Last October, Jennifer Lopez made headlines around the world after showing up at a Chanel fashion show in Paris with her 4-year-old daughter (wearing $2,400 in jewelry) and 25-year-old boyfriend in tow. Photographs of the trio sitting in the front row quickly made their way to the front pages of major newspapers and websites.
Although the photos appear to show Lopez and co. peacefully sitting around, the environment created by the photographers there was anything but peaceful. Sébastien Bauer was sitting a few rows back at the time, and captured the above video showing what it’s like to have frenzied paparazzi breathing down your neck as they look to score a widely-published shot. Read more…
Freelance paparazzi photographer Paul Raef was arrested back on July 6th after chasing Justin Bieber on 101 Freeway, becoming the first person charged under a new anti-paparazzi law signed by former governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. Raef is currently facing four misdemeanors, with two of them being “following another vehicle too closely and reckless driving, with the intent to capture pictures for commercial gain.” The punishment is up to one year in jail and $3,500 in fines.
The Los Angeles Times reports that his lawyers are now trying to have the anti-paparazzi law declared as unconstitutional, saying that it specifically and unfairly targets a certain group of news gatherers. Read more…
Professor and self-proclaimed cyborg Steve Mann created an eye and memory-aid device he calls the EyeTap Digital Glass. The EyeTap, worn by Mann above on the left, is a wearable device that is similar to Google Eye, pictured right, but he’s been making them at home since the 1980s. The goal of his project is to use images to aid memory, or even to augment the memories of people with Alzheimer’s Disease or who simply want to preserve their memories more permanently. However, a recent misunderstanding over Mann’s technology allegedly caused a confrontation between Mann and several employees at a Paris McDonald’s restaurant. Read more…
Urban Outfitters is selling these Embarrassing Photo Protective Sunglasses that make you look like you’re walking around with your face censored — perfect for those who are paranoid of having their photographs taken without their permission. A pair of “face-blocking shades” costs $12.
“Teenage Paparazzo” is a documentary film that will debut on HBO on September 27. It’s about the life of Austin Visschedyk, a 14-year-old paparazzi photographer who chases celebrities for 17 hours a day, earning $500 to $1000 for each photograph sold. Hopefully Visschedyk isn’t like the paparazzi in the Kate Mos LAX video we posted a while ago (though he probably is). Read more…
We’ve covered quite a few stories of photographers being harassed while doing legitimate photography, but what about cases in which photographers are doing the harassing? For many of you, paparazzi likely come to mind. The above video was published by Hollywood.tv back in 2008, and shows supermodel Kate Moss trying to leave Los Angeles International Airport with her young daughter while being hounded by a swarm of paparazzi.
The video was recently used by a campaign that aimed to toughen up laws against paparazzi, and resulted in a new law that passed two weeks ago with a 43-13 vote. If signed by Governor Schwarzenegger, the law would fine paparazzi $5,000 if they break traffic laws or interfere with the operation of a car (as seen at the end of this video).
Judging from the comments left on the YouTube video, it seems like the general public would agree with this kind of law. Do you agree with tougher restrictions on paparazzi?
The Paparazzi Bots are a series of robots invented by Ken Rinaldo, a faculty member in the Department of Art at Ohio State University. Each bot is autonomous, and moves about on a wheeled platform, using infrared sensors to move towards humans. It’s goal is to take single photographs of people, and it makes decisions on whether or not to capture the photograph based on facial expressions of the subject. If you happen to be smiling, the bot is more likely to photograph you.
Here’s a short video demonstration of the bot in action:
Rinaldo was invited to deploy three of these bots at the recent Winter Olympics in Vancouver, and two of the bots were also used at an art and digital culture festival in Berlin.
There will one less millionaire paparazzo in the world.
The first public photograph of Tiger Woods after he reemerged from Tigergate was one of the most highly sought after photographs, and major paparazzi agencies estimated that the photo would bring in over $1 million in worldwide distribution profits.
However, the first photos that emerged (Tiger going on a jog) were not shot through the lens of a paparazzo, but were instead released through Getty Images, the subscription-based photo agency. This effectively wiped out the value of any paparazzi photograph, and provided the photograph to most media outlets for relatively nothing.
Paparazzi photographs can occasionally fetch astronomical prices – photos of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s newborn twins reportedly fetched $14 million.