Tag Archives: documentary

Photography is About Closeness

The dark fluffy clouds come rolling in, shielding the beaming summer blazing bright sun. A little white church sits in the middle, surrounded by rolling green grass, white fluff budding from the fields, and a sea of yellow happiness, with sprinkles of houses scattered around.

Two African American children go running past the church, playing and laughing. Click. The sun begins to  set painting the sky ever so gently in a soft, fading baby blue color with streaks of peach, a man climbs the a ladder to hang an American flag. Click, his silhouette, with a backdrop of sunflowers and sunset painted sky. A woman sits in her dimly lit house, window light slowly creeps in. Click, the beauty of age shines bright with the light. A basketball goal carefully sits in the front yard, a tire keeping it balanced,the backboard worn and leaning. Click, a boy leaps in the air, still tightly gripping the ball.

This is a portrait of a place, a place that lies in the depths of the backside of Texas, a place most pass up or don’t even get to see. This is a portrait of place, with 50 residents, founded by freed slave. A place that few probably would even see beauty in. It’s an intimate and beautiful portrait of Pelham, Texas.

This and all of Lisa Krantz’s work, an Express-News staff photographer, gives a sense of closeness and intimacy.Photo director at Wired.com says, “If you’re not getting invited to dinner, you’re not doing your job.” No matter what subject Krantz covers, it’s as if her viewers too are being invited to share in someone’s experience.

And this is why photojournalist are so important to the world, serving as a connection between two indifferent groups.

This article contains advice on how to make your work better as a photographer. http://www.wired.com/2013/03/lisa-krantz/#slideid-18603Pelham lisa-krantz-scripps-14

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Brazilian Stories and Selfies Through a Pinhole

Brazilian Stories and Selfies Through a Pinhole - NYTimes.com

Brazilian Stories and Selfies Through a Pinhole 

Great piece in the NYTimes Lens Blog about a pinhole photography workshop in the Mare favela in Rio de Janeiro led by Tatian Altberg. Fantastic photographs. 


Brazilian Stories and Selfies Through a Pinhole - NYTimes.com

In my web searching, I found another article about the project.

Posted in Community Programs Also tagged , , , , |

Bangladeshi photo agency Drik

Inspring piece in today’s Lens Blog:

Wresting the Narrative From the West 

… Shahidul Alam’s Pathshala school has produced dozens of world-class photographers and given Bangladesh a reputation for exceptional photography. The Chobi Mela photo festival, which Mr. Alam started in 1999, brings photographers from around the world to the capital, Dhaka, and promotes local image-makers and documentarians. His photo agency, Drik, which he started in 1989, sells stories made by Bangladeshi photographers to media outlets worldwide and encourages its photographers to cover stories the way they want to, and not to try to fit a script imposed by outsiders.

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Alexis Lambrous Photos of Young Brooklyn High School Teacher

Alexis Lambrous Photos of Young Brooklyn High School Teacher
NYTimes.com Lens blog

Today’s lens blog feature begins:

Any thought of law school vanished the moment Ferrin Bujan stepped into a classroom as a student teacher. It was her last year at Queens College, where she was majoring in math and education, and she had been a little uncertain about her future.

“The world turned,” she said. “This is where I wanted to be. I enjoyed helping students who were struggling and knowing I could make a difference for them.” read more

The article continues to tell us the inspiring story of the dedication of Ferron Bujan as a teacher. It is also the story of Alexis Lambrou, a photographer who has dedicated herself to telling the story of new teachers in public high schools. A powerful photoessay is on the lens blog and more photos from the series on Lambrou’s site.

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D.C. students use photography to protest school security – The Washington Post

D.C. students use photography to protest school security – The Washington Post

The small band of guerrilla photographers spread out in schools across the District, snapping photos of metal detectors, police pat-downs, and scuffles between security guards and students. read more

The student photographers Critical Exposure, a nonprofit photography program that teaches youth to use the power of photography and their own voices to become effective advocates for school reform and social change, based in Washington, D.C.

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How to take a photography portrait in 10 minutes

How to take a photography portrait in 10 minutes | Art and design | guardian.co.uk.

When time is short or the location is a disaster, every photographer needs some tried and tested ideas to fall back on. Here are a few tricks of the trade

from the Guardian Photo Blog


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Birth Culture

Alice Proujansky taught in our Community Collaborations program in 2002. She has been extremely busy since then as a freelance journalist and Teaching Artist and Staff Developer at Urban Arts Partnership in NYC.  Her Birth Culture project was featured in this Sunday’s NY Times.

©Alice Proujansky

Life’s Unequal Beginnings – NYTimes.com

Alice Proujansky (BFA 2002)  in the NY Times Sunday Review as part of their Exposures series in The Opinion Pages.

She writes: For the past six years I have been photographing birth, looking at its universal as well as cultural aspects, and the struggle to provide women with safe, respectful care. An estimated quarter of a million women die each year from pregnancy-related causes like pre-eclampsia. Though the number of women who die in pregnancy or childbirth is half what it was 20 years ago, most of these deaths could have been prevented.

My interest in the subject started when I was 18 and on a semester-abroad program in the Dominican Republic, where I ended up with a Spanish immersion internship in the materInity ward of a public hospital. continue reading.

This is the not the fist time the NY Times has featured this work. In 2010, they produced  the multimedia piece “Hope for a Healthy Birth After C-Section” using Alice’s photos.

A freelance photojournalist based in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, Alice Proujansky’s work has been published by the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the BBCNew York MagazineNPR and others. She has also been a teaching artist for many years and now is Staff Developer at Urban Arts Partnership. Alice returns regularly to our department to talk to students in our Community Collaborations project. 

See www.aliceproujansky.com for more information, to view more images from her Birth Culture project, and to follow her blog.


Posted in Media Projects Also tagged , |

Reinvention Stories

REINVENTION STORIES > A new web project by Documentary Filmmakers, Julia Reichert and Steven Bognar  that pushes how the Web can be used for storytelling. *Worth checking out

REINVENTION STORIES is an experiment in bringing real life documentary stories into the potential of an interactive environment. This includes a short movie. Sit back and watch it if you want, or choose your own path through.

You can add your own story. You can answer questions we ask. Or eventually you can see dozens of stories, of people, places and events in our city. read more


Interesting interview with Julia and Steve about their project and the process of making it @ POV films blog, Two Filmmakers Reinvent Their Approach for “Reinvention Stories,” a Web Documentary


Highly recommend reading more on the POV | PBS blog: Another interesting and related story about community storytelling is My Brooklyn: Replicating Their Model in Your Community



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Photographing your own community

Came across this article Voices of NY » » The ‘Destruction of a Community’ Thru Another Lens which features an interview with Ricky Flores, a Bronx photographer whose work is featured in the exhibition Seis del Sur at the Bronx Documentary Center. The article and great website for the exhibition highlight what it means to photograph your own community.

Posted in Community Programs, Media Projects Also tagged , , |

Gordon Parks and the power of photography

What Became of Harlem’s Fontenelle Family? – NYTimes lens blog

Gordon Parks’s Harlem Family Revisited

In March 1968, Gordon Parks published a portrait of an African-American child with disheveled clothes in Life magazine. His lips were swollen and cracked from eating plaster, in a futile attempt to ward off hunger. His eyes were plaintive and haunting.

Richard Fontenelle was too young to understand, but he and his family became the faces of urban poverty for millions of Americans. The photo essay Mr. Parks produced — “A Harlem Family,” which is now on exhibit at the Studio Museum in Harlem — changed Mr. Fontenelle’s life, and the lives of every member of his family, forever. It sparked in him a desire to succeed, and a lifelong friendship with Mr. Parks. read more 


You can view the original layout in the online version of LIFE magazine, March 8, 1968. It is quite powerful to see the original context in the magazine with the layout, other articles, other photographs, and advertising.

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