ASMP NewsFeed Week of 8.16.2021

by | Aug 17, 2021 | Current News, Strictly Business Blog

Image: John Zoiner

ASMP NewsFeed. Keeping You in the Know.

With all that is happening in the world around us, we know that you don’t always have extra hours in your day to catch up on the latest news from the myriad of information sources available today. Curated by former ASMP National Board Member and Contributing Editor Barry Schwartz, the ASMP NewsFeed brings you current articles related to the business and art of photography published in diverse arenas in one single post, so you can peruse and read about a topic that might be of personal or professional interest to you.

VIDEO – Books: Gilles Peress On Northern Ireland, at Long Last

Cross-posted from ProPhoto Daily and The Washington Post In Sight blog.  [By David Schonauer and  Kenneth Dickerman]  “Born in France, Peress began working with photography in 1970, after studying at the Institute d’Etudes Politiques in Paris. His early series included a look at Turkish immigrant workers in West Germany. Over the coming decades he would cover events in Northern Ireland, Lebanon, Palestine, Iran, the Balkans, Rwanda, the U.S., Afghanistan and Iraq and publish a series of books that would earn him a reputation as one of the most acclaimed photojournalists of his time.

His journey to Northern Ireland began what would become a 20-year project about the violence there. Peress returned to Northern Ireland in the 1980s, hoping to find a visual language adequate enough to understand the intractable bloodshed taking place, notes Steidl, which has published Peress’s new book Whatever You Say, Say Nothing.”

Thirty years in the making, this photographer’s deeply personal exploration of the Northern Ireland conflict finally sees light of day

The App With the Unprintable Name That Wants to Give Power to Creators

Cross-posted from The New York Times.  [By Taylor Lorenz]  Why should photographers be paying attention to how social media influencers get paid?  Because we may, on occasion, work for them, and, like ad agencies, photographers need to understand how the business works in order to be paid fairly.  Plus, they are creatives.

“‘Creators need to realize we have the power,’ River Johnson, 29, a creator in Half Moon Bay, Calif., said of the relationship between influencers and brands. ‘They need us, not the other way around.’

Brands have long had an upper hand with influencers. Most creators operate without a manager or an agent. There are no standard pay rates for creating a post for a brand or running digital advertising alongside their videos and posts. Brand deals are negotiated through a messy mix of direct messages and emails.”

Rediscovered Stories From the Zambian Fine Art Studios

Cross-posted from blind.  [By Colin Pantall]  “In 2018, photographer Sana Ginwalla visited Fine Art Studios in Lusana, the capital of Zambia, to buy some film camera batteries. In the studio, she found cupboards full of neglected prints, slides and negatives from the time the studio was run by Ratubhai Somabhai Patel and Hirabhai Lalbhai Patel

‘The works of renowned photographers like Malick Sidibé and Seydou Keita immediately came to mind,’ she says. ‘I was ecstatic to see that Zambia had its own collection of similar images. Seeing how light-damaged the photographs already were and recognising the value in these photographs, I wanted to preserve these rarities – locate the negatives or at least scan the prints. I had no idea what I was going to do with these images, for whom or for what.’”

Photographers on Photographers: Joel Jiminez Jara in Conversation with Alec Soth

Cross-posted from LenScratch.  “JJ: What do you think are the key factors to sustain a practice in a field such as photography for a long time? (in your experience)

AS: For me the key has been to not have my eggs all in one basket. Along with my own personal projects I do editorial work, teaching, and experimental collaborative projects like my recent work with the musician Dave King. All of these activities keep my on my toes creatively. It also helps economically. When the art world collapsed in 2008, I was able to sustain myself with editorial and teaching gigs. But by not being a full-time commercial photographer or shooter, I haven’t gotten worn down from that kind of work.”

Should MFA Programs Teach the Business of Writing?

Cross-posted from Jane Friedman.  Most writers – like photographers – are solo entrepreneurs.  Art schools of all kinds – photo, writing, painting, music – may be good at developing professional skills, but not the one professional skill required to make a living: business.

“Despite the books I’ve written, the keynotes I’ve delivered, and the courses I’ve taught, I’ve never laid out, in a public forum like this, why I think it’s problematic when MFA programs or professors argue that the business of writing lies outside their purview. Why? Well, the type of person often attracted to the MFA likely believes the same and I don’t see my role as persuading the unconvinced or barging in where I’m unwanted. Rather, I am here if people see the need, as I do, for writers to understand the business they’re entering.

However, I think times are changing, for many reasons which I won’t delve into here, but part of it has to do with the gig economy and/or creator economy and the greater variety of writerly business models we now have than we did twenty years ago. More writers are ending up in undergraduate and graduate writing programs who need and want this information. I also believe writers should leave degree-granting programs prepared for the pragmatic and professional issues they will face as a writer. They’re often working alone, with limited or bad business guidance, confused about what’s “normal.” The anxiety and confusion is apparent at every AWP conference I attend. So is the bitterness and resentment for those who wake up to the reality of their situation, after they’ve invested thousands of dollars into a writing education.

And so MFA programs need to acknowledge what’s happening and evolve.”

Why Instagram’s Creatives Are Angry about Its Move to Video

Cross-posted from The Guardian.  [By Camelia Tait]  This article serves as a warning for photographers whose only marketing consists of Instagram posts.  The company – powered by its algorithms – demonstrates again that its customers, not the creators who post content – are its primary focus.

“The social media platform was once a favourite of artists and photographers, but a shift towards TikTok-type videos and shopping could leave them looking for a new home online”.

These Photographers Captured the Fearless Youth of the 1970s

Cross-posted from Artsy.  [By Jacqui Palumbo]  “The youth of the 1970s came of age amid powerful countercultural movements that took root during the previous decade and then blossomed internationally. In the ’70s, political upheaval and social change continued its immutable course: Americans against the Vietnam War were further disillusioned by the Watergate scandal; the U.K. fell into a deep recession and was debilitated by IRA bombings; Africans faced all of the rapid changes of a newly decolonized continent; and Japan continued to rebuild and find its identity in the wake of World War II.

Amid all of these shifts, youth culture flourished in skate parks, dark discotheques, and other communal spaces that young people made their own. The LGBTQ community began organizing in earnest in Washington, D.C., while punk bands shouted for anarchy across the pond. Below, we share nine photographers who captured the bold generation of youth who defined the era.”

Photos of Abandoned Russia

Cross-posted from The Atlantic.  [Edited by Alan Taylor]  ”Across the vastness of Russia—the world’s largest country, at some 6.6 million square miles—and over the span of its long history, countless houses, factories, churches, villages, military bases, and other structures have been built and then left behind: imperial-era palaces, log cabins of pioneers in the Far East, Christian cathedrals, massive Soviet blocks of concrete, speculative-mining camps, and more. For years now, photographers have traveled across Russia finding and photographing these intriguing ghost towns, empty Soviet factories, toppling houses, and crumbling chapels.”

Life Throughs His Lens: Photographer Dennis Brack Spent a Half Century Capturing History in the Making

Cross-posted from Alexandria Times via John Harrington.  [By Cody Mello-Klein]  “Dennis Brack has made a career out of being in the right place at the right time.

As a White House news photographer, Brack chronicled the country’s history and changing socio-political landscape in a career that has spanned 10 presidential administrations, five decades and at least four continents.

Brack photographed the Beatles during their first tour in the states and a reluctant Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon, during the 1960s. Brack travelled the world alongside presidents for diplomatic missions, captured images of the Highway of Death during the Gulf War and, in one week, had his pictures appear on the front pages of Time magazine, Newsweek and U.S. News and World Report.

Brack, 80, maintains a sense of humility when looking back on a lifetime of experiences that together comprise a greatest hits collection of 20th century American history. Even when discussing one of his favorite pieces of work – a shot of a crowd of Beijing onlookers during President Ronald Reagan’s trip to China – the most he’ll say is, ‘It was a good picture.’”

A Photographer Reflected On Her 45-Year Career And What Has Changed

Cross-posted from BuzzFeed News via ProPhoto Daily.  [By Pia Peterson]  “I imagine that the gender dynamics in the 1970s were different.

It was very different. I was so young, and I was surrounded by middle-aged men, older than middle-aged. There were two female photographers in Florida, Mary Lou Foy at the Miami Herald and Ursula Seemann at the Sun Sentinel in Fort Lauderdale. The expectations placed on me were just a lot. If nothing was going on, I was expected to go out and photograph women on the beach in Miami. I found a woman wearing the skimpiest bikini that I could find, and I took her photo, printed it out, and blew it up and put it on our office wall and told everyone that this was the LAST woman I would take a picture of in a bikini. It was women’s lib, and I thought it was unacceptable to ask me to do that.

When covering sports, I was almost always the only female on the field. There were no role models for me, but in general, I looked up to war photographer Susan Meiselas, even though she was probably younger than me. I also studied the portraits and photojournalism of Annie Leibovitz and street photography by Helen Levitt.”

The Secret History of Slim Aarons’s Life as a U.S. Army War Photographer

Cross-posted from Town & Country via ProPhoto Daily.  [By Lesley M.M. Blume]  “His subjects included kings (past, current, and future), aristocrats, Hollywood’s megastars, indolent heirs, business icons and scions—many shot for Town & Country, to which he contributed for decades. Unique and revolutionary in its heyday, Aarons’s body of work and aesthetic remains relentlessly influential today.

Aarons, who died on May 30, 2006, is better known for donning a cravat and linen jacket than military fatigues. However, he actually got his start as a combat photographer in World War II, covering some of the war’s deadliest battles, spanning North Africa, the Middle East, and Europe. He counted among his friends some of the most famous journalists of the war, including Robert Capa, Carl Mydans, and Ernie Pyle. And yet Aarons’s own wartime work and story are surprisingly little known.”

Meet the Young NC Photographer Who Landed Photo Shoots with Beyoncé and Simone Biles

Cross-posted from The News & Observer via ProPhoto Daily.  [By Aubrey Gulick]  “Simone Biles exudes strength in the photograph — from her pose to her level chin to her long braid winding down her body, interwoven with red, white and blue ribbons.

The photo, featured on the June cover of Glamour magazine, reflects the Olympic gold medalist that’s known for her strength and resilience. And in some ways, the photo reflects the photographer behind the camera — Kennedi Carter.

In December, the Durham-based photographer earned the distinction at the age of 21 of being the youngest photographer to shoot a cover for Vogue of superstar singer Beyoncé. British Vogue made three covers out of Carter’s photos, each with a different Beyoncé vibe.

Carter, now 22, has broken into the photography industry with a vengeance, building an impressive resumé that features photos in national publications, including Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone, Entertainment Weekly and The New York Times.”

The Photographers Who Captured the Great Depression

Cross-posted from JStor Daily.  [By Ashawanta Jackson]  “The Farm Security Administration had photographers fan out across the country to document agricultural conditions. But they brought back much more.”

“From 1935 to 1944, the FSA employed photographers to take images of the United States. It wasn’t as much about art as it was a political project, according to Carlebach. The FSA images ‘were intended to persuade Americans that changes needed to be made in the agricultural sector, and that New Deal programs were effective,’ he writes.”

Inside the Cambodian Diaspora in America

Cross-posted from blind.  [By Robert E. Gerhardt]  “Starting in the early 1990s, photographer Stuart Isett documented the Cambodian Refugees who made Chicago home.”

It has now been thirty years since the project first began, and the lives of those involved and the community of Cambodians around Argyle Street has been displaced by gentrification and the rising costs in the city. Some members of the community moved to the suburbs while others headed to other parts of the country that are more affordable. Isett is still in touch with many of them, however, wherever they have ended up. ‘I’m still in touch with some of the people. One of the people who I spent the most time with while doing the project, Gino, I talk to every few months. Some of the younger kids are now adults and have reached out and asked for prints.’”

Fight for the Future Doesn’t Speak for Artists (or anyone else)

Cross-posted from The Illusion of More.  [By David Newhoff]  Fight for the Future recently launched a new campaign website called End Creative Monopolies, and among its many vague declarations, the petition asks signatories to ‘demand the dissolution of the current US copyright system and a fundamental reimagining of artists’ rights and protections for the 21st century that shifts power away from creative monopolies and puts the interests of artists and the public first.’

This is a common, if irrational, refrain. The underlying syllogism declares that corporate media producers and/or legacy copyright owners are wealthy and powerful (generally true). It then claims that independent creators are struggling and powerless (also frequently true). But the conclusion that the copyright system only serves the former at the expense of the latter does not follow as a generalization at all. The story about copyright and independents is a complex conversation about specific aspects of the law—judicial, statutory, and administrative—which FFTF is neither qualified nor willing to have in any way helpful to creators.”