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Posts tagged: portrait photography

A Deeply Human Look at the Lives of Transgender Youth

“All my friends say ‘Oh, I started my period.’ or ‘I’m a B cup now.’ It’s hard for them to understand that that doesn’t happen to us and that we can’t give birth. Not that we necessarily want to, but we do want to feel the same.” – Lilly, 12-year-old transgender female, North Central California

“I know very well that I’m male, and yet I’m treated like a young child, as though I don’t know my own mind, when I’ve never been so sure of anything. I think it’s unfair to expect transgender children to live in the wrong body. My whole life is blighted by it. It never leaves. I’m always confronted by it because I have to live in a body that is not mine. ” – Zak, 13-year-old transgender male, Isle of Wight, England

Photographer Annie Tritt embarked on Transcending Self, a collection of portraits and interviews with transgender and gender expansive children, teenagers, and young adults around the world, more than two years ago. She spent the first year learning and absorbing information. She’d seen the inaccuracies and potentially hurtful stories the press had made in handling the subject in the past, and she wanted instead to give voice directly to the transgender youth.

“This is not my story,” she says, “It is theirs.”

The True and Untold Stories of The Black Panthers

B Kwaku Duren © Bryan Shih, from the book ‘The Black Panthers: Portraits From an Unfinished Revolution’

Charlotte O’Neal © Bryan Shih, from the book ‘The Black Panthers: Portraits From an Unfinished Revolution’

In 1981, one year before the dissolution of the Black Panther Party, co-founder Bobby Seale told a full college auditorium, “Today we don’t need guns; we need computers.” On the 50th anniversary of the party’s founding, photojournalist Bryan Shih sees that prediction coming to life in the Black Lives Matter movement: once more, young people are making their voices heard, against a backdrop of our country’s police brutality, mass incarceration, and systemic racism.

Shih spent four-plus years getting to know former Black Panthers and recording their stories. He teamed up with historian Yohuru R. Williams to make The Black Panthers: Portraits From an Unfinished Revolution, a book composed of photographs, archival materials, scholarly essays, and perhaps most importantly, testimony from the individuals themselves.

Remembering the Horrific Exile of Thousands of People

Fatima Uzhakhova, Ingush, was a granddaughter of biggest landlord in the Caucasus. Her family was split: some were repressed as “public enemies” of the Soviets, andothers joined the Bolsheviks. In 1944, the family was exiled to Kazakhstan with thousands of others. In exile, Fatima’s mother was sentenced to five years of jail for breaking a rule: she crossed the frontier of her exile zone. Fatima had to survive on her own since the age of 9.

Chechen elders pose by the ancestry towers, which were ruined by the Soviets, rebuilt, then ruined again by the Russian army, and rebuilt again.

73 years ago today, the lives of nearly half a milion Chechen and Ingush people changed forever when Stalin ordered their deportation to remote parts of the Soviet Union. More than a third never returned, and the lives of the ones who did were already altered irreversibly. Russian photographer Dmitri Beliakov has been working in the North Caucasus since 1994 and came to learn about this dark chapter of history. As the witnesses of the exile were one by one disappearing, Beliakov felt time was slipping away. His project The Ordeal is the last chance to preserve their memory.

Portraits Depict Life In A Powerful New Zealand Gang

Casey Morton, a photographer based in New South Wales, Australia, wanted to document the contradictory existence of belonging to one of New Zealand’s most powerful gangs, the Black Power NZ. Formed in New Zealand by Maori and Polynesian men as a response to feeling marginalized in a colonized nation, they’re tough, live by their own creed, and are extremely exclusive.

The Woman Who Wanted to Photograph Every House in Poland

© Zofia Rydet, from the series Sociological Record, Courtesy Foundation Zofia Rydet

© Zofia Rydet, from the series Sociological Record, Courtesy Foundation Zofia Rydet

Zofia Rydet mentioned in one of her letters that taking photos for her is like vodka to an alcoholic,” curator Sebastian Cichocki says of the 20th century photographer, “It’s like an addiction, so she collects more and more and more and she’s never satisfied.”

Animated Gifs Tell a Story of War and Hope on ‘Syria Street’

Abbas, Shopkeeper, Bab al-Tabbaneh

Nisrine’s family, Bab al-Tabbaneh

Hana Awad working, Bab al-Tabbaneh

“People get used to war,” photographer Brandon Tauszik says. Daily life doesn’t halt in the face of trauma; it persists in the background. It’s something photojournalists in Syria, like Nish Nalbandian and Ali Khara, have stressed over and over again. And it’s happening forty minutes from the boarder in Tripoli, where two neighborhoods remain locked in a shaky and precarious situation.

Tauszik embarked on the multi-media project Syria Street alongside the International Committee of the Red Cross, spending ten days on the thoroughfare that separates the mostly Sunni population of Bab al-Tabbaneh from the largely Alawite community of Jabal Mohsen.

The Secrets of a Long Life Revealed in New Photo Book

Aline Grosjean, Born September 10, 1913, In Eloyes, France

Sigurgeir Jonsson, Born March 2, 1915, on Flatey Island, Iceland

When Frankfurt photographer Karsten Thormaehlen first met Carl Falck, who was born in Norway in 1907, he was promptly asked, “How do you make any money by photographing old people like me?”

Rare Photographs Of The Dancing Devils Of Liberia

“It is said that if you photograph the Bush Devils (of Liberia), the pictures won’t come out” says British photographer Conor Beary, “whether or not there is any truth to that I don’t know, but I’m not to keen on the initiation process so thought I’d skip that and document the Dancing Devils”.

Empowering the Black Female Body in a World That Denies It

La leçon d’amour, 2008 © Mickalene Thomas, courtesy Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA)

Quanikah Goes Up, 2001/2005 © Mickalene Thomas, courtesy Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA)

The artist Carrie Mae Weems once asked Mickalene Thomas about the difference between the male gaze and the female gaze. Do women objectify their female subjects in the same way men do? Thomas responded, “Could a man have made these images? No, not my images.”

The exchange, pulled from Muse: Mickalene Thomas Photographs (Aperture, 2015), says a lot about Thomas as a photographer.

Inside the Colorful, Vibrant World of Jay Maisel

© Jay Maisel

© Jay Maisel

“There’s nothing I’m not interested in shooting,” photographer Jay Maisel said in a 2011 documentary by The Big Picture, “I have no agenda.”

As part of Month of Photography Los Angeles, Blazing Editions and ChromaLuxe have put together a Maisel retrospective at Space15Twenty, featuring 30-plus images spanning six decades of his iconic career.

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