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Ray Knox
Ray Knox
Ray Knox

Ray Knox

Country: United Kingdom
Birth: 1960

I am a documentary photographer based in London. After studying Graphic Design at the University of Ulster, I moved to London to start my career as an Art Director. Working as a creative in various advertising agencies, I’ve been fortunate to have collaborated with, and learned from, some inspirational photographers.

Encouraged by those photographers, I began making documentary projects and I now divide my time between photographing my personal projects and my advertising creative work.

Close To Home
"I started this photography project shortly after the introduction of the first Covid-19 lockdown as a way of alleviating my restlessness from being confined to home all day.

I would venture out on my neighbourhood walks just after dusk when the streets were deserted and eerily quiet.

Initially, I stuck quite close to home but over time I kept increasing the distance I covered on my meandering strolls around North London.

The solitude I found wandering the streets was an almost meditative experience of simply observing as I walked.

It gave me the chance to explore my local surroundings more intently and notice things. I had overlooked for years.

What a revelation, streets so familiar during the day were completely transformed after dark.

I discovered an alluring beauty photographing under streetlights casting their individual hues, transforming a mundane space by creating a surreal, dreamlike quality and inducing an air of mystery.

Artificial light is much more controlled, and you can almost see more clearly because the light focuses your attention on a certain feature or colour.

It also illuminates a scene in much the same way you would light a still life or a stage set.

I get excited when I have the opportunity to photograph in fog as this gives light a wonderful cinematic quality, reminiscent of film noir.

I believe there are an infinite number of interesting pictures to be made on our doorstep, but you have to search for them.

Looking ahead I hope to continue this project through capturing the quiet beauty of my neighbourhood at night, which often goes unnoticed."
 

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More Great Photographers To Discover

Dotan Saguy
Israel
1970
Dotan Saguy was born in a small kibbutz five miles south of Israel's Lebanese border. He grew up in a diverse working-class Parisian suburb, lived in Lower Manhattan during 9/11, and moved to Los Angeles in 2003. In 2015, Saguy decided to focus on his lifelong passion for photography after a successful career as a high-tech entrepreneur. Since then Saguy attended the prestigious Eddie Adams Workshop, Missouri Photo Workshop and studied photojournalism at Santa Monica College. Saguy's award-winning photographs have been published by National Geographic, The Guardian, The Los Angeles Times, among many other publications. Saguy teaches street photography and documentary workshops for Leica Akademie and Momenta Workshops. In 2018 Saguy's first monograph about the endangered culture of Venice Beach, CA was published by Kehrer Verlag and received a Bronze award by the prestigious Deutscher Fotobuchpreis 2018-19. Saguy lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two children. Statement I met the Reis, a Mormon family from Brazil, the day they arrived in Los Angeles in October 2018 in the yellow school bus they call home. They had come to the United States two years prior to chase the American Dream and although they had quickly found financial success, happiness proved much more elusive with long work hours and material acquisitions leaving them unsatisfied. This body of work documents the trials and tribulations of the Reis family over their 10-month stay in the City of Angels while they struggle as vehicle dwellers, improvised mechanics, unconventional parents, experimenting breadwinners while seeking happiness as a family. The interviews conducted as part of the project also raise subjects such as immigrants chasing the American dream, modern parenting, the growing urban phenomenon of people living in vehicles and rebelling against a strong religious identity in the Internet era. About Nowhere to go but Everywhere
Tamara Dean
Australia
1976
Tamara Dean (b. 1976, Sydney, Australia) is a photographic artist whose works explore the informal rites of passage and rituals of young people within the natural world.Her solo shows include Ritualism, Divine Rites, This too Shall Pass and Only Human.Dean has received numerous awards including a $10,000 High Commendation prize in the 2013 Moran Contemporary Photographic Award, the 2011 Olive Cotton Award and 2009 Sydney Life: Art & About.Dean’s works have been widely exhibited both nationally and internationally. Her works have featured in ‘Dangerous Beauty’ curated by Stephan Stoyanov, Bulgaria 2013, the 2013 Aspettando FotoLeggendo festival in Rome, Fotofever Brussels Art Fair, 2012 and Pingyao Photography Festival, China, 2012 as well as at leading Australian galleries including Inheritance 2009 and Hijacked 2 – New Australian & German Photography 2010, both at the Australian Centre for Photography; Sydney Now – New Australian Photojournalism, Museum of Sydney 2007; Terra Australis Incognita at Monash Gallery of Art.Dean has been awarded artist residencies with ArtOmi, New York (2013), and previously Taronga Zoo, Montsalvat and repeatedly in the remote gold-mining town of Hill End, NSW.For a decade Dean was a member of Oculi photographic collective.Dean’s work is held in a number of public and private collections including Artbank, Sydney; The Francis J. Greenburger Collection, New York; the Mordant Family Collection, Australia; and is represented by Olsen Irwin Gallery Sydney and James Makin Gallery Melbourne.Source: www.tamaradean.com
Gregori Maiofis
Russia
1970
Gregori Maiofis was born in 1970 in Leningrad, Soviet Union, now St Petersburg, Russia. His grandparents, Solomon Maiofis (1911-1968) and Olga Ugriomova (1913-2009) were architects, father, Mikhail Maiofis (b. 1939) is a famous book illustrator. In 1987-1989 studied at the Academy of Arts (the Institute of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture n.a. Y. Repin) in St Petersburg at the graphic arts department. In 1991 his family moved to Los Angeles, California where he lived until 1995. Currently lives and works in St Petersburg, Russia. Gregori Maiofis has had solo exhibitions across Russia, Europe, and the U.S. since 1993. His work is in many museum collections including the following: Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Multimedia Art Museum, Moscow, The State Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow, Museum of modern Art, Moscow, Novy Museum, St Petersburg, Russia, National Gallery of Slovakia, Bratislava, Museum of Modern Art, Rio de Janeiro.Source: gregorimaiofis.com Gregori Maiofis (Russia, b. 1970) comes from a family lineage of artists and architects including his father, the renowned graphic artist, Mikhail Maiofis, who nurtured artistry early in his son's life. Maiofis is a classically trained printmaker and graphic artist who began his first photographic projects in 2000. Printmaking is still an integral part of the artist's oeuvre, which following experimentation with gelatin silver prints and several alternative processes, led to his now prominent use of bromoil and bromoil transfer printing. Common among the Pictorialist masters of the early 20th Century, the bromoil process allows the artist unique aesthetic abilities to manually control the color, tone and texture of the final picture on various surfaces. In the series Proverbs (Monograph available, Nazraeli Press, 2014) the artist uses proverb texts of various origins and visually interprets and conceptualizes them in whimsical staged compositions. Often working with trained animals including elephants, monkeys and predominantly a bear named Funt, Maiofis creates a new reality of interplay between human and animal. Several of the prints on view depict a dialogue of ballet between a Russian ballerina and the bear who appears thoroughly enthused by the performance before him.Source: The Eye of Photography In his work, Maiofis seems to follow the well-worn formulas of how to make “real art, art not for pleasure” but one does get certain pleasure all the same. That pleasure comes from vibrancy of the works’ surface, be it painting or photography. Maiofis has enriched his photography with his painting experience of how to “saturate the surface” of his works so that the “depth” of space in his photos is produced by an illusion of sombre depth like in Baroque painting rather than by multiplanarity of composition. In the photo series Fables he turned to the fables written by Ivan Krylov dubbed Russian La Fontaine in the latter half of the 18th and the earlier half of the 19th centuries. In conformity with the Soviet tradition those fables were for a long time interpreted as a reading matter for children. The artist refutes this view and creates a photographic semblance of space which, in complexity, is commensurable with the fables’ rich associative and semantic content. Here, he uses various forms of photography, combining collage, montage, and painting on photography, and using prints to build the scene for a new still. In his subsequent works, Gregori Maiofis mocks at artistic erudition itself by looking at “simple truths” crammed into a freshman’s head in the history-of-art class. As a rule, people don’t stop to think about the hidden meaning of objects habitually used in art. Maiofis subjects such cliches to ridicule, which brings about sudden recognition of how complex the habitual is. He provokes this recognition not unlike a practicing painter who would recognize that classical photography is the most expressive pictorial means known to him. He thus creates photography involving text that cannot be fully narrated elsewhere.Source: De Santos Gallery
Ricardo Reis
Portugal
1981
Why I Photograph As a young person, I needed and had to put out there so many things that were stuck inside me, and very quickly, I realized that I had a different way of seeing the world. I started noticing that even if there were many people looking at the same thing as me, they weren't seeing what I was seeing. Photography became the most realistic representation of my perspective. Photography blends all the art mediums and I am inspired to create amalgamations of the dream world with the real. I love the challenge of being able to put onto paper the ideas and surreal world of my own creation. My Purpose When I create a photograph image, I want to engage in a dialogue-to make the viewer feel something, even if it's a negative reaction. I appreciate the negative reaction, because I understand I've drawn something out in the viewer: an honest reaction is more potent than an indifferent one. I want to be able to convey an inner conversation-an ambience, a vibe- to create curiosity in the viewer for the lives and moments depicted in my images. My Method I prefer to shoot with black and white 35mm film, because I find it's more honest and direct, at least for me. I like the mental exercise of having to prepare the picture in your mind first and do the chain of thoughts necessary to translate the idea into the final work. Color can be distracting and disruptive of the real intent and emotion I am trying to achieve. My favorite camera is the Canon EOS 1 RS film camera; it has plenty of functions which allow me to have more control over the final product. I love to prepare a playlist and just go and take a walk with my camera and put myself in the mood: a limbo between voyeurism and participant. My Path When I started I wanted to be a war photographer, but in my home country of Portugal, it's very difficult to get the connections necessary to achieve that. I was fortunate to get an internship at a daily newspaper in Portugal which led to my work being published in several major newspapers and magazines. I began to work more in fashion photography and was assigned to the fashion weeks that took place in Europe. During the shows, I found that I always preferred the backstage where I had more freedom to do different things, take more risks. Photography has been the driving force through all my creative pursuits. My love of music, music photography and music videos comprise a large part of my work. As a cinematographer/director for album and DVD covers, I work in collaboration with several European photography agencies in Portugal and in the UK. The more artistic side of my work is represented in several countries and in private collections, from Canada, the UK, France, Netherlands, Australia, China, Portugal, and the United States. Currently I am living in Lisbon, but who knows what's next.
Leonard Freed
United States
1929 | † 2006
Leonard Freed was a documentary photojournalist and longtime Magnum member. He was born to Jewish, working-class parents of Eastern European descent. Freed had wanted to be a painter, but began taking photographs in the Netherlands and discovered a new passion. He traveled in Europe and Africa before returning to the United States where he attended the New School and studied with Alexey Brodovitch, the art director of Harper's Bazaar. In 1958 he moved to Amsterdam to photograph its Jewish community. Through the 1960s he continued to work as a freelance photojournalist, traveling widely. He documented such events and subjects as the Civil Rights movement in America (1964–65), the Yom Kippur War in 1973, and the New York City police department (1972–79). His career blossomed during the American civil rights movement, when he traveled the country with Martin Luther King, Jr. in his celebrated march across the US from Alabama to Washington. This journey gave him the opportunity to produce his 1968 book, Black in White America, which brought considerable attention. His work on New York City law enforcement also led to a book, Police Work which was published in 1980. Early in Freed's career, Edward Steichen purchased three photographs from Freed for the collection of the Museum of Modern Art.[ In 1967, Cornell Capa selected Freed as one of five photographers to participate in his "Concerned Photography" exhibition. Freed joined Magnum Photos in 1972. Publications to which Freed contributed over the years included Der Spiegel, Die Zeit, Fortune, Libération, Life, Look, Paris-Match, Stern, and The Sunday Times Magazine of London. In later years, Freed continued shooting photographs in Italy, Turkey, Germany, Lebanon and the U.S. He also shot four films for Japanese, Dutch and Belgian television.Source: Wikipedia Born in Brooklyn, New York, to working-class Jewish parents of Eastern European descent, Leonard Freed first wanted to become a painter. However, he began taking photographs while in the Netherlands in 1953, and discovered that this was where his passion lay. In 1954, after trips through Europe and North Africa, he returned to the United States and studied in Alexei Brodovitch's 'design laboratory'. He moved to Amsterdam in 1958 and photographed the Jewish community there. He pursued this concern in numerous books and films, examining German society and his own Jewish roots; his book on the Jews in Germany was published in 1961, and Made in Germany, about post-war Germany, appeared in 1965. Working as a freelance photographer from 1961 onwards, Freed began to travel widely, photographing blacks in America (1964-65), events in Israel (1967-68), the Yom Kippur War in 1973, and the New York City police department (1972-79). He also shot four films for Japanese, Dutch and Belgian television. Early in Freed's career, Edward Steichen, then Director of Photography at the Museum of Modern Art, bought three of his photographs for the museum. Steichen told Freed that he was one of the three best young photographers he had seen and urged him to remain an amateur, as the other two were now doing commercial photography and their work had become uninteresting. 'Preferably,' he advised, 'be a truck driver.' Freed joined Magnum in 1972. His coverage of the American civil rights movement first made him famous, but he also produced major essays on Poland, Asian immigration in England, North Sea oil development, and Spain after Franco. Photography became Freed's means of exploring societal violence and racial discrimination. Leonard Freed died in Garrison, New York, on 30 November 2006.Source: Steven Kasher Gallery
Robert Adams
United States
1937
Robert Adams is an American photographer who has focused on the changing landscape of the American West. His work first came to prominence in the mid-1970s through the book The New West (1974) and the exhibition New Topographics: Photographs of a Man-Altered Landscape (1975). He was a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellow in photography in 1973 and 1980, and he received the MacArthur Foundation's MacArthur Fellowship in 1994. Robert Adams, son of Lois Hickman Adams and Ross Adams, was born on May 8, 1937 in Orange, New Jersey. In 1940 they moved to Madison, New Jersey where his younger sister Carolyn was born. Then in 1947 he moved to Madison, Wisconsin for five years, where he contracted polio at age 12 in 1949 in his back, left arm, and hand but was able to recover. Moving one last time in 1952 his family goes to Wheat Ridge, Colorado, a suburb of Denver, when his father secured a job in Denver. The final strength in really great photographs is that they suggest more than just what they show literally. -- Robert Adams His family moved to Colorado partly because of the chronic bronchial problems that he suffered from in Madison, New Jersey around age 5 as an attempt to help alleviate those problems. He continued to suffer from asthma and allergy problems. During his childhood, Adams often accompanied his father on walks and hikes through the woods on Sunday afternoons. He also enjoyed playing baseball in open fields and working with his father on carpentry projects. He was an active Boy Scout, and was also active with the Methodist church that his family attended. He and his father made several raft trips through Dinosaur National Monument, and during his adolescent years he worked at boys' camps at Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado. He also took trips on pack horses and went mountain climbing. He and his sister began visiting the Denver Art Museum. Adams also learned to like reading and it soon became an enjoyment for him. In 1955, he hunted for the last time. Adams enrolled in the University of Colorado, Boulder in 1955, and attended it for his freshman year, but decided to transfer the next year to the University of Redlands in California where he received his B.A. in English from Redlands in 1959. He continued his graduate studies at the University of Southern California and he received his Ph.D. in English in 1965. In 1960 while at Redlands, he met and married Kerstin Mornestam, Swedish native, who shared the same interest in the arts and nature. Robert and Kerstin spent their first few summers together in Oregon along the coast, where they took long walks on the beach and spent their evenings reading. In 1962 they moved back to Colorado, and Adams began teaching English at Colorado College in Colorado Springs. In 1963, Adams bought a 35mm reflex camera and began to take pictures mostly of nature and architecture. He soon read complete sets of Camera Work and Aperture at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center. He learned photographic technique from Myron Wood, a professional photographer who lived in Colorado. While finishing his dissertation, he began to photograph in 1964. In 1967, he began to teach only part-time in order to have more time to photograph. He met John Szarkowski, then curator of photography at the Museum of Modern Art, on a trip to New York City in 1969. The museum later bought four of his prints. In 1970, he began working as a full-time photographer.Source: Wikipedia Nature photography… that acknowledges what is wrong, is admittedly sometimes hard to bear—it has to encompass our mistakes. Yet in the long run, it is important; in order to endure our age of apocalypse, we have to be reconciled not only to avalanche and hurricane, but to ourselves. -- Robert Adams Robert Adams is an American photographer best known for his images of the American West. Offering solemn meditations on the landscapes of California, Colorado, and Oregon, Adams’s black-and-white photos document the changes wrought by humans upon nature. “By Interstate 70: a dog skeleton, a vacuum cleaner, TV dinners, a doll, a pie, rolls of carpet. Later, next to the South Platte River: algae, broken concrete, jet contrails, the smell of crude oil,” he wrote. “What I hope to document, though not at the expense of surface detail, is the form that underlies this apparent chaos.” Born on May 8, 1937 in Orange, NJ, his family moved around the Midwest throughout his childhood, finally settling in Wheat Ridge, CO in 1952. Adams went on to study English at the University of Redlands and received his PhD in English from the University of Southern California in 1965. It wasn’t until the near completion of his dissertation for USC that Adams began to take photography seriously, learning techniques from professional photographer Myron Wood and reading Aperture magazine. In the 1970s, he was released the book The New West (1974), and a year later was included in the seminal exhibition New Topographics: Photographs of a Man-Altered Landscape. Adams has twice been the recipient of the Guggenheim Fellowship and once the recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship. Adams lives and works in Astoria, OR. Today, his works can be found in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, among others. Source: Artnet
Andy Fabrykant
Andy Fabrykant was born in Argentina in 1984. He studied filmmaking at the Film University of Buenos Aires (FUC) and he did a master degree in Czech Republic at FAMU. Today he lives in Paris and he has already made 5 exhibitions (2011 - Paris, des lieux et de gens - Paris / 2011 - Nomade - Bourg-en-Bresse / 2012 - Tremplin Jaunes Talents - Saint-Mandé / 2013 - Besares - Buenos Aires / 2014 - L’Argentine à l’honneur - Neuilly-sur-seine). Even thought he is a filmaker he has been always around a film cameras.fter many years of walking around as a "flâneur" in my own city Buenos Aires (and after in Czech Republic and France) using my camera as a tool to get related with people and the city without knowing exactly what I was looking for, I realized that after the taxonomy of my work I could find the meaning of it. Because, what is a photographer more than a collector of images? That's how I started to find out which were my interests. In general, I am attracted to the relationship between the subject and the space. Sometimes it is an architectural approach where there is a lack of human activity and sometimes is completely the opposite, the subject verbs the object. I have been working around this topic for the last 5 years creating different activities or how I like to call them: games. Each game has it's own rule and I try to change them so I can always have a fresh and new approach. For example I just follow someone on the street and I let him take me to places that I don't know. Normally I don't take pictures of the subject, I just let him be an excuse bring me to where I am.I know a piece is done when I let the person go or when I get interested in someone else.
Bob Richardson
United States
1928 | † 2005
Robert George Richardson was an American fashion photographer. He was born in Long Island, New York, to an Irish Catholic family. Originally a graphic designer in New York City, Bob Richardson did not pick up a camera until age 35. His rise to fashion fame was swift, although not without some battle on his part: "I wanted to put reality in my photographs. Sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll. That's what was happening. And I was going to help make it happen. Boy they did not want that in America. Some of those editors were still wearing white gloves to couture." Richardson developed a reputation for being very difficult to work with. He brought his personal life, which was tumultuous, into his art. He battled with bouts of schizophrenia throughout his life. After making it to the top of the often catty and vicious world of fashion, getting paid up to $15,000 for a single image, he succumbed to his illness and ended up homeless on the streets of San Francisco. In 1989, an art historian researching fashion photography tracked Richardson down living in a flophouse, opening the door to Richardson's reestablishing contact with his son and eventually returning to New York City, where with the help of Richard Avedon and Steven Meisel, he was able to obtain teaching positions at International Center of Photography and the School of Visual Arts. Richardson restarted his career in his sixties, once again working for such magazines as Italian Vogue and British GQ. He was the father of photographer Terry Richardson and Margaret "Meg" Richardson (9/30/1957-5/8/2015).Source: Wikipedia Bob Richardson, a fashion photographer of the 1960's and 70's who transmitted the excitements and regrets of a generation of free spirits before disappearing into a shadow land of mental illness and homelessness, died on Dec. 5 at his home in Manhattan. He was 77. He died of natural causes, said his son, Terry. Robert George Richardson, born to Irish-Catholic parents on Long Island, was attracted to the messy, tempestuous, desolating quality of human relations. He was one of the first photographers to recognize that these emotions were not outside the world of 60's fashion but were in fact vital to it. In a 16-page spread in French Vogue in 1967, he evoked the sex idyll, the gloom and the sudden all-obliterating passions of two lovers on a Greek island. In one shot, the model Donna Mitchell is seen crying; in another she lies on a rocky shore, her face turned away, with her nude lover in the water before her. Mr. Richardson's pictures were radical because, more than showing youthful fashion in a liberated way, they sought to expose the life dramas that were then consuming young people. "Which were not about being applauded as you made your entrance to the opera," said Joan Juliet Buck, the writer and fashion editor, who first met Mr. Richardson in 1969 and later introduced him to her friend Anjelica Huston, with whom he had an intense four-year relationship. "They were about crying in your room, feeling lonely, hoping for sex." To photographers like Bruce Weber, Steven Meisel and Peter Lindbergh, Mr. Richardson was a pathfinder. As Mr. Weber said, describing his influence: "There's no textbook, no award, but there is this Bob Richardson school of photography. And it's an anti school. He was the first guy who said it was O.K. to underexpose the film, to not show the clothes." Mr. Weber added: "So many photographers when I first started out idolized Bob. He was sort of an underground figure." In a 1995 profile in The New Yorker, when Bob Richardson had resurfaced after more than a decade of drifting around Southern California and living in cheap motels or at times on the beach, he told the writer Ingrid Sischy: "I wanted to put reality in my photographs. Sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll -- that's what was happening. And I was going to help make it happen. Boy, they did not want that in America. Some of those editors were still wearing white gloves to couture." Bob Richardson was as overbearing and opinionated as he was seductive and handsome. Terry Richardson said his father's schizophrenia was diagnosed in the 1960's. Years of drug and alcohol abuse added to his instability and increasing rootlessness, especially in the 80's, when he had mostly cut off ties with his family. Terry Richardson, also a photographer, said he first helped get his father off the streets in 1984, and by then he had been homeless for two years. "He had lost everything," his son said. After growing up in Rockville Centre, N.Y., Mr. Richardson studied art at the Parsons School of Design and Pratt Institute without graduating. His first marriage, to Barbara Mead, produced a daughter, Margaret, but soon collapsed; according to The New Yorker article, Mr. Richardson did not maintain contact with them. (Terry Richardson said he had not seen his half-sister in a decade and did not know her whereabouts. There are no other immediate survivors.) By the early 60's, Bob Richardson was taking fashion photographs and had resolved, he told Ms. Sischy, to "photograph my kind of woman." Harper's Bazaar gave him his first commission in 1963, and the magazine's art directors, Ruth Ansel and Bea Feitler, seemed especially attuned to his loose, unencumbered style. Around this time, he married an actress named Norma Kessler (from whom he was later divorced), and Terry, their only child, was born in 1965. Norma served as the assistant for the Greek island shoot two years later. "It was just my mom, Dad and me with a bag of clothes," Terry said. "They just went off together and did these pictures." By 1970, Richardson was deeply involved with Ms. Huston, who was 18 when they met, and together they would produce some of the most wistful portraits of the era. Certainly no photographer ever made Ms. Huston look more beautiful. Terry Richardson said the two last saw each other at an airport in 1973, when they went their separate ways. With much of Mr. Richardson's original work lost or buried in magazine archives, a number of individuals, including Mr. Meisel and the art historian Martin Harrison, tried to help restore at least his reputation as an groundbreaking photographer. And in the 90's he received some new assignments from magazines like Italian Vogue. But Mr. Richardson could be hardest on the people who loved him. "It was his way or the highway," his son said. Early this year, Bob Richardson, who had been living in Los Angeles, decided to return to New York, driving across the country in an old Mercedes with his dog, Mick, and taking pictures. He had a publishing deal to produce his first monograph, with Greybull, but through some orneriness, it fell through. Terry Richardson said he would do the book, which includes an autobiography. And in deference to his father's wishes, it will not have any color pictures: "My dad always said, 'I see the world in black and white.' "Source: The New York Times
William Eugene Smith
United States
1918 | † 1978
William Eugene Smith was an American photojournalist known for his refusal to compromise professional standards and his brutally vivid World War II photographs. Smith graduated from Wichita North High School in 1936. He began his career by taking pictures for two local newspapers, The Wichita Eagle (morning circulation) and the Beacon (evening circulation). He moved to New York City and began work for Newsweek and became known for his incessant perfectionism and thorny personality. Smith was fired from Newsweek for refusing to use medium format cameras and joined Life Magazine in 1939 using a 35mm camera. In 1945 he was wounded while photographing battle conditions in the Pacific theater of World War II. As a correspondent for Ziff-Davis Publishing and then Life again, W. Eugene Smith entered World War II on the front lines of the island-hopping American offensive against Japan, photographing U.S. Marines and Japanese prisoners of war at Saipan, Guam, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa. On Okinawa, Smith was hit by mortar fire. After recovering, he continued at Life and perfected the photo essay from 1947 to 1954. In 1950, he was sent to the United Kingdom to cover the General Election, in which the Labour Party, under Clement Attlee, was narrowly victorious. Life had taken an editorial stance against the Labour government. In the end, a limited number of Smith's photographs of working-class Britain were published, including three shots of the South Wales valleys. In a documentary made by BBC Wales, Professor Dai Smith traced a miner who described how he and two colleagues had met Smith on their way home from work at the pit and had been instructed on how to pose for one of the photos published in Life. Smith severed his ties with Life over the way in which the magazine used his photographs of Albert Schweitzer. Upon leaving Life, Smith joined the Magnum Photos agency in 1955. There he started his project to document Pittsburgh. This project was supposed to take him three weeks, but spanned three years and tens of thousands of negatives. It was too large ever to be shown, although a series of book-length photo essays were eventually produced. From 1957 to 1965 he took photographs and made recordings of jazz musicians at a Manhattan loft shared by David X. Young, Dick Cary and Hall Overton. In January 1972, William Eugene Smith was attacked by Chisso employees near Tokyo, in an attempt to stop him from further publicizing the Minamata disease to the world. Although Smith survived the attack, his sight in one eye deteriorated. Smith and his Japanese wife lived in the city of Minamata from 1971 to 1973 and took many photos as part of a photo essay detailing the effects of Minamata disease, which was caused by a Chisso factory discharging heavy metals into water sources around Minamata. One of his most famous works, Tomoko Uemura in Her Bath, taken in December 1971 and published a few months after the 1972 attack, drew worldwide attention to the effects of Minamata disease. Complications from his long-term consumption of drugs, notably amphetamines (taken to enable his workaholic tendencies), and alcohol led to a massive stroke, from which Eugene Smith died in 1978. He is buried in Crum Elbow Cemetery, Pleasant Valley, New York. Smith was perhaps the originator and arguably the master of the photo-essay. In addition to Pittsburgh, these works include Nurse Midwife, Minamata, Country Doctor, and Albert Schweitzer - A Man of Mercy. Today, Smith's legacy lives on through the W. Eugene Smith Memorial Fund to promote "humanistic photography." Since 1980, the fund has awarded photographers for exceptional accomplishments in the field.Source: Wikipedia Born and reared in Wichita, Kansas, W. Eugene Smith became interested in photography at the age of fourteen, and three years later had begun to photograph for local newspapers. He received a photography scholarship to the University of Notre Dame, but he left after a year for New York, where he joined the staff of Newsweek and freelanced for LIFE, Collier's, Harper's Bazaar, The New York Times, and other publications. Beginning in 1939, Smith began working sporadically as a staff photographer for LIFE, with which he had a tempestuous relationship throughout the rest of his career. During World War II he was a war correspondent in the Pacific theater for the Ziff-Davis publishing company and LIFE, for whom he was working when he was severely wounded in Okinawa in 1945. After a two-year recuperation, he returned to the magazine and produced many of his best photo essays, including Country Doctor, Spanish Village, and A Man of Mercy. In 1955, he joined Magnum, the international cooperative photography agency founded by Henri Cartier-Bresson, Robert Capa, George Rodger and Chim (David Seymour), and began work on a large photographic study of Pittsburgh, for which he received Guggenheim Fellowships in 1956 and 1957. Smith continued to freelance for LIFE, Pageant, and Sports Illustrated, among other periodicals, for the rest of his career. From 1959 to 1977, he worked for Hitachi in Japan and taught at the New School for Social Research and the School of Visual Arts in New York and the University of Arizona in Tucson. His last photo essay, Minamata, completed in the 1970s, depicted victims of mercury poisoning in a Japanese fishing village. Smith is credited with developing the photo essay to its ultimate form. He was an exacting printer, and the combination of innovation, integrity and technical mastery in his photography made his work the standard by which photojournalism was measured for many years. In recognition of his outstanding contribution to the development of photojournalism, the W. Eugene Smith Memorial Fund was established after his death to support the projects of photographers working in the tradition he established. Source: International Center of Photography
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Exclusive Interview with Patrick Cariou
For more than 25 years, French photographer Patrick Cariou has traveled to places around the globe, documenting people living on the fringes of society. Whether photographing surfers, gypsies, Rastafarians or the rude boys of Kingston, Cariou celebrates those who meet the struggles of life with honor, dignity and joy. Bringing together works from his groundbreaking monographs including Surfers, Yes Rasta, Trenchtown Love and Gypsies, Patrick Cariou: Works 1985–2005 (published by Damiani) takes us on a scenic journey around the world, offering an intimate and captivating look at cultures that distance themselves from the blessings and curses of modernity.
Exclusive Interview with Niko J. Kallianiotis
Niko J. Kallianiotis' Athênai in Search of Home (published by Damiani) presents photos taken in and around Athens, the city in which he grew up. The images reflect the artist's eagerness to assimilate back into a home that feels at once foreign and familiar. Throughout the years the city and the surrounding territories have experienced their share of socio-economic struggles and topographic transformations that have altered its identity. The city of Athens in Kallianiotis' photographs is elliptically delineated as a vibrant environment that binds together luxury and social inequality. The photographer depicts a city in which the temporal and the spatial elements often clash with each other while conducting his research for a home that has changed over the years as much as he did.
Exclusive Interview with Ave Pildas
My new book STAR STRUCK focuses on the people and places of Hollywood Boulevard. Soon after I moved to Los Angeles in the '70s, I started shooting there. I was working at Capital Records, just a block and a half away, as a one of four art directors. At lunchtime, we would go out to eat at the Brown Derby, Musso, and Franks, or some other local restaurant, and I got to observe all the activity that was occurring on Hollywood Boulevard. It was amazing and it was fun, even though the location was ''on the turn''.
Exclusive Interview with Elaine Mayes
In The Haight-Ashbury Portraits, 1967-1968 (published by Damiani) during the waning days of the Summer of Love, Elaine Mayes embarked on a set of portraits of youth culture in her neighborhood. Mayes was a young photographer living in San Francisco during the 1960s. She had photographed the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967 and, later that year the hippie movement had turned from euphoria to harder drugs, and the Haight had become less of a blissed-out haven for young people seeking a better way of life than a halfway house for runaway teens.
Exclusive Interview with Theophilus Donoghue
A new release, Seventy-thirty (published by Damiani) depicts humanity's various faces and expressions, from metropolitans to migrants, unseen homeless to celebrities such as Robert De Niro, Muhammad Ali, Rene Magritte, Janis Joplin, and Andy Warhol. Steve Schapiro photographs early New York skateboarders while Theophilus Donoghue documents current Colombian breakdancers. Alternately profound and playful, father and son's photographs capture a vast range of human emotions and experiences. For this project, Schapiro selected images from the 60s civil rights movement and, with Donoghue, provided photos from today's Black Lives Matter protests and environmental rallies.
Exlusive Interview with Jessica Todd Harper about her Book Here
Like 17th-century Dutch painters who made otherwise ordinary interior scenes appear charged with meaning, Pennsylvania-based photographer Jessica Todd Harper looks for the value in everyday moments. Her third monograph Here (Published by Damiani) makes use of what is right in front of the artist, Harper shows how our unexamined or even seemingly dull surroundings can sometimes be illuminating
Exclusive Interview with Roger Ballen about his Book Boyhood
In Boyhood (published by Damiani) Roger Ballen's photographs and stories leads us across the continents of Europe, Asia and North America in search of boyhood: boyhood as it is lived in the Himalayas of Nepal, the islands of Indonesia, the provinces of China, the streets of America. Each stunning black-and-white photograph-culled from 15,000 images shot during Ballen's four-year quest-depicts the magic of adolescence revealed in their games, their adventures, their dreams, their Mischief. More of an ode than a documentary work, Ballen's first book is as powerful and current today as it was 43 years ago-a stunning series of timeless images that transcend social and cultural particularities.
Exclusive Interview with Kim Watson
A multi-dimensional artist with decades of experience, Kim Watson has written, filmed, and photographed subjects ranging from the iconic entertainers of our time to the ''invisible'' people of marginalized communities. A highly influential director in music videos' early days, Watson has directed Grammy winners, shot in uniquely remote locations, and written across genres that include advertising, feature films for Hollywood studios such as Universal (Honey), MTV Films, and Warner Brothers, and publishers such as Simon & Schuster. His passionate marriage of art and social justice has been a life-long endeavor, and, in 2020, after consulting on Engagement & Impact for ITVS/PBS, Kim returned to the streets to create TRESPASS, documenting the images and stories of LA's unhoused. TRESPASS exhibited at The BAG (Bestor Architecture Gallery) in Silver Lake, Los Angeles, September 17, 2022 – October 11, 2022.
Exclusive Interview with Julia Dean, Founder of the L.A. Project
Julia Dean, Founder of the Los Angeles Center of Photography, and its executive director for twenty-two years, began The L.A. Project in 2021. A native Nebraskan, Julia has long sought to create a special project where love for her adopted L.A., and her passion for documentary photography can be shared on a grander scale.
Call for Entries
Solo Exhibition January 2023
Win an Online Solo Exhibition in January 2023