Photo-illustration has already replaced pure photography for what the masses see on a regular basis. On Instagram, people look more beautiful than they actually are and landscapes look nothing like they are in person. The cell phone is now the new reality for most people under the age of 30. It’s all about appearances today. Authenticity and integrity are becoming more precious. Fortunately, some museums, art galleries, blogs, and books exhibit fine art photography made from film or unprocessed digital captures for those who are interested.

For reference, the first photograph that still exists was created 200 years ago, the first Leica camera using 35mm film was made 100 years ago, and the first camera phone was built 25 years ago.

Un-manipulated photography will not completely cease to exist by 2025, but it will be far less relevant than it is now and much harder to identify. Stock photography used for commercial purposes has been pretty much dead for a while and will completely disappear as a viable profession. Commissioned commercial and documentary work will likely continue into the near future. Fortunately, that’s what I do for a living.