604, 800 : That is how many seconds are in a week. If you consider that it only takes a fraction of that second to take a photograph, you can imagine the number of opportunities they are for a photographer to capture our lives. Yet, most of the millions of images uploaded in a week are either useless or invisible. Here, for your viewing pleasure, we have selected some of the best to enjoy, to reflect, to ponder or to just admire.
1. PDN Gallery
Every year, once a year, the trade publication PDN ( Photo District News) puts their brain and eyes together to select who they feel are the best emerging talents in photography. Called “30 under 30”, it is a bit like an award ceremony for the best 30 photographer that are under 30 years old. Of course, age in photography doesn’t mean much – many photographers didn’t start a photographic career before their 40’s – but nevertheless, it a measure. It’s old enough to have some experience and young enough not to be jaded or commercially polluted.
This years crop is up to par and a great opportunity to see, and learn, about photographers that have something to say visually and could become the next photographic stars of your favorite publication. By looking at this online gallery of the 2011 winners, you will have the feeling that you have discovered them first.
Sometimes you just feel like to leave all the craziness of the ongoing revolutions and civil wars to plunge into some refreshing images that just leave you senseless. Vulture, the culture web magazine of New York Magazine will help you with that. Every months, its photo editors review the production of entertainment images and put up a gallery of the best. No, not the street paparazzi or red carpet images you have already seen a thousand of times in your favorite celeb magazine : Only the best portraits series. This month ( which covers the little february month) is no exception.
3. Mikhael Subotzky
Something photography doesn’t have to be about what happened. It can be about what is there. Mikhael Subotzky’ s work is one of these example. The Magnum associate ( that is the last step before becoming a full member) has decided to concentrate on the fifty-four-storey Ponte City building that dominates Johannesburg’s skyline. He then set upon himself to photograph all the windows from the inside, as well as all the doors and finally all the television screens. On every floor, in every apartment.
Once done, he then proceeded in reconstructing three photographic buildings with the result of his work. The result is fascinating as it the gives the viewer a deep Xray view into the lives of the building. The project is online and can be viewed ( studied ?) at length.
Often, when an event goes on for very long time, it becomes very hard to document it without falling into banality. One needs a set of fresh eyes and many photographers will fall into the traps of using either digital artifacts ( think Photoshop) or relying on plastic cameras.
Louie Palu, a Canadian photographer who has been documenting the Afghan war for the past five years has taken a different approach. He decided to use a focal point of view that is closer to our real field of vision. By using a panoramic camera and stepping away from the live combat zones, he has created a gallery of truer to life images that gives us a better perception of what Afghanistan looks like today.
You can almost feel and smell the exhaustion of the people and the armies that inhabit this land that have not seen a moment of real peace for a very long time.
5. Erik Messori
Erik Messori is a talented photographer, no doubt about it. He has numerous awards and even more publications to confirm it. However, his work on the coal workers of Indian is exceptionally well executed and worth a long detour of your weekly web browsing. It has the kind of intimate approach that will make any viewer feel very close to its subject, while immediately identifying all of the aspects that make this story newsworthy.
Messori knows how to use light, however dim it might be, to its full advantage to punctuate the fines details he likes to emphasis. It also brings a strong comfortable environment of subtly well defined intimacy that conveys the viewer to feel physically closer to the people portrayed.
There is also no reason that while you are there, you shouldn’t look at the rest of Erik’s work.