Go Back   Rangefinderforum.com > Cameras / Gear / Photography > Rangefinder Forum > Photography General Interest

Photography General Interest Neat Photo stuff NOT particularly about Rangefinders.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes

Funerals?
Old 02-08-2013   #1
grapejohnson
Registered User
 
grapejohnson is offline
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: pittsburgh, pennsylvania
Posts: 475
Funerals?

A friend of my girlfriend's just died. I am going to take her to the funeral, although I didn't know him. Would it be disrespectful or insensitive to bring a camera along? I don't think I would really want to use it, but how do others feel about this? Any experiences you want to share about the topic?
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #2
msbarnes
Registered User
 
msbarnes's Avatar
 
msbarnes is offline
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: NY, NY
Age: 28
Posts: 836
Quote:
Originally Posted by grapejohnson View Post
A friend of my girlfriend's just died. I am going to take her to the funeral, although I didn't know him. Would it be disrespectful or insensitive to bring a camera along? I don't think I would really want to use it, but how do others feel about this? Any experiences you want to share about the topic?
tough call. I oftentimes think about similar scenarios.

If the interest is for your personal sake, then I would find it inappropriate.
If the interest is to document for the family, then I would find it appropriate.

However, if you do decide to bring a camera then I'd suggest something quiet and unobtrusive.
__________________
Michael | Flickr | Cargo |
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #3
grapejohnson
Registered User
 
grapejohnson is offline
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: pittsburgh, pennsylvania
Posts: 475
Quote:
Originally Posted by msbarnes View Post
tough call. I oftentimes think about similar scenarios.

If the interest is for your personal sake, then I would find it inappropriate.
If the interest is to document for the family, then I would find it appropriate.
He was well loved throughout the community, but you have a good point, i don't think anyone will necessarily want to remember his funeral very much.
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #4
DNG
X-Man
 
DNG's Avatar
 
DNG is offline
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Camby, Indiana. USA
Age: 62
Posts: 2,914
Maybe..
Many family members/freinds will be there, that are normally at one place at the same time.
And when your friend introduce you to her family and friends, a suggestion of small grouping with her in the photo,
may become a family air-loom of those who attended. they can be added to the funeral artifacts that are saved by the surviving family members.

just one with a 28mm lens FOV will be fine, with a small flash.
__________________
Feedback Link
Flickr: My Street
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #5
daveleo
quello che .
 
daveleo is offline
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: People's Republic of Mass.
Posts: 3,377
IMO it would be very inappropriate unless a member of the immediate family asks you bring a camera and take pictures. I have never seen anyone taking pictures at a funeral, except when asked (I was asked once by my family to get my camera out of the car and make one photo).

Also, in any case, I cannot imagine using a flash or a noisy shutter at a funeral service.

EDIT: Also, even if someone in the family thinks it's okay, you should be sure that they all are on the same page. I can easily imagine someone getting extremely upset during the service, and you will not have the chance to say "Well, so and so said it was okay."
__________________
Dave

http://www.cafephotos.net

"I photograph my fantasies" .... Man Ray
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #6
aad
Not so new now.
 
aad is offline
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 1,231
I took many photos at my sister-in-law's funeral immediately after the ceremony. It documented a family that had been apart, and adult children of the deceased with truly difficult stories.

I made booklets of prints for the family members, including some lighter moments as the day progressed. They seemed to enjoy them.

Of course, they all knew me and the pictures at the site were posed group portraits. The candid photos were at a dinner later.

You will have to use your judgement-this is the human part of this hobby.
__________________
<a href='http://www.rangefinderforum.com/photopost/showgallery.php?cat=500&ppuser=3426'>My Gallery</a>
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #7
newsgrunt
Registered User
 
newsgrunt's Avatar
 
newsgrunt is offline
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Canada
Posts: 989
Unless you knew the person and their friends very well, and they knew you, yeah, I'm going to say it's inappropriate.

If you really feel compelled to photograph it, seek the person who was the closest and probably the one handling the arrangements and probe their feelings.

Or just go there and be there for your girlfriend.
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #8
thegman
Registered User
 
thegman is offline
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Australia
Age: 36
Posts: 3,828
Not for me, close relatives won't care for having their photos taken, they'll be too distraught. Not so close friends etc. should probably try to look like they're not having a good time.
__________________
My Blog
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #9
stratcat
Registered User
 
stratcat is offline
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 314
Last august I attended the funeral for one of my wife's aunts. I carried my Olympus XA just in case. I specifically carried the XA because I could carry it in my pocket, out of view. I did not want anyone to get offended by seeing me arrive at the funeral with a Leica or an SLR hanging from my neck or shoulder.

When we were all about to leave there was a call from someone to get all the deceased's siblings together for a picture, since they live in different parts of the country it was a rather unique ocassion that they all got together.

While others took out their cell phones, I took out my little XA and exposed two frames. That was the only time I used the XA that day.

But it was worth it, the frame I chose from the two came out really nice and documents that quite (in more than one way) unique gathering of the family elders and the relatives who have seen the print have expressed, not their happiness obviously, but their beneplacit that the moment was so well preserved.

So to summarize my experience, take a camera, make it invisible so you're not misunderstood and use it only if you're asked to.

Last edited by stratcat : 02-08-2013 at 12:22. Reason: corrected spelling
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #10
steveniphoto
Registered User
 
steveniphoto is offline
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 246
it really depends on how you approach the situation. if you knew the guy well enough i would say its ok as long as you respected the deceased and the people there. i wouldnt bring anything like a DSLR. something that doesnt make enough noise would be key imo.

i took photos while my grandma was dying in a hospital and i think thats one of the best decisions ive made.
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #11
DNG
X-Man
 
DNG's Avatar
 
DNG is offline
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Camby, Indiana. USA
Age: 62
Posts: 2,914
Quote:
Originally Posted by aad View Post
I took many photos at my sister-in-law's funeral immediately after the ceremony. It documented a family that had been apart, and adult children of the deceased with truly difficult stories.

I made booklets of prints for the family members, including some lighter moments as the day progressed. They seemed to enjoy them.

Of course, they all knew me and the pictures at the site were posed group portraits. The candid photos were at a dinner later.

You will have to use your judgement-this is the human part of this hobby.
This is what I was saying...
After the service there is a meet/greet with surviving family.
have your friend ask as she introduces you if they would like group photo. No Setup, just a quick pose and snap.

I w/ siblings, had a few with my Parents friends and extended family at their funerals.
Just not during the ceremony.
__________________
Feedback Link
Flickr: My Street
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #12
Roger Hicks
Registered User
 
Roger Hicks is offline
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Aquitaine
Posts: 21,649
A few years ago, a friend's mother died.

I decided not even to leave a camera in the car, let alone take it with me.

A few months later, he said, "I wish someone had brought a camera..."

Late last year, an acquaintance died. I took pictures of the burial and the wake for his sister, who couldn't be there. His sister and friends really liked the pictures.

In other words, 'it depends'. Ask the family.

Cheers,

R.
__________________
Now even more free photography information on www.rogerandfrances.com
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #13
nobbylon
Registered User
 
nobbylon's Avatar
 
nobbylon is offline
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Nederlands
Posts: 2,423
Personally I don't want anything to remind me how I've felt at funerals.
I've just printed some pictures of my fathers life long friend who sadly died just before xmas. I'd much rather remember him from these portraits than images in my head of him in a box.
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #14
taskoni
Registered User
 
taskoni's Avatar
 
taskoni is offline
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Vilnius, Lithuania
Posts: 1,383
To the OP: Have you ever shot funeral?
I wouldn't carry a camera on a funeral of a person I don't even know if I am not planing to use it.

Regards,

Boris
__________________
When in doubt, click.
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #15
kxl
Social Documentary
 
kxl's Avatar
 
kxl is offline
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Sunny SoCal
Posts: 2,445
I have taken photos at funerals on occasion, but ONLY if the deceased was a friend or a member of my family or my wife's family. This photo captures the untimely passing of a good friend's daughter.

__________________
Keith
My website

"... I thought the only way to give us an incentive, to bring hope, is to show the pictures of the pristine planet - to see the innocence. ― Sebastiao Salgado
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #16
willie_901
Registered User
 
willie_901's Avatar
 
willie_901 is offline
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 3,844
Taking a camera and using it are different. As several posters said, family may request photos at the last minute. Then you will be happy you have your camera.

Occasionally family will make requests beforehand, a least this is what I have read here and elsewhere. I would photograph a funeral by request but make certain all the principles were in agreement and that I understood exactly what they needed. This is a good idea at any event and even more important, I think, at a time when people are vulnerable.

Otherwise I would not have a camera visible or even carry a camera bag of any type.
__________________
"Perspective is governed by where you stand object size and the angle of view included in the picture is determined by focal length." H.S. Newcombe

williamchuttonjr.com, FLICKR,
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #17
Roger Hicks
Registered User
 
Roger Hicks is offline
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Aquitaine
Posts: 21,649
Put it this way. I'd not go to a funeral now without a camera within walking distance (in the car, usually). But I wouldn't have it around my neck.

Cheers,

R.
__________________
Now even more free photography information on www.rogerandfrances.com
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #18
Bob Michaels
nobody special
 
Bob Michaels's Avatar
 
Bob Michaels is offline
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Apopka FL (USA)
Age: 72
Posts: 3,310
Both of there are currently being exhibited. I knew both of the deceased but cannot honestly say were were close friends. I continue to photograph at funerals for documentary purposes with no hesitancy.

Two family members as well as the head Mason guy in the photo have asked for and received copies of this.



While no family member has asked for this photo, they certainly have no problems with me exhibiting it. But I did contribute to the cost of the funeral service. And, as the deceased was dying, she had a print of one of my photos from back in the days when she looked hot and all the men wanted to get into her pants.

__________________
http://www.bobmichaels.org
internet forums appear to have an abundance of anonymous midgets prancing on stilts
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #19
KenR
Registered User
 
KenR is offline
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 590
Just make certain that everyone knows you are there as a family friend. Otherwise someone might think that you are there from the FBI and that the deceased was an organized crime figure.
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #20
jwc57
Registered User
 
jwc57's Avatar
 
jwc57 is offline
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Eastern NC
Posts: 348
I'd ask also. In my family, one of my aunts has a photo she took of my grandfather in the viewing room, open casket, and surrounded by flowers. There is also a photo of him sleeping on the couch in the den of the family home from the 1960's. It was requested by him because he wanted to see what he would look like when he was dead. Though they were taken thirty years apart, he looks remarkably the same.

There is a long history of photography and funerals.

Somewhere I have a photo of a great-great-grandmother in her open casket outside of a church. It was taken in Alabama in the 1920's.
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #21
grapejohnson
Registered User
 
grapejohnson is offline
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: pittsburgh, pennsylvania
Posts: 475
Thanks for all the advice. I think im gonna just leave one in the car, if I bring one at all. I didn't know the guy personally so it'd be kind of weird. I just haven't had to deal with any funerals since I've gotten into photography (luckily) and wasn't sure wha people generally did in the situation.
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #22
Pablito
coco fro
 
Pablito's Avatar
 
Pablito is offline
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Salsipuedes
Posts: 3,361
it's a cultural thing.

it depends.
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #23
jamesj
Registered User
 
jamesj's Avatar
 
jamesj is offline
Join Date: Aug 2006
Age: 36
Posts: 434
When my great grandmother passed away I took photos digging the grave. and at the service with my XA. The roll is sitting around here somewhere.

But I probably wouldn't do it at someone I didn't really know.
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-08-2013   #24
Sunti
Registered User
 
Sunti is offline
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: San Francisco bay area
Posts: 157
I say leave the camera at home unless the family requests that you document the event.
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-09-2013   #25
bigeye
Registered User
 
bigeye's Avatar
 
bigeye is offline
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: New York
Posts: 1,189
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pablito View Post
it's a cultural thing.

it depends.
After my father died, several friends who have immigrated to the US asked if I had taken pictures. "No, why would I?"

The friend from rural Ireland said to mark, for better or worse, another event and gathering of the living family as a whole, which I think is beautiful perspective. See Irish wake. Another friend from the islands said that it is expected, to casually document the state of the deceased.

It's odd that we photograph the funerals of great people, such as presidents, prime ministers, and celebrities/sports heros, but feel uncomfortable doing so for the average person.

- Charlie
__________________
I bought a new camera. It's so advanced you don't even need it. - Steven Wright
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-09-2013   #26
Bob Michaels
nobody special
 
Bob Michaels's Avatar
 
Bob Michaels is offline
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Apopka FL (USA)
Age: 72
Posts: 3,310
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pablito View Post
it's a cultural thing.

it depends.
Absolutely! It is important that we never assume someone else's cultural norms are the same as our own.

For example, our family has not had a funeral for 50 years. Everyone is simply cremated and their ashes poured into the river or ocean. But if anyone wanted to come photograph, they would be welcome.
__________________
http://www.bobmichaels.org
internet forums appear to have an abundance of anonymous midgets prancing on stilts
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-10-2013   #27
bjornkeizers
Registered User
 
bjornkeizers's Avatar
 
bjornkeizers is offline
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: The Netherlands
Posts: 186
I recently read somewhere that funeral photography is actually somewhat of a 'trend'. To me, that makes sense. Why would you only want pictures of the happy moments on your life? Fact is, most of us are just as much defined by the unhappy moments such as death, accidents or misfortune. It's a shame we don't have pictures of those moments, since overcoming them can be source of tremendous strength.

Personally, I would encourage people to take pictures at my funeral. It's the last mark we'll all leave on this world. Why not record it?

We also took pictures at an aunt's funeral a few years ago. Yes, that also included the open casket. We did it during a private moment before the funeral, so as not to disturb others who might find it... somewhat morbid. I don't have that particular hangup, as photographing dead people is a tradition as old as photography itself.
__________________
Canon GIII QL17, EOS 5/630/1000FN
Minolta X570 - XG-1 - XG-M
Minox 35 GT/PL B, LX, EC
Pentax Auto 110 - Polaroid 1000 Land Camera & CPII - Fuji Instax Mini 7S - Ricoh FF70 - Olympus XA1, XA2, Mju II - Bronica ETRS - Holga 120 - Diana 120 - Lomo Fisheye 110
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-12-2013   #28
E__WOK
Registered User
 
E__WOK is offline
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 336
I was part of the funeral procession and took pictures to remember my grandfather who recently passed away.
  Reply With Quote

Old 02-12-2013   #29
koven
Registered User
 
koven is offline
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 689
its in bad taste, IMO
__________________
website
flickr
  Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 14:32.


vBulletin skin developed by: eXtremepixels
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

All content on this site is Copyright Protected and owned by its respective owner. You may link to content on this site but you may not reproduce any of it in whole or part without written consent from its owner.