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Monthly Archives: June 2009

Journalism 1.5

Now that conventional media is congratulating itself on its openness to the cellphone imagery and twitter reports from Iran in a variety of articles, are these same media outlets going to be open to such amateur reporting from other regions of the world–for example, the current coup in Honduras, the Chinese crackdown on the followers [...]

Famous Photographers Tell How

There is a 1958 vinyl record entitled “Famous Photographers Tell How” with the voices of a number of photographic legends: Weegee, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Philippe Halsman, Bert Stern, Tana Hoban, etc. Ted Barron put up MP3 excerpts by Weegee and Cartier-Bresson talking about their photographic processes that can be heard here. It is well worth spending [...]

1968, 2009

In the 1968 Olympics black gloves raised on the victory stand in Mexico City by Tommie Smith and John Carlos were part of a protest representing minority rights that resonated throughout much of the world (Peter Norman of Australia wore a human rights badge in support); now, forty-one years later, it is the wearing of [...]

Click here

It may be too obvious to remark, but warning us about “graphic or objectionable content” may be a good idea not only for a single image but for the majority of the visuals we see daily in the media, from insipid television programs to idiotic advertisements to sexist magazines. In this case the alert is [...]

A Major Turning Point

What we in photojournalism are heading towards, and what we desperately need, is a hybrid of amateur and professional photography, with much overlap between the two groups (there are amateur/professionals as well as professional/amateurs). It is up to us now to figure out how this hybrid can work most effectively while attempting both to regain [...]

The Future of Photography 2.0, and for Professionals

It has been widely commented that much of the important photojournalism of the last several years has been done by amateurs — London Underground bombing, Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse, coffins of American soldiers coming from Iraq, young woman being flogged in Afghanistan, etc. And now, of course, there are the many images from Iran by [...]


Of all the photos showing masses of people protesting the elections in Iran, it is rare to see an individual. As with the imagery of so many mass movements, the individual is often lost in the attempt to show the movement’s scale and, in the case of Iran, its anger.
This photograph is of a woman [...]

Iran, Thirty Years Ago


This is what I had written a long time ago about Gilles Peress’s landmark photographic reportage, TELEX IRAN, which he produced thirty years ago as Iran was going through a revolution bringing Ayatollah Khomeini to power:
“Peress’s photographs are the [...]

Of ballots and batons


Iowa on Our Mind

It is increasingly strange in this Information Age to realize how little we know about each other. People in Iran, North Korea, Afghanistan — who are these people whose governments are so often in the news? Driftless, a moody, elegiacal photo/video/audio piece by Danny Wilcox Frazier on MediaStorm, tells us more about the souls of [...]