A couple of readers contacted me this week wondering if I had digitally altered this photo of a young girl wrangling a chicken. The answer is no and it's always no.
Her hands look much larger than they should and the reason is quite simple. I used a wide-angle lens which will often distort things in the foreground. Her arms (and the chicken) were both coming towards me while her body was in the background causing the distortion. I pulled the frame from a video I shot below.
The Eagle's ethics policy states this: "Readers should feel confident that The Eagle's news photos are accurate depictions of the scenes or events they portray. No manipulation of the scene before taking the photograph or digital alteration of centent after it is taken, no matter how trivial, will be permitted in news photos."
We sometimes do what we call photo illustrations where digital manipulation is permitted only with the permission of an editor. These photographs are always labeled as "Photo Illustration." You might see this type of photo in a feature story.