Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Diversity in documentary photography--photojournalism

This link is to a post written by Stephen Mayes, World Press Photo Secretary for 6 years: One very interesting observation "But the overall impression that I’m left with from the 470,214 images that I have seen entered into the contest in the current decade, is that they reflect a form of photojournalism that is now more romantic than functional" is about the lack of diversity in the subject matter in photojournalism. He goes on "the overwhelming impression from the vast volume of images [in World Press Photo competition]is that photojournalism (as a format for interpreting the world) is trying to be relevant by copying itself rather than by observing the world."

Is the money behind the documentary photography only financing the same old same old? Are the photographers not being curious enough or confident in their own abilities that they aren't sharing their vision? Or is it that the dispossessed make for easier access? There are likely several root causes not the least of which may be laziness.

Here is a link to a speech he gave on May 3, 2009:

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