Category Archive: websites
“Despite many fantastic women working with photographic media, the industry continues to be dominated by male counterparts. Firecracker assists the promotion of women photographers by showcasing their work in a series of monthly online gallery features.” -Firecracker
Firecracker is an interesting project started by Fiona Rogers, who works in Magnum’s London offices, focused on supporting women photographers from Europe. A new photographer is featured each month, running the gamut from photojournalism and documentary to art photography, and photos are always interesting. Here are a few of the featured photographers that really caught my eye: Tessa Bunney, Dana Popa, Sophie Gerrard, Jane Hilton, and the current featured photographer Melinda Gibson.
Firecracker also runs a grant for a female photographer to complete a documentary photographic project. The 2012 application period has just ended, and a winner will be announced soon.
I had the good fortune to meet up with Emphas.is CEO Karim Ben Khelifa recently; he’s full of ideas for the future of photojournalism and Emphas.is. Emphas.is, a kickstarter-like funding platform for visual journalism, has helped produce many photo essays addressing major international topics over the past couple of years, and they’ve recently branched out into book publishing. Among the first books is Revolutions by Rémi Ochlik, a young photographer who was killed this year while covering the conflict in Syria. The video above gives a preview of the work in the book, photos from the Arab Spring uprisings throughout the Middle East last year and this. Now the book is available for sale through Emphas.is (there is also a collector’s edition available that includes a print along with the book).
Emphas.is has other books and prints available through their online store, including Peter Dench’s England Uncensored, William Daniel’s Faded Tulips (previously on dvafoto), and Rian Dundon’s Changsha.
(via Time Lightbox)
In recent months the Alexia Foundation has been very busy with new social media presence and a gorgeous new website that shows off all of the terrific projects and photographers they have supported over the last 21 years. The Foundation was founded in 1991 and has awarded $700,000 in grants to fund over 128 projects by both professionals and students.
This year’s winners include Justin Maxon’s When the Spirit Moves, Kathryn Cook’s Memory of Trees and Katie Orlinsky’s Innocence Assassinated: Living in Mexico’s Drug War. Past winners include Matt Eich (2008), Balazs Gardi (2006), Marcus Bleasdale (2005), Francesco Zizola (2004), Ami Vitale (2000) and Melissa Lyttle (1999).
The Foundation has also just announced a new $25,000 grant called the Women’s Initiative “to provide resources for a photojournalist to produce a project that illuminates any form of abuse of women in the United States but with global significance.” The deadline is August 15, 2012.
“The Alexia Foundation’s main purpose is to encourage and help photojournalists create stories that drive change. While our traditional grant guidelines put no limits on the subject matter for grant proposals, a few proposals about women’s rights in the last few years have been so powerful that they have compelled the Foundation to create a grant specifically on the issue of women’s abuse. Because this issue is so shocking and deplorable – but continues partly because it is so often unseen or ignored – the Foundation will provide a $25,000 grant so a project can be produced that will illuminate the horrors of what is happening, often invisibly in our own communities.”
Photojournalism has a history problem. What was a banner headline and 6-column photo is often forgotten just weeks later. Rarely do we get to see what happened a year or a decade or longer after the main news event. Revolution Revisited does just that. Josh Meltzer, photojournalism instructor at Western Kentucky University, wrote in recently to let us know about this project that he and his classmates finished as part of a Master’s in Multimedia at the University of Miami. It focuses on Kim Komenich‘s 1987 Pulitzer-winning coverage of the Philippine Revolution for the San Francisco Examiner, and pairs that with follow-up photos and interviews with people in the photos and Komenich. The students started the project by working with over 800 contact sheets from Komenich’s original work, and the website makes more than 500 images available online, substantially broadening the tight edit of the work awarded the Pulitzer.
“There is much more to the war than the mainstream media has shown. The purpose of Razistan — or “land of secrets” — is to reveal these untold stories.” -about Razistan
Razistan is a newish Tumblr site devoted to telling original stories from Afghanistan. Founded by a host of acclaimed photographers, writers, and editors (Pieter Ten Hoopen, Sandra Calligaro, Javier Manzano, Fardin Waezi, among others) the group aims to keep attention focused on Afghanistan now the the US’s, the world’s, and the media’s eyes have moved on. There’s a kickstarter funding campaign (72% funded as of this writing). It’s always an ambitious project to fight against the prevailing media of the moment, but Razistan is well under way. There’s a great deal of compelling imagery on their Tumblr site already, and the success of their kickstarter campaign will allow them to do more exhibitions, publications, workshops for local journalists, and more.
By the way, I found this via Tumblr Storyboard, which is Tumblr’s in-house editorial effort to showcase what’s happening on Tumblr. Storyboard has a short interview with Razistan co-founder and publisher Marcos Barbery about the impetus behind the project.
Kamerades is a new collective of photojournalists based in Belgrade who have come together to help develop independent photography in Serbia and to work on group projects documenting contemporary stories. They are currently working together to photograph the Serbian presidential and parliamentary elections, which will take place on Sunday May 6, 2012. These six photographers are contributing their own hard-edged and sardonic vision of the Serbian electoral process and how it reflects Serbian society. They call the project “Dirty Season”.
I think it is an important step for this group and Serbian photography in general to work on such collective projects, with financial support, and to have a community of like-minded photographers working together to get photographs published in their own voice. It is not easy, especially not here, but I admire their energy and efforts. With this in mind I had a few questions for the Kamerades crew about their formation and backgrounds. Given the timeliness of their new project with the elections this week, I chose not to show a portfolio of their work but this current electoral group project which I am so excited about. It is an incredible portrait of Serbia during this election cycle.
Kamerades is Saša Čolić, Nemanja Jovanović, Milovan Milenković, Nemanja Pančić, Marko Risović and Marko Rupena. As a group they regularly post to the Kamerades Blog including updates to the Election story, which they present without captions or credits.
So how did this group of photographers come together? Where did you meet?
Jovanovic: Marko Risovic, Milovan Milenkovic and I participated in a photography lecture supported by World Press Photo back in 2009. That was the first time that we showed some of our work to a group of people larger than three. I was swept by Marko [Risovic]’s Legionnaire story for example and one thing led to another. Milovan suggested that we meet and talk about doing “something” for Serbian photography, even if it means taking only baby steps. After two years of meeting in various pubs and places that would be too generous to call restaurants, speaking and inviting over 20 people to join us, this is what came out of it.
Pancic: Milovan Milenkovic and Nemanja Jovanovic initiated the idea that after our work when we have free time, we can meet at the pub and discuss our work. At first point it brought together a large number of photographers, but over the time there were six of us remained and those were the most persistent ones. During this period, which lasted some two years, we have become a collective. It’s started to affect in a positive way to all of us as photographers, but we also became close friends. In the end we decided to launch a website that allowed us to show our work to the public.
What backgrounds as photographers do you have? Freelance, agencies, newspapers?
Jovanovic: Probably every possible background you can think of! In Serbia, you don’t get a paycheck doing and specializing in only one kind of photography.
Risovic: All of the guys in Kamerades collective were working for Media outlets at some point. At the moment few of us are trying to freelance. In Serbia. Can you imagine?
Pancic: Some of us are working in the agencies, some try to be freelancers, and some in the press.
Was there a moment when this group came together and decided that it was time to work collectively? What was it? What gave you guys the idea to work together?
Jovanovic: Yes. The idea was not so clear in the beginning, but it was there all along. From start we were determined to “push each other forward” and to try to do what we like for no other reason. No money, no awards, fame or glory were important, only escaping our everyday routine which included participating in the inevitable decline of journalism, photojournalism and photography in Serbia. The collective came as a logical solution.
Risovic: Being colleagues, working next to each other for years, we were silent witnesses of degradation of photojournalism in Serbia. We realized that sitting and despairing doesn’t lead us anywhere. So, we decided to pursue some action, and besides hanging around, talking and drinking in the pubs, we tried to be constructive. As Nemanja said before, it was a process, but it was clear from the very beginning that we all have common goal.
How did the website come together? What are you hoping to accomplish with the website (that is, to sell work? to share pictures? promoting yourselves, promoting Serbia, just looking bad-ass, etc.)? Where did the design and logo come from?
Jovanovic: It took some time. We are not experienced in that kind of stuff, so we were learning the basics, step by step. We were lucky enough to be 6 people with completely different interests, knowledge, personalities, approach in photography, but we somehow clicked perfectly together, and it resulted in the fact everybody got their part of job. Mostly Sasha who whipped and pissed off rest of us (or, took the piss out of the rest of us), and Milovan who did logo and design details after approximately nine million e-mails and discussions about the same issue. Also, we had a lot of help from friends, like our colleague Darko Stanimirovic who did the website. A lot of people gave different advices, Matt Lutton among them [ed: happy to help guys!], Donald Weber from VII agency and our friends photographers, designers and editors from Serbia and abroad.
Selling our work is every photographer’s job of course, but with this portfolio we mostly seek attention and hope to sell something in the future, maybe to get some assignments that would suit our style/wishes. And looking cool is one of the goals, of course! We are pretty much terrible musicians and we couldn’t be rock stars, so we took cameras. Chicks love it!
Pancic: As I said before, the website has come as a result of our meetings during the past two years. One idea that keeps us together is that we want to show our work to world around us, we believe that as a collective we have a better chance to get more publicity and through joint actions provide us new projects. Logo design came from a smart push by Milovan Milenkovic, multitalented and good looking guy.
Risovic: Basic thing that bothered us from the beginning was the fact that when you simply google documentary photography and Serbia together, you don’t get any of the serious websites with representative work. There are great documentary photographers and photojournalists in Serbia. Believe us! We hope to change this with our website. And to look badass, it goes well with the fame.
Read on »
Pete Marovich recently got in touch to talk about his project, American Journal, an online magazine collecting photos and stories about the United States from a variety of contributors. There’s a lot of interesting work there, including: Michael Webster’s Curious People, Peter Marovich’s Legacy of the Black Cowboy, Andrea Morales’ Extracted Dreams, Implanted Realities, Jennifer Whitney’s Love and the Third Degree, and Jenna Isaacson’s All Thrifty States. The site started as a way for Marovich and his wife to collect work they did outside of their regular newspaper assignments, but grew to include other contributors. They welcome submissions. The goal is to make a sort of general interest magazine about contemporary American life, and I think they’re well on the way.
Richard Renaldi’s 4th Annual Secular Holiday Advent Calendar is a whimsical little holiday distraction that keeps on giving. Each day, a new date opens up–click on the numbers–and you’ll find a visual morsel hiding beneath.
“We won’t always agree, we can’t promise that the show will always be SFW, and you might get pissed off at us from time to time. But we do know what we’re talking about, and we love photography. In The Loupe will have photographer profiles, work we like, work we don’t like, industry event coverage, and reports from the road. There will be interviews with industry legends, and people whose names aren’t big… yet. And we might just vent for a while.” -about In The Loupe
I had the good fortune of meeting Stella Kramer at this year’s Flash Forward Festival in Boston. We talked a bit about some of the festival topics, including self-publishing and digital media, and she mentioned an upcoming and ongoing project that would be a sort of talk show about photography. Now, In The Loupe is three episodes in and shows great potential. Kramer and Julie Grahame and Allegra Wilde host the show and offer commentary. They know what they’re talking about; between the three, they have 75 years of experience as editors, creative directors, consultants, and all the other business that makes photography reach audiences. What I like most about the series so far is that it features work by photographers I hadn’t run across yet; there’s a discussion on Jennifer Shaw’s “Hurricane Story” and an interview with police photographer John Botte about his work surrounding 9/11. As I mentioned, there are only 3 episodes so far, but the momentum is there. Check out the blog, tumblr, and vimeo for more In The Loupe TV.
“WARCO lets players shoot and record what they see ‘through the lens’ – framing shots, panning and zooming, grabbing powerful images of combatants and civilians caught up in war. They’ve got AK-47s and rocket-propelled grenades – you’ve got a flak jacket, a video camera, and a burning desire to get the story. Every game space is embedded with multiple objectives and story leads for journalist Jesse DeMarco to find – a scoop if she’s smart, mortal danger if she drops her guard…” -from WARCO’s website
WARCO: The News Game is a first-person shooter video game in which the player is a photojournalist gathering footage for television news stories on subjects similar to revolutionary conflict in Africa and the Middle East. There’s a trailer available featuring in-game footage, though the game is not available try or buy yet. Ars Technica has coverage, as does Kotaku. Coverage and reactions generally state the game is a novel take on the war/shooter genre, though in Ars Technica’s article, an unnamed publisher suggests that it will be difficult to get a game company behind the idea: “It’s a hard sell to executives to suggest an FPS with no shooting, but this is definitely the sort of game we should be making, as an industry.” The game designers have been working with photojournalist Tony Maniaty to guide aspects directly related to photography in conflict zones.
I’m intrigued, being a fan of FPS games, but it will be some work to make the game fun and interesting beyond the concept. Instead of taking part in the action, you’ll mostly be watching it. That can be interesting as an actual photographer, but we all know the boredom of waiting for something to happen. The game designers have addressed this criticism directly, telling Kotaku, “A game, by definition, has to be active, and there’s a very voyeuristic nature to this so we really wanted to make sense of gathering footage something more active: you’re actively pulling together a story and a narrative out of the pieces of the world you observe.” The game appears to have two significant modes of play: gathering footage with specific objectives (seen in the trailer which the player accomplishing the goal to “film a rebel vehicle” at :08 seconds in) and surviving while doing so, and editing together that gathered footage to create a news-like narrative of the situation. More than that, much of the game’s tension will relate to moral decisions relating to which footage or interviews best serve the viewing audience of your eventual news report.
This isn’t the first game to feature photography prominently, though it may be the first to focus on war photography. And it’s certainly a unique take on the war genre of contemporary gaming. It also seems like a powerful tool for teaching audiences about the physical dangers of conflict journalism and the moral and ethical difficulties and ambiguities of news reporting.