The War Photographer Ernest Brooks I WHO DID WHAT IN WW1

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The American Civil War Was The First War

that was really extensively captured in photographs, and the First World War was the first one extensively captured on film, but that doesnt mean that photography did not play a major role in the war. It did. Indeed,. There were many official war photographers from the various Warring nations, and the first official British wartime photographer was Ernest Brooks.

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m Indy Neidell; welcome to a Great War special episode about World War One photography and Ernest Brooks. By The First World War, photography had been around for many decades, but the technology for portable cameras and the popularity of the hand-held camera didn t arise until the late 1880s. .

Such Portable Cameras Would Prove Extremely Important

in World War One. Aerial reconnaissance was, for example, critical to the armies on both sides on the Western Front after Stalemate had set in and it. No longer practical to use cavalry to scout the enemy positions. Enemy trenches were at first sketched, but eventually photographed, developing from rough mosaics to huge panoramas. , and the quality became so good that camouflage had to be quickly developed to hide artillery or troop movements from the enemy.

Now, In An Attempt At Censorship, Soldiers

of Army” target=”_blank” rel=”noreferrer noopener”>the British Army were not allowed to have personal cameras,, but many did anyhow. German soldiers, on the other hand. , were allowed to possess cameras, but not to use them in battle. . This directive was also often disregarded.

Widespread.

Amateur photography had become very popular after the invention of the portable Kodak camera, and thousands upon thousands of photos taken by unknown soldiers documented the lives of typical soldiers of all nations, and it was really tough to censor. . Letters home could be edited before being sent, but manipulating photos was really tricky,. and vivid images of the lives of the soldiers ended up in the hands of their loved ones.

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The reality shown by these photos could be dangerous from a propaganda perspective. . Each Army appointed professional photographers and cinematographers to supply images for propaganda and documentation. .

As I Said, The First Official British One

was Ernest Brooks.. He had been a photographer for the Daily Mirror,, which was the first British daily newspaper to regularly publish photographs. Now, Brooks joined the naval reserves in 1915, at a time when there was a shortage of trained professional photographers and a huge war for them to try to cover. Whole.

Teams Of Photographers Were Eventually Hired,,

but Brooks had to cover a wide range of subject matter on the Western Front,, the Italian, Front, Gallipoli,, and naval subjects and engagements. The British public were inundated with thousands of photos that fueled the nation s. Patriotic obsession, but only certain aspects of the war were really covered. .

Censorship Prevented The Representation Of The Real Horrors

of the war, but for the photographers themselves, documenting the truth became of primary importance. See, before the war, photos used for journalism did not always depict the actual events. They would often symbolize the event in some way. Soldiers training may be captioned as being in action. .

When Brooks Began His Work During

the war. He would see something happen in battle and then stage the event later, but as I said, actually documenting the true events became of greater and greater importance to the soldiers and photographers. , and Brooks came under heavy criticism for staging his photos. . He vowed he would never do so again, even if it came at personal risk.

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Brooks and his cohorts often had an honorary military title of Lieutenant, and were more or less left alone to take pictures of whatever they wanted to. OF course, they were assigned at times to photograph specific things and meet certain objectives. . For Example,, Brooks was tasked with photographing munitions being produced and stockpiled for the Battle of the Somme to Allay fears on the home front of shell shortages.

Aside From That, And Because His

photos went through two censors before going home, Brooks could shoot any number of things. As. The war progressed, the subject matter for many of the photographers, Brooks included, became more graphic, even to the point where subjects that were taboo, like photos of their own country s war dead, began to show up by the later stages of the war. But why take pictures you knew would not make it past the censors That.

Wouldn

t be published? There may be several reasons. The photos may have been intended for government records or recording events for the future. . They could be the result of the desensitization to the horrors of war often experienced by men at the front.

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The photographers may also have felt that these violent images were a vital part of the war experience and needed to be recorded on film. Now, Brooks photos are-even by today s standards-striking and beautiful, and he shot some of the war

S Most Enduring And Iconic Images.

. He did not simply photograph the mechanics of war and destruction, but shot individuals and small groups doing things like smiling through shell holes in walls or putting on gas masks. . Just going about their business.

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He made it easier to see the war experience as it was, as something human and dynamic, rather than a stale. A stale set of numbers and events. His photos are not merely informational; they are works of art that tell stories and capture emotions that resonate today. And that storytelling and humanity is important.

The War Photographers Took, For Example,, Photos

of prisoners of war. For propaganda purposes, having photos of enemy soldiers looking vulnerable or defeated may be a good thing, but on the other hand, they make the enemy seem human and real. They Don t show an evil, faceless monster, and can lead to people wondering big questions like, why is humanity inflicting this horror on itself. Wasn

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T A Man From A Different Country,

just another man For. Many people, emotions stick with them far longer than cold numbers and data, and images that create emotion make the viewer learn by not allowing them to forget. And events not forgotten can hopefully influence future generations to not make. The same mistakes once made. Brooks continued his work postwar.

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He became the official photographer of the British Royal Family. , eventually went back into journalism, and even wrote a series of articles about his time as the Royal Family s photographer. He had not,.

However,, Escaped The War Unscathed.

According to his wife he turned heavily to alcohol and there are suspicions that, like many thousands of others, he suffered from undiagnosed shellshock. Something else kind of remarkable-the date of his death is unknown. . He was a real pioneer in the field of wartime photography and left behind a remarkable legacy.

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He may not have been a war hero,, but he was very brave, risking his life in order to portray the truth of the war as he saw it. . It It. IT is true that many of his photos were used for propaganda back home, which fueled public support for the war and can be seen to an extent as helping continue the war,.

But He Also Created Real Works Of Art

and beauty, and above all humanity, that are still both important and educational today.. WE d like to think Julia Williams for helping us with the research on this episode.

Summary

The American Civil War was the first war that was really extensively captured in photographs, but that doesn&t mean that photography did not play a major role in the war . The technology for portable cameras and the popularity of the hand-held camera didn&t arise until the late 1880s . Aerial reconnaissance was critical to the armies on both sides on the Western Front after Stalemate had set in and it. No longer practical to use cavalry to scout the enemy positions. Enemy trenches were at first sketched, but eventually photographed, developing from rough mosaics to huge panoramas. The quality of the quality became so good that camouflage had to be quickly developed to hide artillery or troop movements from the enemy . The first official British wartime photographer was Ernest Brooks. He was also often disregarded by the German soldiers, on the other hand. The German soldiers were allowed to possess cameras, but not to use them in battle. The reality shown by these photos was really tricky, and vivid images…. Click here to read more and watch the full video