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George Rodger
George Rodger

George Rodger

Country: United Kingdom
Birth: 1908 | Death: 1995

George Rodger was a British photojournalist noted for his work in Africa and for taking the first photographs of the death camps at Bergen-Belsen at the end of the Second World War.

Born in Hale, Cheshire, of Scottish descent, Rodger went to school at St.Bees School in Cumberland then joined the British Merchant Navy and sailed around the world. While sailing, Rodger wrote accounts of his travels and taught himself photography to illustrate his travelogues. However, he was unable to get his travel writing published; after a short spell in America, where he failed to find work during the Depression, he returned to Britain in 1936. In London he was fortunate to find work as a photographer for the BBC's The Listener magazine, which was followed in 1938 by a brief stint working for the Black Star Agency.

With the outbreak of the Second World War, Rodger had a strong urge to chronicle the war. His photographs of the Blitz gained him a job as a war correspondent for Life magazine. He covered the war in West Africa extensively and towards the end of the war followed the allied liberation of France, Belgium and Holland. He also covered the retreat of the British forces in Burma and was probably the only British war reporter/photographer to be allowed to drive along and write a story on the Burma Road by travelling on it into China, with special permission from the Chinese commanding generals.

Most notably, Rodger was the first photographer to enter the concentration camp at Bergen-Belsen in 1945. His photographs of the few survivors and piles of corpses were published in Life and Time magazines and were highly influential in showing the reality of the death camps. Rodger later recalled how, after spending several hours at the camp, he was appalled to realise that he had spent most of the time looking for graphically pleasing compositions of the piles of bodies lying among the trees and buildings.

One of the first photographs taken after liberation of Bergen-Belsen in 1945.

This traumatic experience lead Rodger to conclude that he could not work as a war correspondent again. Leaving Life, he travelled throughout Africa and the Middle East, continuing to document these area's wildlife and people. In 1947, Rodger became a founder member of Magnum Photos and over the next thirty years worked as a freelance photographer, taking on many expeditions and assignments to photograph the people, landscape and nature of Africa. Much of Rodger's photojournalism in Africa was published in National Geographic as well as other magazines and newspapers.

Source: Wikipedia

 

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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
Bert Stern
United States
1929 | † 2013
Bertram Stern (October 3, 1929 – June 26, 2013) was a self-taught American commercial photographer. He was the son of Jewish immigrants and grew up in Brooklyn. His father worked as a children’s portrait photographer. After dropping out of high school at the age of 16, he gained a job in the mail room at Look magazine. He became art director at Mayfair magazine, where Stern learned how to develop film and make contact sheets, and started taking his own pictures. In 1951, Stern was drafted into the US Army and was sent to Japan and assigned to the photographic department. In the 1960s Stern's heavy use of amphetamines, led to the destruction to his marriage to Balanchine ballerina, Allegra Kent. By the late 1970s Stern returned to the U.S. to photograph portraits and fashion. He was the subject of the 2010 documentary, "Bert Stern: Original Madman," directed by his secret wife, Shannah Laumeister. Ms. Laumeister and Stern never lived together, and Stern had a long standing relationship of 20+ years with Lynette Lavender who was his constant and devoted companion. His first professional assignment was in 1955 for a Madison Avenue advertising agency for Smirnoff vodka. His best known work is arguably The Last Sitting, is a collection of 2,500 photographs taken for Vogue of Marilyn Monroe over a three-day period, six weeks before her death. Stern's book The Last Sitting was published in 1982 and again in 2000. He has photographed Audrey Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor, Madonna, Kylie Minogue, Drew Barrymore and Lindsay Lohan (recreating The Last Sitting), among others, in addition to his work for advertising and travel publications.(Source: en.wikipedia.org)
Saul Leiter
United States
1923 | † 2013
Saul Leiter is an American photographer and painter whose early work in the 1940s and 1950s was an important contribution to what came to be recognized as The New York School. Saul Leiter was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His father was a well known Talmud scholar and Saul studied to become a Rabbi. His mother gave him a Detrola camera at age 12. At age 23, he left theology school and moved to New York City to become an artist. He had developed an early interest in painting and was fortunate to meet the Abstract Expressionist painter Richard Pousette-Dart. Pousette-Dart and W. Eugene Smith encouraged Saul to pursue photography and he was soon taking black and white pictures with a 35 mm Leica, which he acquired by exchanging a few Eugene Smith prints for it. In 1948, he started taking color photographs. He began associating with other contemporary photographers such as Robert Frank and Diane Arbus and helped form what Jane Livingston has termed The New York School of photographers during the 1940s and 1950s.Source: Wikipedia Leiter’s first exhibition of color photography was held in the 1950s at the Artist's Club, a meeting place for many of the Abstract Expressionist painters of that time. Edward Steichen included twenty-three of Leiter's black and white photographs in the seminal 1953 exhibition “Always the Young Stranger” at the Museum of Modern Art; he also included twenty of Leiter’s color images in the 1957 MoMA conference “Experimental Photography in Color.” In the late 1950s, the art director Henry Wolf published Leiter's color fashion work in Esquire and later in Harper's Bazaar. However, over the next four decades, Leiter’s noncommercial work remained virtually unknown to the wider art world. He continued to work as a fashion photographer through the 1970s, contributing to such publications as in Show, Elle, British Vogue, Queen, and Nova. Leiter is now held to be a pioneer of early color photography, and is noted as one of the outstanding figures in post-war photography. After several exhibitions at Howard Greenberg Gallery throughout the 1990s, Leiter’s work experienced a surge of popularity after a monograph, Early Color, was published by Steidl in 2006. Early Color was followed by a series of monographs and international exhibitions highlighting the depth and scope of his work in photography and painting, beginning with “In Living Color” (2006), his first major retrospective at the Milwaukee Museum of Art. Leiter was the subject of several solo shows thereafter, including the Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson, Paris; the Jewish Historical Museum, Amsterdam; Musée de l’Elysée, Lausanne; and Diechtorhallen, Hamburg.Source: Howard Greenberg Gallery
Ayanava Sil
I am Ayanava Sil a resident of Kolkata, India. By education I hold a degree of Master Of Business Administration in Marketing. Photography to me is an exemption to see things differently. I am a Street and Documentary photographer, with an objective of documenting everyday life. The uncertainty and the suspense drives me the most towards these genres of Photography. Documenting people over the years has provided me with the invaluable opportunity to explore the unknown and to embrace the conglomerate realities of people. I am one of the administrators and curator of Streets Of Calcutta which is the oldest and the largest Street Photography archive of Kolkata. My works has been published and recognized by different platforms like National Geographic, National Geographic Traveller India, CNN America, Getty Images, Business Standard, World-Street-Photography Book 5, APF Street Photography Magazine, Better Photography India, Asian Photography, Chiiz Magazine etc. I have been awarded by The Andrei Stenin International Press Photo Awards, News Times, Eye Win Awards, Golden Orchid International Photography Awards etc. My works has also been exhibited in multiple photography exhibition, to name a few, Jaipur Art Summit 2016, Ariano International Film Festival 2017, Kolkata International Photography Festival 2019, Wlasnymi Slowami Film Festival 2019. Where I Bloom As the world combats with an invisible enemy, many of our lives have come to a standstill now. A month ago our lives were pretty foreseeable with simple daily conventional work that all of us were looking forward to. The coronavirus pandemic has changed the whole scenario, today countries are under locked down, schools and universities have been closed, events are cancelled and many people have been asked to work from home. We have seen the Government enforcing every preventive measure to slow the spread of the virus and flatten the curve. During this critical time, it is essential that everyone stays at home and helps to prevent the spread of this virus. In these tough times, photography is one of the major businesses that has been affected a lot by this pandemic. All studios have been shut down, weddings have been postponed, all the sports events have been cancelled and presently more than half of the world is locked down and there is no possibility of travelling. I am a photographer who loves to roam around the city unwearyingly to document life on the streets but due to the pandemic it is impossible to go out of my house to shoot now. So to keep myself in practice and to keep my sanity I chose to document my house but with a definite objective as this work of mine will have a different approach from the rest of my works. Also, I challenged myself to shoot everything through my phone only. So I started shooting every corner of my house from the ground floor to the terrace, through the windows and the doors, the plants in my house to the birds which flies above my terrace. I decide not to include any human subject and the only reason behind this decision is because we often feel like we are the most important species, but the fact is that we will fade away with time but we will leave behind a lot of things when we are gone. I tried to portray those moments keeping the photographs minimalist and graphical in form and ambiguous in nature. During all this time I had an interesting observation and I discovered that sunlight creates fascinating graphical shadow movements in different parts of my house during each phase of the day. I think that the only positive outlook amidst the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak is that nature has started healing. I do not remember when I last saw such timely Norwesters in the past few years. The Norwesters generally hit during the months of April and May. It mostly occurs late in the evening when thick, dark and black clouds start appearing in the sky. It generally moves from west to east bringing torrential rain often with strong wind and lasts only for a short period of time. The Norwesters are beneficial for cultivation purposes in West Bengal and Bangladesh. This year, the Norwesters bought different and beautiful cloud patterns and I tried to weave them within my work as well.
Jon Enoch
United KIngdom
1979
Jon Enoch discovered his love of photography on a round-the-world-trip, which he won in a competition while in his first year of university, studying geography. He bought a simple point-and-shoot camera and discovered a passion and a skill for portrait and lifestyle photography - looking for an unusual shot, rather than a standard tourist snap. He returned to university to complete his degree in geography, but was still out every weekend working on his own portraiture projects. After he left university, he did a one year course in newspaper photography and began a career in press photography. Jon started developing his bold portraiture style while freelancing at The Times, and now specialises in photo shoots for CEOs, sportspeople and celebrities, as well as advertising and lifestyle shoots. Describing his work as 'bold and uncomplicated', Jon loves playing with light, and how it affects the mood of the work. Jon still works on his own personal projects, and his 'Bikes of Hanoi' set of street images of moped delivery drivers earned him numerous industry accolades and awards, including the, Sony World Photography Awards 2020, Smithsonian Grand Prize Winner 2020, Portraits of Humanity 2020; Lens Culture Portrait Prize 2020 and a gold at the Prix de la Photographie Paris. Statement Jon said: "I continue to develop my skills and my style at every opportunity I get. I had some great personal photography projects in the planning before Covid-19 hit, so hopefully I will get to pick up those plans again before long. During the UK lockdown, I spent my time developing my directing skills. Mixing stills and moving images is something clients increasingly want and I find it an interesting creative challenge. The two worlds are in many ways so similar but at times so different. Being able to tackle both is something I really enjoy. Essentially I want to take stunning images that people connect with. " Exclusive Interview with Jon Enoch
Robert Demachy
France
1859 | † 1936
Robert Demachy (1859–1936) was a prominent French Pictorial photographer of the late 19th and early 20th century. He is best known for his intensely manipulated prints that display a distinct painterly quality. Léon-Robert Demachy was born in the home of his grandmother in Saint-Germain-en-Laye, on the outskirts of Paris, on 7 July 1859. His parents, Charles Adolphe Demachy (1818–1888) and Zoé Girod de l’Ain (1827–1916), had two other sons, Charles Amédée (1852–1911) and Adrien Édouard (1854–1927), and a daughter, Germaine (1856-1940?). The elder Charles had started the highly successful financial enterprise of Banque Demachy, and by the time Demachy was born the family was very wealthy. He had no need to earn a living, and there is no record of his having ever been employed anywhere. He dropped the first part of his name in his childhood and was always known as "Robert". After his birth his family returned to their mansion at 13 Rue François Premier in Paris, where Demachy continued to live for the next fifty years. His early years were quite idyllic, and each year his family would spend several months at their summer villa near Villers-sur-Mer in Normandy. The rest of the year he was educated in Jesuit schools in Paris, and he became fluent in English by the time he was a teenager. His education also included extensive musical lessons, and he became an accomplished violin player. About 1870, Demachy, his mother and his siblings left Paris for Brussels due to the increasing dangers of the Franco-Prussian War. His father stayed in Paris as part of the Commune and the Banque Demachy played an important role in financing the resistance efforts. When he turned eighteen Demachy briefly served a year as an army volunteer, but he soon returned to his life of comfort. In the mid-1870s he began frequenting the artists’ cafés and, perhaps in rebellion to his gentrified life, he became involved in the growing bohemian culture that was beginning to take hold in Paris. He began making sketches of café patrons and people on the street, a practice he continued throughout his life.Source: Wikipedia Robert Demachy was considered by many to be the most influential Pictorialist photographer across the whole of Europe. He was a man of independent means allowing him to focus completely on photography and international travel for it. He was a strong advocate of gum bichromate to enhance Pictorialist photography, for which he coined the term ‘ Photo-Aquatint’ associating it with intaglio printmaking. It is obvious when studying his work closely that his enjoyment of this process was from the artistic freedom it gave him. His gum prints were very successful, with their greatly softened detail quite deliberately reminiscent of impressionist art. Demachy became a strong and vocal defender of manipulated printing techniques. He is most famous for the prominent brushstrokes and rough-textured papers. Although these were greatly manipulated, he was able to bring an air of naturalism and poise to his work. He wrote “Do not say that nature being beautiful, and photography being able to reproduce its beauty, therefore photography is Art. This is unsound. Nature is often beautiful, of course, but never artistic ’per se’, for there can be no art without intervention of the artist in the making of the picture. Nature is but a theme for the artist to play upon. Straight photography registers the theme, that is all - and, between ourselves, it registers it differently” Quoted in Robert Demachy: Photographs and Essays. Bill Jay, 1974. Robert Demachy was a leader in French Pictorialist photography at the turn of the last century. He was elected to the Société française de photographie in 1882 and co-founded the Photo-Club de Paris with Maurice Bucquet in 1888. He had his first exhibition of gum prints in 1895 at the Photo-Club de Paris, which helped to promote his increasingly international status: the same year he was elected to The Linked Ring in London and made an honorary member of the Royal Photographic Society.Source: Edward Draper
Michal Cala
Poland
1948
Michal Cala was born in Toruń, Poland in 1948 and studied aircraft construction in Warsaw at the University of Technology in the early 1970's. From 1974 to 1983 he worked as an engineer in various companies in Silesia, and began photographing in the area. In 1977, he moved to Tychy in Upper Silesia, where he co-founded the photographers' association KRON and become a member of the ZPAF – the Union of Polish Art Photographers. Relatively unknown outside of his native country, his work is in several museum collections in Poland; in the Silesian Museum of Katowice, the Silesian Library in Katowice, the Upper Silesian Museum in Bytom, the Coal Mining Museum in Zabrze as well as local government building in Duisburg in the Ruhr (Germany) and various private collections. His work has received much acclaim and won numerus awards; among which are the Grand Prix at the Polish Landscape Biennale in Kielce twice, 1979 and 1983 and won the first prise at the Pilsner International Photo Awards in the Industrial category in 2007. His work from Galicia series and the Paysages de Pologne exhibition was shown in France in 1980's. The Silesia exhibition was shown widely in Katowice (1984, 2002, 2008), Krakow (1986, 2006), Warsaw (1986, 2009), in Enschede, the Netherlands, (2012), at the Photo Biennale Mannheim – Ludwigshafen – Heidelberg (2007) and part of group project at the Noorderlicht Photo Festival in the Netherlands (2008). In 2007 he was classified as one of most important Polish photographers in last century and participated in the group exhibition Polish Photography in XX Century (Warsaw, Poland and Vilnius, Lithuania). In the same year, Cala's photography was featured in British Journal of Photography and Foto8 magazine. Publications on his work include The Anthology of Polish Photography 1839 – 1989, The Masters of Polish Landscape and The Polish Photography in the 20th Century. His past exhibition Metropolis on Silesian urban landscapes was held at the Silesian Museum in Katowice in 2013 and a solo show Silesia and Galicia in the Museum of History of Photography in 2016 in Krakow (Poland). His photo book based on the same series was recently selected in the Open Submission at Belfast and Athens Photo Festivals respectively (2017). The latest solo exhibition at MMX Gallery; SILESIA 1975-1985, was the first time his work has been shown in UK.MMX Gallery about the exhibition Silesia 1975-1985 Michal Cala is regarded as one of the most important Polish photographers of the last century. Cala started taking pictures in his youth and has been working professionally as a photographer for nearly 40 years. Silesia is an industrial district in Poland which at the time of 1970's and early 1980's was experiencing its peak of development and activity. Although providing massive employment for the area, the environmental issues were ignored. Stepping off the train, Cala encountered the other-worldly landscape for the first time and decided this is what he wanted to make of photographic record of. Fascinated by the subject matter, he devoted himself to photographing the Silesian landscape between 1975 – 1992, which resulted in the series entitled Silesia (Śląsk in Polish). Cala's photography took on various influences ranging from surrealism, which inspired a movement in Poland called "fotografia kreacyjna" (creative photography), and the realism of British New Wave cinema of the late 1950's and early 1960's. Poland's isolation during the Cold War made it very difficult for photographers to obtain artistic publications. However, some Czech and Polish magazines were publishing Western photographers work such as Edward Weston, Bill Brandt, Robert Frank and Diane Arbus who acted as a window for inspiration. Cala was influenced by landscape, reportage and social documentary photography, which he always portrayed in his personally stylised images. In Poland, political and material conditions were harsh under Soviet influence. Using a basic 35mm Exa 500 camera, he managed to produce images of such a lyrical beauty only to be emphasised again with a dark graphic printing style, to further enhance his vision of the sometimes-apocalyptic looking landscape before him. A single house surrounded by huge cooling towers, majestic slagheaps, lonely figures microscopic when compared to the massive scale of industrial surroundings are subtle metaphors of living in a communist reality. The majority of photographs in the exhibition are vintage silver gelatin prints, made by Cala at the time they were taken.Source: MMX Gallery
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