Fantasy, not Fakery
November/December 1993
By Stephanie Dolgoff
Art Director: Mark Gartland


Many Condé Nast Traveler readers who were familiar with this view of Bombay called the magazine to complain that 26‑year veteran photographer Mary Ellen Mark had manipulated the image, inserting a fantasy castle in the mist to the right. In fact, the castle in the picture is very real -it's the famous Gateway of India‑ but it’s located out of sight, to the left of the window. What Mark captured was its reflection in the glass. "Nothing is changed ‑I don't work that way," says Mark. "People are just so suspicious."

For this early morning scene Mark placed her Hasselblad 553 ELX and a 50mm lens on a tripod and shot for one second at f/16. To preserve the subject's warmth she used a strong 81C filter with her Ektachrome 1OO Plus.

By Stephanie Dolgoff