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Curran Hatleberg May 26, 2014

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West Virginia 2011

Curran Hatleberg (b.1982, United States) is a graduate of the University of Colorado and Yale University. His work has been exhibited most recently at Know More Games Gallery and The Camera Club of New York. Curran’s photographs have been published in The New York Times Magazine, Slate and 0_100 Editions. His photographs have been shown at the International Center of Photography in New York City and are included in the Williams College Museum of Art and the Davidson Art Center at Wesleyan University. Curran is the recipient of the Richard Benson Prize for excellence in photography. He currently teaches photography at Yale University.

About the Photograph:

“I met Zach in the summer on the Guyandotte River. He didn’t say much, but was polite and eager to laugh. One humid afternoon, we drove up the steep, lush ridges above town to his house and family. We ate fresh blackberry pie and smoked cigarettes in the kitchen. We ate so long it got dark and  watched TV while dogs and children flashed in and out of the rooms. Later, they showed me an old family graveyard down the road. I could hear cicadas screaming in the trees. Someone’s flashlight caught a goose, waddling alone under the moonless night. Everybody laughed. As I was leaving to go back to town, they made me take the remaining pie and a two-gallon bag of berries.”

Object Lessons from Nina Berman May 24, 2014

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Editor’s Note: This article caught my attention because of Nina’s unique perspective and the disturbing subject matter combined with her observations about the ways photojournalists are adapting to the disruption in the media landscape today. While I admire what agencies like NOOR (the non-profit collective that she is a member of) are doing in terms of partnering with NGOs, I’m doubtful that it’s a sustainable model. I applaud Nina and her colleagues for being so proactive and at the same time doing such strong work. This article originally appeared in Columbia Magazine.

Object Lessons

by Nina Berman ’85JRN

A J-school professor discusses the evolving state of photojournalism — and shares evidence from her latest project.


Rogues’ Gallery / In a new work, Nina Berman photographs trial evidence from cases of slavery and human trafficking, in hopes of indirectly revealing the mindset of the perpetrator. A billy club used by the brutal Chicago-area pimp Alex Campbell. In 2012, Campbell was sentenced to life. / Photographs by Nina Berman ’85JRN

How should one teach journalism today, and especially photojournalism, when everyone with a cell phone is a potential witness to history? What does the new generation of students need to learn about the modern media landscape?

There is a perception that photojournalists are misery chasers who jump from story to story looking for the next big thing — war, famine, tsunami — and when the action is over, they fly home and wait for the next disaster. That’s last century’s photojournalist.

Today, some of the best photojournalists work more like anthropologists or artists. The most serious ones are taking the long view and spending years on a story, publishing pieces along the way. Sometimes their work is funded by publications, but increasingly it is underwritten by NGOs and foundations, blurring the lines between journalism and advocacy. The model of the globetrotting photojournalist dispatched by New York photo editors to the far corners of the world to witness great moments in history applies only to a handful of working photographers today. Technology has democratized and globalized the industry, which means that breaking- news images are increasingly sourced from Twitter and Instagram, where pictures are shot by amateurs, writers, and local photojournalists already on the scene.


A mallet used by Donnell Baines to beat his victims in an Upper East Side sex-trafficking operation. In 2013, Baines was sentenced to sixty-two years in prison.

In class, I teach ethics, which is simple, and not. The number-one rule is that photojournalists cannot construct scenes and then pass off the pictures as found moments. Photojournalists observe and frame; the final image cannot contain people or objects that didn’t originally exist in that frame, nor can people or objects be removed from that frame. Everything else — color, saturation, contrast — is largely up for grabs. This is where things get murky.

Image effects are allowed today that weren’t considered appropriate in journalism just a few years ago. Influential photographers, sometimes in collaboration with a photography lab or digital retoucher, champion a style or create an app that is embraced by editors, and before you know it, we’re seeing a million pictures in the press looking the same, regardless of where they were shot or what they capture. A few years back, increasing the clarity and desaturating the color was popular. Now we’re in love with high dynamic range and blazing perfection. Soon it will be something else. I challenge my students to consider how these aesthetic decisions fit into a broader conversation about stereotypes and points of view.

People still cling to the idea of photography as an objective or neutral medium that captures a shared truth. There is nothing remotely objective about photography.

There are stylistic trends in art and in literature, and everyone acknowledges them. But rarely are they cited in photojournalism, perhaps because people still cling to the idea of photography as an objective or neutral medium that captures a shared truth. There is nothing remotely objective about photography. Where I stand, how I got to that spot, where I direct my lens, what I frame, how I expose the image, what personal and cultural factors influence these decisions — all are intensely subjective.There are stylistic trends in art and in literature, and everyone acknowledges them. But rarely are they cited in photojournalism, perhaps because people still cling to the idea of photography as an objective or neutral medium that captures a shared truth. There is nothing remotely objective about photography. Where I stand, how I got to that spot, where I direct my lens, what I frame, how I expose the image, what personal and cultural factors influence these decisions — all are intensely subjective.


This souvenir notebook with the Statue of Liberty on its cover was used by enslaved women working in New Jersey hair-braiding salons to record their tips, which were then confiscated. The trafficker, Akouavi Kpade Afolabi, was sentenced to twenty-seven years in prison.

With digital photography, there are so many processing options but little discussion of what those choices tell us about the storyteller and the story. In class we ask, does the aesthetic draw you in to the subject in a revealing and interesting way, or does it overpower the subject? This was a conversation when an almost too perfectly processed image from a funeral in Gaza won World Press Photo of the Year in 2013. What does it mean when an ordinary scene showing a village in Haiti is amped up with a torrent of color and contrast, giving the scene a drama that appears forced? When we see US politicians turned into a cross between Dr. Strangelove madmen and Ringling Brothers clowns, as they were in a recent photograph on MSNBC.com, are we looking at a crude use of black-and-white post-processing or a brilliant commentary on the moral emptiness and vulgar salesmanship that characterizes American political campaigns?

In the old days, a photojournalist might pitch a story to a publication and be sent off for a week, maybe with a writer, and the piece would be published, and it would end there.

Now, publishing might be the last part of a much larger scheme. Stories are projects with foundation and NGO partners; they incorporate social media and data and are seen by the public in the physical world as installations or exhibitions as well as printed pieces.


A diamond ring and cufflinks worn by the pimp Alex Campbell, who called himself “the Cowboy.” Campbell also tattooed the horseshoe logo on the women he enslaved, some of whom came from Belarus and Ukraine.

I’m working this way on something called the Marcellus Shale Documentary Project — six photographers documenting the impact of fracking in states linked by the gas-rich Marcellus Shale formation. Funds came from the Sprout Fund, the Pittsburgh Foundation, the Heinz Endowments, and others. The product is a series of traveling photography exhibitions and artist talks in museums, university galleries, and community spaces in New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Ohio. We still publish the work — in Wired, the New York Times, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, and others — but truly, the publishing is seen as amplification. So, is it photojournalism? Most definitely.

I’m in the final stages of a project at the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan (opened in 2012 to house Syrian refugees), where I photographed refugee life along with photographers Andrea Bruce, Alixandra Fazzina, and Stanley Greene, all of us from the Noor photography and film collective. We’re printing the images large and then pasting them on two hundred meters of security wall that surround the camp’s entrance. I’ll document the installation, Instagram some pictures, do blog posts, and at some point publish the project. In this case, photojournalism is being used as a conversation within the refugee and NGO community. The project, and the creative process behind it, becomes a way to talk about the larger story of Syrian refugees and their lives in Jordan, and, we hope, makes the refugee camp itself feel less like a penitentiary.

Finally, this May, I’m working with another Noor photographer, Jon Lowenstein, to launch a public-art and media-awareness campaign looking at human trafficking and forced labor in Chicago. One goal is to raise funds to treat trafficking victims. We’re hosting a workshop with other artists, advertising creatives, nonprofit service providers, and law-enforcement officers to make a blueprint for the campaign.

Sometimes photojournalists’ work is funded by publications, but increasingly it is underwritten by NGOs and foundations, blurring the lines between journalism and advocacy.

Ten years ago, I never would have thought to work like this. Now, it’s increasingly common, and more and more grant makers are demanding it.

One of the questions we’re asking is, how do you depict modern-day forms of slavery, human trafficking, and forced labor? Should the visuals be only of the victims, which is the norm? I looked at slavery in the United States from the criminal-justice angle, investigating successfully prosecuted cases of human trafficking and forced labor, sexual and otherwise. I photographed trial evidence: a wooden box in which a trafficker kept the tips she confiscated from girls brought from Togo, who were forced to work at Newark hair-braiding salons. (All their earnings, even their tip money, were given over to the trafficker.) I photographed a hatchet in Memphis used to terrorize girls in the commercial sex industry. I photographed texts that perpetrators would force victims to write, submitting themselves to their captors — the rules of labor, so to speak. I also photographed crime-scene locations and survivors. My hope was that by showing the evidence in these cases, I could indirectly reveal the mindset of the perpetrator, which is a new way to approach the subject.


A wooden box in which the trafficker Akouavi Kpade Afolabi kept the tips of the women she enslaved. She recruited girls from Ghana and Togo with promises of education and then forced them to work without pay in hair-braiding salons.

While I was looking into a case in Chicago involving Alex Campbell, a particularly brutal character who was sentenced to life in prison for sex trafficking, overseeing forced labor, and other crimes, Gary Hartwig, the special agent in charge of Homeland Security investigations in Chicago, challenged me to do more with my pictures. He had worked so many really disturbing cases, and the idea that I was coming along with a photo project that promised no tangible change frustrated him.

He voiced an attitude that is running through the photojournalism and documentary- film community worldwide: maybe words and pictures aren’t enough. Yes, do the work, make the images, find new visual approaches, subvert stereotypes, but use the material to make an impact in the world. And do it without succumbing to the predictable narratives of rescue and redemption that make the language of advocacy so limiting. This is the future of storytelling, and this is where it gets interesting.

Nina Berman ’85JRN is an associate professor at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. Her documentary photography has appeared in two monographs, many of the world’s leading magazines, and major museum exhibitions. More of her work can be found at ninaberman.com.

Carlotta Cardana May 22, 2014

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Julian and his son Elijah, Fort Yates, North Dakota, 2013

Carlotta Cardana (b. 1981, Italy) is a portrait and documentary photographer based in London. After obtaining a degree in theater and performing arts and a photography diploma, she lived in Argentina and Mexico City. In 2013 she was named “Discovery of the Year” at the Lucie Awards and was shortlisted for the 2014 Sony World Photography Awards and Lens Culture Exposure Award. Her photographs has been exhibited at Photo L.A., in the New York Photo Awards exhibition, the Portrait Salon in London and at the Royal Photographic Society. Cararlotta’s Mod Couples series has been featured in The Guardian Weekend, D Repubblica and Rolling Stone. Parallel to her photographic practice, she works  as music video director and cinematographer in short films and commissioned social documentaries.

About the Photograph:

“This image shows Julian, 27, a Native American from the Sioux tribe, holding his one-year-old son Elijah. Shortly after the baby was born, Elijah’s mother left and Julian is now raising Elijah on his own. Long hair is a matter of pride among Native Americans. Julian has never cut his son’s hair and says that Elijah will not be allowed to do so until he turns 13. The photograph is part of my most recent personal project, which intends to explore the role of traditional identity in the daily struggle of Native Americans living on reservations. Having their cultural practices and language almost vanished by the various attempts at assimilation, the tribal peoples suffer a sort of forced segregation at the very bottom of American society. On every indicator, from the 88% unemployment to the worlds second lowest life expectancy, the reservations stand as Third World islands in the biggest economy on earth. This project, however, would like to depart from the gritty depiction of these issues common in other works on the subject. By portraying American Indians in a positive light and exploring how they rediscover and use pride as a tool for survival and advancement.”

Ellen Jacob May 15, 2014

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Rita and Jacob, Central Park, New York 2010

Ellen Jacob (b.1955, New York) picked up an Kodak Instamatic camera when she was 12 years old. She started her career as an art director for the advertising agencies BBDO and Grey and was a creative lead in children’s publishing and head of her own book design and packaging company. Ellen is the recipient of a Ford Foundation Grant and a Silver Gavel Award from the American Bar Association. She holds a BFA with honors from Pratt. Her work has appeared in Slate, The Daily Mail, Huffington Post among others. Her photographs have been selected for exhibition by The Center for Fine Art Photography, F-Stop and the Soho Photo Gallery in New York.

About the Photograph:

“This image of Rita and Jacob is from Substitutes, a series of photographs of nannies and the children they care for. When I was young, a wonderful woman named Martha took care of me. She was black; I am white. I haven’t seen Martha for over 30 years, but I remember her face vividly. Substitutes is about the indelible impressions these women leave, and the persistent questions they raise about race, class, family, equality, love and much more. I made these photographs over four years on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, where I live. The women pushing the strollers are almost always black and the children white. I wondered why. Rita has known Jacob since he two weeks old. They play in Central Park almost every day. We met in the park on a warm June day and I made this photograph while waiting for Rachel, Jacob’s mom, to join them.

Rita has been a nanny for more than 25 years. She says she has cared only for white children. Like virtually all the women of color who are nannies here, Rita says race doesn’t matter. ‘I just see them as kids, as babies. Not like, oh, you black, you yellow…. No, I just see them as kids, babies. And, you know, I love them; I give them my love…’ Rachel is very grateful for the love Rita and her son share: ‘It’s just such a great thing. You don’t have to worry at all. I leave him with her, and it’s like he doesn’t even care that we leave.”

Giles Clarke May 8, 2014

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From the series, ‘Toxic Gumbo’ Baton Rouge, Louisiana 2013

Giles Clarke (1965, England) started taking pictures in Berlin in the mid-eighties where he lived for three years. He worked as a professional black and white photographic printer for many top London based fashion and advertising photographers and in 1995 moved to New York where he began an intense year in the Richard Avedon studio. Since September 2011, Giles has been heavily involved with documenting the ‘Occupy’ movement all over the world, and recently won awards for his coverage of ‘Occupy Sandy’. His work has appeared in VICE, CNN, The Guardian and The Nation. Giles is a featured photographer with ‘Reportage by Getty’.

About the Photograph:

“This picture is part of a story called Toxic Gumbo – a project about the devastating effects of big industry in an area known as ‘cancer alley’ that runs north of New Orleans along the Mississippi River. The cancer rates in this part of Louisiana are amongst the highest in the entire United States but with toxic emissions climbing annually and with more huge refineries slated for construction, this area is surely doomed to yet higher rates of cancer-related deaths. Micheal, the man in the photo lives directly over from one of the Exxon Mobile plants just north of Baton Rouge. He rears hogs and burns others people’s trash on Sunday’s when the fire marshal’s don’t work. I was standing shin deep in a watery oil slush when I took this photograph.”

Cassi Alexandra April 17, 2014

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Gaza political rally, Orlando , Florida 2009

Cassi Alexandra (b. 1986 United States) is a New York based Photojournalist and Editor, born and raised in Florida where she graduated from the Southeast Center of Photographic Studies and The University of Central Florida with a Bachelors in Photography. She had her start in photojournalism at The Orlando Sentinel in 2009, and quickly after became a contributor for The New York Times. After graduating in 2010 she gained valuable experience at The Flint Journal and The Saginaw News in Michigan. In March 2011 she moved to Brooklyn, New York where she continues to shoot and edit for various news organizations.

About the Photograph:”

“This was on one of my first photojournalism assignments while shadowing staff photographer Jacob Langston at The Orlando Sentinel. Shortly after arriving at the Gaza Rally in Downtown Orlando I began weaving in and out of the people taking as many images as my finger could snap while Jacob, a seasoned photographer took images with precision and thought. I couldn’t stop myself. It was the most energy I had been around in a shooting atmosphere. I was like a kid in a candy store, running around to try every angle. After going through the take several times and then with classmates at Daytona State College this image was finally selected. It wasn’t till I began editing others work that I was able to see the gems from my shooting. This is the day I fell in love with photojournalism and realized it was exactly what I wanted to spend my life doing.”

Taylor Emrey Glascock April 10, 2014

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Trenton, Missouri 2013

Taylor Emrey Glascock (b. 1989, USA) graduated with a degree in photojournalism from the University of Missouri in 2011. While in school she worked as a set photographer for feature films “V/H/S” and “You’re Next,” both of which received wide theatrical release and international distribution. After graduation, she interned at The Dallas Morning News, The Columbus Dispatch and the Peoria Journal Star. She is the creator of the sites Sh*t Photojournalists Like and SunTimes/DarkTimes, and has been featured on Wired, 10,000 Words, and Huffington Post. Her photographs have been published in the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal.

About the Photograph:

“I took this photo while I was at the 65th Missouri Photo Workshop in Trenton, Missouri, earlier this fall. A group of 20 photographers descended upon a small Missouri town, each do a story. What makes it different from other workshops is that you have to find your own project. It’s a lot of rejection and heartbreak, but ultimately so refreshing. I did my story on Kyle Roderick, a 17-year-old on the verge of dropping out of high school. I’ve always been drawn to photographing young people because I think it’s such a weird transitional phase in life. I met Kyle through the school district’s superintendent, and we immediately hit it off. Kyle worked two jobs, one of them at McDonald’s. I had already spent time behind the counter and didn’t think there was much else I could mine from the situation. Before I made this picture, I was sitting in my car, waiting for him to get off work. I originally wasn’t even going to get out of the car because I was parked right next to him. I’m so glad I did though, because when he and his manager walked outside, this moment happened. I have two frames of this situation and then it was over.”

Ciril Jazbec March 31, 2014

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From a story about climate change. Shishmaref Island, Alaska 2012

Ciril Jazbec (b.1987, Slovenia) studied management at the Faculty of Economics before moving to London where he graduated from the MA Photojournalism and Documentary Photography program at the London College of Communication in 2011. His photographs have been published in: GEO Germany, The New York Times, Der Spiegel, Marie Claire Italy, La Repubblica, WIRED UK and National Geographic Traveler. Ciril’s work has been recognized by Les Rencontres d’Arles- Photo Folio Review Award, (2013), Leica Oskar Barnack Award, Eddie Adams Workshop- National Geographic Award (2013), VISA Pour L’Image Perpignan – Coup de coeur ANI (2013), the PDN Photo Annual Student Work (2012) and a finalist for the Lens Culture Exposure Awards (2013).

About the Photograph:

“I was on assignment for Geo in the northwest corner of Alaska working on story about Shishmaref island. This photo was taken on a hunting trip with a local family. Mother Nora is explaining to her sons Kenny and Corben where to look for reindeer during a boat-ride up the Serpentine River. Hunting requires great focus and a good eye, as the wildlife in the tundra knows how to hide from hunters. The photo series documents the daily life in the community as it is today and the disappearing traditional ways in a village facing an uncertain future.”

“Shishmaref is a modern Inupiaq Eskimo community that has found itself in the path of climate change. The island lies in the Chukchi Sea that stretches from Alaska to Siberia. The island is threatened by erosion, storms and inclement weather, as well as by the thawing of permafrost, which lies below a thin layer of soil.”

Natalie Keyssar March 17, 2014

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Dancehall party, Brooklyn 2013

Natalie Keyssar (b. 1984, USA) received her BFA in Painting and Illustration from Pratt Institute in 2009, she began to pursue photojournalism, which fused her love for visual storytelling with her deep interest in social justice. She is currently a member of Reportage by Getty Images Emerging Talent, a regular contributor to The Wall Street Journal, and works for a variety of other publications and organizations. Much of her personal work has focused on the themes of class inequality, and the cultures on the fringes of society. She was a 2013 Global Post Fellow for the “Burma Telling Its Own Story” project in Myanmar. Her work has been recognized with awards from American Photography 29, the NPPA, and The International Color Awards.

About the Photograph

“This is a picture from an ongoing project about the the Caribbean dancehall scene in East Flatbush, Brooklyn, and the lives of the youth who are involved in it. The work explores a range of themes, from gender and sexuality and its expression in this form of dance, to the violence which seems to penetrate the lives of so many of these youth despite their best attempts to keep things positive and productive. Following these young dancers has lead me in several directions, many far outside the nightclubs where the project started, but I never cease to be amazed by the power and raw energy that they channel when they start moving together.”

“I shot this at a dancehall party around 3 a.m. on March 22nd, 2013, in East Flatbush, around the time the dance teams really get going and start competing with each other for the spotlight of the party videographers who post footage from the events on the internet. The energy of the crowd builds up and their focus comes together, first on one crew, then another. There’s an electricity that escalates as one group works to top the last, and their feet are moving in unison through steps that they work on every day, in their living rooms, and basements, and bedrooms. Dancehall music plays a complex role for youth growing up in what is often a very difficult environment. At times it seems to reinforce objectifying roles for women, and aggressive posturing for men, yet I’ve also come to see it as an important outlet, and a source of real empowerment, with roots in Caribbean Culture. In so many ways the system is failing these kids, and through this subculture they’re creating a space where they can strive for perfection and relieve some stress.”

Eve Edelheit March 6, 2014

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Grand Prairie, Texas 2012

Eve Edelheit (b.1988, United States) is a photojournalist based in St. Petersburg, Florida who is currently working at the Tampa Bay Times. After graduating from the University of Missouri with a degree in Photojournalism she went to photojournalism internships at The Chautauquan Daily, The Peoria Journal Star, The Dallas Morning News and the Tampa Bay Times. She also studied at the Danish School of Journalism in Aarhus, Denmark. Her work has been recognized by the National Press Photographers Association and the Hearst Journalism Awards. She was accepted into the XXIV class of the Eddie Adams Workshop in 2011 and was recently awarded the Nikon Emerging Professional Scholarship Award at the 65th Missouri Photo Workshop.

About the Photograph

“This photo is from a larger project about Jonathan Cook who suffers from Ulcerative Colitis. In the photo his mother Janette reads the labels on different breakfast meats while grocery shopping with Jonathan shortly after he got out of the hospital in February 2012. Jonathan was weak after getting out of the hospital and didn’t feel up to walking around the store so he rode in a motorized cart. One thing colitis has in common with other chronic diseases in children, is how helpless it can make parents feel. Due to several of the medications he was on and his new serious condition, Jonathan’s diet became very limited. His new dietary restrictions became a constant struggle for the family as they began to realize how limited their food options were for not only Jonathan, but their entire family as their grocery bill began to exponentially increase.”

“This was the first project I had the opportunity to photograph for a longer period of time and learned what it truly meant to follow the journey of a story. The story I originally pitched to my editor never happened and I was reminded that we can’t try and predict or pre-visualize what we want to have happen in a story. You’ll get frustrated and miss what’s happening right in front of you. Due to various changes in his diet and new medications. Jonathan gained 35 pounds in a four month period after getting out of the hospital – some of which was to get him back to his normal body weight after not eating for two weeks.”

Lottie Hedley February 24, 2014

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Hilty family in Maine over the course of the four seasons in 2011/2012

Lottie Hedley (b. 1979, New Zealand) began her photographic journey in 2010 in Maine after seven years as a corporate lawyer working in New Zealand, the UK and Russia. Lottie attended the Eddie Adams Workshop in 2011, was selected for Center’s review Santa Fe in 2012 and has had her work included in the Catherine Edelman Gallery’s “Ctrl+P” exhibition series for emerging photographers. She is currently based in New Zealand where in addition to freelancing she edits a photography magazine called PRO Photographer.

About the Photograph:

“I come from farming stock in New Zealand and have a keen interest in how we look after the land and the next generation of farmers. While I was photographing another local organic potato farming family the farmer, Jim, had mentioned how he was inspired in some of his practices by the local Amish farmers. After an introduction and some letter writing and meeting with the Hilty family in person they decided I could come and stay with them and photograph their practices as it relates to sustainable living.

Life in the Hilty household works in circles. Food at meals is passed around the table in a clockwise circle; while questions regarding the morning’s bible reading come around the table in an anti-clockwise direction. The seasons impress their own circular influence on the family’s market gardening business and their method of farming cycles the soil through a process that ensures the soil is enriched rather than stripped. Perhaps most importantly, the family’s philosophy on farming for the future generations is according to an over-arching cycle. Their philosophy is to work with the land instead of against it. They don’t want their children to have to deal with problems they’ve created by farming the land to excess.

This picture is a reminder to me that there are little things that we can do to live more sustainably. Even in my own family we would always pick peaches and mum would preserve them. If this project lead to one person looking at their own lifestyle and seeing what they could plant in their own backyard, what they could preserve when produce is in abundance or just what they are doing in general to make things better for the next generation, whether that relates to food and the land or otherwise, the project will have been successful.”

Linda Forsell January 20, 2014

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Aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, Rockaway, New York 2012

Linda Forsell (b.1982, Sweden) is based in New York. Her project Cause of Death (with Kerstin Weig and Karin Alfredsson) documenting violence against women was awarded special recognition in the Swedish Picture of the Year. Life’s a blast, from Israel and Palestine, became a book in 2012, at the same time as it was exhibited in Stockholm, Sweden. The series was one of the finalists of Magnum Expression Award in 2010 and was shown at the Noorderlicht photo festival in 2009. Her work has been published in The New Yorker, la Repubblica and most major Scandinavian publications. Linda has received recognition from the Swedish Arts Foundation, the Lead Awards, Flash Magenta Award and a nomination in Magnum Emergency Fund. She is a member of Kontinent and IBL photo agencies.

About the Photograph:

“This photo is from the small community Roxbury on the Rockaway Peninsula just one day after hurricane Sandy hit. The area was one of the worst hit regions and every single house had water flooding their basements and reaching above the first floor. Many were hit even worse, their homes being swept away by the water that rose and crossed over the entire peninsula from the Atlantic side to the bay side. The rare few who defied the evacuation order during the storm tell stories of swimming or surfing from their homes to the nearest safe spot.

Ted Feimer is part of the heart of Roxbury. On this day, he returned for the first time to see the devastation after the hurricane with his own eyes. There was a pressing air of sadness and uncertainty about the future lying like a blanket over the entire neighborhood. Ted did his best to turn his sadness into energy and was determined to fight for the reconstruction of his home. He walked around trying to begin by consoling his friends. In this picture he met one of his neighbors wandering across the beach trying to grasp the magnitude of what happened and without saying a word they just hugged.”

Erin Brethauer January 13, 2014

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Ginny and Claxton, from the series Autism Camp. Black Mountain, North Carolina 2012

Erin Brethauer (b. 1983, United States) is a staff photographer turned multimedia editor at the Asheville Citizen-Times, a daily newspaper in North Carolina where she has been working since 2007. Originally from Milwaukee, WI, she graduated in 2005 with an English degree from Marquette University and photography minor from the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design.  Since then she has interned with the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram (WI), The Morning News (SC), the Milwaukee Art Museum and has worked with the Associated Press. She was the president of the North Carolina Press Photographers Association from 2011 until February of 2013. Her personal project about Camp Lakey Gap, a camp for people with autism, has been awarded by the Magenta Foundation, FotoVisura, the North Carolina Press Photographers Association and the Asheville Area Arts Council.

About the Photograph:

“Camp Lakey Gap is a residential summer camp for people with autism located in Western North Carolina. I first went there for a newspaper assignment in 2008 and have returned nearly every summer to document the people and try to visualize the different ways these people communicate. When I learned that the Autism Society of North Carolina estimates that 1 out of 88 children born today have some form of Autism Spectrum Disorder, I thought the story was especially relevant. In North Carolina they think the average is more like 1 out of 70 children.”

“This is an image of Ginny sharing a moment with her camper Claxton. She’s trying to coax him out of the pool at the end of the day. I think this picture helps challenge the perception that people with autism don’t make emotional connections with people. Ginny had a great fondness for Claxton and was very perceptive to the ways he communicated with her through facial and body language. They grew very close over their week together, forming a deep bond that was mostly nonverbal. It’s often the fleeting moments like this that the counselors cherish. Here they’re looking into each others eyes which, for Claxton, was a sign of trust.”

Julia Cybularz December 16, 2013

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Christmas, Philadelphia, 2012

Julia Cybularz (b. 1978, United States) earned her MFA from The School of Visual Arts and holds a B.S. in Photography from Drexel University. Her photography and video work has been exhibited both nationally and internationally. In 2007, Julia was the recipient of an Aaron Siskind Memorial grant as well as The School of Visual Arts’ alumni grant. Julia studied under notable photographers Mary Ellen Mark, Andrew Moore and Tina Barney. Her work has been featured in American Photo, on the HBO series “How to Make it in America”, PDN and on Lens Culture. Most recently, she has been selected as a finalist for the Hasselblad Masters, Fotovisura grant, Critical Mass competition and Magenta Flash Forward. She was also presented with the Griffin Award for her series “Breaking the Girl”.

About the Photography:

“This photograph is part of an on-going series titled “The Mathematician” which focuses on my cousin Slawek, a Polish émigré, who is developmentally delayed and has lived with schizophrenia for over twenty years. I made this image of Slawek playing monopoly with his niece during the Christmas holidays. Games, especially children’s games, that involve some form of math, are one of Slawek’s favorite activities and obsessions. The use of photography in this series explores how relationships can be challenged and strengthened through everyday dealings with this sickness. Instead of being singularly explanative, the photographs provide glimpses and fragments, which add up to a collective narrative. One of the focal points of the project is to provide a portrait of Slawek and his relationship to his closely knit family. Children play an important role in Slawek’s life. Children are his playmates and closest confidants. They go on incredible journeys together, sometimes real and other times imagined.”

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