Assignment: Titanic Photograph

OK, I’m still on a photos kick, but this showed up in Twitter this morning:

picture of titanic

Here’s the photo alone:


And the tweet:

Was this really taken aboard the Titanic? What else can you tell us about the photo? Go to it.

As usual, don’t read the comments until after you do the assignment.

I’m going to do some text and stat based assignments next week, for folks sick of the pictures.

8 thoughts on “Assignment: Titanic Photograph

  1. I really liked this one! This is the exact kind of stuff I see mindlessly shared around, and it’s also so easy to disprove (honestly, many people should actually just *know* the source)

  2. For a different route, one might ask, what kind of consumer cameras were available in 1912, that a tourist on the Titanic might have? Found a link in Quora, a few of the models are bulky but it looks like Kodak had some more compact models, e.g the Brownie

    Not definitive, but a line if inquiry.

    My question would also be under those conditions with the cameras of the day, could one possible take such a photo with that amount of detail? I’d imagine under the conditions the light would be poor and the footing unstable, and would suspect a tourist with a camera would at best get a blurry photo. Also, on the wall of the photo, on the right side, you can see the reflection of lights that were most likely on the movie set.

    Then the question- how did the photo or camera survive? The launch of lifeboard, in the water, how did the camera make it? Where are other photos, e.g. of the rescue?

    I’d be extremely doubtful from the outset that a tourist’s camera took such photos in 1912.

    • That’s another good line of inquiry, especially if you are a photographer like yourself.

      There’s another one that someone familiar with the ship could use – if you know the name of that staircase is the grand staircase, the Wikipedia will tell you that there are no pictures of any type of the grand staircase on the Titanic — even the 1997 film based their staircase off the similar but different staircase in the Olympic. So a bit of photography knowledge or a search term can absolutely go a long way.

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