Posts Tagged 'New York Times'

Bigwigs in the NYT Newsroom

The above shot, from New York Times photographer Todd Heisler, is a somewhat rare look at the New York Times behind the scenes (that’s Editor Bill Keller and Managing Editor John Geddes talking something over)….

Source: mediabistro

Lynsey Addario Talks About “Selfish” Job to NPR

Photo: Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs

New York Times photographer Lynsey Addario was on NPR’s “Morning Edition” today talking about her recent time in captivity in Libya. I was surprised at how giddy and upbeat she was in recounting her ordeal, but maybe that’s her way of coping. Or maybe a capture of that nature really isn’t a big deal to war correspondents. But their Libyan driver has not been seen or heard from since that day and he may well have been killed, so while it may be routine for the journalists, it had some pretty awful consequences for someone else.

When host Renee Montagne asked Addario if she would be taking a break now, she replied yes, but it was clear that break meant something like weeks, not long-term. She said: “It’s a selfish profession. Unfortunately I’m very committed to what I do. This is what I’ve done for 15 years. I believe very strongly that the world needs to see what’s happening.”

Source: NPR

NYT Journalists Recount Captivity In Libya

If you haven’t read it already, the four New York Times journalists, Anthony Shadid, Lynsey Addario, Stephen Farrell and Tyler Hicks, who were abducted in Libya, held for six days and released yesterday, have written an account of their time in captivity. The piece recounts their at times brutal treatment at the hands of Col. Qaddafi’s loyalist forces.

A half-hour later, we arrived on what we thought were the outskirts of the other side of Ajdabiya. A man whom soldiers called the sheik questioned us, then began taunting Tyler. “You have a beautiful head,” he told Tyler in a mix of English and Arabic. “I’m going to remove it and put it on mine. I’m going to cut it off.” Tyler, feeling queasy, asked to sit down.

Sadly, they believe their driver, Mohammed, died as a result of their capture.

If he died, we will have to bear the burden for the rest of our lives that an innocent man died because of us, because of wrong choices that we made, for an article that was never worth dying for.

It does make you think of the cost involved in covering stories like this and if it’s worth it. All four journalists said they’d had scary run-ins or close calls before. Despite the whole maybe-my-nine-lives-are-running-out thing, I’m willing to bet this will not deter them from covering future conflicts, though.

Source: New York Times

Photojournalism and the Hipstamatic App

Photo by Damon Winter/New York Times

UPDATE: Damon Winter won POYi’s Newspaper Photographer of the Year too.

When New York Times staff photographer Damon Winter won third place in POYi’s feature competition last week for wartime photos he took on his iPhone using the Hipstamatic app, some people balked. Photojournalism, as practiced by the greats with real cameras, was officially dead. Others said that’s a naive viewpoint; there are no truly objective photographs — and the photographer’s tool doesn’t make or break a great image.

To me, they look a little like ads, or still photography from a David O. Russell film. It doesn’t strike me as great photojournalism, despite Winter being a very skilled photographer, no doubt. That said, maybe I’m old fashioned. There is something about the purity of classic photojournalism that resonates more for me.

As for Winter’s take, he couldn’t submit to an interview with on Friday because he is in Afghanistan, but he did release a statement to the media site.

In part, it says:

I could not have taken these photos using my SLR and that perhaps is the most important point regarding my use of the camera phone for this story. Using the phone is discreet and casual and unintimidating. The soldiers often take pictures of each other with their phones and that was the hope of this essay: to have a set of photos that could almost look like the snapshots that the men take of each other but with a professional eye.

People may have the impression that it is too easy to make interesting images with a camera app like this, but that is not the case — just as it is not the case that good pictures automatically come out of exotic places. At the heart of every solid image are the same fundamentals: composition, information, moment, emotion, connection. If people think that this is a magic tool that makes every image great, they are wrong.

Surprisingly, NY Perps Sport Yankees Caps

Source: NYPD

Calling it a “curious phenomenon,” the New York Times is reporting that “dozens of men and women who have robbed, beaten, stabbed and shot at their fellow New Yorkers have done so while wearing Yankees caps or clothing.”

(This is sort of like when the Times tries to make a trend story out of three people they find feeling one way or doing a particular activity — like women who embrace their A-cup status.)

It’s a big joke. What do they expect from people in New York … green Celtics caps? I’m sure they’re wearing Yankees or Mets t-shirts, too, because guess what? People usually wear their hometown sports team gear.

I wonder if the NYPD will start unlawfully harassing Yankees cap wearers just like they do with photographers….

Article from New York Times

NYPD Rankled Over Javits Center Photos

The New York Times’ Lens blog reports today on photographers’ rights, noting the case of photographer George Hahn, who was recently harassed by an undercover officer while taking a nighttime photo of the Javits Center in New York City. Hahn says that he was on a public sidewalk, but that didn’t stop the officer from barking out a gruff, pointed, “Can I help you?” (No, Officer, I usually prefer to work alone….)

There are terrorists and there are architecture enthusiasts. You’d think the NYPD would be able to distinguish between the two, wouldn’t you?

Article from Lens

Cool Photography Round-Up

• Art director/designer Andrew Faris documented New York City, one Polaroid at a time. Even though the images are often of mundane things, it’s really well done and cool-looking, especially when seen all together. [Andrew Faris]

• 25 elite AP photographers are now available for children’s portraits, weddings, bar mitzvahs or other affairs. Not really…but they are available for hire to other media outlets, schedule permitting. [PDNPulse]

• Take a photo on Sunday, May 2 at 11 a.m. (EST) and send it into the New York Times’ Lens blog for their project  aiming to document “one moment in time across the world.” The photos will almost immediately appear on the web site and viewers can then scroll through them according to topic, country or whatever. [New York Times]

• On Greg Ceo’s blog he’s offering to send along your interesting photography projects to the editor at American Photo or feature them on his own blog’s “New Photographer Monday.” [Greg Ceo]

• And, similarly, on A Photo Editor’s blog, there’s a (different) photo editor looking for “projects related to the economy: foreclosure, stimulus construction, homelessness, unemployment.” Leave a comment or send links in an email. [A Photo Editor]

Photography Profession Hurting

There’s a very sobering article in the New York Times today about the state of photography. In sum: Professional photographers are hurting. Forces have conspired to make it so there are less and less paying opportunities. Meanwhile, amateurs are getting those coveted assignments, accepting lower fees and devaluing the profession.

“There are very few professional photographers who, right now, are not hurting,” said Holly Stuart Hughes, editor of the magazine Photo District News.

So many sad facts in this piece. There are fewer outlets for photographers (428 magazines closed in 2009!). Due to budget constraints, stock photography is now more commonplace — meaning less original work, less creativity. Digital cameras have democratized the skill of taking photos. Anyone can do it.

But with “anyone” doing it, we lose the professional’s expertise. The ability to tell a story, an understanding of ethics and standards, long-term perspective and frame of reference. The same is true with journalism and writing. Some parts of this democratization is good, like new voices and viewpoints and people who never would have had the chance before are now heard.

But, ultimately what it comes down to is that this free content model of the internet is not sustainable. The New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, et al. cannot produce as high quality content as they do and still give it away. I don’t know what our media landscape will look like in five or 10 years, but it’s safe to say that it will look very different from today. And we may be worse for it.

Article from New York Times

Bill Cunningham’s Street Style

From Bill Cunningham New York

Readers of the New York Times Style section know Bill Cunningham’s work — the guy is a dogged chronicler of the city’s street fashion in his regular column “On the Street.” And at 81, he’s not showing any signs of slowing down. He is also famously idiosyncratic, getting around the city on a bike, wearing his signature blue smock, and living a spare existence in a tiny one-room apartment.

On top of the that, he’s extremely private, so it’s no small feat that the documentary Bill Cunningham New York came to be. It actually took 10 years to make and eight of those were spent convincing Cunningham to participate. The NY Times’ Lens blog tells the story of the documentary here.

“It isn’t what I think, it’s what I see,” Mr. Cunningham says. “I let the street speak to me. You’ve got to stay on the street and let the street tell you what it is.”

There will be three screenings in New York this month. Go here for more info.

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

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