Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Flash, Bang, Wallop - but Are We Distorting the Pictures We See?

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Flash, Bang, Wallop - but Are We Distorting the Pictures We See?

Article excerpt

Byline: KATE FOX

APPARENTLY noticing things can be dangerous. Taking a photograph is an act of noticing and it might get you into trouble. It might even cost you your job as Labour Shadow Minister Emily Thornberry has found out.

My phone, and the cameras of others, have been busy this week: Click! I noticed that a shinily refurbished Gateshead school has got a flight of stairs so high, pupils are allowed to go up it, but not down it. I concluded that some architects need to think about the real world a bit more.

Flash! I noticed that parents who would bring their children to a poetry workshop at Sunderland Central Library are a varied bunch of ordinary people, not just the type of tiger parents who make their kids learn the piano, run a marathon, practice their vowels and apply to twelve Oxford colleges before tea time every day. I concluded that I am an inverted snob and that on everreducing funds, libraries still do great work.

Snap! I noticed that three female writers and one male writer on a bill at a literary event in Newcastle excites comment in a way that three male writers and one female writer still wouldn't. I concluded that gender equality still has some way to go.

Say cheese! I noticed that our dog Norbert looks really good in his Christmas pudding coat, I concluded that some people have got too much disposable income to spend in Pets At Home.

Of course, the conclusions other people might draw from the photographs on my iDevices this week, would be completely different. Especially if I only gave them the places they were taken as a caption.

Perhaps a Ukip politician, such as North East MEP Jonathan Arnott, might have noticed the gleaming school stairs and concluded that grammar schools and the eleven plus should be brought back to improve social mobility for some kids and give others a lasting sense of failure and frustration.

Perhaps his party leader, Nigel Farage, would have noticed that some of the children in the library picture appeared to have been born to immigrants and thus should be classed as migrants themselves, in line with his pronouncement this week. …

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