Posts tagged with ‘photojournalism’

Who Buries the Taliban?

An eery, intriguing photo essay from Australian photographer Andrew Quilty on the men whose job it is to bury Taliban members killed in and around Kabul, published in The Sydney Morning Herald earlier this year:

It was hot and dry for early spring, but one of the grave-diggers wore a pin-striped suit while he and the others dug four narrow, waist-deep graves side by side. The earth was damp and brown beneath Afghanistan’s powdery surface. The smell was putrid -  like a decaying animal carcass on the side of road, but far worse.
With no more than disposable surgical masks, Ahmad‘s drive through Kabul’s notorious morning traffic must have been horrendous. The thought of how his cargo came to be in his possession wears on him too.
He rarely discusses his work with friends or family - burying the unwanted, the paupers and the terrorists of Kabul. He has buried dozens of Taliban but is never told from which attack his corpses come.

Read/view the full essay here.
Sidenote: The piece is reminiscent—literally and in feeling—of (the now classic j-school textbook piece) It’s An Honor by Jimmy Breslin. At the time of JFK’s assassination, Breslin stepped outside the media frenzy and set a precedent for covering a big story in a simple, powerful, unconventional way: by writing about the man who would prepare the president’s grave.
Image: Grave diggers cool down and drink tea after their work is done (by Andrew Quilty, via SMH)

Who Buries the Taliban?

An eery, intriguing photo essay from Australian photographer Andrew Quilty on the men whose job it is to bury Taliban members killed in and around Kabul, published in The Sydney Morning Herald earlier this year:

It was hot and dry for early spring, but one of the grave-diggers wore a pin-striped suit while he and the others dug four narrow, waist-deep graves side by side. The earth was damp and brown beneath Afghanistan’s powdery surface. The smell was putrid -  like a decaying animal carcass on the side of road, but far worse.

With no more than disposable surgical masks, Ahmad‘s drive through Kabul’s notorious morning traffic must have been horrendous. The thought of how his cargo came to be in his possession wears on him too.

He rarely discusses his work with friends or family - burying the unwanted, the paupers and the terrorists of Kabul. He has buried dozens of Taliban but is never told from which attack his corpses come.

Read/view the full essay here.

Sidenote: The piece is reminiscent—literally and in feeling—of (the now classic j-school textbook piece) It’s An Honor by Jimmy Breslin. At the time of JFK’s assassination, Breslin stepped outside the media frenzy and set a precedent for covering a big story in a simple, powerful, unconventional way: by writing about the man who would prepare the president’s grave.

Image: Grave diggers cool down and drink tea after their work is done (by Andrew Quilty, via SMH)

100 Years of Photographs Now Free to Embed →

The News: 

Getty Images is dropping the watermark for the bulk of its collection, in exchange for an open-embed program that will let users drop in any image they want, as long as the service gets to append a footer at the bottom of the picture with a credit and link to the licensing page. For a small-scale WordPress blog with no photo budget, this looks an awful lot like free stock imagery.

Implications abound but this one is particularly interesting:

The biggest effect might be on the nature of the web itself. Embeds from Twitter and YouTube are already a crucial part of the modern web, but they’ve also enabled a more advanced kind of link rot, as deleted tweets and videos leave holes in old blog posts. If the new embeds take off, becoming a standard for low-rent WordPress blogs, they’ll extend that webby decay to the images themselves. On an embed-powered web, a change in contracts could leave millions of posts with no lead image, or completely erase a post like this one.

coverjunkie:


Liberation (France)
Impact!"A visual shock! For the first time in its history Liberation is published WITHOUT photographs. To show the power and importance of photography at a time when the industry is facing unprecedented challenges. To support all photojournalists, fashion photographers, portraitists, or conceptual artists"I love this, not every dude with a Nikon is a photographer, there’s a need to make this clear. Last weeks cover Liberation via British Journal of Photography

coverjunkie:

Liberation (France)

Impact!

"A visual shock! For the first time in its history Liberation is published WITHOUT photographs. To show the power and importance of photography at a time when the industry is facing unprecedented challenges. To support all photojournalists, fashion photographers, portraitists, or conceptual artists"

I love this, not every dude with a Nikon is a photographer, there’s a need to make this clear. Last weeks cover Liberation 

via British Journal of Photography
Found in an Argentine Limousine
The NY Times Lens Blog features a series by Myriam Meloni, an Italian photographer, who, while recovering from an injury in Argentina, began spending a lot of time in taxis to attend physical therapy sessions. Over the course of things, she learned that her cabby also drove limos, and had interesting stories about what went on in them. So she chose a uniform angle and “transformed the limo’s back seat into a shoe-box theater, with her as an audience of one, witnessing a parade of scenes.” See the photos here.
One of the people she encountered was Leila, a 23-year-old woman working as a stripper, who—to Meloni’s shock—had sex with four men in the car.
Lens Blog:

“But what impressed me is that I saw the girl manage the situation so easily,” said Ms. Meloni, adding that, through it all, she thought the woman projected poise. But when the four men left and the vehicle drove along, she saw a complete change in the woman (Slide 6). And when the veneer of a passenger’s constructed image was pierced, the contrast with reality could be startling.
“When I saw her totally alone, when I started to see her face, how she looked, how young she was and I took this portrait, I had a special feeling with this woman,” Ms. Meloni said. “Her attitude was totally different. She was just acting.”

She later photographed and wrote about Leila’s life in the essay Important Things Are Said Softly, which is incredible. She writes (of Leila):

She has two children to support. I went into her daily life and I found a strong woman, careful with her context, stubborn, generous and in fact, quite romantic.
I also witnessed her loneliness and frustration. I was wondering how she feels every time she gets undressed in front of a stranger, and what she dreams of, when I hear her humming a romantic melody.

Photo: An inflatable doll, forgotten on the seat of the limo. By Myriam Melona via The NY Times.

Found in an Argentine Limousine

The NY Times Lens Blog features a series by Myriam Meloni, an Italian photographer, who, while recovering from an injury in Argentina, began spending a lot of time in taxis to attend physical therapy sessions. Over the course of things, she learned that her cabby also drove limos, and had interesting stories about what went on in them. So she chose a uniform angle and “transformed the limo’s back seat into a shoe-box theater, with her as an audience of one, witnessing a parade of scenes.” See the photos here.

One of the people she encountered was Leila, a 23-year-old woman working as a stripper, who—to Meloni’s shock—had sex with four men in the car.

Lens Blog:

“But what impressed me is that I saw the girl manage the situation so easily,” said Ms. Meloni, adding that, through it all, she thought the woman projected poise. But when the four men left and the vehicle drove along, she saw a complete change in the woman (Slide 6). And when the veneer of a passenger’s constructed image was pierced, the contrast with reality could be startling.

“When I saw her totally alone, when I started to see her face, how she looked, how young she was and I took this portrait, I had a special feeling with this woman,” Ms. Meloni said. “Her attitude was totally different. She was just acting.”

She later photographed and wrote about Leila’s life in the essay Important Things Are Said Softly, which is incredible. She writes (of Leila):

She has two children to support. I went into her daily life and I found a strong woman, careful with her context, stubborn, generous and in fact, quite romantic.

I also witnessed her loneliness and frustration. I was wondering how she feels every time she gets undressed in front of a stranger, and what she dreams of, when I hear her humming a romantic melody.

Photo: An inflatable doll, forgotten on the seat of the limo. By Myriam Melona via The NY Times.

fotojournalismus:

Pro-military crowds and supporters of the former president, Mohammed Morsi, pelt each other with rocks, fireworks and firebombs in street battles near Ramsis Square, Cairo, Egypt on Oct. 6, 2013.
[Credit : Emad Abdul Rahman/AP]

fotojournalismus:

Pro-military crowds and supporters of the former president, Mohammed Morsi, pelt each other with rocks, fireworks and firebombs in street battles near Ramsis Square, Cairo, Egypt on Oct. 6, 2013.

[Credit : Emad Abdul Rahman/AP]

Brooklyn-based Pop Up Photo Exhibit Shows a Year in the Life of a NY Times Photographer
Lens Blog:

What’s contained in a year? For Tyler Hicks, a staff photographer for The New York Times, it’s trips to places like Gaza or Syria and photographing the longstanding yet reliably devastating conflicts there. Or to the Gulf of Oman, where the aircraft carrier he was on, covering a different story with C. J. Chivers, changed course suddenly to pursue and capture Somali pirates.
Or to the Congolese jungles in Central Africa, chasing a story on poaching, which meant chasing poachers and their prey.
“I’m used to having stuff happen in front of me,” said Mr. Hicks, 44, jet-lagged from his recent wedding in Massachusetts — did we mention he just got married? — to his home in Nairobi, Kenya. “This was different for me, because for the most part, I was photographing animals.”

The subject, he added, “is elusive, you have to really chase it — it’s actually trying to get away from you.”

His work will be exhibited at Photoville, a Brooklyn-based pop up photo destination built from freight containers. The village will include exhibitions, lectures, hands-on workshops, night-time projections and a beer and food garden. It’s open from September 19 through September 29. Details here.
Image: A photo by Tyler Hicks via NY Times Lens Blog. According to the caption, one of the worst massacres for elephants anywhere in the world has been in Sakouma National Park in Chad, where the elephant population has been reduced by 90% in 10 years. See the full set here. Some photos are horrifying.

Brooklyn-based Pop Up Photo Exhibit Shows a Year in the Life of a NY Times Photographer

Lens Blog:

What’s contained in a year? For Tyler Hicks, a staff photographer for The New York Times, it’s trips to places like Gaza or Syria and photographing the longstanding yet reliably devastating conflicts there. Or to the Gulf of Oman, where the aircraft carrier he was on, covering a different story with C. J. Chivers, changed course suddenly to pursue and capture Somali pirates.

Or to the Congolese jungles in Central Africa, chasing a story on poaching, which meant chasing poachers and their prey.

“I’m used to having stuff happen in front of me,” said Mr. Hicks, 44, jet-lagged from his recent wedding in Massachusetts — did we mention he just got married? — to his home in Nairobi, Kenya. “This was different for me, because for the most part, I was photographing animals.”

The subject, he added, “is elusive, you have to really chase it — it’s actually trying to get away from you.”

His work will be exhibited at Photoville, a Brooklyn-based pop up photo destination built from freight containers. The village will include exhibitions, lectures, hands-on workshops, night-time projections and a beer and food garden. It’s open from September 19 through September 29. Details here.

Image: A photo by Tyler Hicks via NY Times Lens Blog. According to the caption, one of the worst massacres for elephants anywhere in the world has been in Sakouma National Park in Chad, where the elephant population has been reduced by 90% in 10 years. See the full set here. Some photos are horrifying.

I wonder if I need to tell them about how I once woke up in my hotel room and found the bellboy standing over my bed. I wonder if I need to recount that while crouching on the ground during a festival, I didn’t realise I had been surrounded by a group of drunken boys and had to crawl through their legs before the leering, lewd gesticulating and touching turned into something uglier. I wonder if I need to talk about the things I never talk about, like fear, because I have been lucky enough to come out safely.

I think it is time not to be ashamed to talk about fear. Fear is what ensures I look back as I walk, it’s what makes me look for exits when I enter potentially difficult spaces, it is what keeps me alert and often, alive. I call it other things like discomfort or commonsense, because it’s weak to be afraid — it might expose me for what I am, a woman.

Ashima Narain, Fear in the Frame, Indian Express.

Narain is a photo editor at National Geographic Traveller India and her piece is an honest, heartfelt call to action to create measures of protection and support for photographers and journalists, particularly women.

For context, see this recent NY Times piece—Why Female Journalists in India Still Can’t Have It All—in which her story is highlighted along with accounts from other female journalists in India, many of whom do not report harassment they experience on the job because if they do, they risk losing the opportunity and freedom to report. It’s a disheartening catch-22 and definitely something to be aware of.

Narain continues:

As press, we are expected to take calculated risks. That is the job, but what do our employers do to protect us? When we join, do they give us any safety guidelines while travelling around the city or the country on an assignment? Do interns receive consistent mentorship on safety in the field? Do the people controlling the purse strings know what it means to be on the ground, or what it means to be gender sensitive?

These questions are in no way about this particular, heinous incident, but ones that I feel need to be addressed based on experiences that I, and many of my peers, have had. They are questions that have been highlighted by this tragedy, and are for media organisations across the board. But we don’t have to stop at the media. Why don’t we make it an institutional obligation for all employers to ensure that, every few months, all their staff has to attend safety seminars?

I couldn’t sleep the night I heard about this incident. For 13 years I have psychologically converted my camera into my protective shield — one that I felt would keep me from harm as it showed that I have the means to retaliate. My shield has been shattered. I do feel scared. I think we all should. But this fear should not paralyse us, nor stop us from doing our work — but channel it so we can do our work better.

Over the past few days, several journalists and photographers have been talking about creating a voluntary mentoring programme for interns, or young people who work in the media and want guidance. Until then, if there are photographers who feel they need to talk, you can look me up. I am easy to find.

Among the core concepts of Buddhism is the idea of understanding your individual experience of living and the way that you are connected to other people. As a photographer, you observe your subject, try to become connected and then capture that in a single moment.

David Butow, as quoted in Photographing the Part of Buddhism that Can’t Be Seen. New York Times Lens Blog.

When David Butow decided to spend 2012 traveling the world to photograph Buddhism, he knew there would be a rich abundance of visual material: colorful clothing, vibrant decorations and precisely choreographed rituals.

But the challenge of capturing the essence of spiritual experience became apparent to him quickly. While sacred rites are visually lush, and obvious, spiritual experience is interior and hidden — and it is difficult to photograph something that is not visible.

Mr. Butow used a variety of strategies — and camera formats — to try to capture the heart of Buddhism. He layered reflections, employed camera motion and made metaphoric images that suggested stillness. He included double exposures, used diptychs and even physically altered negatives with a small blade.

His journey last year, as he worked on “Seeing Buddha: A Photographic Journey,” spanned 10 countries including Bhutan, Cambodia, Japan, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and the Tibetan exile community in Dharamsala, India. Along the way, he discovered that Buddhism and photography have much in common, including observation, empathy and being fully in the moment.

FJP: It’s an awesome set of photos and an awesome project. Check it out.

What does an iPhone-ified newspaper look like?

Back in May, The Chicago Sun-Times fired its entire photo staff (including Pulitzer Prize winner John White) in favor of training its reporters in the art of iPhone photography. The blog SunTimes/DarkTimes has been closely following the paper’s transition, collecting images on its front pages and website.

In a similar vein, former Sun-Times staff photographer Rob Hart started his iPhone-driven blog as a way to chronicle his life after being laid-off. In an interview with Chicagoist, Hart gave his opinion on the paper’s decision:

"Look, an iPhone can be used to take amazing photographs. But not every owner of an iPhone has the ability to capture a moment and tell a story with pictures the way a photojournalist can…I don’t think (reporters shooting pictures with iPhones) will succeed…Everything is done on the cheap. I don’t think anything they do has a chance of succeeding."

comment on SunTimes/DarkTimes lamented the iPhone-ified paper:

The quality in images is like night and day. Truly saddening to see some of the best talent discarded over some dollars and cents.

FJP: The aesthetic quality isn’t the only thing the Sun-Times put at stake. A strong photograph doesn’t just merely accompany an article or fill up space on a website. Photojournalists in the past have shown us that photos can enhance a story and even tell the tale on their own. I hope the Sun-Times does not lose sight of that. —Kat

Images: Screenshots of newspapers curated by SunTimes/DarkTimes blog.

The Stressful Careers of Photojournalists and Newspaper Reporters
Using metrics such as career opportunity, compensation, deadlines, working in the public eye, and danger among others to generate an overall “stress score”, CareerCast has a top ten list of the most stressful jobs of 2013.
Congratulations, photojournalists and newspaper reporters, you’ve cracked the list.
Reiterating what we already know, CareerCast reports:

Two careers in the media industry score highly on the stress scale: photojournalist and newspaper reporter. Professionals from each field can be thrown into the epicenter of dangerous situations, such as war, natural disasters and police chases. Both careers also have declining job opportunities as the 21st century media landscape evolves. Newspaper reporters in particular face a shrinking job market; the BLS estimates a 6% job decline in the industry by 2020.
The growth of online media has transformed the newspaper reporter’s job immensely. The immediacy internet outlets provide can be a useful tool, but it can also be a huge trap. Striving for the fastest reports can lead to inaccuracy and heightened stress. Watchful public eyes are trained on reporters at all times, so an incorrect report can compromise a reporter’s reputation as quickly as they can send a tweet.

The least stressful job for 2013? University professor.
Image: Stressful Careers. Select to embiggen.

The Stressful Careers of Photojournalists and Newspaper Reporters

Using metrics such as career opportunity, compensation, deadlines, working in the public eye, and danger among others to generate an overall “stress score”, CareerCast has a top ten list of the most stressful jobs of 2013.

Congratulations, photojournalists and newspaper reporters, you’ve cracked the list.

Reiterating what we already know, CareerCast reports:

Two careers in the media industry score highly on the stress scale: photojournalist and newspaper reporter. Professionals from each field can be thrown into the epicenter of dangerous situations, such as war, natural disasters and police chases. Both careers also have declining job opportunities as the 21st century media landscape evolves. Newspaper reporters in particular face a shrinking job market; the BLS estimates a 6% job decline in the industry by 2020.

The growth of online media has transformed the newspaper reporter’s job immensely. The immediacy internet outlets provide can be a useful tool, but it can also be a huge trap. Striving for the fastest reports can lead to inaccuracy and heightened stress. Watchful public eyes are trained on reporters at all times, so an incorrect report can compromise a reporter’s reputation as quickly as they can send a tweet.

The least stressful job for 2013? University professor.

Image: Stressful Careers. Select to embiggen.

photojojo:

Still unsure of “phoneography” having a place in the professional sphere? On March 31, 2013, The New York Times used an Instagram shot for the front page cover story.

Granted, it was a professional photographer who took the photo, but it’s quite a statement nonetheless. Perhaps you really should sign up for those Photojojo University Phoneography 101 classes…

New York Times Uses Instagram Photo for Cover Story

Related: From the FJP archives, Photojournalism vs. Instagram.

UPDATE: Another interesting aspect about the New York Times’ use of this photo is that it isn’t from a recent shoot. Instead, it’s from last year. Nick Laham, the photographer, is based in Brooklyn. His personal site is here.

For Syria’s war is characterised most strongly by absence and collective abandonment. Other than the protagonists and victims the arena is almost empty. There is no foreign military intervention. There are no NGOs or aid workers distributing food and blankets. The media is similarly self-exiled: very few broadcasters or newspapers commit journalists regularly, if at all. A handful of freelance photographers work inside the country, but none of the big names. The middle-aged bravehearts of Bosnia and Afghanistan have grown old and too soft for the hardships of Syria, while the economics of journalism have not allowed their replacement generation to prosper. That McCullin, still a prizefighter despite his years, had hauled himself out to that lonely war zone was inspiring in itself, legitimising the work of the few freelancers already there and challenging the absentees.

Anthony Loyd, The Australian. Parting shots.

That’s right: a 77 year old photographer named Don McCullin recently went to Aleppo to take his last set of photos, 15 years after his last war assignment. See the above article for an account of his trip as told by the much younger journalist in charge of his safety.

There’s no telling which photos from Syria’s revolutionary war will become famous and come to represent the conflict, if any do at all. For a great collection of pictures by other photojournalists in the country, see these. For more of McCullin, who is something of a legend in his line of work, see this bio and a portion of his photography from Vietnam and Lebanon.

Innocence Assassinated: Living in Mexico’s Drug War
fjp-latinamerica:

REPORTAGE, the photojournalism branch of Getty Images, is featuring  an astounding slideshow on Mexican violence through the lens of New York-based Katie Orlinsky, one of its most talented photographers. 
For Innocence Assassinated, in order to depict how locals deal with the rampaging narco-fueled bloodshed that overwhelms their communities day after day, Katie went on a breath-taking journey through the some of the most violent regions of Mexico, such as Ciudad Juárez, the Tamaulipas borderlands, the shores of Guerrero (including Acapulco), and the P’urhépecha plateau in central Michoacán. The resulting product is pretty impressive.
So, go ahead and make sure you turn on the captions. 
Image: A destroyed sign at the entrance of Ciudad Mier in Tamaulipas, México. Cover of Innocence Assassinated [PDF], via Reportage by GettyImages.

Innocence Assassinated: Living in Mexico’s Drug War

fjp-latinamerica:

REPORTAGE, the photojournalism branch of Getty Images, is featuring  an astounding slideshow on Mexican violence through the lens of New York-based Katie Orlinsky, one of its most talented photographers. 

For Innocence Assassinated, in order to depict how locals deal with the rampaging narco-fueled bloodshed that overwhelms their communities day after day, Katie went on a breath-taking journey through the some of the most violent regions of Mexico, such as Ciudad Juárez, the Tamaulipas borderlands, the shores of Guerrero (including Acapulco), and the P’urhépecha plateau in central Michoacán. The resulting product is pretty impressive.

So, go ahead and make sure you turn on the captions. 

Image: A destroyed sign at the entrance of Ciudad Mier in Tamaulipas, México. Cover of Innocence Assassinated [PDF], via Reportage by GettyImages.

After Picasso, the $2.19 Million Dollar Camera
The AP and Atlantic Wire report that a camera belonging to TIME Magazine photographer David Douglas Duncan has sold for, well, millions. He took it with him to Vietnam during the US war there and later when he met Pablo Picasso and his family in the artist’s studio in France.

After Picasso, the $2.19 Million Dollar Camera

The AP and Atlantic Wire report that a camera belonging to TIME Magazine photographer David Douglas Duncan has sold for, well, millions. He took it with him to Vietnam during the US war there and later when he met Pablo Picasso and his family in the artist’s studio in France.