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February 11th, 2013

Wire Services Dominate Sports Categories (so far) in POYi Judging

©Associated Pres/Jessica HIll

©Associated Press/Jessica Hill

Wire service photographers are dominating the sports division prizes of POYi, as the judging moves into its second week. POYi judges selected News Division winners last week, including the top prize of Newspaper Photographer of the Year, won by Paul Hansen of Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter.

Jessica Hill of AP won first prize in the sports action category for a photo of a foul contact between two WNBA players that shows one of the players driving the basketball into the face of the other. The image was shot last June.

Jessica Rinaldi, a Boston-based freelancer, won the top prize in the Recreational Sports category for an image of competitors helping a a woman over an wall in Vermont’s “Tough Mudder” obstacle race last July.

The top Sports Feature prize went to Mike Roemer of Associated Press for his image of Donald Driver of the Green Bay Packers celebrating a touchdown in a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars last October.

Alberto Pizzoli of AFP won first prize in the Olympic Action category for his gracefully symmetrical image of two fencers attacking each other at the women’s epee semifinal bout at the London 2012 Olympics.

Quinn Rooney of Getty Images won top prize in the Olympic Feature category for a photo of British cyclist Dani King celebrating a gold medal and world record in the women’s team pursuit track cycling event, also at the 2012 Olympics in London.

News Division category winners announced at the end of last week included:

General News: Bernat Armangue of the Associated Press, for his photograph of a Palestinian man kissing the hand of a dead relative in the morgue of Shifa Hospital in Gaza City on November 18, 2012.

News Picture Story (Newspaper): The winning entry, a series of images showing the police massacre of striking miners last summer at South Africa’s Lonmin Marikana platinum mine, appears to have been shot by Kevin Sutherland of the Johannesburg Sunday Times. PDN has not been able to confirm the photographer’s identity, however. (POYi posts the winning entries, but will not announce the names of the winners until all the judging is completed at the end of February.)

Issue Reporting Picture Story: Liz O. Baylen of the Los Angeles Times won first price for “Life Changing Dose,” about the overuse and abuse of prescription painkillers, and its consequences for people’s lives.

Feature Picture Story: Dave Weatherwax of the Jasper Herald won first prize for a story about an Indiana family’s hog butchering tradition.

Winning images are posted on the POYi web site.

Associated Press Wins Top Portrait Prizes at POYi

POYi Announces Campaign, Spot News, and Feature Category Winners

July 19th, 2012

New Gizmos at the Olympics: AP’s Robotic Cameras

Major sporting events such as the Super Bowl and Olympic games are the incubation grounds for new camera technology, because news organizations are jockeying for competitive advantage and a chance to show off. And the Summer Olympics in London are no exception.

Associated Press has posted this promotional video touting the robotic cameras it has developed for this year’s games. Remote cameras are usually fixed, but operators of AP’s remote robotic cameras will be able to pan, zoom, and swivel the camera up and down using a joy stick, as they monitor the view on a computer screen–and click the shutter at decisive moments.

AP says it will have a robotic camera in each of 12 different venues. Anticipating where all this might be leading, we asked whether a single operator will be controlling several cameras at once, and whether operators can work from far-off locations–say a desk in New York–similar to the way the military flies its drones.

AP spokesperson Paul Colford says there will be one operator per camera. He adds that according to AP director of photography Santiago Lyon, the operator has to be at the venue where the camera is located, “because otherwise there would be a delay in what the operator is seeing.”

June 14th, 2012

Canon USA Says Delayed 1D X DSLR Will Go On Sale in Mid-June

We just got official word from Canon U.S.A. that the delayed Canon EOS-1D X professional digital SLR will finally go on sale in mid-June, in time for the summer Olympics in London.

“The EOS-1D X cameras will be arriving in mid-June to select dealers in small quantities and increase gradually over time,” a Canon U.S.A. spokesperson told PDN. “They will be here in time for the Olympics and will be available.”

The 2012 Summer Olympics run from July 27th to August 12th.

The spokesperson did not explain why the 18-megapixel, full-frame flagship DSLR, which was initially supposed to ship in March 2012, has taken so long to come to market.

The camera, which can shoot 12 frames per second and shoots 1080p HD video, will sell for $6,800 body only.

We got some early hands-on time with a pre-production Canon 1D X way back in October 2011 and wrote this preview story.

March 21st, 2012

March Madness: David Leventi’s College Basketball Cathedrals

You don’t have to be caught up in the NCAA college basketball championship to appreciate David Leventi’s images of basketball arenas. Leventi, a Brooklyn-based photographer, was assigned to shoot some of the country’s oldest college basketball courts last fall for ESPN the Magazine. His images, all shot in available light using a 4×5 camera, capture the architectural grandeur of basketball courts built before 1940, including those at Butler, Fordham, University of Pennsylvania and Yale.

Top: Butler's basketball arena. Above: University of Pennsylvania. All photos © David Leventi

“The idea was to show them as cathedrals of basketball,” he explains. He had two to three hours in each of the spaces to wait until the light was just right, and also to figure out the best place to position his camera in order to get a dramatic photo. “The challenge is finding the one emblematic shot that says it all compositionally as well as on an emotional level.”

Leventi has recently been getting assignments from The New York Times Magazine, Esquire and other clients to shoot grand interiors, including the refurbished TWA terminal in New York’s JFK airport, thanks to his series of images of great opera houses in Europe, which he exhibited last year in Toronto.

Leventi, who also shoots landscapes and less splendid interiors, says his very personal project on opera houses was inspired as much by his grandfather, Anton Gutman, as by his interest in architecture.  Gutman’s singing career was thwarted, Leventi explains. “He was a cantor who was interned in a Soviet prisoner-of-war camp from 1942-1948. The Danish operatic tenor Helge Rosvaenge, also a prisoner, heard my grandfather sing an aria from Tosca and gave him lessons. I grew up listening to him sing in our living room,” says Leventi, who ended up photographing the great stages on which his grandfather never got to sing.

More of Leventi’s architectural work can be found on his blog,

March 1st, 2012

PDN Video Pick: Jonathan Chapman on Mountain Biking

Can a photographer promote video work by showing still images? In PDN‘s feature story about Jonathan Chapman’s direct mail promos, “All the New Work that’s Fit to Print,” the Minneapolis-based photographer and director explains that his new large-format newsprint mailer shows multiple images from assignments and personal projects, whether he shot them as stills or video. For example, he shows stills of bikers, created as part of a video assignment for Specialized, the bike manufacturer. His “Jonathan Chapman Photography/Motion” logo appears on the sun-kissed images, while the URL points readers to find his motion reel on his Web site. His videos like this one for Specialized can also be found on Vimeo.

December 12th, 2011

POYi Calling for Entries

POYi has put out a call for entries for its 69th annual photojournalism competition. Online registration and entry will be open through January 12, 2012, contest organizers say.

POYi has added a new Sports Division, which will include new categories for Sports Photographer of the Year, as well as categories for Sports Multimedia and Sports Editing.

This year’s competition will include two special categories to recognize the work of photographers who documented the Arab Uprisings and the Japan Earthquake.

The Missouri School of Journalism will host the judging in a public forum from February 8 to February 28.

For more information about POYi and details about the competitions see

August 31st, 2011

PDN Video Pick: On Assignment with Jimmy Chin in Yosemite

Adventure photographer Jimmy Chin recently shot a feature story for National Geographic about the derring-do of modern day rock climbing, and Renan Ozturk of made this behind-the-scenes video of Chin at work. It’s full of spectacular views, sweaty palm moments, and insight about how Chin works while dangling from a climbing rope on El Capitan and other Yosemite cliffs.

August 23rd, 2011

PDN Video Pick: Boxer Chordale Booker by Craig Cutler

This video clip titled “Jump Rope” kicked off Week 20 of the photo series “CC52: A Year of Personal Work by Craig Cutler.” The video features Open Class amateur boxer and two-time Golden Gloves champion Chordale Booker. (We previously featured Week 4: Marshmallows, which can be viewed again at
Format: RED ONE Mysterium-X Camera; 100mm-300mm zoom lens. Shot at f5.6 & f8, 2K resolution, 100 fps.

August 18th, 2011

PDN Video Pick: Get Right Back on That Mountain

The three laid-back photographers who make up Camp 4 Collective were a hit at the recent Outdoor Photo Expo, where they gave a seminar on video techniques. Tim Kemple, Jimmy Chin and Renan Ozturk, all of them climbers as well as photographers, showed documentaries they have made for National Geographic. The North Face and other clients. Ozturk, an artist turned filmmaker, showed in one of his videos that he is equally devoted to climbing and the latest tech gadgets. He shot it while recovering from a skull fracture and some broken vertebrae he sustained in a ski accident. Though he was “not technically cleared for physical therapy yet,” he went for a climb and he documented the experience while testing the POV.HD camera from V.I.O and the Kessel Crane pocket dolly motion control.

Ozaturk says of this video, “It was fun to experiment with a fresh roll of duct tape, a bit of stiff steel wire and some thin pieces of PVC.”

More of Camp 4 Collective’s videos can be found on Vimeo.

June 10th, 2011

PDN Video Pick: This Video Makes Us Want to Sweat

“BREATHE” from Paul Schneider on Vimeo.

Maybe we like Paul Scheider’s video “Breathe,” which shows people working out hard and fast, because we sit at our desks all…day…long. But Schneider, a commercial director, also demonstrates that even with minimal audio equipment and only a minute and a half of video, you can get a rise out of viewers. He says he placed a video mic close to the athletes to record ambient sounds and their heavy breathing. He also recorded sound with his video camera, “then used Pluraleyes to sync the two.”

for more on “Breathe” and to see Scheider’s other spots, visit his Vimeo page.