Photo of a Photo -so clear- is my daughter lying?


TPF Noob!
Jan 15, 2008
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Photo of a photo - possible? My kids are getting slicker as the years go by. Im a snoopy Dad, and I only argue with my kids based on solid facts, and I'm just trying to figure out if this is possible...

I found a JPG of my daughter at a beach party during the time she was supposed to be grounded. She claims it was a photo of her at a party a year prior, and she just took a photo of the print since she didnt have a scanner and wanted to put it on her facebook page. She claims she did this when she was grounded and bored at home. Is this possible? The picture looks pretty sharp, but thats why I'm asking this question. The reason why I'm going all CSI on her is because the boy in the picture is her ex boyfriend who is a drug abuser and she claimed she broke up with him. I just want to be sure!
Shes a photography nut and has access to bright lights (but no access to a scanner)
The metadata (image properties) of the JPG shows:
Photo A
1/251 sec shutter speed
focal 6mm
exposure time 1/250sec

Photo B
focal 6mm
exposure time 1/640

Theyre all 600x400, 120 to 180dpi - not exactly super high-res or 8x10 quality, but looks like your average myspace photos.
the best i can do with my own experiments with a reading lamp is 1/120 film speed and 3.2 aperture. If i push it to ISO1600 it looks obviously grainy. I dont have a lot of lights but perhaps you boys have some big toys which can do this?
My question is - could she have taken a photo of a photo INDOORS with lots of lights, and still come up with the same image meta data as Photo A and Photo B above? (which look like real outdoors photos)

If you could post samples of your "photo of a photo" creations that look digital quality, not grainy...and also have similar metadata to the one above, then my mind will be at rest. If not possible, then please let me know why so I can confront my daugther with some facts.

On another note, is it possible to easily modify meta-data, especially DATE photo taken? because she might be doing that in the future.

Looking forward to seeing responses....
Thank you for your help
There is no way to tell without looking at the pictures.

Clues are:
- not sharp enough
- can see the print problems in the original (a problem if the pic is of crap quality)
- uneven lighting on the photograph
- reflection in the photograph
- distortion in the photograph caused by perspective problems.

Given that most photographs are glossy and even the matte finish ones have a shine to them photographing them in a way that it looks like an original photo is something even professionals have trouble with. Especially lighting control.

It's a pity the shutter speeds wern't exactly 1/60th because then it is usually a sign of flash photography and you could tell straight away since the flash would reflect off the photo.

But here's another thing to consider. Photo A:
f/6.3 @ 1/250th of a second is an Exposure Value of 13. Lets assume that the photo was taken at ISO100 (the lowest on most cameras). The thing ringing alarm bells here is that an EV13 at ISO100 would be the perfect shutter speed to photograph something bright outdoors. So unless your daughter has bright lights in her room (we're talking skin cancer bright) then that picture if it looks like it's reasonably exposed was taken outside (very close to the perfect exposure for something directly lit by the sun).

Photo B also has an EV of 13.

I assume your daughter does not have big toys like flash heads that you would need to make this work indoors at low ISO?

If you can find out the ISO of the picture it would confirm without a doubt if the photo was taken in nearly direct sunlight. But I am begining to worry. At ISO1600 you would be looking at something equivalent to EV9 @ ISO100 which is the type of brightness emitted by Galleries, Sports events and high powered lighting for Stage shows. Nearly 4-16 times brighter than your average house lighting.

This isn't an exact science. I would point to a lie, but err on the side of caution, if it's true your daughter is rather talented.
A photo doesn't move, so you don't necessarily need a lot of light to photograph it. All you need is a longer shutter speed...and if the camera isn't moving either (tripod or other support) then you can get a sharp photo.

That being said, the shutter speeds listed, point to plenty of light...posibly flash.
Leave your daughter alone.
It's not a photo of a photo. You can't do copy work, even mediocre copy work, with a digital point-and-shoot.
As far as I know, you can't change EXIF data (meta data as you called it). I could be wrong though.
That sounds like great advice...NOT! That's the problem with a lot of folks out there who have kids, they leave them alone. :thumbdown:

I hope you crack your case George. I would ask to see the print she allegedly shot.

I agree.... too many parents that want to be a friend to their children rather than a parent.
I agree.... too many parents that want to be a friend to their children rather than a parent.
I agree. It would be impossible for the daughter to be at the beach when she's grounded. How could a parent not know that they are not in the house?

Ooooohhhh, the parents are both at work, thus there is no parenting......

It still confuses me why people have children when they don't want to be parents....

"Your grounded, no beach this week. But neither of us are going to be home all day and every day this week, so please do as we say and not go to the beach....." Yeah, that is good parenting...
"Your grounded, no beach this week. But neither of us are going to be home all day and every day this week, so please do as we say and not go to the beach....." Yeah, that is good parenting...

To the above comments, this is what i was referring to. Not to leave her alone literary, but rather stop finding faults with her and start finding faults with yourself.
Folks, this thread is not about parenting.

It is supposed to be about photography.

Do not confuse the two.

Like Garbz is saying: it is hard to tell if it is even LIKELY it is a photo of a print without seeing that photo. You CAN take photos of photos, and the result can even be good. Even with a digital "point and shoot". Whether Max believes this or not. It CAN be done.

But often, the picture quality is no longer quite AS clear and sharp and free from any kind of blemishes as a digital photo of a real scene would be, and often specks of light reflection (from a no longer totally flat print) cannot really be excluded, so there might be hints.

Let her show you the print that served her as motif for the digital pic and everything should be ok. If she comes up with excuses for why it is no longer there, there is cause for discussion I should think...
It is possible to take a picture of a picture, and have it look real, especially on a computer monitor or camera LCD. Print the picture and look for clues "IN" the picture. Has her hair style changed in a year, length, etc. Something that would appear in a picture that she did not have a year ago, like a tattoo, or a scar? I don't mean to offend you by saying your daughter has a tattoo, just an example. Or maybe a tattoo on the "crack head" ex-boyfriend.
Anyway, Good luck, and remember to post your findings.
Leave your daughter alone.

I was thinking that until he mentioned the "drug abusing boyfriend". I think he's doing what is right. She's lucky she has a dad that cares.

Good luck :thumbup:
Oh yeah, just because people have to work, does not make them bad parents. We try to teach right and wrong, but kids don't always listen to their parents, and go out when they are grounded. If we don't look out for our kids, bad people will get them. I commend him for looking out for his daughter. We need more parents who care about their kids in this world.

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