Print media may be dying a slow death, but I’ve never known a time when magazines and newspapers ran huge edits of photography across multiple pages. Sure I’ve seen the odd spread or two, but those are outliers. My exposure to photography outside of the internet has generally been limited to edits of less than 5 images.
It’s hard to realize, but I think we’re in the middle of a golden age for visual culture. Never has more photography, of such high quality (and, of course, such low quality) been so readily available, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Newspapers and magazines are putting huge–often too huge–edits online, every photographer dead or alive has a portfolio website, blogs like this one or Conscientious or countless others sift through the cruft, and then there are the online magazines.
Visura does a lot right: pictures are big, but not too big; edits are long, but tight; diverse range of photographers and photography; great design (though flash and a page layout too wide for my screen are significant drawbacks). There seem to be a million of these online photography magazines popping up, and just as many have gone dormant over the past few years; hard to know which will survive, but it’s great to see a forest starting with so many saplings.
And speaking of the photographers above, be sure to check out “The True Meaning of Pictures: Shelby Lee Adams’ Appalachia”, a documentary exploring the controversy over the photographer’s pictures, Amy Stein’s fantastic series “Domesticated”, now a book, which in my mind is what the world looks like just before the birth of the world described in the Talking Heads’ “(Nothing but) Flowers” (lyrics):