The first Firecracker event took place yesterday night at the Apple Store on Regent Street. Fiona Rogers, founder of this new online platform that promotes European women photographers, brought with her Tessa Bunney, Laura Hynd and Léoni Hampton to show their work and talk about it.
Tessa Bunney showed her series ‘Home Work’, a view on domestic labour in and around Hanoi. ‘The Letting Go’ of Scottish photographer Laura Hynd, it’s a deeply personal series of photographs, portraits and self-portraits that testify the honest and intimate nature of the relationship between her and her subjects. Léoni Hampton discussed ‘In the Shadow of Things’, a book project about her family who gathered to clean up the house of Léoni’s mother, who is affected by obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Following the showcase, Fiona Rogers opened the debate to the public. She said although the majority of photography students in UK universities are women – statistics say two to one -, yet there are very few who become eventually professional photographers.
It’s curious to know that, by the turn of the 20th century, women outnumbered men in the field.
In those years photography was considered a safe job for women, because it allowed them to do practice at their home studios. The trend slowly went down by the second decade of the century.
Probably the reason for this unbalance is beyond the photography field.
But is it really a matter of gender? Does really adding the label ‘woman’ to a picture help in some way that picture to gain more attention? My favourite photographer is Diane Arbus. Yes, I’ve said my favourite photographer, not woman photographer.
Posted in Artists, News
Tagged apple store, diane arbus, fiona rogers, firecracker, laura hynd, leonie hampton, London, photographers, photography, tessa bunney, women
Hany Farid, a digital forensic specialist of Dartmouth University, has developed a jpeg-analysing tool to identify even the subtlest alterations to digital images.
No human eye in front of a good fake is able to notice there is something wrong.
In fact, people often believe wrongly that good authentic images are fabrications.
But mathematics, physics and computer science, are powerful tools that can go further the naked eye and tell us whether shadows, perspective, texture and lighting are correct or not.
Acoording to Farid: “We know how to write down equations that describe jpeg compression, and so on and so forth. So with all this we can actually determine whether these things we see are physically correct or incorrect. Now, the issue with these tools, of course, is that they are not at the stage yet where you just push a button and get an answer. It’s not like CSI on TV; it’s actually a fair amount of work.”
The new software developed by Farid will be very useful for the news agencies that get photographs from citizen journalists and want to make sure there are not alterations of any kind. The specialist is in the early stages of creating a company to make the software commercially viable by year’s end.
For those who want to know more about this cutting-edge topic, on the 5th April will take place an MIT symposium, Ethics and Forensics in the Age of Photoshop Photojournalism, with Farid and Santiago Lyon, director of photography for the Associated Press.
Posted in Media, News
Tagged Associated Press, Dartmouth University, digital forensic, fake, Hany Farid, MIT symposium, photography, photojournalism, photoshop, Santiago Lyon, software
I went around the Strand and Embankment on a sunny day to experiment my own street photography through the use of manual focus and light. I found that London is a city of contrasts (of shapes, colours, lights, cultures…) and is crammed with all sort of things, including a “boot tree”…
“The Bang Bang Club” is an upcoming movie – it will hit the American theatres on the next month – about the young combat photographers Kevin Carter, Greg Marinovich, Ken Oosterbroek, and Joao Silva, who risked their lives to document the violence of the post-Apartheid’s South Africa in the early 90s.
South African photojournalist Kevin Carter won a Pulitzer Prize in 1994 for a controversial picture taken during that period. The photo showed a starving Sudanese toddler and a vulture few meters behind her seemingly waiting for the child to die.
The photograph was published by The New York Times on March 26, 1993, and received vast criticisms from readers who wanted to know whether the photographer helped the little girl to survive or not.
On July 27, 1994 – only few months after he won the Pulitzer – Parker killled himself. Excerpts from his suicide note read:
“I’m really, really sorry. The pain of life overrides the joy to the point that joy does not exist…depressed … without phone … money for rent … money for child support … money for debts … money! … I am haunted by the vivid memories of killings & corpses & anger & pain … of starving or wounded children, of trigger-happy madmen, often police, of killer executioners… I have gone to join Ken if I am that lucky.”
Posted in Artists, News
Tagged Apartheid, Greg Marinovich, Joao Silva, Ken Oosterbroek, Kevin Carter, New York Times, photography, photojournalism, Pulitzer, Ryan Philippe, South Africa, Steven Silver, The Bang Bang Club
I met Mikko Takkunen last Thursday in the bustling atmosphere of Spitalfields Market, near Liverpool Street Station.
He is a Finnish freelance photographer just moved to London to get more work.
His blog, PhotojournalismLinks, is very popular on the web: it receives over 30,000 visits a month and every day features links referencing across the internet the best work and photo essays by the most important photojournalists in assignment around the world.
During our chat we talked about his blog, James Nachtwey, the Emphas.is project and the future of photography.
This is his first ever TV-interview.
THE GUEST – Turi Munthe, founder and CEO of Demotix, one of the most successful experiments of entrepreneurial journalism of the last years, has met last Friday the postgraduate students of International Journalism at City University London.
He talked about citizen journalism and the the new challenges of photojournalism nowadays.
THE VIDEO – In the video that follows there are some extracts of the talk.