WBEZ | Photojournalism http://www.wbez.org/tags/photojournalism Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Laid off Sun-Times photo gallery shows 'What You Missed' http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/laid-sun-times-photo-gallery-shows-what-you-missed-108196 <p><p><em>The Chicago Sun-Times </em>terminated its entire photography department. It replaced 28 photojournalists &ndash; most of whom had been working at the paper for ten to forty-plus years &ndash; with writers using smartphones and freelancers if deemed necessary.</p><p>A little less than two months later, <a href="http://www.chicagophoto.org/">The Chicago Photography Center</a> is presenting a tribute to those laid off journalists, and reflecting on the loss to the community and industry. Their short-term exhibit, which kicked off on July 14 and runs through this weekend, is titled &ldquo;See What You Missed.&rdquo;</p><p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/laid-sun-times-photo-gallery-shows-what-you-missed-108196#rob">Rob Hart</a> | <a href="http://www.wbez.org/laid-sun-times-photo-gallery-shows-what-you-missed-108196#michelle">Michelle LaVigne</a> | <a href="http://www.wbez.org/laid-sun-times-photo-gallery-shows-what-you-missed-108196#andrew">Andrew Nelles</a></p><p>&ldquo;This has really turned the photography world upside down,&rdquo; said Heidi Kohz, the center&rsquo;s executive director. &ldquo;We wanted to do something to help and give value to these photographers who had otherwise been dismissed and unappreciated.&rdquo;</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" see="" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Hart.png" style="height: 407px; width: 620px;" title="Rob Hart took photos of friends for the Chicago Photography Center's gallery." what="" you="" /><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F102470425&amp;color=ff6600&amp;auto_play=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="734.4000244140625px"></iframe></p><p><a name="rob">The exhibit</a> showcases the work of 18 of the <em>Sun-Times</em>&rsquo; laid off photographers, who had from June 29 to July 3 to shoot any subject of their choice for the gallery. Over that week, they created 58 images, including joyful photos from the gay pride parade, somber shots at a fire, and quiet moments in a nursing home.</p><p>&ldquo;Killing off an entire department is kind of extraordinary, and a little frightening,&rdquo; said <a href="http://charlesosgood.photoshelter.com/">Charles Osgood</a>, a former <em>Chicago Tribune </em>photographer, who curated the exhibit along with his colleague at the center, José Moré. &ldquo;Anybody can take a picture, anybody can write a story, but not anybody is a writer, and not anybody is a photographer.&rdquo;</p><p>Kohz said the center&rsquo;s traffic has nearly tripled over the last two weeks because of the exhibit. About 300 guests have come through to see the photos, in addition to 300 more at the exhibit&rsquo;s kickoff celebration, making it the largest opening the center has ever had.</p><p>&ldquo;The support was breathtaking,&rdquo; Kohz said. &ldquo;A photojournalist from Boston came through, students visiting from Spain, family members, friends &ndash;&nbsp;it&rsquo;s been very impactful to people.&rdquo;</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" see="" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Nelles.png" style="height: 410px; width: 620px;" title="Andrew Nelles took photos of a 3-11 alarm fire in Bronzeville for the Chicago Photography Center's gallery." what="" you="" /><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F102589518&amp;color=ff6600&amp;auto_play=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p>The <em>Sun-Times</em> layoffs <a href="http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2013/may/30/chicago-sun-times-photography-staff">became international news</a> as a representation of drastic change in the news business.</p><p>Osgood has been an adjunct professor of photojournalism at Columbia College for more than 20 years. In the last five, he&#39;s started to preach the importance of skill diversification. Most of his students won&#39;t be able to make a living as photojournalists anymore.</p><p>At the same time, he said, photography is &ldquo;more valued than ever,&rdquo; at least by the public. Ironically enough, that&rsquo;s largely due to new ways of consuming media through digital technology &mdash; including that pesky smartphone mentioned earlier.&nbsp;</p><p>&ldquo;When people go online, they look at the photo first, the headline second, the caption third, and then finally they get to the story,&rdquo; Osgood said. &ldquo;Photography is what draws you in, and if you&#39;re in the business of storytelling, it&rsquo;s incredibly important to have top quality images.&rdquo;</p><p>But for many, the <em>Sun-Times</em>&#39; decision confirmed the lurking suspicion that journalism&#39;s decision makers are discounting visual storytelling. Kohz said the<em> Sun-Times</em> may have been the first major paper to do this, but they won&rsquo;t be the last.</p><p>&ldquo;I was joking they should have gotten rid of all the writers and just given the photographers a pen,&rdquo; Osgood said with a chuckle. &ldquo;Someone said, don&#39;t give them any ideas.&rdquo;</p><p>The Chicago Photography Center is also planning a lecture series for this fall on the future of photography, and Kohz said she hopes to check in with the <em>Sun-Times</em> group in six months or a year to &quot;see where they&rsquo;ve landed.&quot;&nbsp;</p><p>&ldquo;They&rsquo;ve all reached the point where they&rsquo;re moving on, and are almost tired of the subject,&rdquo; she said. &ldquo;But with this [exhibit,] at least for a moment, it wasn&rsquo;t taken for granted.&rdquo;</p><p>The Chicago Photography Center&rsquo;s &ldquo;See What You Missed&rdquo; exhibit will run through July 28 at 3301 N. Lincoln Ave. Find out more <a name="michelle">information on</a> <a href="http://www.chicagophoto.org/">its website</a>.&nbsp;</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" exhibit.="" see="" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/LaVigne_0.png" title="Michelle LaVigne took photos of her mother in a nursing home for Chicago Photography Center's gallery." what="" you="" /><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F102470427&amp;color=ff6600&amp;auto_play=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><em>Alyssa Edes is an intern on WBEZ&#39;s digial team. Follow her on Twitter <a href="http://twitter.com/alyssaedes" target="_blank">@alyssaedes</a>. &nbsp;</em></p></p> Thu, 25 Jul 2013 17:02:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/laid-sun-times-photo-gallery-shows-what-you-missed-108196 Afternoon Shift: Rahm, Sun-Times layoffs and Congress Hotel strike http://www.wbez.org/programs/afternoon-shift/2013-05-30/afternoon-shift-rahm-sun-times-layoffs-and-congress-hotel-strike <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/time mag.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>On Thursday&#39;s Afternoon Shift, Niala and guests discuss the Rahm Emanuel magazine cover kicking up dust. The Chicago Sun-Times laid off its entire photo department. And guests remember author Rev. Andrew Greely, who passed away.</p><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/afternoon-shift-308.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/afternoon-shift-308" target="_blank">View the story "Afternoon Shift: Rahm, Sun-Times layoffs and Congress Hotel strike" on Storify</a>]</noscript></p> Thu, 30 May 2013 13:14:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/afternoon-shift/2013-05-30/afternoon-shift-rahm-sun-times-layoffs-and-congress-hotel-strike The Perilous Job Of Conflict Photography http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-05-06/perilous-job-conflict-photography-86172 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/0" alt="" /><p><p>The journalists who cover war make up a tight-knit community. And they say they are still sifting through their emotions in the wake of the deaths last month of two experienced colleagues, Chris Hondros and Tim Hetherington, who were killed documenting the uprising in eastern Libya.</p><p>The dangers weigh heavily. So, too, does the knowledge that no story or photo is worth a life. But an assignment involves an adventure and a paycheck.</p><p></p><p>"We all know our luck could run out at any moment," said Stephanie Gaskell, a former war correspondent for <em>The New York Daily News</em> who runs the news site <a href="http://www.TheWar ReportOnline.com" target="_blank">The War Report</a> and considered Hondros both a friend and a mentor. "You have to be OK with it, and then you go to work."</p><p>Both men who died were experienced at covering war. But every day in the field requires carefully calibrated choices.</p><p>"It starts out in the abstract and moves to the reality of the situation — which is confusing, messy, chaotic and very often humiliating," said Bob Nickelsberg, a legendary war photojournalist who spent a quarter-century as a contract shooter for <em>Time </em>magazine, largely in Central America and South Asia.</p><p>"We're not as courageous as those heroes from movies in Hollywood and Europe make us out to be," Nickelsberg said. "We're scared most of the time. And there's reason for that. You have to keep your wits about you."</p><p>Yet there is an unexpected confluence of trends that make coverage of conflict more dangerous at a time when alternative sources of images and footage are sometimes readily available.</p><p>During uprisings in Syria and Bahrain, repressive regimes detained and tossed out Western journalists. As a result, most of the shots and footage capturing the protests and bloody reprisals there are coming from people in the streets themselves.</p><p>Santiago Lyon is director of photography for The Associated Press. He said the footage of Neda Agha-Soltan, mortally wounded by snipers in June 2009 during a crackdown on protesters in the streets of Tehran, became the iconic representation of that popular rebellion.</p><p>"The images of her dying, essentially in front of a cellphone camera, were really important in terms of telling the story," Lyon said.</p><p>Such citizen or amateur journalism has become an increasingly essential part of coverage, especially in areas that are not accessible to outsiders. Yet Lyon says news professionals still serve a vital role in applying journalistic approaches to verifying that those images are what they appear to be.</p><p>"It's very important when that material is picked up by journalistic organizations that it be vetted as thoroughly as possible and that it be put into context as much as possible," Lyon said.</p><p>Meanwhile, combatants are no longer as likely to treat journalists as an irritant or simply a way to get out their message. Now, the journalists are being targeted. Journalists have been attacked in Egypt, Libya, Syria, Bahrain and other countries in recent months. Those with cameras swaying are particularly visible — and thus, particularly vulnerable.</p><p>"In Central America, the first thing you did when you arrived on a story was you would take some gaffer tape — some duct tape — and tape in big letters the letters 'TV' on the side of your car, to identify you as a journalist," said Lyon, who got his start covering conflict in El Salvador and the U.S. invasion of Panama in the 1980s. "Nowadays, that's the last thing you would do."</p><p>Technology has proved to be a double-edged sword. For reporters, it has shrunk the world: They can upload their stories quickly thanks to portable satellite technology. And thanks to satellite phones, Skype, Facebook and email services, reporters can talk with sources and eyewitnesses found in locations too remote, too arduous to reach.</p><p>For photographers, the immediacy of technology also holds true. But it plays out a bit differently. In past eras, they would have returned to bureaus away from combat to send film and photos back to editors in newsrooms. No longer.</p><p>"Journalists are able spend more time in harm's way," Lyon said. "On the one hand, it speeds up the transmission of information from a conflict area. On the other hand it exposes journalists for a longer amount of time to more danger and thus makes the whole thing more risky."</p><p>But every combat journalist I talked to said — despite the risks — it's worth the effort by professionals to try to get to such hot spots.</p><p>"Those snapshots that so-called citizen journalists take are hugely important. But I think that they can't replace a journalist," Gaskell said.</p><p>For her, Gaskell said, the question boiled down to this:</p><p>"Are you able to wake up in the morning and say, 'I'm OK with how I have lived my life up until this moment?' I think that's a pretty powerful thing."</p><p>She is planning her next reporting trip embedded with a military unit in Afghanistan in June.</p><p>And at the age of 60, <a href="http://robertnickelsberg.com/" target="_blank">Bob Nickelsberg</a> is also planning to head back to Afghanistan this summer. He recalls his years in South Asia as particularly bracing because of the complexities of the stories he sought to depict. "It was quite three-dimensional," Nickelsberg said. "You didn't have to go far to see how the legacy of a historical event played out on a daily basis."</p><p>The most dangerous assignments to predict, he said, involved urban violence like the kind that claimed the lives of Hondros and Hetherington, who were <a href="http://www.npr.org/2011/04/21/135581937/2-photojournalists-killed-covering-battle-in-libya" target="_blank">killed in Misrata in eastern Libya</a> by mortar fire.</p><p>"You really don't know where anything is coming from. You can't tell by sound, by wind, by sun — what to expect," Nickelsberg said. "And it's just not possible to watch the rooftop as you're running through rubble."</p><p>Gaskell, Nickelsberg and Lyon joined hundreds of mourners at a recent memorial service for Hondros in Brooklyn, N.Y. Yet even as they grieve the loss of dear friends, photojournalists calculate the risks and, in many cases, head right back to hot spots. They seek to bear witness to war, suffering and repression and to share what they've learned with the world.</p><p>Lyon says all combat assignments are voluntary. In 1995 on assignment in Sarajevo, he was wounded in the leg by shrapnel from a mortar round during intense fighting there. It took six months to heal — and he said he was itching to get back during his convalescence.</p><p>"It's a very intimate thing," said Lyon. "What we're talking about here, in essence, is a relationship — a relationship with danger, a relationship with death, in some cases. A relationship with adrenaline. A relationship with intensity of experience.</p><p>"And like a lot of relationships, to those outside of them, they are a mystery of sorts." Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit <a href="http://www.npr.org/">http://www.npr.org/</a>.<img src="http://metrics.npr.org/b/ss/nprapidev/5/1304710636?&gn=The+Perilous+Job+Of+Conflict+Photography&ev=event2&ch=97635953&h1=Tim+Hetherington,Chris+Hondros,Photojournalism,Editor%27s+Pick,The+Picture+Show,Photography,Digital+Life,Media,World,Home+Page+Top+Stories&c3=D%3Dgn&v3=D%3Dgn&c4=136053477&c7=1143&v7=D%3Dc7&c18=1143&v18=D%3Dc18&c19=20110506&v19=D%3Dc19&c20=1&v20=D%3Dc20&c21=2&v21=D%3Dc2&c31=135571037,135571032,126938587,125399149,97635953&v31=D%3Dc31&c45=MDA0OTc2MjAwMDEyNjk0NDE4OTI2NmUwNQ001"/></p></p> Fri, 06 May 2011 14:33:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-05-06/perilous-job-conflict-photography-86172