fbpx
Menu

Posts tagged: documentary photography

Sam Gregg documents the true story of Naples

Whether its the slums in Klong Toey, Bangkok, or Britain filled with “greasy spoons” and “pie and mash shops”, London-based Sam Gregg is a portrait and documentary photographer drawn towards capturing marginalised and dispossessed communities.

Through honest and captivating imagery, Gregg encompasses his environment by fully immersing himself in his surroundings. Over the years he’s formed a body of work that’s full of impactful stories and narratives – so enlightening, so vulnerable and so empowering that it’s hard to witness any of his collections come to an end.

Within See Napes and Die, his ongoing project that began in 2016, Gregg travels to four of central Naples’ most historically rich yet volatile areas: Rione Sanità, Quartieri Spagnoli, Forcella and Santa Lucia. With an aim to “humanise the city’s plight” while “showing that those who are affected are tangible human beings before they’re political units” – says Gregg in the summary, the series is a response to the media and its glamorisation of Naples’ negative image.

Troy Colby photographs the fragility of being a father

Although filled with adoration, love and excitement, parenthood can be an equally nervous and daunting process. For Troy Colby, a photographer born and raised in a small rural farming community and now residing in Lawrence, Kansas, he presents his honest experiences of fatherhood in his ongoing series, The Fragility of Fatherhood.

Poignant Photos of Rescued Farm Animals in Their Twilight Years

Violet, a potbellied pig, age 12. Born with her rear legs partially paralyzed, Violet was surrendered to a sanctuary because her guardian could not properly care for her special needs.

Blue, an Australian Kelpie rescue dog, was a companion for 21 years.

Babs, a donkey, age 24.

Babs, a donkey, spent seventeen years of her life at a cattle ranch, where ranchers used her for roping practice. “Roping involves electrically shocking a donkey to make her run, chasing her on horseback, and then tossing a lasso around her neck or rear legs to pull her to the ground,” the photographer Isa Leshko writes in her book Allowed to Grow Old. “Donkeys endure this practice repeatedly until they are exhausted, maimed, or killed.”

A Portrait of Power and Resistance Among One of Africa’s Last Hunter-Gatherer Populations

Living in Kenya’s Mau and Mont Elgon Forests are the Ogiek — one of East Africa’s last hunter-gatherer populations. The name “Ogiek” means “caretaker of all plants and wild animals,” in acknowledgement of their way of life: hunting wild animals, collecting fruit, and practicing beekeeping in the trees for centuries.

Their ancestral homeland, the Mau Forest Complex, home to 30,000 Ogiek, is the main water catchment area for numerous rivers that drain into five major lakes including Lake Victoria, the third largest fresh water lake in the world. In recent decades, human encroachment for agriculture, tea plantations, charcoal, logging, illegal and poorly planned resettling of other tribes have devastated the forest complex, making the area vulnerable to soil erosion and flooding.

In 2017, after eight years, the African Court of Human and People’s Rights’ decision recognized that the Kenyan government had violated the Ogiek’s right to their ancestral land, and demanded that the community was appropriately compensated — but the government has done little to pay reparations for their violations.

In December 2018, Slovak/Hungarian photographer Diana Takacsova was introduced to the Ogiek, through Minority Rights Group International, an NGO that worked closely on the court case. Here Takacsova shares The Ogiek, a story of identity, culture, resistance, natural resources as a political struggle and an interconnected ecosystem that influences the life of millions.

The Outsider Artist Whose Dedication Saved His Life

The call to make art isn’t so much a choice as a force compelling creation, no matter the price. Few can resist the possibility that lays beyond the sheer will it takes to render something out of nothing at all. For all that is given, the possibility of return is a draw: fame, wealth, and legacy.

But for the outsider artist, the reward is the act itself, creating a cycle of momentum nothing short of phenomenal. For Gustav Mesmer, the “Icarus of Lautertal”, as he came to be called, art was a way the medium through which he could express and resolve the conflict of being on earth and off at the same time. And that was enough.

A Powerful Portrait of Living Off the Grid in Northern Canada

A view of Yellowknife Bay from Jolliffe Island.

Ryan and Cheyanna on Jolliffe Island.

Deep in the Northern Territories of Canada, on the edge of Great Slave Lake lies a community living off the grid, on the fringes of Yellowknife, the capital city — home to photographer Pat Kane, a member of the Timiskaming First Nation.

The city of Yellowknife, named for a local Dene tribe, first colonized in the 1930s after gold was discovered. Early prospectors headed north, erecting shacks and shanties on the waterfront, which remained intact as the city was built around these settlements.

By the 1980s, the first houseboats appeared on the lake, and together, with the shacks, became home to a flourishing community who have chosen the solitude of nature over the conveniences of modernity. In his on-going series, Offgrid, Kane documents a colorful collection of characters from all walks of life — from musicians and artists to bureaucrats, entrepreneurs, and curmudgeons — whose back-to-basics way of life has become a vibrant part of the city’s cultural landscape.

Here, Kane shares his experiences photographing the people who live in this magical corner of the world.

Seeing War Abroad and at Home Through the Eyes of Don McCullin

Local Boys in Bradford 1972

Don McCullin – Near Checkpoint Charlie, Berlin 1961

Londonderry 1971

At the age of 83, British photojournalist Sir Don McCullin decidedly declared, “I’m not an artist” — while standing inside a major retrospective of his work now on view at the Tate in London through May 6, 2019.

“I’ve been struggling against that word all my life,” McCullin told The New York Times. “The American photographers all want to be called artists. I’m a photographer and I stand by it.”

But don’t be quick to try to label McCullin any further. A genre photographer he is not. Despite efforts made to describe him to a “war photographer,” McCullin resists summing up his life’s work in such narrow, reductive terms. As a photojournalist and documentary photographer, McCullin’s interests lie in focusing his attention on the difficult truths about humanity on the home front and abroad.

Whether covering conflict in Cyprus, Vietnam, Cambodia, Biafra, Congo, Bangladesh, Northern Ireland, Beirut, Syria — or looking at poverty and working class life in the UK, McCullin uses the camera to explore the underlying humanity — or lack thereof — at the core of conflict, oppression, and trauma.

New book, Images in Transition, makes us question the notion of truth in photo journalism

David Pace photography

David Pace got his first camera when he was just eight years old — a little plastic Kodak Brownie Hawkeye. Since then, he has displayed an exceptional ability to portray raw, lingering emotion through his photographs.

Whether it’s mundane scenes of suburban life in the 1960s or artisanal gold mining in Burkina Faso, you can always find something relatable in David’s work. It conveys the complex vagaries of humanity, each frame an invitation to find connections between the subjects he photographs and our own life.

David Pace photography

His work has been exhibited in prestigious galleries in Germany, Japan, and the US. Most recently, he partnered with Stephen Wirtz, co-founder of the Stephen Wirtz Gallery in San Francisco, to create the visually powerful book, Images in Transition, a collection of evocative wirephotos from World War 2.

The technique was still in its infancy at the time and wirephotos were far from perfect. These images were blurry, ridden with weird artifacts, and showed dot-matrix like pixelation. News agencies often retouched these pictures to enhance details, hide certain elements or incorporate new ones. This heavy amount of manipulation raises a whole universe of fascinating questions around ethics, art, and technology.

The result is an intriguing look at the intersection between art, journalism, and propaganda.

Thought-Provoking Photos of Children In Their Color-Coded Rooms

The Pink Project I – Jiwon (K) and Her Pink Things, Seoul, South Korea,
Light jet Print, 2014

The Blue Project – Kyungjin and His Blue Things, Gyeonggi-do, South Korea,
Light jet Print, 2017

Color is many-splendored thing — a bouquet of sensations we often take to heart. Color evokes emotion and desire, excitement and reserve. It is both curious and telling that color would be genderized, with pink and blue, two opposite ends of the spectrum, used to delineate the poles on the binary. Where pink was once the color of masculinity, drawn from the power of red, it was viciously emasculated on July 18, 1926 when the Chicago Tribune ran a notorious, unsigned editorial headlined, “Pink Powder Puffs.”

In it, the author attacked film star Rudolph Valentino, holding him to blame for the installation of a face-powder machine inside a public restroom for men on the North Side. It was a reach, one that was as bigoted and disrespectful as anything you would see today:

A powder vending machine!  In a men’s washroom! Homo Americanus! Why didn’t someone quietly drown Rudolph Guglielmo, alias Valentino, years ago?… Do women like the type of “man” who pats pink powder on his face in a public washroom and arranges his coiffure in a public elevator?… Hollywood is the national school of masculinity. Rudy, the beautiful gardener’s boy, is the prototype of the American male.

It was a sentiment that the American public loved, one that held fast as the color pink received gender reassignment. Blue, which was traditionally for girls, was given to boys, and once complete, the color/gender binary became the latest socially constructed fait accompli.

Because gender is assigned at birth along with sex, paroxysms of cultural hysteria follow in the simplest of terms, when the seeds of identity politics planted in something as inherently universal as color itself. It’s popular because it’s easy — and just a little too obvious.

But sometimes, you can’t see it until it’s arranged in such a way that the undeniable truth is taken to absurdist heights. In JeongMee Yoon: The Pink and Blue Project (Hatje Cantz), Seoul-based photographer JeongMee Yoon sets out to explore the striking intersection between color, gender, and late capitalism.

Magical Photos of Childhood Summers in a Small Austrian Village

Alena plays with a cat and a cow. Merkenbrechts, August 2013

Victor is enjoying his mother’s legs. Merkenbrechts, July 2018

In her project I am Waldviertel, Dutch photographer Carla Kogelman travels to the Austrian region of Waldviertel to the small village of Merkenbrechts, population less than 200. Here, Kogelman transports us into an eternal moment of fleeting childhood summers, a moment where time eclipses in that it is both fast with outdoor adventure, and slow with restless boredom—imagination and play often being its only respite.

Subscribe to our newsletter

Get some visual inspiration into your day!

Be inspired! Get industry news, opportunites and new photography direct into your inbox

Expert advice from photo industry professionals every Friday + get our guide to mastering Instagram (for FREE)!

Thanks for signing up to the Feature Shoot newsletter! You might also be interested in submitting some of your photos to our global Print Swap initiative. More here: https://www.theprintswap.com/photo-upload