Several photo series blew us away this week, including entries for this years National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest, Jody MacDonald’s paragliding photography, and a miniature world series by a fourteen-year-old photographer and retoucher. To kick it all off, we have a special article from American Photo on women in conflict photography.
War through a woman’s eyes
A new article in American Photo Magazine explores what it’s like to be a woman conflict photographer, and how their experiences differ from those of their male colleagues. “Women working in conflict zones face a double-edged sword, especially in places where gender separation is part of the culture,” they note. “They face lingering resistance to their presence in the field, and often must take extra precautions against becoming targets of violence.”
The article includes first-hand interviews with conflict photographers Heidi Levine (whose images of the Libyan civil war won a Picture of the Year International award), Andrea Bruce, Lynsey Addario, Kate Brooks, and Stacy Pearsall. The women note that sometimes their gender actually provides them special access – for example, Lynsey Addario was able to photograph inside Afghanistan people’s homes in the early 2000’s without her guide because Taliban members cannot enter a home with only a woman.
Check out the full article and interviewees’ images, as well as a special Q&A with PhotoShelter member Stacy Pearsall.
Interview with Benjamin Lowy in Sydney
ABC Australia caught up with Benjamin Lowy this week during his stay in Sydney for the Head On Photography Festival. Lowy is an acclaimed photojournalist and conflict photographer who is perhaps now best known for his iPhone – and more specifically, Hipstamatic – photos. “If someone has an iPhone and they’re taking pictures of their cat and their brunch, and then they see a picture from Afghanistan using the same tool they have in their hand, it’s a small common denominator,” he told ABC. “But it’s still something they have more in common with than a far flung photojournalist using a big DSLR that appears on some news aggregation site.” Read the full story here.
Entries for the 2013 National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest
National Geographic Traveler shared some of the early entries to its 25th annual photo contest with The Atlantic’s In Focus blog. Check out a few of our favorites below – the full post can be found here.
T-Rex chase makes for the “best wedding pic ever”
“So things got a little crazy at my friend’s wedding,” a poster wrote on Reddit this week, sending a photo of an entire bridal party being chased by a T-Rex into viral stardom.
“I don’t even promote myself as a wedding photographer,” said Quinn Miller, who suggested the joke shot to the couple. Since then the photo has been shared over 8,000 times. Is this now going to be a thing among wedding photographers? (via Today on NBC News)
Paragliding photographer takes bird’s eye view of world’s landscapes
PhotoShelter member and documentary photographer Jody MacDonald is no stranger to the world of outdoor adventure – she’s swam with elephants, shot extreme surfers, and now has mastered the art of paragliding photography. In this amazing series shot for Niviuk, one of the leading paragliding manufacturers, Jody sailed at speeds of 35kph and reached altitudes of 20,000ft over some of the most remote landscapes in the world. “Shooting from a paraglider in the air can be relatively easy if you have good smooth flying conditions,” says Jody, who usually rides with a pilot so her hands are free and she can concentrate on shooting. Check out a few of her stunning images below, and read her full post filled with how-to tips and insight into this incredible adventure.
Miniature world series created by fourteen-year-old in Photoshop
Since 2011, 14-year-old photographer and retoucher Zev has been sharing his work on Flickr, and lately his photo-manipulated miniature world series has been attracting a lot of attention – and for good reason. The composites are beautifully done, and feature some intense subject matter like the meaning of memories. Zev explains his Photoshop process to the folks over at PetaPixel:
“I shoot the ‘background’ picture first, and it is usually a panorama made up of 5-20 pictures, combining pictures taken at this distance from the subject replicates the look of shooting with a large format sensor, even though I shoot APS-C. After this is done, I take a picture of a person in the exact same (or as close as I can get it) lighting, take that picture into Photoshop, mask out the background (usually with the polygonal lasso and brush) and color correct them so that the brightness and tonality is the same between the background and the miniature person. Then I add depth of field to the person (using quick masks, and lens blur). Then, I draw in shadows, (also using quick masks and lens blur) and call it done. The process usually takes me 4-6 hours.”