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Lecture 4

Media, Information and Technoculture 2000F/G Lecture Notes - Lecture 4: Copywriting, Procter & Gamble, Jacob Riis

Media, Information and Technoculture
Course Code
MIT 2000F/G
Daniel Robinson

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Lecture 4 Photography/Advertising
Wet Plate Collodion
6-8 images can be produced after a day’s work.
Lots of skill required.
Dry Plate Collodion Process
Possible to do photography in mobile setting
George Dawson, “geological survey of Canada” in BC
1840s to 1870s
Matthew Brady, most popular at this time. Celebrity photographer.
Purpose of this type of photo: nationalism, citizenship, character
Democratic Portraiture
Wealthy had paintings done of families.
Became more affordable, so poorer people could too now.
50 cents/image. Half days of wage for a lower class worker.
Reflection of inner, not just outer self.
The Living Dead
Photos of dead babies or toddlers.
Posed as “sleeping subject”
1880 ‘dead child’ photograph.
Romantic/Documentary Depiction
Photography changed the popular conception of war, allowed public to understand the
repulsive side of war.
Social Documentary
Jacob Riis: “How the other half lives” 1890. Documented the social, environmental
conditions of those areas to raise awareness.
Reformer ideal: serves the interest of social reform, by documenting the abuses in society
that many would not usually see.
BUT, this made them seen as the “other” and alienated them in some ways.
Objective lens of camera could not stop his subjective mind, the text he wrote on the
photos reflected this.
Kodak Camera 1888
George Eastman
Hand-held, point and shoot cameras. Portable. Issue of cost (because of the service)
Brownie camera: much cheaper, still costs to develop photos though.
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