For those of you that are interested in pursuing a career linked to photography in some way or another, here are a few choices that are available to you! First, the most important thing that you should be aware of is that in order to become a successful photographer and obtain a great career, it’s vital that you get a degree in photojournalism. With this at the palm of your hands, you’re almost guaranteed some sort of job relating to photography. The most common jobs that are linked to photography are being a freelance photographer, a specialized photographer, a photo editor, or a commercial/multimedia photographer. The most popular type is becoming a freelance photographer because it’s a great way for someone to start out with a very flexible schedule, and slowly work their way into a more packed schedule. This allows photographers to learn over a certain period of time how to create schedules based on their flexibility with other jobs. For example, a freelance photographer has the option to take a certain job or not. Of course, most freelance photographer won’t turn down any opportunities, because the odds that taking a certain job will lead to additional future jobs is high. The second most popular photography-related job is becoming a specialized photographer. For instance, being a sports photographer or something of this sort allows the photographer to focus on one topic, and allows them to specialize in this type of genre. This essentially leads to the photographer becoming an excellent and knowledgeable photographer in this field, such as a baseball or basketball photographer.
The endless assortment of photojournalist careers that are available is astonishing, in my opinion. Whether it be photographing family portraits, to photographing an NFL SuperBowl game, with a degree in photojournalism it’s not impossible to work your way to the top. One of the most beneficial aspects of being able to work your way to the top is getting to experience everything in between the less professional work to the most professional. You get to experience different types of photography as well as working with different cameras and settings. The mixture of these various photography events molds someone into an open-minded and well rounded photographer, as he or she experiences different aspects of photography each day. If you’re truly interested in becoming some sort of photographer, this website has almost all the information you need to know in order to become a successful photographer.
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.
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 post this week is about the famous photojournalist Michael Ainsworth; he was born in Houston, Texas and is known specifically for sports and thunder storms photography. He ‘s known as the “Thunder Boy” and is one of the most reliable sources around, which is why his photographs have been featured in many large magazines and news outlets such as The Dallas Morning News, The Newsweek, The National Geographic, and Sports Illustrated. Ainsworth has won many awards for Picture of the Year; he was recently awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Photography for the photographs he captured of Hurricane Katrina, which you can view here.
Some of the most important traits a photojournalist must possess are: attempt to strive for the truth, be able to capture compelling images, and take risks. Michael Ainsworth has achieved all of these traits; he has become such an important icon in the photojournalism world today because of his dedication and reliability in this field of work, which are the two most important traits one should possess to become successful in this business. Especially with the direction journalism is headed in today, it’s crucial that a photojournalist creates enormous amounts of credibility with the public to remain a trusted source of information.
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.