Tag Archives: journalism

Link Roundup 07-17-2010

Before we get to the links, I apologize to anybody that visited the site recently and found it to be infected with a malicious redirect exploit. I became aware of the issue this morning (thanks to an email from a reader) and I had it fixed within an hour. These things happen from time to time, and I appreciate folks letting me know when something is wrong with the site. Now for some weekend reading!

Book Review – 44 Days: Iran and the Remaking of the World

For those who don’t already know, a favorite topic of mine is war and conflict photography. I say “favorite”, but I feel somewhat awkward calling it that… favorites are usually associated with happy things (kitties, butterflies, flowers, sunsets, puppies, etc). No, war and conflict don’t make me feel warm and fuzzy inside, but I do feel that photographs of such situations are vitally important.

Why are such photos important? Because they tell the story of things that are happening to fellow human beings around the world. Because the photographers capturing the images are risking their lives to tell that story. And because the photos are history in the making.

This latest book of images and recollections from photographer David Burnett is nothing short of amazing. National Geographic has a tendency to outdo themselves with the materials they publish, and this book is the latest in that trend.

See the end of this post for a chance to win a free copy of the book.

44 Days: Iran and the Remaking of the World (ISBN 978-1426205132) can be purchased directly from National Geographic or through Amazon.com.

ABOUT THE BOOK

44 Days

44 Days: Iran and the Remaking of the World is a hardcover book containing 224 pages of text and photos (both color and b/w). It’s an average sized book, not too large or too small, measuring approximately 9×10.5″. Needless to say, the quality of the cover, binding, and paper are all outstanding. And the images contained within are equally outstanding.

44 Days

The book covers the history of the Iranian Revolution of 1979 when the Shah was overthrown and the Islamic Republic was born. The major parts of this event took place in a mere 44 days, and David Burnett was there to capture a big part of it. Everything from mass protests, funerals, killings, the fall and rise of power, and everything else associated with the revolution. I found it amazing that one person could capture so many aspects of this event, and I was amazed that he lived through it.

44 Days

Obviously, this is a wonderful piece of photojournalism, but it’s more than that. David’s recollections and thoughts are visible every few pages of the book. This is more than captions on the photos — this is a historic account of what happened day-by-day through the revolution. From start to finish, from city to city, David recounts his steps and recaps the news of things that were happening in Iran at the time.

44 Days

All in all, this is more than just a photo book — it’s a history book. And this is the type of history that isn’t taught in most classrooms.

David Burnett

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

David Burnett is a seasoned photojournalist with over 40 years of experience in the field. He has worked in over 75 countries and won many awards for his photojournalism. After his college days, he worked for Time and Life magazines on many assignments.

David’s work has taken him to the Vietnam War, the Iranian Revolution, and countless other historic situations. He has also photographed every American president from John F. Kennedy to Barack Obama, in addition to reggae legend Bob Marley.

In 1975 David co-founded a new photo agency, Contact Press Images, in New York City. You can see more of his amazing work at his online portfolio.

MY FINAL THOUGHTS

44 Days

For me, this book was an eye opening experience. When I first got it, I scanned through the photos and I was fairly impressed at a first glance. But when I started reading the text, the photos went to a whole different level — they had a deep sense of meaning and importance. The book is also written in such a way that your interest in the subject is accelerated as you read through it.

On the flip side of being overwhelmed with amazing photojournalism and story telling, I couldn’t help but feel like a stereotypical “Dumb American”. This is a subject that I knew absolutely nothing about, a subject that is not taught in typical American high schools. The Iranian Revolution was such a huge piece of modern world history, and I’m a bit disappointed that it isn’t as well known as other historic events of the same caliber. And with the level of anti-American feelings during the revolution, I’m quite amazed that David survived the ordeal. He’s a trooper, that’s for sure.

A great book overall. If you enjoy history, photojournalism, and/or conflict photography, I’d say go ahead and buy this book.

WANT A FREE COPY?

The folks at National Geographic provided me with 2 extra copies of the book to give away here on the blog! I like doing contests for the freebies, but I also like the contests to be on topic with the material. This one presents a difficult situation because not many of us have been to Iran or photographed revolutions. So the assignment for this contest is to curate a gallery from other people’s photos.

Flickr recently announced a new feature called “Galleries”. This allows you to create a collection of up to 18 photos from other photographers, while adding your own comments as a curator. This is a perfect feature for us to test out!

Here’s how you can get a free copy of “44 Days”:

Create a Flickr Gallery on the topic of “Iran” and leave a link to your gallery in the comments below. That’s it! You can focus on sub-topics and genres within the boundaries of “Iran” — things like people, places, buildings, religion, food, clothing, etc. Whatever you can come up with! Here’s a quick gallery I put together titled “Faces of Iran“:

Faces of Iran

So that’s it! Get your gallery curated and drop a link before October 12, 2009. I’ll announce and present the winners (my favorites) sometime soon after.

ZORIAH: A Great Photojournalist

© Zoriah

I have a deep admiration for great photojournalists. The ones who do well have a special gift for capturing real events as they happen to real people. Being able to convey these things to people across the globe through photos and written stories is truly a gift. I’m no photojournalist myself, but I hold those who are in very high regard and their photos are some of my favorites to experience.

© Zoriah

INTRODUCING ZORIAH…

Zoriah is one of these great photojournalists. And what I really love about his work is his ability to combine photojournalism with art — I find many of his photos to be highly artistic in nature. He’s completely independent; covering the issues that he wants to cover. Zoriah is not bound by anyone’s agenda but his own. He chooses to cover some of the tragic and terrible events that mainstream media won’t. But with this freedom comes sacrifice in other areas (especially in the wallet). Even with limited budgets, Zoriah keeps doing what he loves. He also has a very defined explanation of what photojournalism means to him:

I think photojournalism is about producing journalism in a way that hits people right in the heart and their emotional core using the power of the still image to affect people on an emotional level and make them want to change and educate or have some action in a situation.

MORE ABOUT ZORIAH AND HIS WORK

© Zoriah

If you can’t tell by now, Zoriah is a photojournalist and war photographer specializing in documenting conflict, crisis, and disaster. He is an award winning photojournalist whose works have been featured in some of the world’s most prestigious galleries, museums and publications. Zoriah’s clients have included The BBC, Newsweek, The Wall Street Journal, Fortune, ABC News, NPR, Focus and many others. With a background in Disaster Management and Humanitarian Aid, Zoriah specializes in documenting human crises in developing countries. His vitae not only lists photographic achievements and study, but also the in-depth training and experience necessary for working under extreme conditions in some of the world’s harshest environments. (quoted from Zoriah.net)

He’s covered events such as the Lebanon Post Conflict and Cluster Bomb Aftermath, the Gaza Medical Crisis, the Thailand Tsunami, the Bird Flu Pandemic in Southeast Asia, Hurricane Iris, the World Trade Center Attacks, and many more.

© Zoriah

FOLLOWING ZORIAH

Zoriah is currently in Iraq covering the ongoing events via his blog, Flickr, etc.

I would highly recommend checking out each of his sites, particularly his new blog where he combines his amazing imagery with first-hand reports and stories. You won’t find this type of journalism on typical mainstream media. Also note that the photos you see on this post are just a small portion of his work.

FINAL THOUGHTS ON ZORIAH

© Zoriah

This entire post is a bit out of the ordinary for me. I don’t typically feature single photographers because there are way too many great ones out there. But Zoriah actually contacted me several days ago looking for tips and such on his new blog, and he introduced himself as “new to blogging, but old to photography”. As soon as I saw his work, I knew that Zoriah was a very special individual… one of those people who can change the world with nothing more than a camera. And to top it all off, he’s very down to earth and approachable as a real person just like you and I.

I wish him all the best of luck with his current and future endeavors, and I invite all of you to view his photos, read his writing, and take an interest in what he’s doing.

© Zoriah