At first glance, New York-based photographer Richard Barnes‘ Civil War photos might look like they were taken from some museum or historical photographic archive. Look a little closer, however, and you’ll begin to notice things that are quite peculiar. In one of them, there’s a pickup truck parked in the background. In another, a man wears a T-shirt and baseball cap — certainly not the fashion you’d expect to see in a mid-1800s photo.
The truth is, Barnes creates beautiful war photos that appear to be from over a century ago by using the Civil War-era process of wet plate photography to capture modern day Civil War battle reenactments. Read more…
Editors have always been wary of sending photographers into war zones since the practice began in the early 20th century, but the speed at which the Internet distributes photography is increasing both the danger to photojournalists and the reluctance of the backers. The British Journal of Photography has an interesting look at the costs of conflict photography:
This situation, said [Jon] Jones, had led to a catch-22 in which young photographers are unable to get assignments because magazines and agencies refuse to take responsibility for the risks involved. “I think there’s a reluctance to send people into conflict zones. It doesn’t mean it’s right, but it’s the economic reality.” But that’s nothing new, he added. “When I went to Bosnia [in the 1990s], I didn’t have any support. I went with no money, then went back with £300, then again with £400, and built it up each time. It takes a while. But the initial step was just to go. Today, you get the same answer I was given 20 years ago: ‘Great. I’m not going to assign this to you, but I’d love to see you when you come back.’” And somewhere down the line, after a young photographer has proved his worth, it changes, he explained.
“You basically have to earn the right to get an assignment,” Knight added. “Nobody is going to assign you to a conflict zone right out of college. They want to see what you’ve done and what you are capable of. When I started it was the same. Once you’ve done that enough times, they might give you an assignment,” he told the audience. “When I started, I had to sell my own blood to eat.”
“I had to sell my own blood to eat”… Now that’s dedication to photography.
This may be a rare case in which a $695 class might actually save your life: Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism is offering a safety course for journalists who cover war, conflict and disaster zones. Read more…
Back in May 2011, Canadian camera shop The Camera Store released a humorous advertisement that quickly went viral, amassing millions of views. Here’s the sequel to that video, showing another violent engagement between two groups of well trained photographers.
For her project titled Marked, photographer Claire Felicie shot close-up portraits of the marines in the 13th infantry company of the Royal Netherlands Marine Corps before, during, and after their deployment from 2009-2010. She then arranged the portraits into haunting triptychs that show the toll war has on a person’s eyes and face. Read more…
After the viral success of The Battle at F-Stop Ridge, making action videos in which camera equipment is used as weaponry has become quite popular. Here’s another crazy one that features Canon vs. Nikon:
A group of Canon commandos is sent out on a mission. Their objective: to save an innocent girl who has been taken hostage by Nikon terrorists. Who will ultimately win this battle?
The bar just keep getting set higher for these things…
If you liked the Battle at F-Stop Ridge video that went viral earlier this year, then you’ll probably enjoy this humorous video showing a major battle in the war between photographers and videographers. It was created by Switzerfilm at After Dark, a photography education “un-conference” in Tucson, Arizona.
Photo sharing is proving to be one of the main battlegrounds in the social networking war between Facebook, Twitter, and Google+. Facebook launched another counterattack today by increasing the resolution of displayed photos yet again from 720px to 960px, a 33% increase (last year they increased by 20% from 604px to 720px). Furthermore, the company claims that photos now load twice as fast as before. Read more…
The New York Times has a powerful piece about photographer Giles Duley. Duley was covering a patrol in Afghanistan back in February when he stepped on a bomb and lost an arm and both legs:
“I remember looking up and seeing bits of me and my clothes in the tree, which I knew wasn’t a good sign,” he said. “I saw my left arm. It was just obviously shredded to pieces, and smoldering. I couldn’t feel my legs, so straightaway and from what I could see in the tree, I figured they were gone.”
[...] Rather than tally what was missing, Mr. Duley counted what remained.
“I thought, ‘Right hand? Eyes?’ ” — he realized that all of these were intact — “and I thought, ‘I can work.’ ”
And work is what he plans to continue doing. Duley expects to be self-dependent within the year and to continue working as a photographer — perhaps even in Afghanistan. You can help finance Duley’s recovery and return to photography through this website.