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Posted 08/17/2018
It’s no news that the print newspaper business is going through tough times and that newsroom staffs, particularly photographers, often bear the brunt of cost-saving moves. Day rates have stagnated, staff jobs are scarce and, in some cases, entire photography departments have been laid off as video, citizen-provided material, even security footage, is often preferred over news photographs on many digital news platforms. Many factors are involved, but the trend has been clear for some time and, hitting close to home, in July 2018, The New York Daily News eliminated all its staff photography positions. On today’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast, we welcome Todd Maisel, a renowned New York City photographer and one of the veteran staff photographers at the Daily News to have lost his job in the most recent round of layoffs. Maisel brings a lot of flavor to our discussion, and his years of experience as a freelancer, a staff photographer, a videographer, and a publisher make him the perfect guest to opine on the current and future state of newspaper photojournalism. Among other questions, we ask him if the days of the “chaser,” the local photographer covering spot news, are over. We also discuss the differences between the type of photos that a newspaper wants now, compared to years earlier, and where they are sourced. Andrew Seng has a different perspective. Still in his twenties, he left a staff photographer job at the Sacramento Bee and moved to New York to work as an independent photographer in the journalism, editorial, and commercial photography fields. Seng discusses the reasons he gave up his “plum gig” to make a new path for himself, how he has found work, and how being independent enables him to work on personal projects. We consider the many new opportunities available on the digital platforms that news organizations now offer, the range of potential clients that want quality visuals for their editorial content, and the need to think like an entrepreneur, not just an employee. Join us for this very topical discussion. Guests: Todd Maisel and Andrew Seng Firefighters rescued a small boy from a raging fire in Red Hook, Brooklyn, June 1993. © Todd Maisel Flooding in Brooklyn caused numerous problems. Police yell at a four-wheeler who created a huge wake where ESU officers were assisting a stranded motorist during the flood. © Todd Maisel A 24-year-old woman dangled 100 feet above the ground from a concrete silo on 106th Avenue in Jamaica, Queens. She was grabbed by ESU officers as she was ready to jump. © Todd Maisel Fifth Avenue after a water main broke, flooding and destroying the street and causing a gas fire. January 1998. © Todd Maisel A 3-alarm fire engulfed three floors of the four-story residential building in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. Several injuries were reported during the battle that brought 165 firefighters. © Todd Maisel Sacramento amateur boxer Angel Rios, 2016 © Andrew Seng Butte wildfire, 2015 © Andrew Seng © Andrew Seng © Andrew Seng Arturo Sanchez, who recently moved to Sacramento from Long Beach, works for the City Manager's Office focusing on transparency in police and fire departments, pictured at City Hall, 2017 © Andrew Seng Todd Maisel © John Harris Andrew Seng © John Harris Todd Maisel, Allan Weitz, and Andrew Seng © John Harris Previous Pause Next DON'T MISS AN EPISODE SUBSCRIBE NOW:   Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 03/29/2018
March 29 is now the official National Vietnam War Veterans Day, set aside to “observe with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities” the commemoration of the war. More important than commemorating a war is to commemorate the service, in some cases the ultimate service, that soldiers gave their nation. For our part, we commemorate with what we know—photography—and on today’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast, we talk about photography created by U.S. servicemen during their time in Vietnam. We begin with David Parks, who, in 1968, published a book about his experience in Vietnam, titled G I Diary. The book includes excerpts of the diary he kept and personal photos he took while in the army. Mr. Parks, who is the son of famed photographer Gordon Parks, dropped out of college knowing that he was likely to be drafted. He saw front-line combat and documented his experiences, in text and image, from the viewpoint of an African-American “grunt.” We speak with Mr. Parks about his ability to photograph in such a challenging situation, about the gear he used, how he processed film, if he considered his work photojournalism, and how his diaries came to be one of the first books ever published about the Vietnam War. On the second half of our program, we welcome Kendra Rennick, of The Vietnam Slide Project. When a friend of Ms. Rennick’s employed her help to organize a collection of photos taken by her late father, a project was born. That project took on a life, and Ms. Rennick started an archive of “slides” taken only by soldiers who served in Vietnam. Many of these images reflect the more mundane aspects of army life, but are a rare glimpse into the lives and concerns of soldiers, some on their very first trip out of the States. We speak with Ms. Rennick about the organization of her project, its future, and the relationships she has developed with the veterans and families who donate their imagery. Guests: David Parks and Kendra Rennick © C.R. Foster, Courtesy The Vietnam Slide Project © C.R. Foster, Courtesy The Vietnam Slide Project © C.R. Foster, Courtesy The Vietnam Slide Project © D Thornton, Courtesy The Vietnam Slide Project © D Thornton, Courtesy The Vietnam Slide Project © D Thornton, Courtesy The Vietnam Slide Project © D.W. Russell, Courtesy The Vietnam Slide Project © D.W. Russell, Courtesy The Vietnam Slide Project © G Huested, Courtesy The Vietnam Slide Project © W. Brown Courtesy The Vietnam Slide Project © W. Brown Courtesy The Vietnam Slide Project © Unknown Soldier, Courtesy The Vietnam Slide Project G I Diary cover, © David Parks From G I Diary, © David Parks From G I Diary, © David Parks From G I Diary, © David Parks Kendra Rennick on the B&H Photography Podcast, ©John Harris Kendra Rennick and Allan Weitz, © John Harris Previous Pause Next DON'T MISS AN EPISODE SUBSCRIBE NOW:   Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 12/01/2017
In the previous episode of the B&H Photography Podcast, we talked about the best-selling, the most important, and our favorite new cameras from 2017. In this week's episode, we look ahead to 2018 with a discussion on "industry trends" and the new technology and photo gear we expect to see more of over the coming years. We welcome back Yaakov Adler and Levi Tenenbaum with their insight on the subject, and we discuss the improving technology of cellular phone cameras, new memory cards, wireless applications, electronic shutters, and even the "draw of analog," amongst other topics. We also mention the current cameras that are on the forefront of incorporating these technologies. On the second half of our show, we continue with our serial segment, "Dispatch" with Adriane Ohanesian. Based in Kenya and covering stories throughout Africa, Ohanesian is the 2016 Anja Niedringhaus Courage in Photojournalism Award winner and a World Press Photo award winner whose work appears regularly in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, VICE, and other publications. After a deadly attack during a photo assignment in Congo and recovering from malaria, Ohanesian has returned to her "normal," which means extended assignments throughout the region covering conflict, resource and migration issues, and in this case, the last male Northern White Rhino in existence. Join us as we get an understanding of the working life and photographic process of a freelance photojournalist. Guests: Yaakov Adler and Levi Tenenbaum; Adriane Ohanesian Just before dawn, IDPs (Internally Displaced Persons) walk along the dirt wall that surrounds the UN base that currently houses more than 47,000 people, in Bentiu, South Sudan, July 1, 2014. Photograph © Adriane Ohanesian A boy flies his homemade kite over the roofs of the tents that house more than 3,000 Yemeni refugees who have fled to Obock, Djibouti, January 13, 2016. Photograph © Adriane Ohanesian Severely malnourished, Farhiyah, age 2, lies on the floor of her family’s hut where she stays with her three siblings and mother who came to the area in search of food and water, in Uusgure, Puntland, northern Somalia, February 18, 2017. Photograph © Adriane Ohanesian The dusty Shabelle camp for people who have fled the ongoing fight against al Shabaab, and also new arrivals who have moved into the city in search of food and water, in Garowe, Puntland, northern Somalia, February 20, 2017. Photograph © Adriane Ohanesian Adriane Ohanesian photographing grave markers of rhinos that have died or been poached inside of the Ol Pejeta Conservancy, in Laikipia County, Kenya Adriane Ohanesian at work in an abandoned gold mine in the Okapi Wildlife Reserve, Congo Levi Tenenbaum, Allan Weitz, Yaakov Adler Previous Pause Next DON'T MISS AN EPISODE SUBSCRIBE NOW:   Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 10/27/2017
Bird photography is a big deal around B&H, and we’re not just talking about the lenses needed to get those wonderful close-ups of warblers, herons, gulls, and raptors. Bird photography is a passion that grabs pros and amateurs alike and seems to not let go; there are very few photographers as dedicated to their craft (and gear) as bird photographers. We are fortunate to have two photographers with us to discuss the gear, technique, and protocols necessary to capture pleasing images of our feathered friends. David Speiser is a member of the Board of Directors of New York City Audubon and has been an avid bird photographer for more than twenty years. He has an incredible body of work that includes birds of all varieties, and brings not only technical excellence to his photographs, but a birder’s meticulousness to his archive. Klemens Gasser is a visual artist who became enthralled with birding several years ago and turned his fixation into an exhibit of bird photographs enlarged to 72 inches across. He brings an artist’s spirit to his bird photography and humor to our discussion, and clearly loves the thrill of the chase. We speak with these two photographers about the gear and apps they use, their shooting styles, favorite locations, and how digital technology has transformed bird photography. Join us for some very practical advice and a fun conversation. Guests: David Speiser and Klemens Gasser Baltimore oriole, photograph © David Speiser Blackburnian warbler, photograph © David Speiser Canada warbler, photograph © David Speiser Great gray owl, photograph © David Speiser Prairie warbler, photograph © David Speiser Red-shouldered hawk, photograph © David Speiser Red-tailed hawk, photograph © David Speiser Snowy owl, photograph © David Speiser Spruce grouse, photograph © David Speiser Upland sandpiper, photograph © David Speiser Common grackle, photograph © Klemens Gasser American bittern, photograph © Klemens Gasser Snowy owl I, photograph © Klemens Gasser Glaucous gull, photograph © Klemens Gasser Saltmarsh sparrow, photograph © Klemens Gasser Franklin’s gull, photograph © Klemens Gasser Painted bunting, photograph © Klemens Gasser Snowy owl II, photograph © Klemens Gasser Snowy owl III, photograph © Klemens Gasser Klemens Gasser, Allan Weitz, David Speiser, photograph © John Harris Previous Pause Next DON'T MISS AN EPISODE SUBSCRIBE NOW:   Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 10/04/2017
Steve Simon is The Passionate Photographer, and in the short conversation we had with him at the 2017 OPTIC Conference, it became clear why. Not only does he exude a passion for photography (and for cameras) but his photographs are imbued with humanity, humor, a wonderful sense of composition, and his talent for capturing the decisive moment. Whether it is street photography, long-form documentary or his wonderful news coverage of presidential campaigns and conventions, his passion is on display. We talk with Simon about a range of subjects, including his first cameras, his popular workshops, and what motivates him to keep shooting. After a break, we return with the fifth installment of our series “Dispatch with Adriane Ohanesian.” In this segment, she recounts her harrowing story of coming under attack while photographing a story on illegal gold mining in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Ohanesian is an award-winning photojournalist, based in Kenya, who covers humanitarian crisis and conflict in South Sudan and Somalia. On this assignment, she had hiked deep into the Okapi Wildlife Reserve with rangers returning to a gold mine that had been cleared of illegal mining, only to be attacked by militia members looking to reclaim their site. Her incredible story involves hiding overnight in a mine pit within earshot of her attackers, fleeing barefoot through the jungle, only to get lost and returned to the mine she had hoped to escape. Join us for this bracing episode, which demonstrates what passionate photographers will do to tell a story worth telling.  Click here  if you missed Episode 4 of “Dispatch.” Guests: Steve Simon and Adriane Ohanesian Photojournalist Adriane Ohanesian at work in the Okapi Wildlife Reserve Photograph © Steve Simon Photograph © Steve Simon Photograph © Steve Simon Photograph © Steve Simon Photograph © Steve Simon Photograph © Steve Simon Photograph © Steve Simon Photograph © Steve Simon Photograph © Steve Simon Photograph © Steve Simon Photograph © Steve Simon Photograph © Steve Simon Photograph © Steve Simon Previous Pause Next DON'T MISS AN EPISODE SUBSCRIBE NOW:   Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 09/08/2017
The title “The Falling Man” has been acknowledged as the name of the photograph of a man falling from the north tower of the World Trade Center during the attacks of September 11, 2001. The image depicts a lone figure falling headfirst against the backdrop of the vertical lines of the twin towers. As an image, it is a striking composition and the casual position of the man’s body bisecting the two towers, has even been described as graceful. These visual elements mask the horror of its immediate context and perhaps add to the upsetting response that often accompanies this image. Unlike other photographs from that day, this image does not explicitly depict carnage and destruction, but it is this image that has been often singled-out as too disturbing to view, too galling to publish. In fact, the image was published by many newspapers on the day following the attacks and was received with such recoil that editors were called to apologize for its inclusion and almost immediately, it fell under a shroud of obscurity, which in the sixteen years since 9/11, has been slowly lifted. On today’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast, we welcome veteran Associated Press photojournalist Richard Drew who took this now iconic photograph. We talk with Drew about his experiences on September 11, 2001, about media self-censorship and about how this photo, which is simultaneously peaceful and deeply painful, had been received, rejected and perhaps now, accepted as part of the whole story and a symbol of all that was lost that day. Guest: Richard Drew Editor’s Note: We have decided to not use “The Falling Man” photograph in our blog post because of its painful depiction, but we feel the conversation we hold has educational, emotional and historical value, especially as we approach the sixteenth anniversary of 9/11. We produced it and present it with the utmost of respect for those whose lives has been affected by the attacks of September 11, 2001, particularly the survivors, the victims and their families, the first-responders and the journalists, who also risked their lives that horrible morning. Assassination of Robert F. Kennedy, Los Angeles, 1968. Photograph: Richard Drew Assassination of Robert F. Kennedy, Los Angeles, 1968. Photograph: Richard Drew Muhammad Ali watches as defending world champion George Foreman goes down to the canvas in the eighth round of their WBA/WBC championship match in Kinshasa, Zaire, on October 30, 1974. (AP Photo/Richard Drew) Frank Sinatra escorts Jackie Onassis to the '21' Club on September 17, 1975 after she attended his concert at the Uris theater (AP Photo/Richard Drew) President Richard Nixon attends a baseball game at Yankee Stadium after his term in office (AP Photo/Richard Drew) Andy Warhol (AP Photo/Richard Drew) Texas billionaire Ross Perot laughs in response to reporters asking when he plans to formally enter the Presidential race. New York City, May 5, 1992 (AP Photo/Richard Drew) Britain’s Prince Charles, during a charity polo match in Mexico City’s Chapultepec Park. February 17, 1993 (AP Photo/Richard Drew) Cuban President Fidel Castro at a special commemorative meeting of the U.N. General Assembly, October 22, 1995. (AP Photo/Richard Drew) Specialist Anthony Rinaldi is reflected in a screen at his post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, April 19, 2017. (AP Photo/Richard Drew) Richard Drew at the B&H Photography Podcast. Photograph: John Harris Allan Weitz and Richard Drew. Photograph: John Harris Previous Pause Next DON'T MISS AN EPISODE SUBSCRIBE NOW:   Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 09/01/2017
On today’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast, we continue our exploration of photographic collaboration with photojournalists Ben Lowy and Marvi Lacar. In addition to sharing a vocation, they also share two children and a life together. Photojournalism is a decidedly independent, at times dangerous, career, certainly not one known for a routine home life, but when domestic responsibilities and children enter the picture, how does a couple balance craft and career with the need to earn a living and the time needed to nurture relationships? More so, when both people are working in the same field, how does bolstering one career cross the line into debilitating the other and how do the individuals comprising a creative couple find ways to support each other’s efforts? Lowy and Lacar bring an animated humor and a willingness to talk about the difficult moments from their lives and careers, and explain how they have come to recognize their best personal and professional attributes, bringing those strengths into a working relationship that continues to evolve. Guests: Marvi Lacar and Ben Lowy From the series "Melting Pot," Marvi Lacar From the series "Melting Pot," Marvi Lacar From the series "U.S. Bases," Marvi Lacar From the series "U.S. Bases," Marvi Lacar From “This Is a Love Story,” Marvi Lacar From “This Is a Love Story,” Marvi Lacar 2004 Democratic National Convention, Ben Lowy Protest at 2004 Republican National Convention, Ben Lowy Iraq Perspectives #1, Ben Lowy Iraq perspectives, #2, Ben Lowy Wounded soldier, Iraq, Ben Lowy Ski Jumper, Sochi, 2014, Ben Lowy Speed Skater, Sochi, 2014, Ben Lowy Great White Shark, 2016, Ben Lowy Seal, 2016, Ben Lowy Ben Lowy and Marvi Lacar at B&H Photography Podcast, John Harris Previous Pause Next DON'T MISS AN EPISODE SUBSCRIBE NOW:   Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 08/11/2017
Structure and limitation is the key to the artistic process. This is the idea that opens our conversation with photographer and publisher Brooks Jensen. In addition to his work as a fine-art photographer, Jensen is well recognized as the publisher of LensWork, the beautiful print magazine (and website) about photographs (not cameras!). We speak with him about LensWork’s “Seeing in Sixes” competition, in which photographers submit a series of just six images with the idea that this limited number forces efficiency and creativity. Our discussion glides to other topics, such as the purpose of art, digital versus analog preservation, and the simple joy of creating and sharing your work. On the second half of our show we return for Episode Four of “Dispatch,” with Adriane Ohanesian. In this segment, Ohanesian talks about the cameras, lenses, and gear she uses in covering breaking and long-form news in Africa. She compares her newer Sony mirrorless to her Canon “tanks,” and offers insight on working in some of the toughest conditions imaginable. Ohanesian also continues to detail her assignment work and, on this occasion, she is in the Democratic Republic of the Congo with rangers combating illegal poaching and mining in the Okapi Wildlife Reserve. She tells of the region and its struggle for resources, and of the dangers, both natural and human, which confront locals and visitors. Chronicling her time with the rangers and her miles-long hikes through thick jungle, she shares thoughts on developing the photo narrative she hopes to relate with understated humor, and prepares us for the next chapter to this story, which ultimately turns quite tragic. Guests: Brooks Jensen and Adriane Ohanesian Previous Pause Next "Shoji – In Praise of Shadows," from Seeing in Sixes Brooks Jensen DON'T MISS AN EPISODE SUBSCRIBE NOW:   Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 04/07/2017
Conservation photography can take many forms, and we will offer our definition, but more importantly, we will speak with noted outdoor photographer Art Wolfe about his definition of the term. After “Al’s Gearhead Pick of the Week,” we are joined by Mr. Wolfe for a segment in which we discuss how he produces beautiful images in the service of a greater cause. Wolfe is currently working on a project on African elephants and the critical need to safeguard their existence. From this topic, the conversation easily flows to the funding of expeditions through workshops and book deals to the work of other photographers promoting awareness on a global scale and photographers tackling local issues of concern to them. Above Photograph © Art Wolfe After a break, we are joined by David Brommer, director of OPTIC 2017-Outdoor, Photo/Video, Travel Imaging Conference, who will give us a preview of this year’s event, held June 4-7, in New York City. The theme of this year’s conference is conservation and the environment, so it is fitting that we pair him with Art Wolfe; however, the photographers who present at OPTIC represent a wide range of styles and concerns, and the topics discussed range from the aesthetic to the technical to the practical. Brommer provides us with a sense of the breadth of this photographic talent, as well as the manufacturers who will attend and festoon their booths with gear for everyone to try. Guests: Art Wolfe and David Brommer African Elephants, Savuti Marsh, Chobe National Park, Botswana: I was in a small boat as these elephants crossed the channel and hauled themselves out dark and slick with water. What I really like about this image is the implied African Elephants, Okavango Delta, Botswana: I set up by a shallow pond and was able to position the camera in a way to capture the width of the landscape Humpback Whale, Vava'u, Tonga: Tonga is one of the very few places you can actually snorkel within close proximity to whales. We had just five days on the water and four of them were just too windy and the whales were very shy. In a more outgoing moment, a whale swam by and eyeballed me. It was extraordinary. Puma, Torres del Paine National Park, Chile. African Elephant, Okavango Delta, Botswana: An African elephant's tusks are used for defense, digging for roots, stripping bark, and fighting during mating season. Previous Pause Next Art Wolfe DON'T MISS AN EPISODE SUBSCRIBE NOW:   Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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Posted 12/08/2016
Continuing with our series of conversations from the Eddie Adams Workshop, we sit with National Geographic photographer Steve Winter to talk about his work and career, specifically regarding capturing images and telling the stories of the big cats of the world. Winter started his photojournalism career in the social documentary tradition and, working for the famed Black Star agency, fate (and fear) pushed him into the world of wildlife photography. He tells us how his path shifted, how he blends photojournalism and wildlife photography and how specializing in one subject has benefitted his career. With many adventures and close calls under his belt, he relates how travel and gear logistics and long stretches away from home can be the hardest part of his job. He also talks gear choices, working with scientists and local trackers and drone photography. Winter’s work spans the globe and includes an ark full of creatures, but he is most recognized for his big-cat photography, which entails long expeditions in mountains and jungles and also the proficient use of camera traps to photograph elusive animals remotely, including the cougar known as P-22, which Winter photographed in its territory—the Hollywood hills.  Guest: Steve Winter All Photos © Steve Winter/ National Geographic A tiger peers at a camera trap it triggered while hunting in the early morning in the forests of northern Sumatra, Indonesia. 2009 With proper protection and enough prey tigers breed easily. This four year old tigress returned to the cave where she was born to have her first litter. Bandhavgarh National Park, India. 2011 A villager honors a slain elephant with incense and prayers, reflecting the Hindu belief that these pachyderms are sacred. This animal was illegally shot with a bullet soaked in acid while it was raiding a rice field near Kaziranga National Park, India. It died of its wounds a few days later. 2007 These men were apprehended while trying to sell a tiger skin near Chandrapur, India. Illegal trade in tiger bone, eyes, whiskers, penises, teeth and other parts for traditional Chinese medicine may generate up to five million dollars a year. Most poaching is done by local people trying to supplement their income. 2011 A leopard drinks at a waterhole where the caretaker of a local shrine lives with his livestock just outside Mumbai, India. 2014 Photographer Steve Winter sets up a camera trap on a beach in Yala National Park, Sri Lanka, in hopes of photographing a leopard that’s known to roam the beach in search of prey.   DON'T MISS AN EPISODE SUBSCRIBE NOW:   Host: Allan Weitz Senior Creative Producer: John Harris Producer: Jason Tables Executive Producer: Lawrence Neves
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