About A Photograph

#1: David Bergman 

The video I explored this week is titled “David Bergman on photographing Bon Jovi”. The video is about a photograph tour photographer David Bergman took of Bon Jovi in one of his concerts in Helsinki, Finland. The photograph which is in black and white shot is a spectacular capture of Jovi on stage looking up while lifting his hands as the rain poured on. The most interesting thing about the photograph is the fact that the shot captured the rain drops in white against a dark background of the crowd which makes it extremely amazing. The most inspirational aspect about the video is David Bergman advice to young photographers about being selfless in one’s one and always wanting to achieve the best one is capable of achieving. When one is in a position like David Bergman was in of being the tour photographer, it is important to do everything possible to build trust by going out of the way in order to achieve the best. This inspirational advice is applicable not only to photographers but also to other people in their different areas of profession. It is the determination to achieve the best and to be unique that provides the driving force to achieve excellence.


#2: John Moore on Ebola in Monrovia

The video that I watched this week covers the works by John Moore, a senior photographer working for Getty Images. The works specifically related to his coverage of the catastrophic Ebora outbreak in Monrovia, Liberia. Moore stood at the front line to cover what was happening on the ground through photography. In the video, the image covered is that of a victims of the Ebora virus who were locked in a room in a deplorable condition. Moore narrates the challenges that local health workers encountered while fighting the epidemic, where even the health workers themselves were at a high risk of contracting the virus. What is most interesting about this story is the effort by Moore to tell the world about the epidemic that was first spreading through photography. He dared to cover a situation that was considered by other media organizations to be too dangerous to send their journalists. Moore believes that the images he covered about the situation in Monrovia has a positive impact because it influenced countries and other organizations respond to the situation through sending health workers and through aid. The lesson I learned from this video is that photographers can play a pivotal in addressing some the challenges that face humanity through coverage of the difficulties that societies go through in their day-to-day lives.

#3: John Tlumacki

The video titled “John Tlumacki’s Photograph from the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing” is a narration by photographer John Tlumacki who was covering the Boston Marathon that was marred by the explosion at the finish line. Tlumacki had covered marathons for more than 3 decades and the finish line was, to him, very spectacular to cover. The picture shown in the video was shot immediately the first blast went off showing the initial reaction by the police and one of the inured marathoners on the ground. Despite the risky situation that Tlumacki found himself in he was resolute about doing what he had gone there to do-shooting photos. Unlike other people who were running from the explosion, Tlumacki ran towards it while taking shots. Tlumacki advises that as a photographer he did not let emotions hinder him from doing what he was doing. It means that covering a messy situation where people are in pain and agonizing can trigger emotions that can hinder photographers from doing their work. It is therefore that little courage that a photographer needs in order to maneuver risky situations. This video raises the questions about the limits to which a photographer should subject him/herself in order to cover a situation without compromising their safety or health. In my view, it is important to assess the situation before deciding to cover a risky situations. After all no photo is worth the life of the photographer.

#4: Josh Newton

In this week, I will review the video showing a photo that was shot by Josh Newton of the wedding between April Hartley and Michael Wolber with a ranging wildfire at the background. The wedding was happening at Rock Sprig Ranch in Oregon. This particular photo was shared on social media platforms and was widely viewed across the world. As per the video, the couple were unaware that there was a huge fire on the background by the photographer seized the moment and shot some of the most spectacular wending photos. It is indicated that the wedding was relocated to another reserved location. The wildfire provides a spectacular background making it a very unique wedding photo in a natural environment. People are used to shooting wedding photos in areas that are specifically prepared to go in line with the theme of the wedding. Therefore, having a unique wedding photo provides a new type of experience. The lesson one can learn from this photo as a photographer is the aspect of seizing the moment, being alert of what is happening in the environment and being swift to capture the details that other people can easily ignore. This can bring the whole difference in regard to quality of photos and photography skills.

 #5: John Stanmeyer

This video features a photograph by John Stanmeyer that he captured during an evening walk around the shores of the red sea. The photograph captured a number of people standing at a spot at the shores, seemingly focusing their phones upwards. The photo captures the spectacular scenario at the beach and red sea with people lifting up their phones towards the sky. Stanmeyer, learned that the people were Somalis who were searching for network signal to enable them connect with their people back in Somaliland. While the photograph shows Stanmeyer’s mastery in photography based on the high quality of the photo, it also communicates a deep message about people’s lives and what they go through in their day-to-day lives. The stunning thing about the photograph is that it brings into limelight the plight of immigrants concerning their desire to connect with their people back home. Photography can therefore play a pivotal role in highlighting such issues, and also as a tool for instigating a social change. For example, the photograph by Stanmeyer highlights the need to provide immigrants with effective and efficient communication platforms to help them link with their families in their home countries. As a photographer, the lesson I learned through this video is that I can do my part in making the world a better place through applying my photography skills to highlight specific social issues.

#6: Nick Ut – About Photography

The video in Think tank photos that I will highlight in this discussion is a photograph by Nick Ut. Nick took the photo in 1972 while covering the Vietnam War near Saigon. The photo captures several children running ahead of army officers while screaming and crying. At the background, the photo captures a heavy explosion. The center of attraction in this photo is one young girl name Kim who is walking naked on the road. Nick got interested to know why the girl was naked and went ahead to capture the photo but realized that the girl had suffered severe burns from the explosion. At this point, he decided to help the girl by driving her with his van to the hospital 40 minutes away. After 40 years Nick still remembers the girl and the situation. Kim is also happy to tell her mates how she was rescued by the photographer. This photo shows the power of photography in connecting people and being a channel through which strangers can connect and create long-term relationships. Photos are a great way of rekindling lost memories about significant periods, situations, and events in our lives. What is most interesting about the photo is that it acts as a link between people from completely different backgrounds. It is also interesting that Kim did not get anybody to rescue her even the army officers who were around. It is Nick Ut who was at the right place and at the right time to take action and help the girl. It shows how photography is intertwined with humanity. It is a message that photographers need not only focus on capturing the events and happenings but must also identify situations when they are needed to act in service to humanity. 

#7: Ron Haviv – About Photography

The photograph by Rov Haviv captured a Bosnian soldier leaning on a tree, sobbing after finding that the place he called home was literally wiped away during the war period. The houses behind were once where the family of the soldier lived but it was completely destroyed and no one was living there anymore. There were about 69 people who were massacred in the village and in addition, properties were burned and others destroyed. The 1995 photograph represents a significant message and history of the war in Bosnia. In fact there is a big story, and as Haviv narrates, documenting every aspect of the war was his objective. The photograph therefore communicates a thousand words and with just a glance, one can pick very valuable information about negative effects of the war. As a photographer, the lesson I learned from this photograph is that when covering historical events, photographs are very important tools given that a single shot can carry a big and significant story about the people and place. Most important, people can look at the photograph and learn a lot of things. For example this photo shows the negative effects of war and people can learn that war can have grave impacts on individuals and communities meaning that people should look for all means of resolving conflicts before they escalate to a war.

#8: ED Kashi – About Photography

Ed Kashi’s was covering the activities of the Miltant Group in Nigeria. It was a delicate situation for the reporters due to the risk and also the need to capture every bit of activity that was taking place. Kashi used his creativity to capture two different moments in one photo. He was able to do this by capturing what was ahead and at the same time the reflection on the real mirror in his car. The idea here was to capture a photo that tells a story and at the same time using photography skills to capture photos that are aesthetically appealing. The key lesson that Kashi shares in this photo is that as a photographer one has to be alert on everything that is happening, be observant and keep hoping to capture something important. Things can change in the scene in a matter of seconds and what makes the difference is the ability of photographer to use his/her skills and creativity in order to capture photos that tell a story and at the same time have a photo that is aesthetically appealing.

#9: Ben Lowy – About Photography

In this video presents the photography work by Benjamin Lowy. The specific work in this video is a photo that he took using a cell phone in 2012 capturing Hurricane Sandy. He carried the cellphone using a zip lock bag. The photo was featured in Times magazine making Ben one of the pioneers of cellphone photography. Lowy had been involved in covering wars in different parts of the world. He started using a cellphone in 2008 and became a strong promoter of Hispamatic and Instagram Applications. What is interesting about Lowy is that he chose a different path from most photographers and started embracing cellphone photography. To him using photography was an artistic choice despite the fact that I may seem to be of lower quality compared to using film camera. When using a cell phone, the photographs may have an exceptional aesthetic not common with film camera which can be good for bringing attention for the social issues being covered such as a Hurricane or war in a more unique way. To him, it is not the photography tools that matters but the end product. The major lesson that this video shares is that a photographer may need to identify the best tool to use to capture the real details of the situation or work being covered. This is to say that using a cell phone can be more effective than using film camera in some circumstances. I find this view convincing because in some circumstances such as in conflict zones, carrying a conventional photography camera can be inappropriate especially when covering secrets and inner details of a situation. A cell phone can be more convenient because of the light weight as well as due to the ease of use. But still, there is the artistic aspect that Lowy highlights about cellphone photography, in that it can bring out unique aesthetics that may reflect the situation better that when using photography cameras.

#10: Simon Bruty – About Photography

Simon Brutty photograph video is about a photo he took of a German weightlifter during a live event during the London Olympics when he attempted to lift 196kg and the weight toppled over his neck on his second attempt almost crashing him. Simon Bruty talk says that a photographer in such events must be alert, always conscious of what is going on and be prepared to capture even the fine details. The photo is very clear indicating that the photographer was very precise with his timing. One of the advices Bruty shares about photography is that the photographer must be emotionally detached from what is happening or what the subjects are experiencing in order to capture the key moments. This is the only way they can be able to focus on capturing photos that make a difference.

#11: Saul Loeb – About Photography

Saul Loeb was covering the president Obama’s election campaigns. Obama made a stopover at a restaurant owned by one of the biggest supporters of President. Leob captured the owner when he hugged the president, gave him a big hug and lifted him up. The photographer was just in time to capture Obama lifted up by the restaurant person. What is interesting about this photograph is the fact that it is about one of the rare moments one can find a president being lifted up by a civilian in the midst the secret service. A photo captures a moment that many people may never come to witness. This photo shows the importance of being alerted to capture the most extraordinary unique moments because it can end up being the picture of the moment that defines a historical event. This photo can tell the story of the character of diehard democrats as well as the personality and character of President Barack Obama during his campaigns.

#12: Ami Vitale – About Photography

Ami Vitale narrates a story about his coverage of a coffee ceremony in Ethiopia, which is a country that is quite famous with coffee. Ami indicates that she had attempted to take images of what was happening during preparation of the coffee without much success because the rooms were always poorly lit. She kept coming back repeatedly without much success but this one moment she was able to capture a spectacular image of a woman who was roasting coffee for the ceremony. This managed this with the help of village boys who she recruited to help in carrying a reflector. The advice that Ami Vitale gives to photographers is about being patient in order to capture the best moment. This is quite different from the lessons learned from other photographers who talk about being alert to capture that key moment. However, when covering an event such as a coffee festival, it can be advisable to be patient in order to take the images that best represents the story. This is a big lesson for me as a photographer because in some cases, photographers are in a hurry and may miss some of the best moments when doing a story coverage.

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