I am not one to alter or harm a photo, although I am a HUGE fan of artwork that does. (Ask those that know me, I can't even delete a digital image and fill up and save all of my cards. Yes, I know I can save them to the computer, which I do, several times, and reformat, which I never do.) The only time I ever destroyed a photograph was when I broke up with an ex. Gathering all of the photos with him in them, I burned them all over a raging fire. I did cut up one, but it looked silly, so I think that too went into the flames.
Oddly enough, the essay talks starts out talking about a woman from Rochester! I'll share a quote from Alex Williams' piece, as it's that good and intriguing:
REMOVING her ex-husband from more than a decade of memories may take a lifetime for Laura Horn, a police emergency dispatcher in Rochester. But removing him from a dozen years of vacation photographs took only hours, with some deft mouse work from a willing friend who was proficient in Photoshop, the popular digital-image editing program.Thanks to Keith Johnson for keying me in to this!
Like a Stalin-era technician in the Kremlin removing all traces of an out-of-favor official from state photos, the friend erased the husband from numerous cherished pictures taken on cruises and at Caribbean cottages, where he had been standing alongside Ms. Horn, now 50, and other traveling companions.
“In my own reality, I know that these things did happen,” Ms. Horn said. But “without him in them, I can display them. I can look at those pictures and think of the laughter we were sharing, the places we went to.”
“This new reality,” she added, “is a lot more pleasant.”... Read more here.
ABOVE IMAGE: BACK IN THE U.S.S.R. Grandpa always wanted to visit the Soviet Union (circa May Day, 1937), and with some digital help, it’s almost as if he’s there. Illustration by The New York Times; photographs by Bettmann/Corbis (historical image) and John Henley/Corbis (man waving)