Photograph taken by Charles Apple
While many are flustered by the unexpected bombings at the Boston Marathon, held Monday April 15th, news outlets instantly fled to the scene to capture the gory images of the unfortunate who were injured. The photograph was posted on multiple news sources, such as The Daily News and The New York Post. Although The New York Post was looked down upon for inaccurate reporting, The Daily News was criticized as well for touching up this photograph above and reporting it without the grisly image. As you can see above, the left picture is the raw image of the event, with a lady’s lower leg injured from the impact of the bombing, while the image on the right is touched-up so there’s nothing gory showing. To view more photographs from the bombing at the Boston Marathon and the potential suspects, click here.
Many news sources were faced with ethical and journalistic dilemmas while reporting photographs from this event. In order to show the true events that occurred on this day, photojournalists had to capture images of those who were impacted by the bombings. Sources such as The Daily News had trouble deciding whether showing the true images to the public were too gruesome and inappropriate to report, so they decided to touch up the photograph, showing no gory injury at all. However, this backfired on them because they broke one of the most valued principles of journalism: to tell the truth. The Daily News, along with all other news outlets trying to report the story, faced the dilemma of telling the truth, but The Daily News chose not to. This created many repercussions for their reputation because they’ve lost a great amount of credibility and have to gain it back slowly over time. For more information on this image and the story behind it, you can view it here.
Being paid to travel around the world and take photographs of breaking news? Sign me up! Environmental photojournalism is without a doubt one of the most interesting forms of journalism a photographer could take on. Traveling to phenomenal locations around the world seems like business mixed with pleasure; a perfect combination for a photojournalist. Having the opportunity to become involved with natural disasters and manmade disasters is an experience worth waiting for. Along with this, being an environmentalist photographer is a great method of communicating the true environmental issues occurring around the world because pictures are the all-time verification for an event that occurs.
The BP Oil Spill that effected the marine life along the Gulf of Mexico in 2010, was a phenomenal disaster that occurred due to an accidental marine oil spill, that was ranked the world’s largest oil spill in history. The photograph above shows multiple patches of smoke rising into the atmosphere of oil being burned as a cleanup process that was used to help erase the disaster that occurred. The man who took this photograph, Joel Sartore, captured an amazing shot of oil patterns reflecting off the water, with boats nearby keeping the burning under control. This photograph captures many different elements of the event itself, but also the larger image of man destructing earth. It captures the perfect message that humans created this disaster. Even though it was an accident, we, as humans, had the ability and power to create such a negative impact on the ocean and the species that it contains. Sartore was able to capture the entire disaster in just one image, which is truly a gift for a photojournalist. For more image from the BP Oil Spill, click here.
This image with a duck wading in a pond with plastic strewn about behind it is another great photograph that portrays the life of a photojournalist. These photojournalists are able to get up close and personal, and experience something extremely unique. For more spectacular images of environmental photographs where humans have effected wildlife and nature, you can view them here.
Photograph taken by Jose Carlos Fajardo
Sports photographs are like snowflakes – no single photograph is the same as another. When it comes to sports photography, there’s no joking around. This type of photojournalism is unique in ways such that it’s all about catching the action, it’s a nonstop photographing event, and best of all, sports photography captures the most memorable pictures. Not only this, but there is a continuous array of images that can be captured within sports. These photographers are always on their feet running from one end of the court or field to the next, capturing various angles and compositions of the event, which ultimately creates the range of photographs that appear the next day in the newspapers from various sources.
Photographers who become lucky enough to shoot events such as MLB Baseball, NBA Basketball, NFL Football, and so on are some of the more recognized photographers in the realm of photojournalism. The most recent NFL Super Bowl XLVII is a perfect representation of the photographs that were taken by sports photojournalists. You can view images of the Super Bowl here. As you can see in the first photograph, the player is surround by multiple companies filming the same player at different angles as well, which is how multiple companies are successful because they’re all able to capture their own photograph from a different view. Because each company is able to create their own twist on a single event, photojournalists are constantly on the move, from event to event, capturing images that last forever.
Photography by Henri Cartier-Bresson
“To take a photograph is to align the head, the eye and the heart. It’s a way of life.” -Henri Cartier-Bresson
This week I wanted to focus more on the photography aspect of photojournalism and talk about Henri Cartier-Bresson, who was considered the “father of modern photojournalism.” He, along with nine other famously known photographers, introduced what the world of photography could do for society and created some of the techniques that photographers now use today. Cartier-Bresson was born in Chanteloup, France and while he was growing up there, a photograph taken by Martin Munkacsi opened his eyes to the world of photography. He was one of the first who began using the 35mm film camera, which is still a popular medium of photography today, and his career flourished from there. Cartier-Bresson ultimately created the type of photography, called Street Photography, by spending his time taking shots of citizens around the streets of his hometown. 1948, however, is the year that he became most famously known for covering Mahatma Gandhi’s funeral along with the last bits of the Chinese Civil War that ended in 1949. Cartier-Bresson traveled all around the world during his lifetime from France to China, India, Soviet Union, and various places around Europe. You can check all of these photographs out in his photo gallery. I highly recommend taking a look at his photographs if you’re into photography because I spent a hefty amount of time taking a look at them, and they definitely affected me and strengthened my appreciation for the art of photography.
I figured I would dedicate one of these blog posts to inform people on how to write good captions in photojournalism. Photojournalism isn’t just about finding the right place and the right time to capture the perfect shot, it’s much more than that. These photojournalists can bask in their glory of capturing a great image, but their job isn’t done just yet. They need to have an open spot in their mind for the textual aspect of being a photojournalist. Writing captions is never easy, especially when the photojournalist wants to strengthen the photograph with a caption, and not weaken it. The best way to go about creating a caption is to take it step by step. Here are a couple links as guidelines for writing clear and effective captions: Link 1 – Link 2
Photograph taken by Sebastian Meyer
Being a photojournalist takes an incredible amount of courage, especially when the photographer is risking his or her life to capture an image in a hazardous location. One of the well-known stories about the dangers of photojournalism is the story about a war-film director and a second prize-winning photojournalist who were killed during the time they were covering a battle between the Libyan government and rebels, along with two other photographers heavily wounded. Neither of the two men who were killed had protective gear with them, ultimately causing their death by lack of protection. According to an article on NBC News, “British-born Tim Hetherington, co-director of the 2010 documentary “Restrepo” about U.S. soldiers on an outpost in Afghanistan, was killed,” stated by his publicist. Tim traveled to Libya to pursue his ongoing project involving multiple media sources to emphasize the humanitarian issues during the time of this war between rebels and the Libyan government. The other victim, Chris Hondros, was a New York-based photographer who died a few days after the incident due to head wounds. Both of these men will be remembered for their dedication to journalism and their love for photographing events that very few people have the courage to attempt. To receive more information about this incident, you can view the article here.
In regards to this, the most dangerous locations for photojournalists range from various places around the world. The top three most dangerous locations for photojournalists to visit are Iraq, Somalia, and the Philippines. Iraq has been listed as the top most threatening location to travel to in regards for photojournalists because of its ongoing violence for the past few years. One journalist stated, “I was in a U.S. military vehicle that was hit by a 200 pound suicide car bomb.” However, U.S. journalists aren’t the only ones at risk, Iraqi journalists are at risk as well if not more; they are at risk from being punished by Al-Quaeda if they publish anything negative. The second most dangerous location is Somalia for similar reasons, but one of the biggest risks of going out to the unsafe locations is the possibility of being kidnapped. There have been various cases where journalists have been kidnapped while searching for information in different regions of Somalia. The third most dangerous location is the Philipines because according to Jacob Maentz, “It’s clear that most of the journalist murders in the Philippines since 1992 were politically motivated in some regard.” However, although these dangers can be harmful, Maentz believes that journalists should not be hesitant of covering important stories that need to be heard, which is true journalism.
This photograph was taken by Richard Drew, a member of Associated Press, which shows a man jumping off of the World Trade Center during the event of 9/11 in 2001. This person who remains unidentified jumped off of this building for a reason that’s still remained unknown; however, it seems most likely that the man was trying to escape from the smoke and fire. This still remains an iconic image today because it represents the tragic events that occurred on this day.
When it comes to morals, photojournalists have an obligation to get the one photograph that represents the epitome of an event no matter how hard it is to handle the truth. Many in society are against photojournalists because of this reason; there have been numerous events where photojournalists have signed contracts agreeing to avoid getting involved with the scene they’re shooting, but this has resulted in humans being harmed. This is where the controversial issue becomes apparent because ethics plays a huge role in journalism, especially photojournalism . Photographers are obligated to dedicate their jobs to obtaining pure information without tampering with the scene, even if their morals run into the ability to get the photograph.
For example, one of the largest controversial photographs is the National Geographic image of the african girl crawling to a food camp to get food, but there’s a vulture standing close by eyeing her as its next meal. The photographer, Kevin Carter, had the decision to either save the girl from the vulture or letting nature take its course, and because he signed the contract agreeing to not get involved with the story he chose to take the photograph and leave, resulting in the girl passing away. This photograph won the Pulitzer Prize in 1994 for feature photography. This distraught image hugely impacted the society in a negative way; many were incredibly displeased with the photographer for not helping the little girl and blaming him for the death of her, but others were able to identify with him and understand that he had an obligation to get the story. Ethics in photojournalism will always be a controversial issue in society because of the multiple levels of morals society has; ultimately, these types of photographs will always have a never-ending ethical issue.
Photojournalism, in my opinion, is the most successful tactic at getting a reader’s attention. While one may just be scanning through the National Geographic and a graphic or vivid image of a lion waiting to hung its prey down comes across a page, there’s almost no way a reader is going to ignore that image. Photojournalists have to travel deep into the heart of the story to capture the perfect image that says it all. For example the picture of this rhinoceros captures the entire text of the story into one image. Sure it may be a graphic and difficult photograph for some readers to take in, but it shows the cruel, true fact that animals are being severely injured for parts of their body. Photojournalists allow society to vividly see photographs that tell the truth. Journalists who dive in and dig deep to find their story are successful as well, but there’s nothing truer than a photograph.
To view more about this poaching, you can visit http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2012/03/rhino-wars/gwin-text.