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Sonia Costa
Sonia Costa
Sonia Costa

Sonia Costa

Country: Italy

Sonia Costa is an was born in Northeast Italy and is temporarily based in Rome. With her studies in Geography and her passion for nature and worldwide different cultures, she has been traveling the world for years studying the interrelationship between people and environment. Promoting a sustainable tourism with a low environmental impact, she has long worked in Indian Sub-Continent, South East Asia and in the most isolated corners of the planet.

Award winning free-lance photographer, she has been taking street and documentary photographs for years. Her essential subject is social life, focusing mostly in ordinary life, cultural stories and contemporary issues, always attracted by old stories, isolated places and people out of the spotlight. Her special passion for intimacy led her to develop portraiture as one of preferred means to interact with people and better understand the human condition. Wandering the planet including its remote regions, she has always been fascinated by the profound resilience with which simple people, especially women and children, face life . In a world submerged by conflicts, she tries to document the beauty and delicacy she can still find out there.

In 2016 her first pocketbook was published: "La figlia di Saadi" Ed. Polaris, a tour around the world through short stories and photographs dedicated to the female universe. She published her photographs in magazines and books and exhibited her work in collective and solo shows in Italy and in collective shows in USA and Spain, upcoming in Japan. After being away from photography world for a while, she started to share her photographs just three years ago and be awarded in various International Photography Contests. Tokyo International Awards - IPA International Awards - Julia Cameron Awards - Prix de La Photographie Paris. Nominees and Honorable mentions, Merit of Excellence and Nominees : All About Photo APP Magazine - Monochrome Awards - Fine Art Photography Awards - Pollux Awards - Black and White Spider Awards - International Colors Awards - IPA Street Awards.

Ordinary life through an extraordinary year
I have always loved isolated places and being able to capture images with few people filling empty spaces I felt, in some way, as I was in my loved remote and lonely journeys. I usually travel and live out of my country months a year. Due to Covid-19 Pandemic, I spent most of 2020 stuck in Italy and luckily, when possible, in other European countries. During the lockdown, I wandered through the deserted cities with my camera, in this project I tried to document the ordinary life of two Italian symbol cities: Rome and Venice. In summertime, Venice had somehow returned to what it once was many years ago, even if in indoor places masks were still compulsory. Without crowds of tourists poured through the narrow streets and the cruise ships that monstrously invaded the lagoon, I could hear my voice again and the silent canals could finally breath. Rome, in late spring and fall, looked like certain sunny summers when the city empties itself for holidays and the sultry heat. Only few people going around by tramways or in empty squares patrolled by policemen with the sound of the sea gulls in the air. Documenting ordinary life along the streets, it was like looking at old photographs during the pandemic Spanish flu in 1918. Used to observe distant countries, see and record the changing world, last year I observed and caught the world through our changing cities.
 

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Charles Harbutt
United States
1935 | † 2015
Charles Henry Harbutt (July 29, 1935 – June 30, 2015) was an American photographer, a former president of Magnum, and full-time Associate Professor of Photography at Parsons School of Design in New York. Harbutt was born in Camden, New Jersey, and raised in Teaneck, New Jersey, and learned much of his photography skills from the township's amateur camera club. He attended Regis High School in New York City where he took photographs for the school newspaper. He later graduated from Marquette University. Harbutt's work is deeply rooted in the modern photojournalist tradition. For the first twenty years of his career he contributed to major magazines in the United States, Europe and Japan. His work was often intrinsically political, exhibiting social and economic contingencies. In 1959, while working as a writer and photographer for the Catholic magazine Jubilee, he was invited by members of the Castro underground to document the Cuban Revolution on the strength of three photographs he had published in Modern Photography. An editor at Jubilee while Harbutt was working there, Robert Lax, used photographs taken by Harbutt for the front and back cover of his first book of poetry, The Circus of the Sun. Harbutt joined Magnum Photos and was elected president of the organization twice, first in 1979. He left the group in 1981, citing its increasingly commercial ambitions and the desire to pursue more personal work. He taught photography workshops, exhibited in solo and group shows around the world, and joined the faculty of the Parsons School of Design at New School University as a full-time professor, in addition to serving as guest artist at MIT, Art Institute of Chicago, and the Rhode Island School of Design. Harbutt was a founding member of Archive Pictures Inc., an international documentary photographers' cooperative, and a member of the American Society of Magazine Photographers. His work was exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art, the National Museum of American History, the Corcoran Gallery of Art, the U.S. Library of Congress, George Eastman House, the Art Institute of Chicago, the International Center of Photography, the Center for Creative Photography, and at the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, the Beaubourg, and the Maison Européenne de la Photographie in Paris. In 1997, his negatives, master prints, and archives were acquired for the collection of the Center for Creative Photography in Tucson, Arizona. He mounted a large exhibition of his work at the Centro de la Imagen in Mexico City in December 2000 and received the medal of the City of Perpignan at a retrospective of his work there in 2004. He died in Monteagle, Tennessee, on June 30, 2015, at the age of 79. He had emphysema.Source: Wikipedia Charles Harbutt’s early fascination with magic and the elusive line between perception and reality steered him toward journalism and its documentary role, first as a writer. But he altered his course in 1959, when he was 23, after being invited by Cuban rebels to document the Castro revolution. Immersing himself in Havana’s convulsive and euphoric newfound freedom, he recalled, “I soon understood that I could get closer to the feel of things by taking pictures.” Mr. Harbutt went on to become an accomplished photojournalist for major magazines and the renowned agency Magnum Photos. “He and Burk Uzzle took photojournalism and pushed it in a direction away from literalism or classicism,” Jeff Jacobson, a former colleague, told The New York Times, referring to a contemporary whose pictures of the Woodstock music festival in 1969 gained wide attention, “away from certainly the European paradigm of Cartier-Bresson, and away from the narrative paradigm of Gene Smith to something very, very different, very involved with metaphor.” But Charles Harbutt became disillusioned with his craft, questioning the veracity of the events he was covering, particularly after witnessing undercover government agents provoke violence at a rally in New Haven in 1970 in support of jailed Black Panthers. “The kinds of stories I chose to do, I later realized, were mostly about American myths,” he wrote in his last book, Departures and Arrivals (2012). “I photographed small towns, immigrants, the barrio in New York, and then the enormous changes that came with the ’60s. I tried to be a witness as well as show my feelings about all of this. But maybe I had a sell-by time — expiration date — for being a witness,” he continued. “In the early ’70s, I started questioning this reportage for myself. A host of manipulators had so corrupted and warped public events, I could no longer trust the authenticity of what I was seeing. I realized that I was more interested in pajamas on a bed one Brooklyn morning, or a Dublin woman hauling groceries to her house, than I was in the machinations of politics and history ‘writ large.’ ” Mr. Harbutt experimented with surreal composition and juxtaposition of quotidian forms in a style he described as personal documentary and facetiously branded “superbanalisms.” Among his most famous black-and-white photographs was one of a blind boy, seemingly trying to transcend his sightlessness by reaching for a ribbon of light on a wall. In another, a bride in a flowing white gown poses pensively below exposed pipes and empty tables in a large basement before her wedding reception. Charles Harbutt’s own favorite, called “Mr. X-Ray Man,” was shot through a car window on the Rue du Départ near the Montparnasse train station in Paris, where fragments of the cityscape and even of the photographer himself can be seen reflected in the glass. What made it special was that it was unexpected, he explained in Arrivals and Departures. “What I like best,” he wrote, “is that however the picture is made, it’s a surprise to me when I see the photo come up in the developer.”Source: The New York Times
Ralph Steiner
United States
1899 | † 1986
Ralph Steiner was an American photographer, pioneer documentarian and a key figure among avant-garde filmmakers in the 1930s. Born in Cleveland, Steiner studied chemistry at Dartmouth, but in 1921 entered the Clarence H. White School of Modern Photography. White helped Steiner in finding a job at the Manhattan Photogravure Company, and Steiner worked on making photogravure plates of scenes from Robert Flaherty's 1922 Nanook of the North. Not long after, Steiner's work as a freelance photographer in New York began, working mostly in advertising and for publications like Ladies' Home Journal. With fellow graduate Anton Bruehl (1900–1982), in 1925, they opened a studio on 47th Street, producing a narrative series of amusing table-top shots of three cut‑out figures dressed in suits for The New Yorker magazine; advertisements for Weber and Heilbroner menswear in a running weekly series. Their client was wiped out in the Wall Street Crash. Through the encouragement of fellow photographer Paul Strand, Steiner joined the left-of-center Film and Photo League around 1927. He was also to influence the photography of Walker Evans, giving him guidance, technical assistance, and one of his view cameras. Steiner's still photographs are notable for their odd angles, abstraction and sometimes bizarre subject matter; the 1944 image Gypsy Rose Lee and Her Girls is sometimes mistaken for Weegee. His experimental films, however, are considered central to the literature of early American avant-garde cinema, and the influence of Ralph Steiner's visual style continues to assert itself; for example, contemporary avant-garde filmmaker Timoleon Wilkins cites Steiner as an inspiration. In his appreciation of Steiner, author Scott McDonald expands that list to include Dorsky, Andrew Noren, Larry Gottheim and Peter Hutton. The links between the first generation of American avant-garde filmmakers such as Steiner with the second – exemplified by Maya Deren, Stan Brakhage and others – are few, but Steiner is among those who managed to bridge the gap.Source: Wikipedia At the end of the 1960s Steiner relocated to Vermont. After making three more films he devoted himself to photographing clouds for nearly twenty years, primarily on the coast of Maine and in Oaxaca, Mexico. Clouds have been of longstanding interest to painters throughout the history of art. In photography, the subject is often associated with Alfred Stieglitz, who made photographs of clouds entitled Equivalents, believing them to appeal directly to the subconscious mind. Steiner similarly saw the evocative potential in cloud formations, although he felt the meaning of any given image was far more mercurial than his predecessor. Leaving his works deliberately untitled, he invites viewers to use their imaginations and provide their own titles, which, in his estimation, becomes a process of testing out different descriptions and metaphors. In 1985, shortly before his death, Steiner published a book of these studies, In Pursuit of Clouds.Source: MoCP
Jo Ann Chauss
United States
1954
Jo Ann Chaus is an American photographer from and based in the New York metro area She holds two certificates from the International Center of Photography in New York City. In 2016 Jo Ann self-published "Sweetie & Hansom", a 60-image book with original text exploring family, relationships and loss. Her current body of work, "Conversations with Myself", is a collection of performative self-portraiture that explores women's roles and identity, currently under edit for publishing. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, and she holds special recognitions and awards: Critical Mass Top 200 2020, 2019, 15th Julia Margaret Cameron Award for Women Photographers Winner Self Portrait Series, 14th Julia Margaret Cameron Awards Honorable Mention, Winner 13th Pollux Awards non-professional category, Critical Mass 2019 Top 200, Klompching Fresh 2019 Finalist, PDN Emerging Photographer Fall 2019 Winner, , Candela Unbound8! and 9! juried exhibitions, Permanent Collection in the Center for Creative Photography Qualities of Light Exhibition, Juror's Choice South East Center for Photography Portrait Exhibition 2019. Statement Jo Ann's work is a visual record of her interactions with and with-in her environment, and her curiosity to explore and discover personal truths, whether found or assembled, as metaphors for her inner landscape. She expresses the joys and pathos of a life, as seen and felt by the young girl within who became the woman, the mother, and the wife. Her perspective is through the eyes of an elder in our society, contemplating the challenges and incongruities of her own will, desire and constraints within a historical context. Heightened and enhanced by the literal light of day, it is an examination of life's ambiguities: the close and the distant, the beauty and the grit, the singular and the plural, satisfaction and longing, together and apart… all relentlessly seeking to understand and witness herself, past, present and future.
Oriol Torra Segon
He was born in Manresa (Spain) in 1981. He studied photography at Catalan Institute of Photographic Studies (IEFC). He participated in several documentary workshops taught by Antoine d’Agata (Magnum Photos), Franco Pagetti (VII), Jose Manuel Navia (Agence Vu) or Arianna Rinaldo, among others. Since 2011 he is a freelance photographer. His photography focuses in human frailty and vulnerability. His photographic project Young Patriots has been has received the EXPOSURE AWARD 2014 of See Me (New York, United States), has been one of the photographic projects selected as Descubrimientos PhotoEspaña 2014 (Madrid, Spain), was exhitibted at the Emerging Photography PA-TA-TA Granada Festival (Granada, Spain) and will be exhibited at DOCfield 2014 Festival (Barcelona, Spain), La Kursala de la UCA gallery (Cádiz, Spain) , Backlight Festival (Findland) and Encontros da Imagem Festival (Braga, Portugal). Young Patriots was also published in CNN and Cicero Magazine (Germany). Currently he works on commercial assignments and he is also a contributor of the Echo Photo Agency.About Young Patriots: “Young patriots documents the daily life in a military summer camp for children and teenagers focusing on the fragility of the atendees, in transition between from the childhood to the adulthood”The military summer camp in Mogyoród, Hungary, is a private project which each year sees the arrival of hundreds of children and teenagers between 10 and 15 years old. Some came attracted by the fascination of the military way of life, a militarism which is omnipresent in Hungarian society thanks to its imperial past and the memories of both the Nazi and the Communist periods. Others are brought here by their parents (mostly Hungarian nationalists) so as to introduce them to the unforgiving adult world where emotions are rarely permitted and life must be faced with rectitude and discipline.For a week they will live in tents, will receive military training from experienced soldiers who are still active, will acquire notions regarding Order and the Homeland, will endure long nights on guard duty without sleep, will learn how to use old out of service AK-47s built in Czechoslovakia (with blanks) and will even simulate being under teargas attacks.It will be a week of screamed orders during which intense physical exercise, educational behaviorism and precooked food will prevail; a place where any vulnerabilities and all questioning of military methods are simply overlooked, silenced and inwardly repressed.The young soldiers who had previously already felt the call of the Homeland will live the week’s activities impregnates wit epic airs. On the other hand, the skeptical protagonists, increasingly desensitized, more obedient, more docile, will have been transformed into disciplined young patriots of the great Hungary which one day will go back to being what it once was.All the images of this project were taken in Mogyoród, Hungary in the first week of July, 2013.
Jefferson Caine Lankford
United States
1993
Jefferson Caine Lankford is a photographer born and currently based in the United States. He uses a range of photographic techniques including alternative, analog, and digital practices. Jefferson earned a BFA in photography at East Carolina University in 2016 and also attended the Australian National University, located in Canberra, Australia - where he studied documentary photography. His work focuses on a variety of subjects, ranging from environmental concerns and foreign cultures to the various aspects of the American South, such as agriculture, poverty, and society. To Be, Rather Than to Seem The American South has an essence that sparingly reveals itself, thus requiring unprecedented determination and patience to photograph all its splendor. Nevertheless, and despite its elusiveness, this essence I am chasing - permeates; it lingers in the air of North Carolina, and when discovered, puts on a magnificent display. This essence appears in the eyes of a jet-black cat within an abandoned barn: it agonizes within the face of an elderly Amish man; it breathes deep within the shadow of a stray dog crossing a back road; it flourishes within the wings of starlings above a farm after heavy rain; it shines on a dilapidated door in the middle of nowhere, and it tirelessly works in the tobacco fields without complaint. Over the past three years, I have traveled throughout many impoverished towns and across countless acres of farmland to document and share an original story of existence - life and death as it occurs in rural North Carolina. The photographs within this ongoing project, To Be, Rather Than to Seem - provides a window for others to witness these fleeting moments for themselves and embrace the beautiful raw essence of my homeland.
William Henry Fox Talbot
United Kingdom
1800 | † 1877
William Henry Fox Talbot was born on 11 February 1800 in Melbury, Dorset, into a well-connected family. His father died when he was less than a year old and he and his mother lived in a succession of homes until she remarried in 1804. Talbot went to Cambridge University in 1817. In 1832, he married Constance Mundy and the same year was elected as MP for Chippenham. In 1833, while visiting Lake Como in Italy, his lack of success at sketching the scenery prompted him to dream up a new machine with light-sensitive paper that would make the sketches for him automatically. On his return to England, he began work on this project at his home at Lacock Abbey in Wiltshire. Thomas Wedgwood had already made photograms - silhouettes of leaves and other objects - but these faded quickly. In 1827, Joseph Nicéphore de Niepce had produced pictures on bitumen, and in January 1839, Louis Daguerre displayed his 'Daguerreotypes' - pictures on silver plates - to the French Academy of Sciences. Three weeks later, Fox Talbot reported his 'art of photogenic drawing' to the Royal Society. His process based the prints on paper that had been made light sensitive, rather than bitumen or copper-paper. Fox Talbot went on to develop the three primary elements of photography: developing, fixing, and printing. Although simply exposing photographic paper to the light produced an image, it required extremely long exposure times. By accident, he discovered that there was an image after a very short exposure. Although he could not see it, he found he could chemically develop it into a useful negative. The image on this negative was then fixed with a chemical solution. This removed the light-sensitive silver and enabled the picture to be viewed in bright light. With the negative image, Fox Talbot realised he could repeat the process of printing from the negative. Consequently, his process could make any number of positive prints, unlike the Daguerreotypes. He called this the 'calotype' and patented the process in 1841. The following year was rewarded with a medal from the Royal Society for his work. Fox Talbot was also an eminent mathematician, an astronomer and archaeologist, who translated the cuneiform inscriptions from Nineveh. He died on 11 September 1877. Source: BBC
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