Posts Tagged 'Flickr'

Ordinary People

Photo by discarted

If you’re a regular reader of this site, or even someone new to photography, you’re likely already well aware of flickr—Yahoo’s user generated photography site where thousands of people upload their photos on a daily basis and join various groups to share their work, as well as discuss everything related to photography, including our favorite topic—photographers’ rights.

One of these groups is called Humanistic, which was created “In the spirit of William Eugene Smith (1918-1978),” and is dedicated to sharing photography that “…is humanistically driven, with a strong, genuine human-interest theme.

Humanistic was established in May of 2009 and the group administrator, tsienni, is celebrating the group’s steady growth by holding their first contest dedicated to Ordinary People.

The contest is limited to one submission per group member, and the rules are that the image must contain at least two people and not be altered in any way, or excessively processed—which, some would argue is rather arbitrary and nondescript. However, anyone familiar with William Eugene Smith’s work would instinctively know what the contest organizer meant by “excessively processed.” More important though, the first place winner will received $500 worth of Kodachrome.

Kidding. The contest is for fun.

And Kodachrome will be joining the dinosaurs very soon.

The submission deadline is March 10th, so if you  have a photo that you think is worth sharing with others and representative of Smith’s work, be sure to join the group and submit your image by this Wednesday.

Join Humanistic.


Obama Socialism Poster Has Flickr Roots


The Obama/Joker “Socialism” poster became newsworthy recently for a few reasons, one of them being that it’s based on a stolen Flickr image – which itself was essentially stealing two copyrighted properties.

The LA Times tracked down the “owner” of the image, 20-year-old University of Illinois student Firas Alkhateeb, who says he posted the modified Time cover in January after creating it in Photoshop. It wasn’t until someone (still not publicly known who) took the image, removed the Time title, added “socialism”  and plastered the posters around LA that people really started to take notice.

Forget that the article actually treats this college student’s political views as if they’re relevant and the myriad of things in play, from the trumped up socialism frenzy to political statements to copyright issues. The puzzling thing for me is that the Joker is the quintessentially self-interested cartoon villain, so the link between him and Obama’s purported socialism just doesn’t really add up. But whoever did it, you just know, thinks he/she is really, really clever right about now.

Article from LA Times

See Firas Alkhateeb’s Flickr stream here

Is Ripping Off Flickr Photogs OK?

20-2 Image by discarted

This week, in the New York Times tech blogGadgetwise,” writer Sonia Zjawinski advised readers to download “practically free!” flickr images to decorate their walls.

Of all the artwork I have in my studio apartment (there isn’t a bare wall in the house), my Flickr finds get the most attention. Best of all, they were practically free! I use a Kodak ESP7 AIO printer to ink my finds on various sizes of photo paper and frame them in inexpensive frames found at Urban Outfitters or Ikea. The only thing I pay for is ink, paper and frames — peanuts, in my opinion. 

Now, I get it’s a neat interior design trick she’s stumbled upon. The fact that she’s printing it for public consumption – in the New York Times of all places! The pinnacle of journalistic integrity! – floors me. She’s basically endorsing theft.

Because of the firestorm of complaints, Zjawinski wrote an update to say she consulted a couple lawyers who (absolve her and) say it’s basically a grey area and OK as long as you ask permission. It’s a grey area alright, and you sure as hell can’t control what people are printing in the privacy of their homes. But for her to publish something like that with no research or forethought is so seriously irresponsible – and, sad to say it, goes to show how little respect there is for photographers’ rights that it didn’t even cross her mind to do so.

 Article via New York Times

Photostreaming With Obama

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

I don’t want to just be a bandwagoneeer, but there are things about this presidential administration that have really impressed me. There is a hackneyed old phrase that comes to mind, but I’ll use it anyway: breath of fresh air. 

In an interesting – and unprecedented – move, the White House created a Flickr account and uploaded 299 photos this week. We see President Obama in situations a rare few have access to:  in the White House movie theater, waiting in the Blue Room before a press conference, on Air Force One, in his private study. The photos are, collectively and individually, quite awesome. 

This president doesn’t seem to have a problem with cameras, and amazingly, wants people to see what’s going on at the White House – he seems to be encouraging, dare I say it, openness. They’ve even enabled comments! Now that’s an interesting tack for a government official….

The man behind the camera is the White House’s official photographer, Pete Souza.

California Coasting

Photo by Brian Auer

Aerial Photo’s Views Skyrocket Thanks to Spellings

Photo by Atwater Village Newbie

When Candy Spelling put her Holmby Hills house on the market last week, a Flickr user saw his page views go through the roof. It just so happened that an LA photographer, who goes by Atwater Village Newbie (and runs a local blog by the same name),  had been taking a helicopter tour about a year ago and spotted the extravagant mansion (also known as the “Spelling Manor” in pretentious-speak). He thought it’d make for a good photo. “The sheer size of the house caught my eye, of course, as did the idea of getting a rare peek into the backyards of the rich and famous,” he says.  

It wasn’t until a fellow Flickr user commented that the house looked to be the Spelling mansion that AVN knew what an interesting shot he indeed had. With the real estate listing announcement, AVN released many of the rights of the photo under Creative Commons to encourage people to use it and link back to his work. The Flickr photo went from 9,000 views on the day of the announcement, March 25, to 39,000 views on March 29. About a third of the views came from this Daily Telegraph article out of Australia.

And if you’re interested in the Spelling abode, the most expensive residence in the U.S., it’s going for $150 million. Bad economy? Not for some!

I’d Hate to Be This Guy’s Lawyer

Photo by Jeremy Brooks

This is from an old post on flickr, but still great.

Photographer Jeremy Brooks came upon this angry guy yelling at a homeless man on a corner in San Francisco. He went over to investigate, camera in hand, and the angry man soon turned on him. Mr. Angry Overreaction Man, as Brooks dubbed him, screamed and yelled, threatened him, bumped him with his chest, and told him if the picture ended up on the internet he’d call his lawyer. Brooks stood his ground and got this shot, which fittingly, is now on the internet. 

Brooks says: 

So, Mr. Angry Overreaction Man, your photo is now on the internet. Call your lawyer. Tell him somebody on a public sidewalk took your photo while you were on a public sidewalk. Then tell him you physically assaulted the photographer. See what he says.

Read the whole post on Jeremy Brooks’ flickr page.


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