March 23rd, 2011

Oslo Photo Festival: On Photojournalism and Survival

The 5th annual Oslo Photo Festival, which took place from March 16 to 20 in Norway’s capital, hosted talks by photojournalists and documentary photographers Carolyn Drake, Stephanie Sinclair, Pieter Ten Hoopen, Thomas Lekfeldt, Andrea Star Reese, Justyna Mielnikiewicz and Eugene Richards. Speakers offered insights into how they win the trust of subjects, what it takes to develop a strong personal project, and advice on surviving under difficult conditions and in an increasingly demanding profession.

Many photographers and photo students who attended sought advice on what it takes to be a successful photojournalist. Others, like festival attendee Chris Harrison, came to meet colleagues from the Norwegian photo community. “We all live in our own little worlds most of the time so it’s good to get out socially and chew the fat,” Harrison said. “All in all it’s kind of like getting a vitamin shot—going to these things you realize you aren’t alone and in some ways you’re quite privileged and its good to be reminded how fantastic photography is.”

Here are notes from some of the Festival’s presentations.

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