Photojournalism
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Photojournalism Photojournalism Document Transcript

  • Photojournalism “If eyes are the windows of the soul, then photojournalism is the window on the most momentous events of our time”, wrote Richard Stengel, Managing Editor of Time. Photojournalism is a particular form of journalism (the collecting, editing, and presenting of news material for publication or broadcast) that creates images in order to tell a news story. It is now usually understood to refer only to still images, but in some cases the term also refers to video used in broadcast journalism. Photojournalism is distinguished from other close branches of photography (e.g., documentary photography, social documentary photography, street photography or celebrity photography) by complying with a rigid ethical framework which demands that the work is both honest and impartial whilst telling the story in strictly journalistic terms. Photojournalists create pictures that contribute to the news media. History The practice of illustrating news stories with photographs was made possible by printing and photography innovations that occurred in the mid 19th century. Although early illustrations had appeared in newspapers, such as an illustration of the funeral of Lord Horatio Nelson in The Times (1806), the first weekly illustrated newspaper was the Illustrated London News, first printed in 1842.The illustrations were printed with the use of engravings. During the Crimean War, the ILN pioneered the birth of early photojournalism by printing pictures of the war that had been taken by Roger Fenton. Fenton was the first official war photographer and his work documenting the effects of the war on the troops, laid the groundwork for modern photojournalism.[2] Other photographers of the war included William Simpson and Carol Szathmari.
  • Similarly, the American Civil War photographs of Mathew Brady were engraved before publication in Harper's Weekly. Elements of Photojournalism Timeliness : The images have meaning in the context of a recently published record of events Objectivity : The situation implied by the images is a fair and accurate representation of the events they depict in both content and tone. Narrative : The images combine with other news elements to make facts relatable to the viewer or reader on a cultural level. Types of Photojournalism FEATURE PHOTOJOURNALISM : It includes human interests ranging from arts and entertainment, business, science and technology. SPORTS PHOTOJOURNALISM : It covers sports through losses and wins. A sport photojournalist attends games, practices and events. ENVIRONMENTAL PHOTOJOURNALISM : It captures the essence of the subject. It captures a newsworthy figure, in their natural setting. It explains who the subject of the photo is though meaning and emotion. Photojournalist A journalist tells stories. A photographer takes pictures of nouns (people, places and things). A photojournalist takes the best of both and locks it into the most powerful medium available.
  • Photojournalists capture "verbs." They hunt them, shoot them and show them to their readers. Then, they hunt more. Main task of a photojournalist is to give the viewer an image that is truthful and speaks for itself. Golden age The "Golden Age of Photojournalism" is often considered to be roughly the 1930s through the 1950s.[12] It was made possible by the development of the commercial 35mmLeica camera in 1925, and the first flash bulbs between 1927 and 1930 that allowed the journalist true flexibility in taking pictures. The Berliner Illustrirte Zeitung pioneered modern photojournalism and was widely copied. Beginning in 1901, it began to print photographs inside the magazine, a revolutionary innovation. It pioneered the photo-essay, had a specialised staff and production unit for pictures and maintained a photo library. It also introduced the use of candid photographs taken with the new smaller cameras. The magazine sought out reporters who could tell a story using photographs, notably the pioneer sports photographer Martin Munkácsi, the first staff photographer, and Erich Salomon, one of the founders of photojournalism. Other magazines included, Arbeiter-Illustrierte- Zeitung (Berlin), Vu (France), Life (USA), Look (USA), Picture Post (London)); and newspapers, The Daily Mirror (London) and The New York Daily News. Famous photographers of the era included Robert Capa, Romano Cagnoni, Alfred Eisenstaedt, Margaret Bourke-White and W. Eugene Smith. Henri Cartier-Bresson is held by some to be the father of modern photojournalism, although this appellation has been applied to various other
  • photographers, such as Erich Salomon, whose candid pictures of political figures were novel in the 1930s. Behind the Gare St. Lazare” by Henri Cartier-Bresson has been called as the greatest photograph of the 20th century. His most famous photograph is that of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru announcing the death of Gandhiji. His book called ‘Henri Cartier Bresson in India’ is very well known. Photojournalism in India Photography was first introduced to India in 1840, only a year after the announcements of the daguerreotype and calotype processes in France and England. Initially, commercial studios were established in cities such as Calcutta, where an ever-increasing clientele could be relied upon to keep up a demand for portraits. Some amateurs also brought cameras to India, wrote Sophie Gordon. As India was being ruled by the British, British photographers started taking pictures of the country, its scenery and monuments. When the first war of Independence happened in 1857, it was one of the first incidents of war photography in the world. Many political developments were also taking place in India especially around the freedom movement. Photojournalists had no dearth of subjects to take news photographs. Like in the west, development of newspapers led to the growth of photojournalism in India. Readers of newspapers and periodicals wanted to see incidents. Photographs provided them that opportunity. Gradually photojournalism took root in Indian media. Raja Deen Dayal was one of the first notable Indian photojournalists. He was a court photographer in India during the rule of the sixth Nizam of Hyderabad. As he was the only ‘native’ photographer, he has left behind a very impressive record of British India.
  • Among the famous photojournalists who worked then was Sunil Janah. A political activist and journalist, Sunil Janah began to photograph while writing assignments for his newspaper. At the time of India’s independence, Janah photographed the significant events in the country and made a record of the transition from British rule to independent India. His photographs of India’s partition, its people; specially the tribal people as well as pictures of industries and temple structures are very famous. Kulwant Roy shot a series of rare images documenting the tumultuous years immediately before and after independence. He chronicled events like the cabinet mission, which proposed various formulas for independence to Indian leaders. He had close access to Nehru, which allowed him to take intimate photographs of him with various leaders and his daughter Indira Gandhi. In a profession dominated by men, she was the first woman photojournalist. She is Homai Vyarawalla. Her work was first published in 1938 in the Bombay Chronicle, and later in other major publications of those times. She also worked for the Illustrated Weekly of India and during World War II covered every aspect of wartime activities in India. Her documentation of the events of the freedom movement is significant. Among the great photojournalists of India mention must be made of T.S. Satyam (1923-2009). Amongst the photojournalists after Independence, the name of Raghu Rai is most famous. Prashant Panjiar is another successful photojournalist of thepresent times. Born in Kolkata, he is a self taught photographer who has worked for several magazines in Delhi. Among the younger photojournalists mention must be made of Srinagar based Altaf Qadri whose extensive coverage of the conflict in Kashmir has been published in several publications worldwide.
  • News Photography in Orissa Photographs have been published in newspapers of Orissa for long. Before offset printing came to Orissa in mid-eighties, printing photographs used to be a tedious job. Half tone metal blocks used to be made. Even then the quality of printing was not good. Except Samaja and Prajatantra hardly any newspapers had staff photographers before 80s. Hrudaynath Das worked as the staff photographer of Samaja in 50s. He then set up ‘Das and Das Photo Studio’. Umaprasad Mishra also worked as a staff photographer of Samaja. News photography in Orissa came of age after the introduction of offset printing in mid-eighties. Several mainstream newspapers appointed staff photographers. Fortunately for Orissa, there have been journalists who were also good photographers. They took news photography to a new level. Among them were Srimoy Kar, who started his journalistic career as a reporter-photographer of Sun Times, Bhubaneswar in 1984 and went on to become the resident editor of The New Indian Express; and Sampad Mahapatra, who was for some time the editor of Sambad, and presently working as the Orissa correspondent of NDTV. Among the contemporary photojournalists of Orissa mention must be made of Anil Mishra, who started Eastern Press Agency. It is the only photo agency in Orissa with its headquarters in Bhubaneswar. Ashok Panda, who presently works for Samaya (1996-onwards) and an Orissa news-centric website orissamatters.com worked in the past as a professional press photographer for Eastern Press Agency (1984-1995), and The Asian Age (1997-2000). Asok Chakravorty, who presently works for The Hindu in Bhubaneswar and Shivaji Moulik also made their names as good photojournalists.
  • Ethics Of Photojournalism Merriam-Webster defines “ethics” as, “the code of good conduct for an individual or group,” and lists synonyms as, “morality, morals, principles, [and] standards. In terms of ethics in photojournalism, the National Press Photographers Association's Code of Ethics reads, in part:  Be accurate and comprehensive in the representation of subjects.  Resist being manipulated by staged photo opportunities.  While photographing subjects do not intentionally contribute to, alter, or seek to alter or influence events.  Do not accept gifts, favours, or compensation from those who might seek to influence coverage.  Editing should maintain the integrity of the photographic images’ content and context. Do not manipulate images or add or alter sound in any way that can mislead viewers or misrepresent subjects.  Be complete and provide context when photographing or recording subjects. Avoid stereotyping individuals and groups. Recognize and work to avoid presenting one’s own biases in the work. All manipulation of photographs is a violation of basic journalistic ethics. For the photojournalist must capture the truth. This means that the photojournalist must only photograph what has happened, when it happened and not invent a situation or recreate one by moving things around in the picture to make it seem more interesting than it really was. Conclusion The profession of photojournalism as it is known today could change to such a degree that it is unrecognizable as image capturing technology naturally progresses. Citizen journalism and the increase in user contribution and submission of amateur photos to news sites are becoming more widespread.
  • Paul Levinson attributes this shift to the Kodak camera, one of the first cheap and accessible photo technologies that “put a piece of visual reality into every person’s potential grasp”. The empowered news audience with the advent of the Internet sparked the creation of blogs, podcasts and online news, independent of the traditional outlets, and “for the first time in our history, the news increasingly is produced by companies outside journalism”8 With image capturing and transmitting devices becoming cheaper and more user friendly, the trend only can increase. That puts tremendous pressure on the professional photo journalists. They find their domain being invaded by outsiders; and more important for them – their jobs being taken away. However, there is another angle to it. It puts the professional photojournalists in a situation, where they have to improve their craft and skill to survive. It augurs well for the art of photo journalism, which is set to scale greater heights.