Friday, July 27, 2007

McCurry Interview Coming Soon

I am currently editing an e-mail interview with Steve McCurry where we discussed his career and the future of photojournalism. I'm also trying to get an interview with Michael O'Brien.

I just received what, at first glance, looks like a great book by David Hume Kennerly, Photo Du Jour. Kennerly shot an entire year with one camera and one lens, a Mamiya 7 with a 43mm . I will give an in depth review soon.

Also coming up a profile of a photojournalism student working his first in depth assignment as a intern in Washington D.C. and a poll of favorite, not-so-obvious gear and tidbits that make our life easier from photojournalists around the world.

Post your helpful piece of gear here to be added to our poll. Mine, my magellan navigation system, I don't know how I survived without it.

Monday, July 23, 2007

McCurry, O'Brien exhibt in Central Texas

After spending 5 years driving for hours and braving the downtown Dallas or Austin traffic, just to spend an hour or so looking at some great photographs, I now have local exhibits of two amazing artists right in my backyard. (now you know why it's easier for me collect books) Michael O’Brien who has worked as a freelance magazine photographer for more than 25 years, for publications such as, Texas Monthly, National Geographic, Esquire, Life, Vanity Fair, ESPN, Time, Fortune and Forbes has opened an exhibit in the little Texas town of Belton (pop. 15,000) and just 15 min from where I work. Michael is also the author of an excellent portrait book called "The Face of Texas" featuring environmental portraits of some of Texas' best known personalities such as President Bush, Willie Nelson, Michael Dell and George Strait. But, my favorite images are that of some local colorful characters like the Anahuac, Texas Gatorfest Queen of 1989 and Ran Horn, an eccentric artist from Van Horn, Texas. With stories written by his wife, Elizabeth O'Brien this book and showing are on my definite not-to-miss list. The exhibit runs at the Bell County Museum until August 25th.

World reknown photojournalist Steve McCurry also opened a nine month long showing of "South by Southeast" at the Art Center of Waco. Although most recognized for his 1985 National Geographic photograph of a young emerald eyed Afgan girl, McCurry is also the author of several books. My favorites among them include, Monsoon and South by Southeast. While McCurry is one of my favorite photographers, I do have to admit that his 2005 book Sanctuary is not one of my favorites.I find it more a landscape and travel feature of the Temples at Angkor Wat then what I would consider a piece of documentary journalism. While the printing is slightly subdued and book somewhat small in size, the photographs are exquisite but just missing alot of the human emotion and facial expession that I have come to admire in Steve McCurry. For landscape, travel and those interested in Asia, esp. Angkor Wat it is a must have, but for documentarians I would pass this one up for South by Southeast or Monsoon.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

War: USA - Afghanistan - Iraq, by Agency VII

I almost thought I recieved a package of bricks in the mail yesterday but instead it was my anxiously awaited copy of WAR by Agency VII, 416 pages of the current conflict in Iraq and Afghanistan shot by some of the greatest photographers of this century. James Nachtwey, Lauren Greenfield, Ron Haviv, Christopher Anderson, Alexandra Boulat, Gary Knight, Antonin Kratochvil, Christopher Morris and John Stanmeyer with Peter Howe, Peter Maass, Remy Ourdan and David Rieff all contributed to this mega-masterpiece of photojournalistic art. At 13"x11"x2" and over 8lbs filled with over 220 images this book demands several days of inspection. The epic begins on September 11th, 2001 with photographs from the World Trade Center bombing then onto the White House and national reactions. The book continues through the plight of the Afgan and Iraqi people with insights to American military forces training for war and into the conflict itself. The images not only document the war itself ,but, in true form of the great photojournalists of Agency VII, also show the impact this conflict has had on humanity. Build, printing and layout are top notch, with my only criticism of the book being that the captions are way too small and some pages require that the book be turned sideways to read. With book this size that can be a little tricky. Otherwise this book is a must read for any photojournalist.

for more images from Agency VII go to

Feel free to post your own review of War