Showing posts with label photo-editing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label photo-editing. Show all posts

Tuesday 12 March 2024

Overzealous furore over Princess of Wales's botched photo-edited picture

The picture by the Prince of Wales for Mother's Day which was photo-edited by his wife the Princess of Wales has hit the headlines in the wrong way. Firstly, there was a lot of hypocritical - as far as I am concerned - criticism of the photograph by picture agencies. They pulled the picture once they understood that it had been photo edited.

Within 12 hours of being notified of the botched photo editing (which they should have spotted in the first place) they issued a kill notice advising editors and librarians to delete the image because it had been "manipulated".

Yes, it has been manipulated in a bad and amateurish way by the Princess of Wales who was just experimenting (but shouldn't have been) but the basic substance of the image, the content, has not been changed in any fundamental way at all. It is still a charming photograph of her family. It's a good picture.

Note: I cannot publish the photograph here because it is copyright protected. The copyright is owned by the Princess of Wales and I guess her husband because he took the photograph. I'm afraid you will have to refer to the picture from a different source if you're reading this article.

Catherine, the Princess of Wales. See credit at base of page.

Photo-editing is the norm nowadays

All she was doing was tidying up bits and pieces and trying to to make the picture look 'cleaner' and more organised. This happens all the time. These photo agencies receive pictures from hundreds of thousands of photographers who have assiduously and with great expertise photo edited their images to make them look cleaner and aesthetically beautiful.

It's all part and parcel of modern day photography. You always clean up the images by removing little defects in the background like a bird in the sky or a electrical socket on a wall; that kind of thing. Kate, the Princess of Wales, went too far and she wasn't skilled enough to do it for a picture that was destined to be published worldwide.

Mistake - apology

She should have experimented more at home and become more proficient before she issued a photograph for worldwide publication.

That's a mistake and she apologised today. In a statement she said "Like many other amateur photographers, I do occasionally experiment with editing. I wanted to express my apologies for any confusion the family photograph we shared yesterday caused. I hope everyone celebrating had a very happy Mother's Day. C".


Some big news agencies pulled the photograph. Some claim that it did not meet their photo standards. Fair enough. But the public doesn't mind. It is still a good photograph.

Reissue the original photograph

Why couldn't the news agencies have asked the Princess for the original, unedited version of the photograph and used that instead? If the news agencies had been more assiduous they would have spotted the problem initially, telephoned the Princess's staff and asked for the original instead.

Or perhaps they could have patched up the photo editing themselves. It is entirely possible to re-photo edit a botched photo edited photograph to make it more acceptable. There were ways around this but I would argue that the photo agencies are complicit in some way in this mistake.

Overzealous criticism - crazy response

And in The Times today we have a massive overreaction by overzealous journalists to this image from across the world. With some newspapers saying that they can't trust the Royal family any more which I think is absurd.

For example, American newspapers suggested that the episode may have inflicted lasting reputational damage. Ridiculous. This is simply an example of poorly done photo editing by an amateur photographer. That is all it comes down to. No attempt to manipulate the public or fundamentally change the image.

It appears that many newspapers have reported on this botched photo edited image but always it seems to me in an overly zealous manner. For example, in Italy, the newspaper La Repubblica said: "This is one of the biggest and most embarrassing controversies in the recent history of the Royal family." Ridiculous again.

Six areas of photo-editing

Apparently there are six poorly completed photo edited sections in the photograph which The Times have highlighted. But that newspaper's analysis is that these basic errors "should have been spotted by the Palace". I agree that. The picture should have been more accurately assessed by somebody at the Palace but once again I would lay the blame partly at the photo agencies for not assessing the picture themselves accurately.

They have the staff and the expertise to assess the images that they receive. Why weren't they more careful? A lot of the blame needs to fall upon them in my opinion.

And the Princess should not be so heavily criticised like this. I am not a royalist. I don't actually like the Royal family. But I also don't like unfair behaviour and criticism in this case of an amateur photographer who tried her hand at minor photo editing at the wrong time and in the wrong way. That's all.

Image credit: By Ian Jones - Buckingham Palace reception, CC BY 2.0,


P.S. please forgive the occasional typo. These articles are written at breakneck speed using Dragon Dictate. I have to prepare them in around 20 mins.

Wednesday 24 May 2023

OMG amazing dog group photo by dog walker who was photographed taking the pic

You won't see a more impressive group dog photo and it's impromptu. It was taken by a dog walker whose name we don't know when out walking his group of dogs. He used his smart phone. Although the picture has been substantially photo-edited which he probably did himself in the phone before uploading it to social media where it ended up on Twitter, the source for me of the photo. 

We don't know if he knew that he was being photographed while he photographed the dogs but they make a really great combination.

You can see that when he took the photograph, he was looking at the dogs over his phone. He is not looking at the dogs through the phone which is interesting. Perhaps he felt that he could control the dogs better that way. And my God he did an amazing job of controlling them for the photo and/or they were very obedient.

We don't know where it was taken either. It looks like a Mediterranean country to me. Italy perhaps. 

Here are the pics. First the dog group photo and them him taking it.

The best dog group photo that you'll see
The best dog group photo that you'll see. Image: Twitter.

Everyone on Twitter who has seen it are as impressed as me and why not? 

The photographer who took the best dog group photo at the time he took it!
The photographer who took the best dog group photo at the time he took it! Image: Twitter.

Wednesday 20 April 2022

Picture of a giant cat in the middle of the road!

A nice bit of photo-editing from Matt McCarthy in North Carolina, USA. I should imagine that it was quite time consuming to do this photo-editing. You have to get the edges clean and that means a lot of meticulous deletions unless he uses software that does it all for him. But in my experience the best software is imperfect. I am probably wrong but this looks like three images sandwiched together: the background buildings, the cat and the foreground people. He has built up the image from the background creating three layers in all. 

Giant cat sleeps in the middle of the road. Image: Matt McCarthy.
Giant cat sleeps in the middle of the road. Image: Matt McCarthy.

You can see his work on Instagram: link.

Wednesday 18 August 2021

Catnap in a model village

Catnap in a model village
Catnap in a model village. Image in the public domain.

This should be 'a cat napping in a model village' but I wanted the title to be a bit ambivalent. The picture is an example of an unreal cat picture without photo-editing. That's unusual. Below is the usual giant cat picture.


Here is one example:

Giant Cat. By fransditaa on Instagram
Giant Cat. By fransditaa on Instagram

Monday 9 August 2021

Photoshopped gigantic domestic cat

This has to be a photoshopped, gigantic domestic cat. It has been done very well and there are some Maine Coons who are humongous so you can almost believe that this picture is true but it is impossible. This cat looks as heavy as a mountain lion! You'd struggle to carry a cat like this in this way. 

The cat's head is bigger than the man's head. No, it caught my eye and then it all looks wrong. There is a problem these days with being deceived by photographs of all kinds. If it looks extraordinary you have to query if it's genuine and often you can't tell which leaves you in limbo land. Many photos on the internet are photo-edited nowadays to varying degrees.

Photoshopped gigantic domestic cat.

Sunday 20 June 2021

Cats sleeping on a toy train set

Is this real or a very good example of photo-editing? Answer: it's photo-editing but it's good enough to look real. It is a variation on the giant killer kitty theme when monster cats roam around the city smashing building to bits and squashing pedestrians as they scream in terror. B-movie stuff but in the home using a train set!

It is a nice picture deserving of publishing here. I've taken the liberty in presuming that it is in the public domain i.e. free of intellectual property rights but if I am wrong, please tell me in a comment.

Cats sleeping on a toy train set
Cats sleeping on a toy train set. Picture from and uploaded by r/photoshopbattles, which tells me that it is unreal but it is a close call as it is done so well.

Photo-editing images of cats has become slightly problematic as sometimes you can't tell if an outstanding cat is genuine or fake. The most outstanding example of photoshopping cats occurred around 14 years ago when I think it was a woman in New Zealand or Australia used Photoshop to give the appearance that domestic cats had been painted. They were called 'pained cats' and they were all over the internet.

I have just recalled who was involved. Heather Bush, was the named co-author (the illustrator) of the best-selling book (the photographer and illustrator) titled: Why Painted Cat. The other author was Burton Silver.  The trouble with the book is that it misleads people into believing that the cats really were painted. That was upsetting to some people.

Wednesday 26 May 2021

Black cat's eyes spell FOOD

Clever and observant this makes an interesting cat image. It works really well. It's made better by the abstract shape of the black cat. The eyes are perfect for this photo-editing. Someone will 'steal' the photo for a website about cat food :) 

Cat food is a big subject but surprisingly most cat owners are disinterested in learning about it. I think this is because they rely on the manufacturers to get it right. They generally trust them and always buy the same foods. It does pay, though, to do some research. The best cat foods are as expensive as human foods! That's what I think. I also think that the pet food manufacturers are playing on our emotional connection to our cat. We'll do anything for our cat companion even spend more than we should on food.

The worst kind of cat food is cheap dry cat food. Don't use it exclusively. High quality dry cat food is okay I believe as long as you also provide high quality wet and make sure that they eat it. This may mean covering the dry as it can addictive due to the 'meat digest' that they spray on the tasteless product to make it palatable. This is addictive stuff they spray on. It certainly is for my cat. They are a bit tricky the pet food manufacturers. They want us to buy their dry foods and they achieve that goal through our cats by getting them hooked on the stuff.


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