When I go to a photography exhibit or show, I find myself looking at similar work. Photographs made from an inkjet printer, that are just stylised archives. Be it a photo of a bird, a photo of a dress, subject or event. Whatever it is, it’s just a photograph. A photograph that can be easily duplicated with the simple press of a button. A print on a piece of paper, nothing more, nothing less. But where is the artist’s brush stroke? Where is the photographer’s unique thumbprint, aside from on top of their shutter button?
What is photography to you? Is it your business or you just something you do for fun and pleasure? For me, it’s the second one. I have been into photography for quite a long time, yet I never turned it into a career. It’s always been something else that paid my bills, and photography is here to enrich my life in a totally different way.
I am a stubborn hobbyist who never gave it a shot to turn pro. Over the years, I’ve heard many annoying proposals and questions about my photography “career” – though I never had a career. But I came up with four of them that have always been said with good intentions – yet they’ve made me feel very uncomfortable. Have you heard them as well?
After some rumours and speculations, the new Presidential photographer has finally been announced. Obama’s photographer Pete Souza left the White House, and the one to replace him and work with Donald Trump is Shealah Craighead. She is a photojournalist who already has the history of photographing politicians, and even working in the White House for George W. Bush.
Heather Whitten, a photographer and a mom, recently shared a photo of her husband taking care of their sick son. She captured the dad taking care of the boy in the shower. The photo caused millions of positive reactions all over the internet, but a single negative one was enough to send her to court. A single individual sent a complaint to local authorities in Arizona, resulting in Heather and her husband being investigated for neglect.
The importance of presidential photography cannot be understated in today’s visual world. Although the bulk of photography since the inception of regular presidential photography in the 1950s still consists of “grip and grin” photo ops, White House photographers have sought to capture a more intimate look at the leader of the free world. Press access to the President varies by administration (a criticism that dogged the Obama administration), but White House photographers have access to private or top secret moments that are a vital part of the historical record – from 9/11 to the assassination of Osama bin Laden.
“I’m going to document every meeting that you have. It’s for history,” said Pete Souza, Chief White House Photographer under President Barack Obama, in an interview with National Geographic. “This job is about access and trust, and if you have both of those, hopefully you’re going to make interesting and historic pictures.”
The concept of official White House photographer was established in the 1960s and started with John. F. Kennedy. Since then, every president of the US, except Jimmy Carter, has had his official photographer.
The latest video by DigitalRev shows a brief history of presidents and their official photographers. We’ve been surrounded lately by the news about the elections and inauguration of the new US president. But this video focuses on what we’re all interested in here: photography. It also refers to some features the White House photographer needs to have, which is particularly interesting. So, how is the official presidential photographer chosen?
Jobs like White House Photographer fascinate me. It’s not that I’m particularly interested in doing that kind of work (quite the opposite, in fact). But that it’s so far removed from the type of photography that most of us do on a daily basis. There’s many different challenges. Different goals. It’s a completely different way of working.
The current White House Photographer, for a couple more days at least, is Pete Souza. He’s been photographing Barack Obama since 2005, when he was just a Senator. Souza has held this position before during the time of Ronald Reagan’s presidency. Since those days, though, photography and technology has come a long way. I would imagine he didn’t quite hit the 2 million photos mark with Reagan that he has with Obama.
Antony Armstrong-Jones, the Earl of Snowdon and Princess Margaret’s former husband, passed away today at his home in London at the age of 86.
Apart from being the Queen’s (former) brother-in-law, he was also an inventor, photographer and Emmy Award-winning documentary filmmaker. Despite his divorce from Princess Margaret, he continued to take photos of the Royal family and the Queen herself.
In this hectic and violent world, photographers use the term “shooting” for totally different purposes. Jason Siegel is a photographer who combines the two meanings in a controversial and thought-provoking project called “Shoot Portraits, Not People”.
This is his first non-photography based art project. In order to make it, he used photographic equipment built into high-powered weaponry. Thus, he combined different techniques and different types of art into a unique project.
I wanted to write to you about photography contests — why I generally recommend staying away from them.
First of all, if you enter your photo into a contest, you suddenly become a slave to the opinions of others.
The most important person to please in your photography is yourself. Not judges. Not random people voting on your photos.
Do you really care about what others think about your photos? If so, why?