Posts by: Alison Zavos

17 Photographers Reveal the Hardest Life Lesson They Learned When Starting Out


Photographer Ami Vitale with a rhinoceros friend

Ami Vitale: Failure is a tough lesson. It hurts but the best thing that comes out of it is the honesty it brings.

Feature Shoot is Looking to Hire a Bright, Savvy Social Media Editor

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Feature Shoot’s Instagram

Feature Shoot is hiring a dynamic freelance Social Media Editor to start immediately. This is a paid, part time position. The editor will be able to work remotely from anywhere in the world, and it would consist of 12-15 hrs./week.

We are looking for detail-orientated candidates who are passionate about photography and who are exceptional at using social media effectively to tell stories. The major platforms are Facebook and Instagram, but a good working knowledge of Twitter and Snapchat will also be highly valued.

-Work alongside Editor-in-Chief to create engaging content for different social platforms.
-Create original content for Facebook and Instagram (including native content)
-Manage Feature Shoot’s social accounts and increase their growth by developing a social media strategy
-Develop social partnerships with like-minded publications

• Experience managing a web publisher’s social platforms: Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat
• Ideas for how to fast-track growth across those social platforms

• An eye for spotting compelling photography that our readers will want to share
• Social media writing skills (ability to tell a story with a limited amount of words)
• Fluency with Adobe Photoshop
• Working knowledge of Google Analytics, Facebook Analytics
• Ability to work efficiently without making mistakes

To apply, please submit your resume and 3 images you think would do well on our social channels (with copy) to [email protected] Please put “Social Media Editor” as the subject.


Feature Shoot’s Facebook page

Photographer Christopher Rimmer Discusses Changing the Lives of Boys in a South African Orphanage

Eloxolweni 1

© Christopher Rimmer

Christopher Rimmer: Being a fine art photographer and separated from the tradition of photo journalism, it is unusual for my work to actually effect social change as such. This image however, is one I consider to be the most important photograph I have ever taken. The reason I consider it to be so is because it effected a small social change in the town of Port St Johns in South Africa.

21 Photographers Discuss The Impact Going Viral Had on their Careers


© Eric Pickersgill, whose series ‘Removed’ took mobile phones out of images to convey the personal disconnect that technology has facilitated

Eric Pickersgill: My career has changed drastically. I am now represented by Rick Wester Fine Art in New York and will be bringing my work to PULSE Miami Beach Contemporary Art Fair in December as well as AIPAD and a show at Rick Wester Fine Art in 2016. I am able to do this work full time and am starting new projects as well as working on international commissions and editorial assignments. All of which were not options for me 2 months ago. It is still surreal to think about as I type this, and I am so grateful for all of the guidance and support I have received along the way.

For the second part of our three-part series of posts on “going viral,” we asked some of our favorite viral photographers to tell us about if and how the experience changed the course of their careers. Find the first part- in which we discuss the potential drawbacks of going viral- here, and be sure to reserve your spot at The BlowUp, where nine NYC-based viral sensations will tell the stories behind their images.

The Moving Story of a Street Photographer’s Chance Encounter With a Subject Almost 29 Years Later

Bushwick After The Ashes

Jump Rope (Vanessa Matir, The Little Girl in the Blue Shorts) June 1983 © Meryl Meisler 1983

Meryl Meisler: In June of 1983, I photographed what appeared to be an extended family and neighbors hanging out in front of a small brick apartment house on Palmetto Street in the Bushwick section of Brooklyn. It was a building I walked past nearly every day on my way to and from school. The light ochre bricks of the façade are graffiti covered with brown and black spray paint of names like Jose, Rafael and other tags. A woman sits with her carriage and toddlers on the stoop. An older woman looks towards younger women with their carriages and toddlers. A woman sitting on a garbage can looks towards the direction of the camera. A white haired man wearing T-shirt peers out of the ground floor window, stares directly at the camera lens. There’s a little girl in the foreground joyfully on her tippy toes tossing one end of a jump rope, the jumper and other person turning the rope are out of view. A young dark hair pony tailed girl, wearing a blue halter tope and shorts, has her back to the camera, she’s looking toward the grandmotherly figure. More people in the adjacent building peer towards the camera. It looks like a happy scene.

Leon Borensztein On Why Photographing the Yakuza was the Biggest Risk of His Career


© Leon Borensztein

Leon Borensztein: In 1996 The New York Times Magazine send me to Japan to document the Generation X, the underworld of Japan. I was worried a little, as I was dealing with the real underworld without any protection. On my third day I have a real Yakuza, three gangsters coming to my fancy hotel room; they refused to meet at any place but on my territory. Two of them had missing pinkies, a bad omen. After taking a few exposures I asked them to take their shirts off, which they did promptly. After a while, I asked them to take all their clothes off so I could photograph all their tattoos. All of them went to the bathroom, took showers and returned naked. I had two young and attractive Japanese girls with me, students from the best university, speaking perfect English and working with the world press. To my surprise all went smooth, they did all of what I asked. I never felt any real danger. On the ninth day, I was supposed to photograph members of motorcycle gang, young fellows who later grew up to be the real gangsters.

They wanted to meet at midnight at undisclosed locations, since their names were known to the local police. We meet them some place, and we were told to follow them, about 20 on 10 bikes. They were driving very fast out of Tokyo, and I started to worry. After an hour of driving, we arrived to some place that was totally dark, some Shinto temple with an adjunct graveyard. It didn’t look good. I powered my generator, set my studio lights, but then a few of them took their hara-kiri sabers and started to throw them in the air and in some maddening dance started to move closer and closer to me when yelling angrily in Japanese. There was no escape. The leader, his face full of fury was just centimeters from my face and his dagger was performing some frenzied dance between us. As the cold blade was moving fast in front of my eyes the modeling lights were reflecting in ominous way.

I was sure that this would be the end of me. After scaring me, they turned to be pussycats, did everything that I asked them, and more.

A few weeks after returning from this assignment, when the award piece was published I received a fax from one of the girls that the real Yakuza were going to kill all of us because their faces are showing and the caption under the image said that after the session they went to “claim” money that somebody owed their boss. I explained to the girl that they stood in front of my camera voluntarily, but somebody told them that there would be a big black bar over their eyes. I am alive, but I never heard from my young translators.

‘What Camera Do You Use?’ And Other Questions Photographers HATE Being Asked

USA. New York City. 1989. Feast of San Gennero, Little Italy.

© Bruce Gilden

Bruce Gilden: Aren’t you getting in lots of fights when you photograph?

Andi Schreiber: I photograph events and parties and I’m often asked about the type of equipment I’m carrying. It’s always men who will say something like, “Hey, that’s a great camera – – I’ll bet it takes great pictures!” I wonder if they’re just flirting or they’re actually being serious. I always smile and politely tell them what matters is who’s behind the camera but that it’s also helpful to have reliable and responsive equipment.

We Asked 16 Photographers: Are you Optimistic for the Future of Photography?


© Benjamin Lowy

Benjamin Lowy: Of course I am. The future is innovation, and photography will change and adapt, but it will continue to be a viable artistic form. Whether one can make money from it is another question all together.

J.M. Giordano: We will always have still photography and it will always be important. This came to me while watching a doc on photography during the Vietnam War. There’s a 16mm film showing the execution of a Vietcong sympathizer by a cop. It happens very fast and the film was all but forgotten. Luckily, still photographer Eddie Adams was there to capture one of the most famous war photos of all time. No one remembers the film but EVERYONE remembers the still photograph. In reality, I’m more concerned with the future of GOOD photography. The more we accept mediocrity and fear criticism, the more we’re no longer able to judge what’s good and what’s bad. Everything isn’t awesome.”

Ron Haviv: I am very optimistic about the future of photography. While the monetization of our new world hasn’t reached the level we want, the audience level has. Never before has there been more interest in photography than now. Whilst almost everyone considers themselves a photographer of some sort, those same people are appreciating great photography in a new way. We at VII photo and other places have moved from content suppliers to actual publishers through social media and other venues. It is very exciting to be able to reach an audience the same size as a magazine.

20 Inspiring Photos of Life ‘Off the Grid’

William Woodward

© William Woodward /

© Christopher Rubey, 2015 -

© Christopher Rubey /

For our newest group show, “Off The Grid,” we partnered with ImageBrief and put out a call for images that depict what living life “off the grid” means to photographers. The following collection, was curated by Chris Buda, Manager of Art Buying at BBDO and Isabelle Raphael, Head of Visual Content at ImageBrief and features 20 photos that encapsulate the ethos of the “off the grid” lifestyle. More images from the collection can be found on ImageBrief’s site.

Congratulations to the photographers featured here. Each will receive free Explorer Plus accounts from ImageBrief, which allow them to sell images in the ImageBrief Marketplace, get hired on assignment, and get contacted by ImageBrief’s network of thousands of buyers.

Didn’t make it in time to submit to Off The Grid? Don’t worry, ImageBrief has dozens of new briefs every day and it’s free to sign up and submit.

London Photographer Jenny Lewis on the Most Important Photo She’s Ever Taken


Joti and Kiran © Jenny Lewis

Jenny Lewis: One of the most important in the One Day Young series was one of Joti and Kiran. Whilst I was shooting this portrait of Joti, whom I had never met before, with her 4 hour old baby, she told me how she had lost a baby the year before, and with each contraction she had to suppress the waves of grief and fear that were swelling up attempting to drown her. The raw honesty of the conversation cemented this feeling of responsibility I felt, to tell this story of the triumphant mother, the story of strength and empowerment. I learnt a lot about compassion for strangers that day and humanity. We have kept in touch, and it’s wonderful that this moment of taking the picture and talking about her lost son Joseph was a turning point, and somehow Joti and Kiran being in the book keeps Joesph’s memory alive and their picture becomes about both boys. The picture means a lot to me, and I still get goosebumps every time I look at it.

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