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Imani McCray
Imani McCray
Imani McCray

Imani McCray

Country: United States
Birth: 1992

Born in Baltimore Maryland 1992, the probability of me being dead or negative statistic was inherited from birth. With the help of those who have come into my life, I have triumphed over those odds and wish it help others overcome their adversity. Progressive art aids social justice by using its polyrhythmic mediums to give form to the thoughts, needs, and pains of a broken society. As an advocate for social justice and artist, my goal is to use impactful images, easily accessible copy, and strategic design to engage and inspire my audience. Passion, deception, faith, and spontaneity, are constant themes throughout our world. Navigating these experiences through different mediums is my attempt to shape this reality with imagination and passion. Photography and graphic design are the mediums I nurture as a way of bringing tangibility to my imagination.

Statement
2020 has presented the world with a myriad of challenges being met in succession. The events that continue to transpire are radically reshaping our societies and mindsets. People have been tasked with navigating the well-being of themselves, their livelihood, and conscious contribution to change. Our individual and collective ability to adapt is continually being pushed. With the future uncertain, we must be proactive in creating our reality. We must be the change we want to see. "Be The Change" is a multifaceted photo-journalistic design series highlighting some amazing people working to shape a better future through vast forms of social justice. I progress the second issue is focused on documenting the changes our society is going through from the frontline.

As a minority I have marched in solidarity with others striving to defend our most basic human rights to life, to freedom, to vote, and to love in public without the threat of an oppressive society continuing to cause us harm. Protesters have occupied streets and been used in social justice movements to remind others of our humanity. January 6th was a sight that should have been relegated only to horror movies and pre-reconstruction ignorance-not 2021.

What we witnessed wasn't protest-peaceful or otherwise. It was an insurrection and the manifestation and mass personification of white privilege and fragility. The mob implored the tactics of a victimhood mentality, while simultaneously showing a broad sense of entitlement. They should be held accountable for their actions and not allowed to shrink back into the shadows of ignorance and hate.

For the last four years, we have watched as America's darker truths were aired for the entire world to see. We have watched white privilege documented and the murder of black bodies go without justice. America has never been the land of the free, but we have always believed we can be more. The entire world has had to adapt to the adversity of a global pandemic and overcome the fear of the unknown. The American dream is based on success through adversity. The American reality is adversity reveals character and many Americans should be ashamed of what happened on January 6 and all that led up to it. From the ones that stormed the Capitol with malicious intent to the ones that allow ignorance to go unchecked, and all the in-between-we all hold responsibility. There is always room to be better and be the change you want to see. As Amanda Gorman, National Youth Poet Laureate said at the inauguration of a new President, "There is always light if we're brave enough to see it. There's always light if we're brave enough to be it." I aim for my photography and Be the Change to be a path forward with both truth and light.
 

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Cao Luning
China
1990
Cao Luning is a street photographer who lives in Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China, a city of 8 million people. He only started to do photography 3 years ago and all learnt by himself. For Cao Luning, photography is a means of getting to know and expressing himself. Just like the saying "You are what you read", he also believes "You are what you shoot". He's extremely crazy about Street, Travel and Documentary photography, and the uncertainty and infinite possibilities of them fascinate him. They are just similar to life, you never know what you are going to get tomorrow. You may capture some nice shots, or you might come back empty-handed. Street photographer is his identity. Cao Luning is a street wanderer and likes to watch people. He can linger on the streets all day long without feeling tired or fed up. When he shoots, he focuses on the serendipity of specific colors, light and shadows, gestures and the implied humor of scenes. Cao Luning reckons framing is crucial to a good photograph, and he's been greatly influenced by Henri Cartier-Bresson and his "The Decisive Moment Theory", which He thinks is something that every photographer should pay attention to. His mentors are Mangum Photographer Alex Webb and his wife Rebecca Norris Webb, and they both helped him a lot in developing his own vision. In his opinion, given different situations and scenarios, a good street photographer should swiftly apply different compositions that best suit the scenes, instead of using one or two methods for all situations, because that's not a creative process, it's just mechanical repetitions. Statement I'm a street photographer who started to do photography 3 years ago. For me, photography is a means of getting to know and expressing myself. Just like the saying "You are what you read", I also believe "You are what you shoot". I'm extremely crazy about Street, Travel and Documentary photography, and the uncertainty and infinite possibilities of them fascinate me. They are just similar to life, you never know what you are going to get tomorrow. You may capture many nice shots, or you might come back empty-handed. I'm a street wanderer and I like to watch people. I can linger on the streets all day long without feeling tired or fed up. When I shoot, I focus on the serendipity of specific colors, light and shadows, gestures and the implied humor of scenes. I reckon framing is crucial to a good photograph, and I've been greatly influenced by Henri Cartier-Bresson and his "The Decisive Moment Theory", which I think is something that every photographer should pay attention to. In my opinion, given different situations and scenarios, a good street photographer should swiftly apply different compositions that best suit the scenes, instead of using one or two methods for all situations, because that's not a creative process, it's just mechanical repetitions. Most of the works I submitted were shot during the pandemic in China.. On January 2020, The New Coronavirus Pneumonia (or COVID-19) outbroke in Wuhan, Hubei Province in China and soon spread all over the country. As a result, the Chinese government locked down the whole country, stopped all production activities, restricted intercity transportation, and people were advised not to go outside. I live in Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, a city of 8 million people, and when it was shut down, it was a bit like a ghost town in the beginning, not completely empty, but hard to find people on the streets. However, I found out by the Yangtze River and some parks, there are some citizens. People would go fishing, do sports, exercise or simply relax. So I often go to those places with my camera, trying to capture their life under the influence of Coronavirus. The virus has pressed the pause button for most of us, though it's not a good thing, objectively speaking, it gives us a good opportunity to look inside and review our living states. It offers us a window to slow down and appreciate all the good and beautiful things around us as well. In the meantime, we are also given the possibility to do the things that we always wanted to do. We should cherish it and live in the moment, despite how dreadful the epidemic situation might be, life has to go on. I hope you'll enjoy my works and get to know me better by them.
Giacomo Brunelli
Giacomo Brunelli (b. Perugia, Italy, 1977) graduated with a degree in International Communications in 2002. His series on animals has been exhibited widely with shows at The Photographers’Gallery, London (Uk), Galerie Camera Obscura, Paris (France), Format Festival, Derby (Uk), Robert Morat Galerie, Hamburg (Germany), Noorderlicht Photofestival (The Netherlands), Athens Photo Festival (Greece), Daegu PhotoBiennal (South Korea), Angkor PhotoFestival (Cambodia), BlueSky Gallery, Portland (Usa), The New Art Gallery Walsall (Uk), Griffin Museum ,Boston (Usa), StreetLevel Glasgow (Uk), Photofusion, London (Uk), Arden & Anstruther Petworth (Uk), Galleria Belvedere Milan (Italy), Fotofestiwal Lodz (Poland) and Boutographies, Montepellier (France). The work has won the Sony World Photography Award, the Gran Prix Lodz, Poland and the Magenta Foundation “Flash Forward 2009”. It has also been featured widely in the art and photography press including The Guardian (Uk), Harper’s Magazine (Usa), Eyemazing (Holland), European Photography (Germany), B&W Magazine (Usa), Creative Review (Uk), Foto&Video (Russia), Images Magazine (France) Photographie (Germany), Katalog (Denmark), AdBusters (Canada), FOTO (Sweden) and FOTOGRAFI (Norway). His work is in the collection of Museum of Fine Arts Houston, The New Art Gallery Walsall, Uk Kiyosato Museum of Photographic Arts and Portland Art Museum, Usa. “The Animals”, his first monograph, was published by Dewi Lewis Publishing in 2008. In 2012, he was commissioned by The Photographers’Gallery to do a project on London that will be shown there in March 2014. Interview with Giacomo Brunelli: All About Photo: When did you realize you wanted to be a photographer? I remember when more that 10 years ago, I found my father's camera in a drawer and immediately wanted to be able to use it. Did't know exactly to do what but since then I have been using it to shoot my ideas." Where did you study photography? "I graduated in Communications in 2002 and attended a six month course in photojournalism in Rome." Do you remember your first shot? What was it? "I don't remember my first shot but I started shooting people, lanscapes and animals since the beginning. I have been soon fascinated by the idea of being outside taking pictures of what you like." What or who inspires you? I take inspiration from exhibitions, books, walks, stories and music." How could you describe your style? Street Photography." What kind of gear do you use? Camera, lens, digital, film? "Since the very beginning, I have been using a Miranda Sensomat 35mm, a japanese film camera from the '60. Although I have tried the 28mm and 135mm when I started, I use the 50mm lens only and 1.8 1/500 as combination diaphragm/shutter speed. For a recent commission I got from The Photographers'Gallery two years ago on London, I started using 1/1000 also. Regarding the film, I like Kodak Tri-x 400 and I print the images myself in my darkroom on Agfa Fiber Based paper." Do you spend a lot of time editing your images? For what purpose? "Editing is crucial and I love spending time looking at my images as a body of work and select the ones I feel are the strongest to communicate my vision." AFavorite(s) photographer(s)? "I grew up looking at the great masters such as Lartigue, Muybridge, Giacomelli, Frank, Klein and Winogrand so I think I have been deeply influenced by the way they managed to express their own ideas through photography." What advice would you give a young photographer? "Developing a coherent body of work takes time and energy; I would say just be prepared to work hard." What mistake should a young photographer avoid? "Not to be patient." Your best memory as a photographer? Publishing "The Animals" (Dewi Lewis Publishing, 2008) has been great, seeing your pictures taking the form of a book is fantastic." Your worst souvenir as a photographer? "In 2005 I left my camera and my own things in a taxi in Bratislava."
David Yarrow
Scotland
1966
David Yarrow was born in Glasgow, Scotland in 1966. He took up photography at an early age and as a 20-year-old found himself working as a photographer for The London Times on the pitch at the World Cup Final in Mexico City. On that day, David took the famous picture of Diego Maradona holding the World Cup and, as a result, was subsequently asked to cover the Olympics and numerous other sporting events. Many years later David established himself as a fine art photographer by documenting the natural world from new perspectives and the last nine years have been career defining. David's evocative and immersive photography of life on earth is most distinctive and has earned him an ever growing following amongst art collectors. His large monochrome images made in Los Angeles are on display in leading galleries and museums across Europe and North America. He is now recognised as one of the best selling fine art photographers in the world and his limited edition works regularly sell at high prices at Sotheby's and other auction houses. In September 2019, Rizzoli published their second book by David Yarrow. It was Rizzoli's flagship book and their Autumn catalogue featured David's image on the cover. The books foreword was written by global NFL star Tom Brady and an afterword written by American cultural icon Cindy Crawford. All royalties from this book will be donated to conservation charities Tusk, in the UK and WildAid, in the US. David's position in the industry has been rewarded with a wide range of advisory and ambassadorial roles. He is an ambassador for WildArk and The Kevin Richardson Foundation. As the European ambassador for Nikon, he has recently been integral to the company's most anticipated camera release of the last decade. In December 2017 he shot LVMH's latest “Don't Crack Under Pressure” campaign with Cara Delevingne, which can be seen in airports around the world. In January 2019 David was appointed as a global ambassador for UBS. Most recently, in the spring of 2020, David was appointed a Global Ambassador for Best Buddies – one of America's most established children's charities. In 2018 and 2019 David's work raised over $4.5m for philanthropic and conservation organisations. At Art Miami in December 2019, David's photograph “The Wolves of Wall Street” broke new records. One print, signed by Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese, featuring the real Wolf of Wall Street – Jordan Belfort – sold for $200,000. The proceeds went to conservation NGOs supported by DiCaprio. At the start of 2020, David was in Australia documenting the devastating bush fires that have destroyed communities, wildlife and wildlands. Using the striking and poignant images that he captured of the effects of the fire, Yarrow launched the #KoalaComeback Campaign to support the recovery efforts in Australia. As of early June, the campaign has raised $1.4m. In April 2020, during the Covid-19 pandemic, David joined the Art For Heroes campaign, to raise money for the NHS. He released a print – Our Pride – with all proceeds going to HEROES. For every print purchased, David donated an Our Pride print to an NHS worker. The campaign has surpassed its original target of £1m.
Denis Olivier
France
1969
My first encounter with photography took place when my parents performed some strange static dances with an object in front of their face. Later they would close themselves up in a special room under the house for long periods of time, and no one was allowed in. They diligently made sure that they were left to their own devices while inside. One day I was given permission to enter the room and allowed to stay, but on the condition that I didn't move or went out. I remember there was a unique chemical perfume and a red light. I was bewildered: my parents appeared flashing a white light on a piece of paper using a strange apparatus. Then they dipped it into a clear liquid and Behold! I couldn't believe it, A miracle! They were wizards who created pictures. In the following years I didn't really follow his experiments, I was too young to manipulate cameras and I preferred to draw. Photography, Architecture and Art was always present around us and I still remember the black and white exhibitions that we visited. When I was a teenager, I continued to draw and started to paint a little. I even took part in some local exhibitions. At the age of 17 I began to take some photographs, I was especially fascinated by mineralogical micro mounts. I started studying biochemistry, but after 3 years I changed to Poitiers school of fine-arts, and took an interest in computer graphics and generated imagery. While I was there I meet Alain Fleig who introduced me to art photography. I also felt a need to practice photography, and with a friend we spent a lot of time learning how to develop films and photographs. We did sessions with models, scenery, and discovered France. The second year I had my first personal exhibition in a gallery, which was a great experience, then a training placement with Philippe Salaün, who was at this time Robert Doisneau's developer. Following this I did some jobs for organizations, shows and commissioned works. I then started in December 1995 working with computer graphics and made use of the Internet. I worked in artistic direction for several years, then digital cameras came along and I found a way to work quickly and experiment without using too many resources such as film, chemicals, photo sensitive paper and of course the wonderful resource of water.
Maja Strgar Kurecic
Maja Strgar Kurecic is a fine art photographer and an Associate Professor of photography at the Faculty of Graphic Arts, University of Zagreb, Croatia. She has been involved in photography for over 25 years. At the beginning of her career, Maja engaged mostly in advertising and journalistic projects. The last few years she devoted to projects that fall within the field of abstract photography. She earned international recognition for her recent projects: Other Worlds, Escape Landscapes and Floating Garden that won many international awards. She exhibited photographs on over 50 group and 20 independent exhibitions, held in country and abroad. OTHER WORLDS (2018) In the intimacy of my room, I immerse myself in an unpredictable, hidden world of colors and liquids. I create abstract motives from scratch. With the camera, I approach the subject and stop the moment of the dynamic process of their interaction. What is elusive to the eye in real time becomes visible in photographs... Although these photographs look like an abstract expression of colors and shapes, for me they mean much more. They represent symbolic landscapes - places where I escape from everyday worries and the real world, symbolize my inner world. What drives me in creation is the eternal search for wider horizons, unfettered spaces that transcend the boundaries of where we are physically standing and transcend into the infinite space of the imagination. For me, creation is a journey to freedom, to an open flow of pure ideas.
Dennis Stock
United States
1928 | † 2010
Dennis Stock (July 24, 1928 – January 11, 2010) was an American photojournalist and documentary photographer and a member of Magnum Photos. He was born in New York City and died in Sarasota, Florida. Stock served in the United States Army from 1947-1951. Following his discharge, he apprenticed under photographer Gjon Mili. In 1951, he won a first prize in a Life magazine competition for young photographers. That same year, he became an associate member of the photography agency Magnum. He became a full partner-member in 1954. In 1955, Stock met the actor James Dean and undertook a series of photos of the young star in Hollywood, Dean's hometown in Indiana and in New York City. He took a photograph of Dean in New York's Times Square in 1955 (the year Dean died) that became an iconic image of the young star. It appeared later in numerous galleries and on postcards and posters and was one of the most reproduced photographs of the post-war period. The black and white photograph shows the actor with a pulled up collar on a casual jacket and a cigarette in his mouth on a rain-soaked, gray day. From 1957 until the early 1960s, Stock aimed his lens at jazz musicians, photographing such people as Louis Armstrong, Billie Holiday, Sidney Bechet, Gene Krupa and Duke Ellington. With this series of photographs he published the book Jazz Street. In 1962, he received the first prize at the International Photo Competition in Poland. In 1968, Stock left Magnum to start his own film company, Visual Objectives Inc., and made several documentaries, but he returned to the agency a year later, as vice president for new media and film. In the mid-1970s, he traveled to Japan and the Far East, and also produced numerous features series, such as photographs of contrasting regions, like Hawaii and Alaska. In the 1970s and 1980s he focused on color photography of nature and landscape, and returned to his urban roots in the 1990s focusing on architecture and modernism.(Source: en.wikipedia.org) Dennis Stock was born in 1928 in New York City. At the age of 17, he left home to join the United States Navy. In 1947 he became an apprentice to Life magazine photographer Gjon Mili and won first prize in Life's Young Photographers contest. He joined Magnum in 1951. Stock managed to evoke the spirit of America through his memorable and iconic portraits of Hollywood stars, most notably James Dean. From 1957 to 1960 Stock made lively portraits of jazz musicians, including Louis Armstrong, Billie Holiday, Sidney Bechet, Gene Krupa and Duke Ellington for his book Jazz Street. In 1968 Stock took a leave of absence from Magnum to create Visual Objectives, a film production company, and he shot several documentaries. In the late 1960s he captured the attempts of California hippies to reshape society according to ideals of love and caring. Then throughout the 1970s and 1980s he worked on color books, emphasizing the beauty of nature through details and landscape. In the 1990s he went back to his urban origins, exploring the modern architecture of large cities. His recent work was mostly focused on the abstraction of flowers. Stock generated a book or an exhibition almost every year since the 1950s. He taught numerous workshops and exhibited his work widely in France, Germany, Italy, the United States and Japan. He worked as a writer, director and producer for television and film, and his photographs have been acquired by most major museum collections. He served as president of Magnum's film and new media division in 1969 and 1970.(Source: Magnum Photos)
Gueorgui Pinkhassov
France / Russia
1953
Gueorgui Pinkhassov is a photographer, born in Moscow in 1953. He is a member of Magnum Photos. Pinkhassov began his interest in photography in his teens, and enrolled at the Moscow Institute of Cinematography (VGIK) in 1969. Following college and two years in the army, he joined the film crew at Mosfilm. Continuing his interest in still photography he became a set photographer at the studio. His work was noticed by the film director Andrei Tarkovsky, who invited Pinkhassov to work on the set of his film Stalker. Being awarded independent artist status by the Moscow Union of Graphic Arts in 1978 allowed Pinkhassov far more freedom to travel, allowing him to exhibit his work internationally. In 1979 his work was noticed outside of Russia for the first time, in a group exhibition of Soviet photographers held in Paris. Previously, his work had mainly been seen in a number of Russian magazines, including L'artiste Sovietique. His acceptance by the Magnum Photos agency in 1988 opened up his work to a wider audience. He worked for the international media covering major events in Lithuania, Mongolia, Indonesia, and Africa. Returning to Moscow to cover the 1991 Coup, for the New York Times. In 1995, he received a photographic scholarship from the city, and in 1998, he published the book Sightwalk, photographs of Japan. Pinkhassov is now a French citizen, living in Paris.Source: Wikipedia Gueorgui Pinkhassov is known for his vivid art-reportage, which elevates the everyday to the extraordinary. His richly-colored images are absorbing, complex and poetic—sometimes bordering on an abstraction which embraces the visual complexity of contemporary life. As well as his global documentary work, Pinkhassov has photographed iconic cultural events from Cannes Film Festival to backstage at Paris Fashion Week. “It is foolish to change the vector of chaos. You shouldn’t try to control it, but fall into it” he says of his approach. Born in Moscow in 1952, Pinkhassov’s interest in photography began while he was still at school. After studying cinematography at the VGIK (The Moscow Institute of Cinematography), he went on to work at the Mosfilm studio as a cameraman and then as an on-set photographer. He joined the Moscow Union of Graphic Artists in 1978, which allowed him more freedom to travel and exhibit internationally. His work was soon noticed by the prominent Russian filmmaker Andrei Tarkovsky, who invited him to make a reportage about his film Stalker (1979). Recent work includes his study of Blackpool Illuminations in 2018, an ongoing series of city portraits illuminating places as varied as Beirut, Lisbon, Venice, Moscow and Nancy, and his coverage of the clashes between Anti-government protesters and police in the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv in 2014. Today, he works regularly for the international press, particularly for Geo, Actuel and The New York Times Magazine. He joined Magnum Photos in 1988.Source: Magnum Photos
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