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Eleni Mahera
Eleni Mahera
Eleni Mahera

Eleni Mahera

Country: Greece
Birth: 1974

I was born and raised in Agios Lavrentios, a small village on Mt Pelion, Greece. I have a Bachelor in English Language and Literature and a Master in Interdisciplinary Approach to Teaching Foreign Languages. I live in Komotini, a small provincial town in northern Greece and I am currently involved with Adult Education. My first contact with photography came in 2009 through a course offered by a local photography club. What actually gave me a new insight not only into photography but in life altogether was the sudden loss of a beloved person: my mother. In my attempt to redefine myself, photography came as a real blessing, an outlet for my pent-up emotions. My “project” is to make the most of this therapeutical effect photography has on me and transform my inner world into images.
 

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Manuello Paganelli
Dominican Republic/United States
1960
I was born in the Dominican Republic and growing up in the 1960s I watched my parents devote time to help others, exposing me to the inequality of wealth, education, and the lack of mind and body wellness prevalent on our small island. It was hard for me to understand why poor children would be on the streets instead of in a warmer, safer place. I saw school-age boys like me but barefoot and shining the fancy shoes of businessmen. Scruffy kids with open hands asking for pennies. Running, begging for anything to eat, fending for themselves, and surviving on their wits alone. None of my parents' words made it better, or helped me understand what led to my country's socio-economic crisis. With my parents' humanistic influence, I figured I would become an attorney like my father or a missionary doctor. In 1972, I arrived in the US for high school without speaking any English. By my last year of college in Tennessee, I lost all desire to become a doctor, My father stopped supporting me. I found work on the assembly lines and loading docks of the local McKee Baking Company. In 1982 I bought my first camera as a way to forget my doomed career. While browsing in a bookstore I learned about a man named Ansel Adams. A few glances at Adams' powerful black-and-white landscapes left me hypnotized. Within days, I was on the telephone with Ansel. It was an innocent call but that first conversation with Ansel Adams led to many more, until we established a warm mentoring relationship that lasted until he passed away in 1984. My break into professional photography began when I was hired as a staff photographer for The Chattanooga Times in 1982. While that photojournalism experience was invaluable, I soon left for the Washington, DC area, where I began a freelance editorial photography career and from there migrated into humanistic photography. In 1989, I began traveling to Cuba to find long-lost relatives. There I learned about the social issues of the island and the survival spirit of the Cuban people, becoming increasingly aware of the socio-political climate I continued to travel there. My documentary photos from my Cuban project culminated in an exhibition in 1995, where a Washington Post columnist wrote: "Paganelli's Cuban photographs are a brilliant window on a land and people too long hidden from North American eyes... Paganelli brings an artist's eyes and a native son's sensibility to his superb photographs." My current essay project, which started in 1994, explores Black Cowboys across the USA, examining cultural and regional influences within this well developed sub-culture. Statement I never planned on becoming a professional photographer. I always thought I'd be a doctor, but during my senior year in college I began to have doubts about a career in medicine. It was around that time that I bought a Canon camera. Despite years in the business, I still possess that same excitement for the craft that gripped me the first time I picked up a camera. And, too, I maintain a passion for sharing my subjects' stories through documentary photography. My influences are the things that my eyes capture from the moment I get up, see, sense and experience and everything else beyond that with the elements of sounds , shadows and light. But I've always admired the work of Walker Evans, Henry Cartier Bresson and most notably the works of W.Eugene Smith and Robert Frank. I also love the landscape of Ansel Adams and the beautiful magical touches of the portraits done by Irving Penn.
Lewis Hine
United States
1874 | † 1940
Lewis Wickes Hine (September 26, 1874 – November 3, 1940) was an American sociologist and photographer known for using his camera as a tool for social reform. His photographs were instrumental in changing child labor laws in the United States. Lewis Hine was born in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, on September 26, 1874. After his father was killed in an accident, Hine began working and saved his money for a college education. He studied sociology at the University of Chicago, Columbia University, and New York University. He became a teacher in New York City at the Ethical Culture School, where he encouraged his students to use photography as an educational medium. Hine led his sociology classes to Ellis Island in New York Harbor, photographing the thousands of immigrants who arrived each day. Between 1904 and 1909, Hine took over 200 plates (photographs) and came to the realization that documentary photography could be employed as a tool for social change and reform. In 1907, Hine became the staff photographer of the Russell Sage Foundation; he photographed life in the steel-making districts and people of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, for the influential sociological study called The Pittsburgh Survey. The next year, he became the photographer for the National Child Labor Committee (NCLC), leaving his teaching position. Over the next decade, Hine documented child labor, with focus on the use of child labor in the Carolina Piedmont, to aid the NCLC's lobbying efforts to end the practice. In 1913, he documented child laborers among cotton mill workers with a series of Francis Galton's composite portraits. Hine's work for the NCLC was often dangerous. As a photographer, he was frequently threatened with violence or even death by factory police and foremen. At the time, the immorality of child labor was meant to be hidden from the public. Photography was not only prohibited but also posed a serious threat to the industry. To gain entry to the mills, mines and factories, Hine was forced to assume many guises. At times he was a fire inspector, postcard vendor, bible salesman, or even an industrial photographer making a record of factory machinery. During and after World War I, he photographed American Red Cross relief work in Europe. In the 1920s and early 1930s, Hine made a series of work portraits, which emphasized the human contribution to modern industry. In 1930, Hine was commissioned to document the construction of the Empire State Building. He photographed the workers in precarious positions while they secured the steel framework of the structure, taking many of the same risks that the workers endured. To obtain the best vantage points, Hine was swung out in a specially designed basket 1,000 ft above Fifth Avenue. At times, he remembered, he hung above the city with nothing below but "a sheer drop of nearly a quarter-mile." During the Great Depression Hine again worked for the Red Cross, photographing drought relief in the American South, and for the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), documenting life in the mountains of eastern Tennessee. He also served as chief photographer for the Works Progress Administration's National Research Project, which studied changes in the industry and their effect on employment. Hine was also a faculty member of the Ethical Culture Fieldston School. In 1936, Hine was selected as the photographer for the National Research Project of the Works Projects Administration, but his work there was not completed. The last years of his life were filled with professional struggles by loss of government and corporate patronage. Hine hoped to join the Farm Security Administration photography project, but despite writing repeatedly to Roy Stryker, Stryker always refused. Few people were interested in his work, past or present, and Hine lost his house and applied for welfare. He died on November 3, 1940, at Dobbs Ferry Hospital in Dobbs Ferry, New York, after an operation. He was 66 years old. Hine's photographs supported the NCLC's lobbying to end child labor, and in 1912 the Children's Bureau was created. The Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 eventually brought child labour in the US to an end. After Hine's death, his son Corydon donated his prints and negatives to the Photo League, which was dismantled in 1951. The Museum of Modern Art was offered his pictures and did not accept them, but the George Eastman House did. In 2006, author Elizabeth Winthrop Alsop's historical fiction middle-grade novel, Counting on Grace was published by Wendy Lamb Books. The latter chapters center on 12-year-old Grace and her life-changing encounter with Lewis Hine, during his 1910 visit to a Vermont cotton mill known to have many child laborers. On the cover is the iconic photo of Grace's real-life counterpart, Addie Card (1897–1993), taken during Hine's undercover visit to the Pownal Cotton Mill. In 2016, TIME Magazine published colorized versions of several of Hine's photographs of child labor in the US.Source: Wikipedia Lewis Hine was trained to be an educator in Chicago and New York. A project photographing on Ellis Island with students from the Ethical Culture School in New York galvanized his recognition of the value of documentary photography in education. Soon after, he became a sociological photographer, establishing a studio in upstate New York in 1912. For nearly ten years Hine was the photographer for the National Child Labor Committee, contributing to exhibitions and the organization's publication, The Survey. Declaring that he "wanted to show things that had to be corrected," he was one of the earliest photographers to use the photograph as a documentary tool. Around 1920, however, Hine changed his studio publicity from "Social Photography by Lewis W. Hine" to "Lewis Wickes Hine, Interpretive Photography," to emphasize a more artistic approach to his imagemaking. Having joined the American Red Cross briefly in 1918, he continued to freelance for them through the 1930s. In 1936 Hine was appointed head photographer for the National Research Project of the Works Projects Administration, but his work for them was never completed. His last years were marked by professional struggles due to diminishing government and corporate patronage, and he died in 1940 at age sixty-six.Source: The J. Paul Getty Museum Born in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, Lewis W. Hine studied sociology before moving to New York in 1901 to work at the Ethical Culture School, where he took up photography to enhance his teaching practices. By 1904 he had begun a series of photographs documenting the arrival of immigrants at Ellis Island; this project, along with his pictures of harsh labor conditions published in the Pittsburgh Survey, brought his work to the attention of the National Child Labor Committee. He served as its official photographer from 1911 to 1916, and later traveled with the Red Cross to Europe, where he documented the effects of World War I in France and the Balkans for Red Cross Magazine. After returning to the United States in 1922, he accepted commercial assignments, produced another series on Ellis Island immigrants, and photographed the construction of the Empire State Building. Several of these construction pictures were published in Men at Work (1932), a book celebrating the individual worker's interaction with machines in the modern world. Despite the success of this book, Hine's financial situation became desperate and his photography was virtually forgotten. Berenice Abbott and Elizabeth McCausland learned of his work through the New York City Photo League and mounted a traveling retrospective exhibition of his work to revive interest in it in 1939. Lewis Hine is best known for the documentary images of child labor practices that he produced under the aegis of the National Child Labor Committee from 1911 to 1916. These photographs not only have been credited as important in the passing of child labor laws, but also have been praised for their sympathetic depiction of individuals in abject working conditions. Hine labeled his pictures "photo-interpretations," emphasizing his subjective involvement with his subjects; this approach became the model for many later documentary photographers, such as Sid Grossman and Ben Shahn.Source: International Center of Photography
Rosa Basurto
Spain
1972
Rosa Basurto is a self-taught photographer from Spain who, within a short frame of time, has been widely recognised for her work. Despite no formal training, Basurto demonstrates an impressive command of photographic skill, producing images that are poetic in style and imitating a dream-like world, within the reality of landscape. Though each image includes quite life-like subjects, such as trees and birds in flight, the spaces they occupy within Basurto’s photographs bring about a very intimate and almost mysterious atmosphere. By capturing a suspension of time, Basurto’s particular style allows the viewer to notice what would have normally been taken for granted. It is exactly this element that gives each picture its dramatic dimension. It emerges when we view a space that seems tranquil, bringing in to question what habitation would have normally occupied such land. Furthermore, the sense of frame, the cleanliness, and the geometric lines give the image an undeniable modernity. Basurto’s work has been exhibited in various group shows as well as having been displayed in solo exhibitions around Spain, Portugal and France. Her work has been widely recognised and received various awards. Some of these include; the Jury Prize for the “Historia de invierno”, PhotoEspaña, 2010, First Prize for the Bienal Internacional SICAFI, Argentina in 2008, the IV Concurso de Fotografía de Naturaleza Vila-Real prize in the category of Flowers, Castellón in 2007. She has also won First Place for the EPSON Digital Photography Contest in 2006. In 2008, Basurto’s work was shortlisted for various awards including Descubrimientos, PhotoEspaña in 2008, Trierenberg Super Circuit, Austria in 2008, the X Biennal Internacional AQÜEDUCTE, 'European Wildlife Photographerof the Year' in the category 'landscapes' in 2007, as well as the “XXXV Trofeo Guipúzcoa Internacional” prize in 2007. Source www.milimgallery.com
Josef Koudelka
Czech Republic
1938
Josef Koudelka was born in 1938 in Boskovice, Moravia. He began photographing his family and the surroundings with a 6 x 6 Bakelite camera. He studied at the Czech Technical University in Prague (CVUT) between 1956 and 1961, receiving a Degree in Engineering in 1961. He staged his first photographic exhibition the same year. Later he worked as an aeronautical engineer in Prague and Bratislava. He began taking commissions from theatre magazines, and regularly photographed stage productions at Prague's Theatre Behind the Gate on a Rolleiflex camera. In 1967, Koudelka decided to give up his career in engineering for full-time work as a photographer. He had returned from a project photographing gypsies in Romania just two days before the Soviet invasion, in August 1968. He witnessed and recorded the military forces of the Warsaw Pact as they invaded Prague and crushed the Czech reforms. Koudelka's negatives were smuggled out of Prague into the hands of the Magnum agency, and published anonymously in The Sunday Times Magazine under the initials P. P. (Prague Photographer) for fear of reprisal to him and his family. His pictures of the events became dramatic international symbols. In 1969 the "anonymous Czech photographer" was awarded the Overseas Press Club's Robert Capa Gold Medal for photographs requiring exceptional courage. With Magnum to recommend him to the British authorities, Koudelka applied for a three-month working visa and fled to England in 1970, where he applied for political asylum and stayed for more than a decade. In 1971 he joined Magnum Photos. A nomad at heart, he continued to wander around Europe with his camera and little else. Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, Koudelka sustained his work through numerous grants and awards, and continued to exhibit and publish major projects like Gypsies (1975) and Exiles (1988). Since 1986, he has worked with a panoramic camera and issued a compilation of these photographs in his book Chaos in 1999. Koudelka has had more than a dozen books of his work published, including most recently in 2006 the retrospective volume Koudelka. Koudelka has won awards such as the Prix Nadar (1978), a Grand Prix National de la Photographie (1989), a Grand Prix Cartier-Bresson (1991), and the Hasselblad Foundation International Award in Photography (1992). Significant exhibitions of his work have been held at the Museum of Modern Art and the International Center of Photography, New York; the Hayward Gallery, London; the Stedelijk Museum of Modern Art, Amsterdam; and the Palais de Tokyo, Paris. He and his work received support and acknowledgment from his friend the French photographer, Henri Cartier-Bresson. He was also supported by the Czech art historian Anna Farova. In 1987 Koudelka became a French citizen, and was able to return to Czechoslovakia for the first time in 1991. He then produced Black Triangle, documenting his country's wasted landscape. Koudelka resides in France and Prague and is continuing his work documenting the European landscape. He has two daughters and a son. Source: Wikipedia
Don Jacobson
United States
The world of photography and the world of the natural wonders of the Sierra Nevada opened to Don Jacobson simultaneously. The photographs he took with his little Kodak Brownie were woefully inadequate to express the grandeur of the Range of Light. Within a week of his first backpack trip into the high country, he bought his first SLR, a Pentax Spotmatic and began to take photography classes. His degree is in electrical engineering and he worked in that field for three years. Working for the defense industry became more of a contradiction with his political views initiating a search for a desperately needed a creative outlet. For the next twenty-eight years he worked as a glassblower. His work was shown in galleries across the United States, and the Corning Museum included a piece of his in their 1986 collection of 200 international glassblowers. Although glassblowing was his "day job*," he continued to practice the art of photography, studying photography with Edmund Teske at UCLA for a year. The two different mediums, are connected by light. The magic of glass is in its ability to transmit and reflect light while photography is the capturing of light. During the years he lived in the San Francisco Bay Area, 1973 through 1976, he amassed 135 images of owner decorated vehicles. He is currently a member of the Portland Photographers Forum and the Interim Group, a critique group originally formed by the influential photographer Minor White. Statement I see the world differently now. The camera, which narrows the field of vision, has actually expanded my vision. When I realized I was viewing reality as if it were a series of photographs, I initially questioned that perspective. Now, I know my perception is enhanced and enriched from my pursuit of photography. An already dynamic and interesting world has become more so. I am delighted by quality of light, vibrancy of color, unexpected and often unnoticed detail. The stunning structure of an orchid, the intricate ornamentation on an older building, or dishes stacked in a dish drainer are fascinating to me. Abstractions and patterns are richer and invite investigation. My subject matter is limitless. Anything that appeals to my eye is fair game for my camera.
Vladimir Nosalskiy (Lenin)
Russia Federation
1973
I was born in USSR on June 10-th 1973. My pseudonyms in arts is Lenin. Back there our country was far from being open towards new ways of self-expression such as modern art, creative photography or so. For a long time everything people could percept from art and culture has been gray and monotonous. My childhood passed in criminal district. However, both of my parents are self-educated artists. I am sure that my ability to see beauty in ordinary, routine things originates from my family. Photography itself appeared in my life when I was 10.With my father's camera Zenith; I discovered all the nearby corners of my district, all the parks and squares. When I was teenager, the only way to make surrounding world more beautiful was to go studying as a tailor, which was the only creative profession in our town back there. During Perestroika Russia moved from cultural aspects of governmental policy into market economy, which made a life of an artist hard. I built into the system by creating decorations and shows for governmental and business events. However, I always missed the camera, it was my companion everywhere. I took pictures of the art plans, events, nature, city and travel. However, my comeback to real inspirational photoshoots happened several years ago. "Contemplate, create, enjoy" - has become my moto since I was young. I had several personal exhibitions art & photo: 1999, "26 steps", Moscow, Russia, 2000, "Cocoon-2000", Moscow, Russia. And several group exhibitions 1999, "Kazantip", "Kazantip-2" The exhibition of young artists "Lenin i Deti", Moscow, Russia, 2016, "Planet Moscow 2016" , Moscow, Russia. My inspiration in photography and arts are: Alexander Rodchenko, Auguste Rodin, Billy Monk, Claude Monet, Francisco Josè de Goya, Hieronymus Bosch, Ivan Bilibin, Jackson Pollock, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Leonardo da Vinci, René Magritte, Vladimir Tatlin, Wassily Kandinsky.
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