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One Husband’s Loving Portrait of His Wife and Her Illness

Rikard Osterlund has photographed his wife, Zara, for thirteen years. “There is an image taken on holiday in Sardinia,” he tells me. “I remember looking at her and thinking ‘How did I get so lucky to be right here, with Zara, sharing this moment?'” Zara is an artist and a poet. She admires Frida Kahlo and enjoys science fiction. Her husband describes her as “a very stylish geek.” Zara also has fibromyalgia, a condition that causes fatigue and all-over physical pain, and hypermobility syndrome, meaning her joints can become “loose” and slip out of normal range. She has OCD and depression. Osterlund’s photo book Look, I’m wearing all the colours, currently being funded on Kickstarter, is a candid record of their shared history.

A Trip Around the World in 13 Architecture Photos

the straight and narrow © Patrick Woodward (@_patrickwoodward_)

I stopped searching for light. I decided to become it instead. © Anna Bachmeier (@annassky)

We are now in the final stretch approaching the deadline for submissions for the next Print Swap exhibition, scheduled to open in Hyderabad, India, on September 6th as part of The Indian Photography Festival. Over the course of our call for submissions, we’ve seen inspiring images from photographers all over the world, and in the lead-up to the May 29th deadline, we wanted to put together a few online group shows to spotlight the diverse array of pictures up for consideration. For this collection, we selected architectural images from The Print Swap.

The great photographer Ezra Stoller famously said, “I’m not interested in art photography. I’m interested in architecture as it is, to look at and enjoy.” But his pictures were in fact works of art, regardless of his intention. And like Stoller, the photographers in this collection have transformed recognizable and unknown buildings into something new. Janet Lees brings phantoms to life using only a facade and windows in Haunted.  Radu Mihai Iani seems to choreograph a solo dance within a lighted corridor. With tricks of the light, they turn familiar places into scenes from a dream. These buildings, made from metal and concrete, have undergone a strange alchemy and become two-dimensional object. We can’t wait to see where these prints end up.

As a reminder, photographers can submit to The Print Swap at any point by tagging their images #theprintswap on Instagram. While submissions made within the next five days only will be considered by our guest curator, the preeminent photojournalist Ami Vitale, to be part of the exhibition in India, The Print Swap is open year-round. Participating photographers give a print and receive a print from another outstanding artist somewhere in the world, and all selected photographers now have the opportunity to join the roster at our new store, Superfine Prints. The Print Swap is curated by Alison Zavos, the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Feature Shoot. It’s free to submit, but selected photographers pay $40 per image to participate. Learn more at our website and Instagram, @theprintswap.

Help Protect Elephants at The Reteti Elephant Sanctuary and Win a 7-day Kenyan Safari!

In the remote Matthews mountain range in Kenya, the country’s second largest elephant population are under the tutelage of community-run The Reteti Elephant Sanctuary, which endeavours to reintroduce orphaned baby elephants to their herds. Reteti is about protecting elephants, but it’s also about empowering people. The local Samburu have recognised the important role of elephants both in protecting their fragile ecosystem, and improving the region’s economy.

Photojournalist Ami Vitale has paired up with musician Dave Matthews to produce this film about The Reteti Elephant Sanctuary featuring his song ‘Mother of Africa.’ If Reteti looks like a place you might like to support—and if you’re lucky, visit—all it takes is a $10 contribution to enter into the prize draw for a 7-day Kenyan safari along with tickets to see Dave Matthews at the Hollywood Bowl—and more! For more information on the prize draw see here. I spoke with Ami Vitale about elephant conservation, The Reteti Elephant Sanctuary and her collaboration with Dave Matthews. 

The Viral #FoodGradient Photographer on Success, Instagram, and Veggies (Sponsored)

Brittany Wright’s Squarespace website

The Seattle photographer Brittany Wright is on a mission “to teach herself how to cook everything and anything,” and she’s taking the rest of us along for the ride. Between her wildly popular Instagram feed and her recently released book Feast Your Eyes, Wright’s playful, colorful photographs have earned her a following of hundreds of thousands of people around the globe. And as the artist behind the viral sensation #foodgradients, she’s created a business and a brand from passion.

Whether she’s meticulously arranging strawberries and grapefruit or ice cream and donuts, Wright elevates the ordinary into the realm of fine art. In her mind, if she’s able to show us another, unexpected side of everyday foods, she’s succeeded. While her photos regularly rack up dozens if not hundreds of comments, many of her favorite remarks tend to go something like, “I hate this food, but I love this photo.”

And she’s built everything from the ground up, having started photography as a hobby while working a day job in computer repair. As an artist and a person, Wright thrives by taking on new challenges. Through hard work and an eye for color, she made international headlines, landed a book deal, and changed the course of her life forever. When it came time to choose a website builder, she selected Squarespace, and she operates under the recognizable domain name Wright Kitchen (the same as her Instagram handle). Her flourishing online store includes everything from prints and gift cards to jigsaw puzzles, with more products in the works.

Squarespace offers beautiful, award-winning website templates for ambitious photographers and entrepreneurs who, like Wright, take a hands-on, do-it-yourself approach to building their business. For busy artists, Squarespace makes it easy to host a website, start a blog, and open a store without learning complicated code or hiring an outside web designer. We talked to Wright about inspiration, Instagram, viral success, and the gorgeous website she built to showcase it all.

25 Meditative Landscape Photos From Around the World

New Beginnings | An African sunrise to remember © Zubair Khawar (@zbr_photographs), Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Lake Superior Ore Dock © Emily Lanctot (@emily_lanctot), Marquette, MI

About a year and a half ago, Feature Shoot launched The Print Swap, a project for photographers around the world. The rules are simple: photographers are welcome to submit images for consideration by tagging #theprintswap on Instagram. Alison Zavos, the Editor-in-Chief and Founder of Feature Shoot, goes through each and every submission and selects outstanding work to be part of the swap. Once chosen, participating photographers exchange prints. In the days of film, there was a sense of anticipation as we waited for images to come back to the lab. We’ve tried to replicate that excitement in the digital age. Part of the fun is that all our prints are mailed out randomly, so no one knows where each photograph will end up until the day it arrives.

Photographers who submit to The Print Swap before May 29th will also be considered by our guest curator Ami Vitale for our fall exhibition at The Indian Photography Festival in Hyderabad, India. This will be our sixth exhibition so far and our first in Asia. In the meantime, we put together this online group show to share some of the inspiring landscape submissions we’ve received so far. Going forward, every photographer who participates in the swap will have their work showcased on the Feature Shoot website, the Feature Shoot Facebook page, and/or one of our Instagram feeds, @featureshoot and @theprintswap.

When asked about the absence of human beings in his landscapes, Ansel Adams once replied, “There are always two people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer.” A great landscape photograph, even when it features an exotic, faraway location, has a kind of intimacy. When we come face-to-face with a vast or sweeping vista, we also come face-to-face with the person behind the camera. This bond, forged by a physical print, transcends the boundaries of both space and time. Even if we’ve never set foot in Yosemite, we know its contours and crevices through the photographs Adams made throughout his lifetime.

We chose the title Meditative Landscapes for this online group show because of the quiet reflection contained within these photographs. As we travel from the hot rivers of Iceland to the volcanos of Costa Rica, we pass slowly from dawn into day and finally into night. In an era defined by urgency and hurriedness, these artists ask us to sit down and slow down with only the water, the hills, the wind, and our thoughts for company. Submit to The Print Swap today by tagging your images #theprintswap on Instagram. Please note that Print Swap photographers will now have the opportunity to sell work via our brand-new store, Superfine Prints. Visit our website and @theprintswap on Instagram for more.

Sally Mann Looks Back on Life in the American South

Sally Mann. Bean’s Bottom, 1991.
Silver dye bleach print, 49.5 × 49.5 cm (19 1/2 × 19 1/2 in.)
Private collection. © Sally Mann

Sally Mann. Was Ever Love, 2009>
Gelatin silver print, 38.1 × 34.3 cm (15 × 13 1/2 in.).
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Museum purchase funded by the
S.I. Morris Photography Endowment, 2010.163. Image © Sally Mann

“The past is never dead. It’s not even past,” William Faulkner wrote in the 1951 novel Requiem for a Nun. He understood the ways in which history is ever present to the point in which it casts a long shadow over our daily lives. It lingers and mingles until it dyes the color of our thoughts, camouflaging itself by hiding in plain sight.

Faulkner understood the nature of the American South, a land shrouded in myth and mystique, nestled in layers of illusion and untold histories. For the novelist, the South was not so much a place as it was an “emotional idea,” one that could be mined endlessly for stories that evoke the truth about who we were – and who we are.

American photographer Sally Mann shares this knowledge of the South. A native Virginia born in a hospital that had once been Stonewall Jackson’s home, Mann’s work is infused with mix of romantic and Gothic sensibilities that underscore her southern roots. In every image there is a sense of a past so profound that it pulls the present backwards until the very sense of when these images were made melts away.

One Photographer Dresses People in Camouflage Sweaters, With Delightful Results

The Brighton photographer Joseph Ford could have easily spent a couple of hours on Photoshop and made a series of pictures with people camouflaged into their surroundings, but he’s never been one to choose the easy route. “My agent sometimes suggests that maybe I could try doing something simple, but somehow it never quite pans out,” the artist admits. Instead, he commissioned Nina Dodd, a friend and knitting whiz, to create a set of sweaters designed to blend into various public spaces. After street casting the perfect models, he aligned them exactly with their surrounds, stood at exactly the right spot, and took his shot.

Stunning Portraits from the Villages of Papua New Guinea

Joseph Kayan, a Goroka Show participant from Chimbu Province, wears boar tusks and the tail of a tree kangaroo around his neck. The design of his headdress is specific to his village: it includes bird-of-paradise feathers, with reeds to fill out the shape. His armlets hold sprigs of plants from his region.

Is any place on the planet less familiar to Americans than heavily forested, mountainous, linguistically complex, faraway Papua New Guinea? The photographer Sandro, who’s based in Chicago, went to the Eastern Highlands and attended the Goroka Show. That’s a three-day festival where people from all over the country showcase their customs. In a makeshift studio Sandro photographed men and women wearing costumes unique to their villages.

This kind of undertaking is not without risk. Anthropologists rightly caution against ethnic stereotyping, and a Papuan elder in feathered regalia doesn’t stand in for the entire population any more than a woman wearing a calico bonnet in Colonial Williamsburg is a typical American. But his headdress is an amazing heirloom, a thing of beauty deeply linked to an ancient way of life.

Read the rest of Torsten Blackwood’s article on Sandro’s photographs at Smithsonian Magazine.

How to make an ethical down coat that will keep you warm

Geese near Kapittelweg, Breda (2017)

Feather Collecting, Kapitalweg, Breda (video still #2)

Filling, sewing and making the down jacket with collected goose feathers (video stills)

“Last autumn, I was selected as an artist of The Arctic Circle Residency, a sailing expedition in Svalbard,” says photographer Sheng Wen Lo, with whom we talked last year about his long-term project White Bear. “While shopping for winter jackets for the journey, I realised that it was impossible for me to tell where exactly the feathers of mass-produced down jackets came from (live plucking, etc). Even though there are multiple certificates (such as RDS, which requires that geese are killed for meat before plucking), I couldn’t be sure about their origin.”

These photographs will make you question your assumptions about the human body

What is a body if not the sum of all its parts? Though strange and distorted, the bodies portrayed here are not manipulated in any way. Whether we regard these curious images with awe, feel repulsed—or experience a combination of the two—this is London-based photographer Chloe Rosser’s attempt “to turn some of our assumptions on their heads.” Her ongoing series Form & Function is on display at the Photofusion Photography Centre in London until 18 June 2018—a solo exhibition organised in partnership with the L A Noble Gallery.

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