November 26th, 2013

Updated: Tragic Story of Former Photoj Inspires Upswell of Support on FB

Yesterday photojournalist Benjamin Lowy posted a photograph on Instagram and Facebook of a man he identified as a former photojournalist, who through a series of tragic circumstances found himself living on the street. Lowy shared his image of the man, named Scott Sutton, and recounted the conversation he and Sutton had on the street near Union Square in New York City. After Lowy told Sutton that he is a photojournalist, “the conversation took a turn to the surreal,” Lowy wrote.

Sutton told Lowy that he had once been a photojournalist as well. According to Lowy, Sutton told him he’d lost everyone close to him, including his wife, who passed away, and has been on the street for two years.

Many in and out of the photo community have shared the story and posted nearly 100 comments on Facebook. Several people have said they know Sutton and have offered to help him. “Very difficult to see him this way but any of us could easily find ourselves in the same spot,” wrote Patrick Whalen, a Wall Street Journal photo editor who said he worked with Sutton in the 90s.

As of this afternoon, Lowy wrote an update saying that since the post yesterday, “quite a few of his friends have contacted me from RIT – where he did his PJ grad schooling, and Archive Photos – where he was a darkroom tech in the 90′s. Currently we are all trying to figure out how to best help him, and I’ll be going back out today to try and find him.”

Lowy’s image and story are here, on his Facebook page.

Update: A previous version of this article stated that Sutton had worked as a photojournalist for Getty Images. A Getty representative told PDNPulse via email that Sutton never worked as a Getty Images photographer.

June 8th, 2012

Photoville Brooklyn Announces Artist Talks, Workshops, Events

When the inaugural Photoville event kicks off on June 22 in Brooklyn, New York’s Brooklyn Bridge Park, not only will it boast a village of exhibitions housed in 30 freight containers, it will also include plenty of educational programming and events for visitors.

The slate of artist talks, lectures, workshops and other events run June 23-24. On the 23rd, BagNewsNotes editor Michael Shaw will speak about the state of news photography, and a panel discussion moderated by Pete Brook of Prison Photography blog fame will discuss “documentary, institutional, vernacular and legal photography and the political uses of images by media.”

That night MediaStorm will give a presentation on “digital storytelling and the cinematic narrative.”

Workshops that run on both days will cover topics like analogue photography, printing, light painting and zine making.

Programming on the June 24th will include a talk about contemporary documentary photography by Ed Kashi, Lori Grinker and Benjamin Lowy, moderated by Glenn Ruga, and a talk about how photography is being used to promote human rights.

That night there is a “show and tell” opportunity for anyone who wants to bring work and talk about it for three minutes, and throughout the day the Center for Alternative Photography will run a “Tintype Photo Booth” where visitors can have their portrait made and learn about this alternative photo process.

There is a slate of exhibitions by photographers from all over the world. For example, Open Society Institute will show Wyatt Gallery’s work from Haiti; Nooderlicht in the Netherlands will present 11 photographers documenting life in prison; The Magnum Foundation will exhibit recent work by Bruce Gilden and Sim Chi Yin. Feature Shoot is showing work by young photographers, and PDN is showing the winners of The Curator contest.

Add to all this the beer garden and food, and the dog run where you can get photos taken of your pooch at play.

For more on the Photoville schedule visit their Web site: http://photovillenyc.org/about.html

May 11th, 2012

Want to Shoot Like Ben Lowy? There’s a New Lens for That.

In a post on The New York Times Lens blog, photojournalist Ben Lowy discusses collaborating with Hipstamatic on a “lens” and “film” combination for the popular photo app. Lowy’s series “iLibya,” shot during the Arab Spring, was made using his iPhone and the photographer is a proponent of using his mobile device on assignment as well as for personal work. His decision to create a Hipstamatic option that’s less stylized than most speaks to the growing concern that using the app for photojournalism is somewhat misleading due to the effects that it can impart. Many critics argue that using a lens or filter on Hipstamatic is similar to editing an image in Photoshop.

Lowy says he contacted Hipstamatic about creating an option in the app that better adheres to newspaper standards for photojournalists when he returned from Libya. He describes the Ben Lowy Lens as being “pure and fairly straightforward” and “slightly desaturated, clarity is up, it’s contrasty.”

Now that there’s soon to be a Ben Lowy Lens, we started to think about what Hipstamatic lenses named for other photographers might look like. If you had your own Hipstamatic lens, what would it do?

May 3rd, 2012

Departing ICP Director Hartshorn Honored at 28th Annual ICP Infinity Awards

The 28th Annual International Center of Photography Infinity Awards, held May 2 in New York City, paid tribute to its departing director, ICP director Willis E. “Buzz” Hartshorn, who last year announced he wanted to step down for medical reasons. Though Hartshorn will continue to work with ICP, this was his last Infinity Awards as director, a role he has held since 1994, when he took over from ICP founder Cornell Capa.

The crowd gave a standing ovation to Hartshorn, who oversaw the expansion of both the ICP museum’s exhibition space and its photography school and the creation of the ICP Triennial exhibition. In accepting a special Infinity Award last night, Hartshorn said that in the 30 years he’s been associated with ICP, its mission has evolved from promoting the appreciation of photography to exploring “how pictures create meaning.” He thanked the ICP board for creating a new advisory position for him within the institution. He also expressed gratitude to ICP founder Cornell Capa for his leadership and encouragement. Looking first toward the heavens and then, after a pause, downwards, Hartshorn said, “Cornell, thank you for giving me this opportunity.”

Photographer Daido Moriyama won the Lifetime Achievement Award. A video that preceded the presentation showed Moriyama capturing his black-and-white, expressionistic images, shooting on the streets of Tokyo with a small pocket camera, sometimes from the hip or without looking through the viewfinder. Moriyama took his iconic photo “Stray Dog” while in his 20s, but for a time he abandoned photography, frustrated that his work was only copying. After falling into a period of drug use, he by chance found and bought a used Pentax and then returned to making art. (more…)