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Photos of Lonely Strangers in the Streets of NYC at Night

“The people in the photos are all strangers,” NYC photographer and filmmaker Daniel Soares tells us, “And I make up these stories in my head, about why they are going to get beer or cigarettes at 1:00 AM.” He’s created Neon Nights over the course of many midnight walks through the hushed side-streets of the city.

On Lake Chad, People Are Living on One Meal a Day

A chipped bowl containing a few grains of rice and some dried beans. Grains are in short supply because the government has banned farmers from allowing their crops to grow more than three feet tall along Cameroon’s highways. Militants had been hiding in the fields in order to ambush passing convoys.

Not so long ago, Lake Chad was one of the largest bodies of water in Africa. The thick reeds and vital wetlands around its basin provided vast freshwater reserves, breeding grounds for fish, fertile soil for agriculture, and grasslands where farmers grazed their animals. But as climate change has taken its toll, the lake has shrunk by 90 percent. Today, only 965 square miles remain. Those who still live by the lake struggle to survive, beset by chronic drought and the slow onset of ecological catastrophe.

This looming crisis has only worsened with the rise of Boko Haram, which has driven some 74,000 Nigerians into neighboring Cameroon. More refugees and fewer crops have proven to be a deadly combination in a region already ravaged by climate change. More than seven million people around Lake Chad are now suffering from severe hunger, including 500,000 children wracked by acute malnutrition. Those fortunate enough to be granted a spot in a refugee camp often receive no more than one meal a day.

We often turn away from images of the starving and hungry, from the skeletal profiles and ­hollowed­­-­out eyes that attest to the misery and suffering. But photographer Chris de Bode has found a way to focus our attention on this forgotten crisis. A single vegetable, a dried fish, a bowl of red maize—sometimes this is all a mother has to divide between her children each day. She may have to choose to feed her two youngest and send the teenagers to a village to beg for food. These images do not ask us to look into their eyes and see ourselves. They ask us to look at the emptiness of their bowls and reflect on the fullness of our own. We see their hunger through what little they have. We measure their suffering in the most universal unit of all: a single meal.

Read the rest of Lisa Palmer’s article on Chris de Bode’s photographs at The New Republic.

Photos of a Strange and Beautiful Australian Mining Town

In 2008, French photographer Antoine Bruy spent a year in Australia. When he returned home, he planned to bring with him more than a hundred rolls of film. All of them were lost. “Since then, I kept thinking of going back, to do something about this place,” the artist says.

Powerful portraits confront the politics of race and representation

‘I’m reclaiming my blackness, which I feel is continuously performed by the privileged other. My reality is that I do not mimic being black; it is my skin, and the experience of being black is deeply entrenched in me. Just like our ancestors, we live as black people 365 days a year, and we should speak without fear.’  -Zanele Muholi

Photojournalists and editors know it—some consumers do too—exoticism sells. People in the west are fascinated by images that reinforce their preconceived ideas of what a culture “out to look like”, seeking poverty, isolated traditions and stereotypes such as African women adorned with cowrie shells and color. Their quest for “authenticity” is so narrow in scope that its seekers often ignore the complex, modern realities experienced by black people in different regions of the world.

Visual activist photographer Zanele Muholi has her first solo exhibition opening this month at the East London gallery Autograph ABP. For more than a decade, she has focused on documenting black LGTBQI people in South Africa. Her ongoing portrait series Somnyama Ngonyama was inspired by her experiences on the road and the socio-political events she encountered along the way. Using her body as a canvas, her psychologically driven portraits confront the politics of race and representation.

Photographer seeks solitude in some of the world’s remotest wildernesses

Nature is beautiful, though also capable of arousing fear in those who have settled in densely populated areas where comfort is found in numbers and light. Many of us have gotten used to a more restrained nature in fields and city parks, a far cry from impenetrable dark forests and wildernesses where only animal cries and running water break the silence. We’ve severed ties with what shaped us.

Heartfelt Photos of a Father Near the End of His Life

Dad, 84 yrs old, Omachi, Kamakura, Dec 2014

Dad, 86 yrs old, Sagamihara, May 2017

In April 2014, Japanese photographer Shin Noguchi took a picture of his father. A doctor had recently diagnosed 83-year-old with Stage IV Lung Cancer, but Noguchi hadn’t yet told his dad the news. “It was the first time I had a secret about my father that he didn’t know himself,” Noguchi remembers. Over the last three years, he has continued to photograph his father.

This Is What Dinnertime Looks Like in Different Households

Tuesday: Alex, Sophia, Kathy, David, Claudia, Eva & Ana. 2015

Wednesday: Emilio, Rhonda, Benedetto, Skylrae, and Jacomo. 2014

Wednesday: Willie Mae. 2013

“I’m super nosy about people’s habits,” Milwaukee photographer Lois Bielefeld admits. “I’ve always craved going into people’s homes- it’s inspiring, curious. It gives so many sometimes subtle and sometimes blatant insights about someone.”

16 Timeless Photos of the Sea that Will Inspire You

Marlborough Sounds, New Zealand © Helena Sofia de Kok, Wellington, NZ

Florida Cold Front © David Friske, Hollywood, FL

Land’s End © Angela Marklew, Venice, CA

The Print Swap is a global initiative connecting photographers around the world. Anyone and everyone can submit via Instagram using the hashtag #theprintswap. As of this writing, well over 25,000 images have been considered for the swap. About 1200 of them have been chosen to be part of the project thus far. Every winner of The Print Swap receives a surprise print from another winner, and all the prints are made at Skink Ink in Brooklyn before being shipped off to cities and countries across the globe.

We recently put together a New Topographics group show in honor of some of our previous Print Swap winners, and this time, we took a look through the archive to find some of the best seascapes that have been part of the swap over the last year.

Photos of a Changing Landscape, Inspired by the Western Meadowlark

In 1994, MTV’s Karen Duffy made the trip to the least-visited state in America, a snow-covered North Dakota, to find answers. When she asked then-governor about his home, he responded, “Well, I think the best reason to visit North Dakota is you can still get lost here.” He paused before adding, “Not necessarily lost on a map, but you can really get lost mentally here.”

It’s twenty-something years later, and Seattle photographer Ian C. Bates has gotten lost many times in North Dakota. He picked the state in part because of its solitude. “It is easy to feel alone there,” he tells us, “I liked that feeling, but it also overcomes you after being there for a long time.”

See the Emerging Photography Awards Exhibition at United Photo Industries

Besan in Gaza, Palestine 2016 © Johanna-Maria Fritz

Water Wheel Falls, Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne River, CA 2014 © Ansley West Rivers

Rocks © Zoe Wetherall

Every year for the last three years, the Feature Shoot Emerging Photography Awards have culminated in an exhibition at United Photo Industries in DUMBO, Brooklyn. This time, UPI Creative Director Sam Barzilay handpicked three winning photographers to exhibit at the gallery: Johanna-Maria Fritz, Ansley West Rivers, and Zoe Wetherall. The Winner Showcase opens Thursday night with an Artist Reception at 6:00 PM, with exhibiting prints made on ChromaLuxe® aluminum at the state-of-the-art dye sublimation printing facility at Ken Allen Studios.

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