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Ian Bates February 28, 2013

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Ohio University, United States.

Club-goers leaving after a fight broke out and guns were fired, Greenwood, Mississippi 2012

Ian Bates (b. 1992, United States) grew up in North Brunswick, New Jersey. In elementary school he received a cheap point and shoot film camera to bring on a field trip to the zoo, but didn’t realize his love for the photograph until later began taking photography classes in his sophomore year in high school. The images became a way to store memories with truth and without them fading away. He is now a junior at Ohio University working on his bachelor of science in visual communication with an emphasis in photojournalism and a Specialization in Sociology. He recently was awarded a Silver in both the General News and Feature categories in the 67th College Photographer of the Year awards. He has worked for The New York Times, Reuters, The Athens NEWS and The Asbury Park Press. Ian resides in Athens, Ohio

About the Photograph:

“I was lucky enough to have an opportunity to spend my summer working with freelance photographer Matt Eich over the summer of 2012. One of the first times I got to make pictures was the night this picture was made. Matt got invited to go to the club for one of the Baptist Town resident’s birthday party so I tagged along. The club was a metal, warehouse type building with mixed color lights out front. The inside was dark with back lights and a mirror across one wall of the dance floor. People were drinking, dancing and having fun as you would assume they would at a birthday party.”

“Then, all of a sudden, there was a weird tension throughout the whole room. Something was up and in less then a minute a fight broke out. Most didn’t want to get involved and backed away to where the tables and chairs were and some went outside. The security guards broke the fight up and kicked the participants out. Minutes later there were gunshots outside in the parking lot. People ran inside the club screaming, knocking over tables and chairs and then the lights were turned on. During the next five to ten minutes everyone stood around waiting to see what would happen next. Two weeks earlier the club had been shot up by the same crew that started the fight with the Baptist Town boys. We were soon ushered out by security guards into the parking lot where there were police officers waiting outside. The image above was from when people were being ushered out of the club. Just as the night began, in an instant, it was over.”