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Mendi Thaler
Mendi Thaler
Mendi Thaler

Mendi Thaler

Country: Israel
Birth: 2003

Born on September 29, 2003 in Jerusalem, Israel. From my childhood I was drawn to plastic art. I loved looking at pictures and photographs. Later, as I grew up, I became more and more interested in photography. In 2019 I started taking photography classes. In 2020 I participated in the international photography competition "Berdychevsky Vernissage Photography 2020" in the street photography section. My work "On the Way to Work" was awarded a diploma in the photography competition. In 2021 I participated in a photography competition, solo exhibition. Photography has become an important part of my life. Street photography, reportage, portrait and landscape are genres of photography that I work with.

My motto is from imagination to creation
 

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Karl Struss
United States
1886 | † 1921
Karl Struss, was a notable figure in American visual arts, renowned for his contributions as both a photographer and a cinematographer spanning from the early 1900s to the 1950s. Notably, he played a significant role in the advancement of 3-D filmmaking techniques during his career. His portfolio boasts a diverse range of projects, including iconic films like F.W. Murnau's Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans and Charlie Chaplin's The Great Dictator and Limelight. Beyond his cinematic endeavors, Struss also lent his expertise to television productions, notably serving as a cinematographer for the series Broken Arrow and capturing the essence of 19 episodes of My Friend Flicka through his lens. Born in New York City in 1886, Karl Struss's early life took an unexpected turn when an illness sidelined him from high school. His father, Henry, made the decision to withdraw him from formal education, placing him as a labor operator at Seybel & Struss bonnet wire factory. However, this diversion ignited a passion within Karl for photography. He delved into the craft, experimenting with an 8x10 camera and immersing himself in the art through Clarence H. White's evening photography course at Teachers College, Columbia University, starting in 1908 and concluding in 1912. During his formative years of study, Struss's fascination with camera lenses led him to invent the Struss Pictorial Lens in 1909, which he aimed to patent as a soft-focus lens. This innovation garnered attention and popularity among pictorial photographers of the era, ultimately becoming the first soft-focus lens embraced by the motion picture industry in 1916. Struss's breakthrough in the world of photography came when Alfred Stieglitz selected 12 of his pictorial works for the Albright Art Gallery International Exhibition of Pictorial Photography in 1910, marking the culmination of the Photo-Secession movement. His reputation continued to flourish, as evidenced by his inclusion in the prestigious exhibition "What the Camera Does in the Hand of the Artist" at the Newark Art Museum in April 1911. This success led to an invitation from Teacher's College for Struss to curate a solo exhibition showcasing his depictions of New York City and to temporarily assume teaching responsibilities for White's course during the summer of 1912. Further recognition came when Stieglitz invited Struss to join the Photo-Secession in 1912, facilitating the publication of his work in the group's magazine, Camera Work. In 1913, Struss collaborated with Edward Dickson, Clarence White, Alvin Langdon Coburn, and Paul Anderson to establish Platinum Print, a publication aimed at promoting photographic artistry. By 1914, Struss fully embraced his identity as a professional photographer, resigning from the family business and taking over Clarence White's former studio space, marking a pivotal moment in his career trajectory. At the suggestion of Coburn, Struss took the initiative to submit prints to the American Invitational Section of the Royal Photographic Society's annual exhibition in London, marking the beginning of a recurring practice that would extend well into the 1920s. Alongside this, he actively participated in various exhibitions organized by photography clubs and associations, such as the Pittsburgh Salon of National Photographic Art and the annual photography showcase hosted by the Philadelphia department store Wanamaker's. While engaging in these exhibitions and handling specialized commissions, Struss concurrently pursued commercial photography for esteemed magazines like Vogue, Vanity Fair, and Harper's Bazaar. It's noteworthy that he maintained a distinction, adamantly asserting that his work didn't fall under the category of fashion photography. However, the trajectory of his photographic career was interrupted by the outbreak of World War I. In 1917, he fulfilled his patriotic duty by registering for the draft and subsequently enlisting with the intention of serving his country through photography. Initially trained for aerial photography instruction, Struss encountered complications when his German connections came under scrutiny by the Military Intelligence Department. This led to his demotion from sergeant to private and a period of confinement in Ithaca, New York, where he was originally stationed to teach at the School of Military Aeronautics. Eventually, he was transferred to Fort Leavenworth, where his duties shifted to serving as a prison guard and later as a file clerk. In this latter role, he reignited his passion for photography, documenting the lives of the prisoners. Towards the end of the war, in a bid to dispel any lingering suspicions of anti-American sentiment, Struss sought to clear his name by applying and being accepted into Officer's Training Camp, attaining the rank of corporal. Despite receiving an honorable discharge eventually, the fallout from the military investigation likely left him hesitant to resume his previous endeavors in New York, as many of his professional relationships had been strained or fractured as a result. In 1919, following his military discharge, he relocated to Los Angeles, where he secured a position as a cameraman under Cecil B. DeMille's direction. His first assignment was on the set of the film For Better, For Worse, featuring Gloria Swanson, which paved the way for subsequent collaborations on projects like Male and Female. This successful partnership led to a lucrative two-year contract with the studio. Early in 1921, Struss tied the knot with Ethel Wall, whose support enabled him to pursue independent photographic ventures alongside his studio obligations, notably capturing scenic views across California. Throughout the 1920s, his cinematic expertise graced notable productions including Ben-Hur and F.W. Murnau's Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans. By 1927, he transitioned to United Artists, collaborating with luminaries such as D.W. Griffith on projects like Drums of Love and pioneering Mary Pickford's inaugural sound film, Coquette. Continuously innovative, Struss delved into experimental camera technology, inventing the "Lupe Light" and devising a novel bracket system for the Bell & Howell camera. From 1931 to 1945, Struss contributed his talents as a cameraman to Paramount, engaging in diverse projects featuring prominent figures like Mae West, Bing Crosby, and Dorothy Lamour. He also made significant contributions to the field through his written work, exemplified by his 1934 article "Photographic Modernism and the Cinematographer" published in American Cinematographer. Recognized for his expertise, he gained membership in esteemed organizations such as the American Society of Cinematographers and played a pivotal role as a founding member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts. In 1949, while working independently, Struss embarked on pioneering endeavors in stereo cinematography, positioning himself as a trailblazer in this emerging art form. Regrettably, most of his 3-D film ventures took place overseas in Italy, with none of his productions receiving 3-D releases in the United States. In addition to his illustrious career in photography and cinematography, Struss pursued a passion for philately, particularly focusing on the inaugural transpacific airmail flights. He meticulously crafted commemorative covers for significant events such as the first San Francisco to Honolulu flight in November 1935, showcasing his dedication to this specialized hobby. His personal collection, including exhibition prints, film stills, negatives, and papers, is housed at the Amon Carter Museum of American Art in Fort Worth, Texas.
Helen Levitt
United States
1913 | † 2009
Helen Levitt was an American photographer and cinematographer. She was particularly noted for her street photography around New York City. David Levi Strauss described her as "the most celebrated and least known photographer of her time." Helen Levitt was most well known and celebrated for her work taking pictures of children playing in the streets. She also focused her work in areas of Harlem and the Lower East side with the subjects of her work many of which were minorities. There is a constant motif of children playing games in her work. She stepped away from the normal practice set by other established photographers at the time by giving a journalistic depiction of suffering. She instead chose to show the world from the perspective of her children by taking pictures of their chalk art. She usually positions the camera and styles the photo in a way that gives the focus of her photography power. Her choice to display children playing in the street and explore street photography fights against what was going on at the time. Legislation being passed in New York at the time was limiting many of the working classes' access to these public spaces. Laws were passed that directly targeted these communities in an attempt to control them. New bans on noise targeted working-class and minority communities. There was a movement to also try to keep children from playing on the street believing it is unsafe for them out there. Instead encouraging safe new areas that were usually built more in upper and middle-class areas. Helen Levitt instead exploring the narrative of those who lived in these areas and played in these streets was a way further to empower the subjects of her photos. Levitt was born in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, New York, the daughter of May (Kane), and Sam Levitt. Her father and maternal grandparents were Russian Jewish immigrants. She went to New Utrecht High School but dropped out in 1931. She began taking photography when she was eighteen and in 1931 she learned how to develop photos in the darkroom when she began working for J. Florian Mitchell, a commercial portrait photographer in the Bronx. She also attended many classes and events hosted by Manhattan Film and Photography League. This was also around the time she was exposed to the work of Henri Cartier-Bresson at the Julien Levy Gallery, who she was also able to meet through the league. His work became a major influence for her photography as it inspired her to change from her current more journalistic and commercial approach to photography to a more personal one. In 1936, she purchased a Leica camera (a 35 mm range-finder camera). In While teaching art classes to children in 1937 for the New York City's Federal Art Project, Levitt became intrigued with the transitory chalk drawings that were part of the New York children's street culture of the time. She began to photograph these chalk drawings, as well as the children who made them for her own creative assignment with the Federal Art Project. were ultimately published in 1987 as In The Street: chalk drawings and messages, New York City 1938–1948. She continued taking more street photographs mainly in East Harlem but also in the Garment District and on the Lower East Side, all in Manhattan. During the 1930s to 1940s, the lack of air conditioning meant people were outside more, which invested her in street photography. Her work was first published in Fortune magazine's July 1939 issue. The new photography section of the Museum of Modern Art, New York included Levitt's work in its inaugural exhibition in July 1939. In 1941, she visted Mexico City with author James Agee and took photos of the area. In 1943, Nancy Newhall curated her first solo exhibition Helen Levitt: Photographs of Children. In 1959 and 1960, she received two grants from the Guggenheim Foundation for her pioneering work in color photography. In 1965 she published her first major collection, A Way of Seeing. Much of her work in color from 1959 to 1960 was stolen in a 1970 burglary of her East 12th Street apartment. The remaining photos, and others taken in the following years, can be seen in the 2005 book Slide Show: The Color Photographs of Helen Levitt. A second solo exhibit, Projects: Helen Levitt in Color, was held at the Museum of Modern Art, New York in 1974. Her next major shows were in the 1960s; Amanda Hopkinson suggests that this second wave of recognition was related to the feminist rediscovery of women's creative achievements. In 1976, she was a Photography Fellow of the National Endowment for the Arts. Levitt lived in New York City and remained active as a photographer for nearly 70 years. However, she expressed lament at the change of New York City scenery: "I go where there's a lot of activity. Children used to be outside. Now the streets are empty. People are indoors looking at television or something." She had to give up making her own prints in the 1990s due to sciatica, which also made standing and carrying her Leica difficult, causing her to switch to a small, automatic Contax. She was born with Ménière's syndrome, an inner-ear disorder that caused her to "[feel] wobbly all [her] life." She also had a near-fatal case of pneumonia in the 1950s. Levitt lived a personal and quiet life. She seldom gave interviews and was generally very introverted. She never married, living alone with her yellow tabby Blinky. Levitt died in her sleep on March 29, 2009, at the age of 95.Source: Wikipedia
Maia Flore
France
1988
Maia Flore was born in 1988, in France. She is currently living in Paris. Graduated from Ecole des Gobelins in 2010, she joined Agence VU' in 2011. Her approach fits into a research of coincidences between reality and her imagination. Her world is a complete fabrication in form of touching and enchanting narrations, even surrealistic. This is in Sweden she begins her first series "Sleep Elevations", a journey that indulges in childhood memories. During the summer of 2012, while her first residence in Finland, Maia Flore explores new methods of representation and narration. These researches will then continue at the Arts Center of Berkeley, California. Resulting two series (Situations and Morning Sculptures) that continue to explore the feelings of confusion in which the photographer places her characters as her audience. She is exposed for the first time in February 2011 at the festival Circulation (s) of the Young European Photography in Paris. More recently, as part of a White Card from Atout France and the French Institute, Maia Flore depicts the French heritage through her dreamy world in the series "Imagine France – Le voyage fantastique" exposed in Bercy Village until September 2014. In 2015, she wins Le prix HSBC pour la photographie. Source: Agence VU Situations (2012) In the Situations series, a girl runs through varyingly weathered landscapes donning a striking red outfit. In search of a sublime freedom, she travels to find fleeting moments of communion with nature. Draped in red, she catches the light of the sun or buries herself in the fog. As though she were attempting to rediscover this space, she roams on land-locked clouds that evaporate into the landscape upon the return of the sun as it chases away their mystery. Like a game between reality and fantasy, the clash between clairvoyance and a moment of madness, the girl is amused by her emotional confusion. Sleep Elevation (2010) "Those who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night," Edgar Allan Poe. This is how these girls, carried away in the air by objects, let themselves travel through boundless landscapes. Flying towards dreamed lands, making real a complete attraction between the character, his ideal universe and the world they live in: that is where these girls lead us. Their contorted movements are merging with the shape of the one revealing their passion. Mix of an imaginary realism and childhood memories, these beings in levitation invite us to dream, limitlessly.
Donell Gumiran
Philippines
Donell Gumiran is a Design & Senior Art Director based in Dubai."Every time I press the shutter, it seems like it's an extension of my personality,"- Donell Gumiran. He sees himself as an image-maker who captures and tells a story in a photograph. The Filipino lensman sees his photography as an art form, borne from his desire to create on canvas and his professional training in design, when he worked as a design director in a creative agency. Now based in the U.A.E. Donell is known for his evocative portraits and travel photography. His favorite subjects are those that capture human conditions and emotions in everyday life. His knack for sharing his stories, captured through the lens, has won him international recognitions. He is the recipient of numerous awards both local and international. Donell Gumiran is also photographer & contributor for Asian Geographic Magazine. Recently, He won in Tokyo Foto Award, Japan - Gold 2019, 1st Prize in documentary category 2018 - International Photography (IPA) Awards Los Angeles, USA. 1st Place Winner 2018 The Independent Photo Travel Award, Berlin, Germany - He was adjudged the 2017 grand prize winner of the Travel Photographer Society International Photography Contest Awards in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in 2017 and was awarded as "Portrait Photographer of the Year 2017" for Asian Geographic Images of Asia for its Asia without Borders program in Singapore. Donell Gumiran also awarded as Photographer of the year by the Filipino Times 2017 UAE. In addition, he was also one of the winners in the Life Framer World Travelers Competition judged by magnum photographer Steve McCurry. Most of his works have been exhibited in New York, Tokyo,and Rome. He was awarded also as Curtin Dubai's Photographer of the Year - Urban Art Festival 2018. On the home front, Donell was recently chosen by the National Commission for Culture and the Arts under the office of the President of the Philippines to receive the coveted "Ani ng Dangal Award 2018 & 2019." "I think my real accomplishment was that I was able to use photography as a significant instrument to help the world for the better. My work gives me a chance to capture and preserve memories of our time." He sits on the Board of Directors as creative director of Team Juan Makasining, and uses this position to encourage other photographers to express themselves through their art. "Start as passion, not as a profession." - Donell Gumiran
Julia Margaret Cameron
United Kingdom
1815 | † 1879
Julia Margaret Cameron (née Pattle; 11 June 1815 – 26 January 1879) was a British photographer. She became known for her portraits of celebrities of the time, and for photographs with Arthurian and other legendary themes. Cameron's photographic career was short, spanning eleven years of her life (1864–1875). She took up photography at the relatively late age of 48, when she was given a camera as a present. Although her style was not widely appreciated in her own day, her work has had an impact on modern photographers, especially her closely cropped portraits. Her house, Dimbola Lodge, on the Isle of Wight is open to the public. Julia Margaret Cameron was born Julia Margaret Pattle in Calcutta, India, to James Pattle, a British official of the East India Company, and Adeline de l'Etang. Adeline de l'Etang was the daughter of Chevalier Antoine de l'Etang, who had been a page and probable lover of Marie Antoinette and an officer in the Garde du Corps of King Louis XVI. He had married the Indian-born Therese Blin de Grincourt a daughter of French aristocrats. Julia was from a family of celebrated beauties, and was considered an ugly duckling among her sisters. As her great-niece Virginia Woolf wrote in the 1926 introduction to the Hogarth Press collection of Cameron's photographs, "In the trio [of sisters] where...[one] was Beauty; and [one] Dash; Mrs. Cameron was undoubtedly Talent". Cameron's sister Virginia was the mother of the temperance leader Lady Henry Somerset. Cameron was educated in France, but returned to India, and in 1838 married Charles Hay Cameron, a jurist and member of the Law Commission stationed in Calcutta, who was twenty years her senior. In 1848, Charles Hay Cameron retired, and the family moved to London, England. Cameron's sister, Sarah Prinsep, had been living in London and hosted a salon at Little Holland House, the dower house of Holland House in Kensington, where famous artists and writers regularly visited. In 1860, Cameron visited the estate of poet Alfred Lord Tennyson on the Isle of Wight. Julia was taken with the location, and the Cameron family purchased a property on the island soon after. They called it Dimbola Lodge after the family's Ceylon estate. In 1863, when Cameron was 48 years old, her daughter gave her a camera as a present, thereby starting her career as a photographer. Within a year, Cameron became a member of the Photographic Societies of London and Scotland. In her photography, Cameron strove to capture beauty. She wrote, "I longed to arrest all the beauty that came before me and at length the longing has been satisfied." The basic techniques of soft-focus "fancy portraits", which she later developed, were taught to her by David Wilkie Wynfield. She later wrote that "to my feeling about his beautiful photography I owed all my attempts and indeed consequently all my success". Lord Tennyson, her neighbour on the Isle of Wight, often brought friends to see the photographer. Cameron was sometimes obsessive about her new occupation, with subjects sitting for countless exposures in the blinding light as she laboriously coated, exposed, and processed each wet plate. The results were, in fact, unconventional in their intimacy and their particular visual habit of created blur through both long exposures, where the subject moved and by leaving the lens intentionally out of focus. This led some of her contemporaries to complain and even ridicule the work, but her friends and family were supportive, and she was one of the most prolific and advanced of amateurs in her time. Her enthusiasm for her craft meant that her children and others sometimes tired of her endless photographing, but it also means that we are left with some of the best of records of her children and of the many notable figures of the time who visited her. During her career, Cameron registered each of her photographs with the copyright office and kept detailed records. Her shrewd business sense is one reason that so many of her works survive today. Another reason that many of Cameron's portraits are significant is because they are often the only existing photograph of historical figures. Many paintings and drawings exist, but, at the time, photography was still a new and challenging medium for someone outside a typical portrait studio. The bulk of Cameron's photographs fit into two categories – closely framed portraits and illustrative allegories based on religious and literary works. In the allegorical works in particular, her artistic influence was clearly Pre-Raphaelite, with far-away looks and limp poses and soft lighting. Cameron's sister ran the artistic scene at Little Holland House, which gave her many famous subjects for her portraits. Some of her famous subjects include: Charles Darwin, Alfred Lord Tennyson, Robert Browning, John Everett Millais, William Michael Rossetti, Edward Burne-Jones, Ellen Terry and George Frederic Watts. Most of these distinctive portraits are cropped closely around the subject's face and are in soft focus. Cameron was often friends with these Victorian celebrities, and tried to capture their personalities in her photos. Among Cameron's lesser-known images are those she took of Mary Emily ('May') Prinsep, wife of Hallam Tennyson, 2nd Baron Tennyson, the elder son of Alfred Tennyson and a British colonial administrator. Cameron's portraits of May Prinsep, taken on the Isle of Wight, show a somewhat plain woman shot head-on and without affect. Cameron's posed photographic illustrations represent the other half of her work. In these illustrations, she frequently photographed historical scenes or literary works, which often took the quality of oil paintings. However, she made no attempt in hiding the backgrounds. Cameron's friendship with Tennyson led to him asking her to photograph illustrations for his Idylls of the King. These photographs are designed to look like oil paintings from the same time period, including rich details like historical costumes and intricate draperies. Today, these posed works are sometimes dismissed by art critics. Nevertheless, Cameron saw these photographs as art, just like the oil paintings they imitated. In 1875, the Camerons moved back to Ceylon (now Sri Lanka). Julia continued to practice photography but complained in letters about the difficulties of getting chemicals and pure water to develop and print photographs. Also, in India, she did not have access to Little Holland House's artistic community. She also did not have a market to distribute her photographs as she had in England. Because of this, Cameron took fewer pictures in India. These pictures were of posed Indian people, paralleling the posed pictures that Cameron had taken of neighbours in England. Almost none of Cameron's work from India survives. Cameron caught a bad chill and died in Kalutara, Ceylon in 1879. Cameron's niece Julia Prinsep Stephen (née Jackson; 1846–1895) wrote the biography of Cameron, which appeared in the first edition of the Dictionary of National Biography, 1886. Julia Stephen was the mother of Virginia Woolf, who wrote a comic portrayal of the "Freshwater circle" in her only play Freshwater. Woolf edited, with Roger Fry, a collection of Cameron's photographs. However, it was not until 1948 that her photography became more widely known when Helmut Gernsheim wrote a book on her work. In 1977 Gernsheim noted that although a great photographer, Cameron had "left no mark" on the aesthetic history of photography because her work was not appreciated by her contemporaries and thus not imitated. But this situation was evidently already changing by then thanks to his popularisation of her work, for instance in 1975 Imogen Cunningham had commented "I'd like to see portrait photography go right back to Julia Margaret Cameron. I don't think there's anyone better." In 2013, Getty Images says in its caption of a portrait of Alice Liddell (whom Cameron photographed as Alethea, Pomona, Ceres, and St. Agnes in 1872) that "Cameron's photographic portraits are considered among the finest in the early history of photography". Source: Wikipedia
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