Subscribe Now

travelers today

Home » Travel Culture

Pedro Oliveira on Why Photography Ethics is Essential

Travelers Today       By    Staff Reporter

Updated: May 14, 2020 04:17 PM EDT

Text Size: A A A

Pedro Oliveira
(Photo : Pedro Oliveira)

Do you know that there are more than 2.3 million photos taken every minute around the world? Almost everyone has a smartphone these days, allowing them to take pictures of literally everything. Yes, the democratization of photos benefits many, but you also need to understand its drawbacks, such as photo manipulation, circulating images without consent, and spreading fake news.

Pedro Oliveira
(Photo : Pedro Oliveira)

As a professional photographer, it is your responsibility to be ethical. Remember, most people know how to read and write from a young age, but they don't understand photography at a professional level. What you present should tell a transparent story instead of teasing your audience to manipulate the photo's meaning. This is one of the reasons why the photographer Pedro Oliveira firmly believes in photography ethics.

Pedro is an advertising/documentary traveler photographer and has earned recognition for "Careful: Soul Inside," a project that portrays the faces of the homeless and tells the story of how challenging life is for them. Trying to draw the fine line between what society sees and what it chooses not to see could have gone either way for Pedro. But it was his photography ethics that helped him stay within his boundaries throughout the project.

Criticism of Careful: Soul Inside

While the massive majority appreciate what Pedro tries to convey in "Careful: Soul Inside," some people don't shy from criticizing it either. They believe that Pedro had exploited the homelessness subject for his own gain and that he shouldn't have objectified their homelessness to earn popularity. But Pedro disagrees.

The photographer argues that a story is always there to be told and that it is the storyteller's duty to report on subjects which are often overlooked by society. In his particular project, all the subjects were fully aware of why he was taking their photos and appreciated the goal of the project. They were aware of the fact that Pedro would publish these photos so that he could give voice to their stories.

This project wasn't just a publicity stunt to make money. In fact, Pedro didn't make a penny from this project. During his two-year journey of capturing photos of the homeless, Pedro came across many people who didn't want him to take their pictures. And, Pedro respectfully agreed to their requests. Oliveira warns that a photographer/videomaker should, too, know the limits of their freedom. Meaning, as a photographer your goal is to elicit as much information and realness as possible, and you just cannot convey such truthfulness by spying on people and "stealing" snapshots; not to mention that this would be just plain wrong. That's the type of ethics he wants photographers to follow.

Essentials of photography ethics

Pedro, who has photographed subjects from the Brazilian favelas to the Desert of Saudi Arabia, believes that not following photography ethics leads to deceiving the audience. Manipulating images may bring unwanted controversies, and that's not what photographers should aim for. Photography is a medium to positively impact the world through the lenses of a photographer while bringing the genuineness of the moment. Anything that breaks such rules disobeys the ethics of photography.

According to Pedro, many photographers use manipulative images for cheap publicity. They don't realize how strongly photos can affect people. If you stay within the realms of photography ethics, you can easily avoid these controversies.

For Pedro, his lens tries to tell the true stories of his subjects whether it is a man facing homelessness in Brazil, a woman who suffered domestic abuse in Los Angeles, and wants to share her experiences, or a Camel's shepherd in Saudi Arabia. His idea of photography is to capture during that one millisecond the emotions hidden behind the person's eyes and for such ethics and empathy are essential.

See Now: The U.S. had the highest number of Most Wanted properties, dominating the Hotels.com Loved By Guests Awards 2018

© 2021 Traverlers Today, All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.
Join Our Conversation

Subscribe to our newsletter

Receive the latest travel news, reviews, and more..

Most Popular

How to Make an Old Car Feel Like New Again

How to Make an Old Car Feel Like New Again

Those who enjoy long road trips put a lot of stock in the

6 Tips for Planning the Perfect African Safari Trip

6 Tips for Planning the Perfect African Safari Trip

For the perfect safari trip, plan in advance, pac

Must-See Places That Makes US a Tourist Paradise

Must-See Places That Makes US a Tourist Paradise

The United States of America is a popular tourist de

Breathtaking Places to Travel Before you Die

Breathtaking Places to Travel Before you Die

A life well-traveled is a life well-lived, for memories

13 Ancient Egyptian Symbols and Their Meanings

13 Ancient Egyptian Symbols and Their Meanings

There are various historically significant Egyptian sy

Air Travel Tips for the Self Employed

Air Travel Tips for the Self Employed

2020 was the year that the COVI-19 pandemic impacted the world'

Common Travel Document Mistakes and How To Avoid Them

Common Travel Document Mistakes and How To Avoid Them

Traveling is fun, but not when your documents a

Supplements for Vegan Moms Who Love to Travel

Supplements for Vegan Moms Who Love to Travel

It's probably safe to say that we all want to stay safe

6 Things to Do in Pigeon Forge

6 Things to Do in Pigeon Forge

Who doesn't enjoy trekking through lush green forests, inhaling fresh

Six Exotic American Family Vacation Destinations

Six Exotic American Family Vacation Destinations

America has so much to offer in terms of travel dest

How to Apply for a Canadian Tourist Visa

How to Apply for a Canadian Tourist Visa

Canada’s borders are expected to open on May 21! Find out

How To Help Your Dog Overcome Fear Of Flying

How To Help Your Dog Overcome Fear Of Flying

Travelling with your dog not only strengthens the trust

The 5 Safest Cars to Take Across the Country

The 5 Safest Cars to Take Across the Country

These days, the only traveling we can look forward to is

The 6 Best Places to Travel on a Motorcycle

The 6 Best Places to Travel on a Motorcycle

Motorcycles, while fun and exhilarating to ride, are noto

Why You Should Get Travel Insurance Before Your Next Vacation

Why You Should Get Travel Insurance Before Your Next Vacation

Taking a break from your day-to-day lif

How to Travel while Practicing Social Distancing

How to Travel while Practicing Social Distancing

Chances are you’ve been affected by the COVID-19 p

Will I need an approved ETIAS to travel to France?

Will I need an approved ETIAS to travel to France?

France is known for its beautiful culture and natu

8 Tips to Stay Healthy While Traveling

8 Tips to Stay Healthy While Traveling

Studies show that travel can improve our health. These benefit

A Guide to Packing Fashionably in One Suitcase

A Guide to Packing Fashionably in One Suitcase

One of the biggest problems with vacations and traveli

9 Offline Games To Play During Long Flights

9 Offline Games To Play During Long Flights

Long flights can be boring in most cases, but we know the

Why You Should Head to the U.S. East Coast

Why You Should Head to the U.S. East Coast

From coast to coast America has incredible towns and beaut

Best Places to Visit in Denver While Driving Around

Best Places to Visit in Denver While Driving Around

Denver's outdoorsy vibe is best experienced on a

Top Tourist Attractions in Seattle: Parking Options

Top Tourist Attractions in Seattle: Parking Options

From its breathtaking natural attractions to the

travelers today

© 2021 TRAVELERS TODAY All rights reserved.

Subscribe to our newsletter
Real Time Analytics