similar with photography.