Photography studio, gallery and training complex

C.A.M.O.S. – Join The Struggle!

We have taken enough. It’s time to rise and be heard. I stand before you, your representative of C.A.M.O.S, asking for your support in this, our time of greatest need.

The Campaign Against Misuse Of Sepia needs you!

For too long now, we have stood idly by while this ancient and venerable photographic trait has been misappropriated by Photoshopaholic feckwits, and visual illiterates of all types.

Now I should state here and now that yes, I have used sepia, and yes, not just for my own personal consumption. But in my defence, I have never encouraged others to use it. In fact, I have been known to actually dissuade others, such as those students, lured by it’s “cool” portrayal in certain areas of the media, who find themselves considering dabbling in sepia. Just say “No!” I tell them.

Yuk! What's wrong with black and white here?

There is nothing wrong with sepia per se. Some of my best friends have been known to use it with little or no long term damage. But it really should be treated with caution. Sadly, it can become addictive, with users feeling the urge to indulge this addiction with ever increasing frequency, in some cases entirely inappropriately.


Sepia envokes a psychological reaction in the viewer that is (increasingly) often entirely add at odds with the subject matter. Sepia has its origins in historical printing and archival techniques but has been successfully and effectively used for photographic enhancement ever since. To most, it embodies age, history, memory, warmth etc but must we be subjected to its use for all sorts of unsuitable subjects?

Aah, those hazy lazy days of the f15 fighter jet...

You will have gathered by now that this is something of a “pet hate” of mine. I like sepia – but when used with due consideration to context.

So, summing up: just because you might be offered sepia, doesn’t mean you have to use it. Stand beside me and fight this brown stain on the underwear of photography. Thank you.


One response

  1. Sepia is to photography what liver paté is to a crumpet.

    October 8, 2011 at 6:47 pm

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