Photographer Jim Lo Scalzo’s funny/sad video “America’s Dead Sea” won third place in the World Press Photo Multimedia contest, announced this morning. Lo Scalzo manages to find a fresh perspective on the much photographed Salton Sea in the southern California desert. Intercutting his still photos and video footage with archival promotional films, Lo Scalzo’s three-and-a-half minute video traces the area’s decline from a major tourist attraction to a lifeless toxic dump, contaminated by salinity and farm chemical runoff. The video is touching, and there’s ukelele music on the soundtrack.
You can see “America’s Dead Sea” and Lo Scalzo’s other videos on Vimeo.
Other winners in the multimedia division of the competition include Time magazine, which won the Documentary Project of the Year award for “Beyond 9/11,” a project by photographer Marco Grob for the tenth anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks. Time magazine also won the News Multimedia Story award for a project about the uprising in Egypt shot by contract photographer Dominic Nahr.
Other winners included Alfonso Moral and Roser Corella, who won the Long-Form Multimedia Documentary Award for this project called “Machine Man,” about manual laborers in Bangladesh:
The Issue Reporting Multimedia Story award went to freelancers Elles Van Gelder and Ilvy Njiokiktjien for this project called “Afrikaner Blood,” about extremists clinging to South Africa’s apartheid past:
Reporter Corinne Reilly and photographer Ross Taylor of the Virginia Pilot won the Feature Multimedia Story award for this story called “Home | Front” about a Virginia family separated by the war in Afghanistan:
A complete list of categories, with links to all the winning entries, is online at poyi.org.
Charles Dharapak of the Associated Press has been named Photographer of the Year in the still photography division of the 2012 “Eyes of History” contest, the White House News Photographers Association (WHNPA) has announced. Andrew Harnik of the Washington Times won the Political Photo of the Year award.
In the new media division of the competition, John Poole of NPR won first place in the Best Use of Photography & Audio (with narration). David Gilky of NPR won Best Use of Photography &Audio (natural sound). Whitney Shefte of The Washington Post won first and second place in the Best of Multimedia (in depth) category, while Jim Lo Scalzo of EPA won first place in the Best Multimedia Package (simple) category.
Judges for the still photo competition were Ohio University professor Marcy Nighswander and photographers Bob Pearson and Ed Kashi. A full list of still photography winners will be posted here on the WHNPA site.
Judges for the new media competition were photographers Liz O. Baylen, Will Yurman, and Zach Wise. The full list of new media winners will be posted here on the WHNPA site.
The White House News Photographers Association sponsors The Eyes of History contest. This year’s winners will be honored at the annual “Eyes of History” Gala on May 5, 2012, in Washington, DC.
HitRECord, an online artist collaborative and production company started by actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt, has created the animated short “They Can’t Turn the Lights Off Now” based on the ACLU of Florida’s pamphlet “Photographers: Know Your Rights.” The setting for the video is a demonstration on Wall Street, where a young girl’s camera is confiscated by a police officer. To her rescue comes Benjamin Franklin (with angel wings), who explains what rights she has to take photographs under the first amendment. The video appears to be making a statement about the recent actions by police to limit journalists and others from documenting Occupy Wall Street protests. Watch the video below and go to ACLU.org to learn more about photographer rights.
Vimeo just announced a new design of its video-sharing service. The main feature of the redesign is a new video player that Vimeo says is twice as large as the previous set-up, making it easier to display video content.
Vimeo says the redesign also gives users the ability to play videos from their personal homepage, improves the overall navigation, and adds more privacy options on your account.
Many of the new features are outlined in the video below. Also, after the jump is a press release about Vimeo’s revamp.
Stephen Ferry has received the first-ever Tim Hetherington Grant, it was announced this morning. The grant was established to honor Hetherington, the photographer and filmmaker who was killed in Libya in April, 2011, and is administered by World Press Photo and Human Rights Watch with the support of Hetherington’s parents.
You’ve probably heard about the new Canon Cinema EOS C300 by now and you may have even seen Vincent Laforet’s short film, Mobius, which was shot with the new cinema camera but you may want to check out this behind-the-scenes footage of what it was like to make the film.
If you haven’t seen Mobius yet, we’ve embeded it below the behind-the-scenes footage as well.
During a seminar titled “The New World of Online Magazines and Curator Web Sites” this afternoon at PDN PhotoPlus Expo, photographer Sophia Wallace posed a question to photographers who’ve been hesitant to harness the full power of the internet for fear that their work might be stolen: Should you be more afraid of image theft, or of working in obscurity?
This rather direct question, which had resonated with Wallace after she heard it at another talk recently, gets to the heart of the decision that photographers must make in today’s market. You can embrace online publishing on blogs, online magazines, Tumblr pages and the myriad other platforms on which people are looking at imagery these days, or you can keep your work to yourself.
Suffice it to say that nobody in the audience was interested in the latter option. But in case they were, Wallace and fellow photographer Manjari Sharma shared stories about their own experiences that made a strong case for diving headlong into promoting one’s work online.
By getting their work featured by online platforms, such as those run by moderator Stella Kramer (StellaZine) and panelists Julie Grahame (aCurator) and Michael Itkoff (Daylight), each of the photographers had built momentum for bodies of work that eventually led to concrete achievements like exhibitions, advertising commissions and essential project funding.
After having her work circulate one image at a time across various online publications (and in a couple of print magazines), Wallace received what she termed “the email she’d been waiting for.” It was from a curator asking if she would show her work in a three-person show at Colgate University’s Clifford Gallery with photographers Catherine Opie and Jo Ann Santangelo. During her presentation Wallace also showed how, through Google analytics, she could track who was looking at her site and where they came from. It was amazing, she said, to realize that people all over the world were looking at her photographs.
Sharma showed two projects that she’d promoted online. A series of portraits of people taken in the shower in her Brooklyn apartment was discovered by art directors at the ad agency JWT in Delhi, which lead to a commission to replicate that work for ads for a German maker of shower heads that was expanding their business in India. Sharma’s photographs appeared on billboards in 23 cities, she said.
After she created a well-produced Kickstarter video to raise funds for her project Darshan, several photo blogs and other online publications wrote about the work. She ended up raising $26,000 of funding over the course of three months.
Each of the panelists encouraged the audience members to build networks online through Facebook and Twitter, and to help promote other photographers whose work they appreciate. Wallace made the point that opportunities for group exhibitions often come from other artists, and introductions to clients often come from fellow photographers.
Kramer also made another useful point for photographers who might still be hesitant to publish their work online: “The more you are associated with your work, the harder it is to steal it,” she said.
With the help of a grant, 48 interconnected DSLR cameras, and some long hours of editing, Ryan Enn Hughes produced a pair of videos that combine thousands of still photographs into a 360-degree look at ballet and “Krump” dancers. Check out the results and the behind-the-scenes production video below. We corresponded with Hughes via email to find out a bit more about the project, and how and why it was made.
PDN: What interested you in creating these 360-degree videos?
Ryan Enn Hughes: The 360 Project stems from a proposal I wrote and received for a Chalmers Arts Fellowship—a funding body in Canada that supports extraordinary research and creation projects in the Arts. My proposal was to “explore the structural elements of the moving image,” which is in its essence the still photograph. My background is in Film Production/Cinematography —it wasn’t until late in University that I immersed myself in Photography. Over the last few years, more than ever, Motion Pictures and Photography have started to cross-pollinate—digital capture, digital software, and digital presentation methods in both media make the integration of the two fields seamless. Coming from a film background, I’ve always had a desire to push the still image further. The 360 Project is where I ended up.
Working with dancers is something I’ve been doing for a few years now (RGB Move, Ballet!, C-Walk, etc). I’ve always been taken by the concept of capturing a “peak moment of action,” and dance really lends itself to that concept. The way I view the project is like this: it is constructed of still photographs that when assembled like a flip-book create a motion picture, which end up resembling a type of rotating digital statue, which we in turn edited together.
PDN: Can you give me a rundown of the equipment you used?
REH: The gear used was 48 Nikon D700′s, 4 Broncolor Pulso G 3200J Lamp Heads, 4 Scoro A4S Packs.
PDN: How long did you spend editing the project?
REH: Post-production was a very big undertaking. There were several steps necessary to get to the end product. Before we could get into any actual editing, each frame in every 48-frame set had to be Photoshopped—painting out all the cameras that were visible in the original captures was a time consuming process, but enabled us to have greater control over the images. The editing process and sound design (Zelig Sound) was undertaken at the same time—it was a back and forth process exploring various editing techniques and sound design elements. Fortunately this project was not on a hard deadline, and our timeline was designed to allow our team to explore creative options.
PDN: In applying for the grant, what was your pitch in terms of the value of the project as a technical and creative innovation?
REH: I suppose the biggest factor in pitching this project was its interdisciplinary approach—the fact that it combined ideas, tools and methodologies from a variety of media. Another exciting factor was that what I proposed wasn’t a normal method of production—the gear, software, and know-how to create a project like this hasn’t been overly accessible in the past for arts based projects—it has certainly been around, but the availability, particularly the software to handle this type of project, I feel is new to a broader group of creatives.
PDN: Now that you’ve completed a pair of these projects, how do you imagine using this experience and this style of production in the future?
REH: This has definitely been the most technically challenging project I’ve undertaken to date. It’s definitely set a new bar for me personally in terms of where I want to take my work—both technically and creatively. I’m very interested in pushing the editing style used in “Krump 360″ and “Ballet 360″ further—making edits more complex, faster, and integrated with sound. I’m very interested in taking this style of production and applying it to Music Videos and Commercial Work.