Monthly Archive for December, 2011

Valerio Spada – Gomorrah Girl

Valerio Spada

Gomorrah Girl


It’s about adolescence, choices and chances in a land of Camorrah (the name of the Mafia in Naples).

On March 27th, 2004, Annalisa Durante, at the age of 14, was killed in Forcella, a Naples area under the Giuliano clan’s egemony.

Annalisa and two of her friends were in front of her father’s small store, leaning on a car, talking with Salvatore Giuliano, a young Camorrah boss, then 22. Two killers on a motorcycle and uncovered faces pop out of a side street and open fire. Their aim is to kill Guiliano, who hides behind the car and starts to shoot back at them. The two friends of Annalisa find a getaway on the rigth side in a small street, while Annalisa runs in the opposite direction, where the killers are driving away.

One of the three bullets fired by Giuliano hits Annalisa in the head, immediately she falls lifeless to the ground. Salvatore Giuliano was charged for homicide and is serving 24 years in prison.

This photographic journey starts from Annalisa’s father, Giovanni Durante, who still works in the same store in Forcella. Since that day he brings breakfast with milk at 9 every morning to his daughter’s grave.

Annalisa was buried along with her cell phone, which was her father’s wish, since she used to call him five times per day, every day. Generations of wrong choices and mistakes that have ripped families and whole communities in this region apart.

In this book there are portraits of girls whose destinies can still change if not the destiny of the area in which they are growing up. Annalisa was one of them. “Gomorrah Girl” shows the problems of becoming a woman in a dangerous, crime ridden area.

Adolescence is almost denied, at 9 they dance, move and make themselves up as tv personalities and dream to become one of them. At 13 or 14, very often, they become mothers, skipping the adolescence which is lived fully everywhere else in Italy.

I think I’d like to make a series of books on this, and keep shooting in the same area for all my life.




Born in 1972 in Milan. After some years of occasional works in fashion and commercials, directed some music videos. For the last 4 years he’s shooting in Naples and self published his first book, in March 2011. Currently lives between New York, Paris and Piacenza.


Related links

Valerio Spada



I took this picture the day after Christmas . I was playing dominos with my mother, when I noticed the light hitting just right on her wedding day picture. A very small simply framed b&w shot from a random off the street commercial photographer in San Francisco where my parents were married without ceremony as my father went off to war. Not an unusual set of circumstances for a couple of Iowa farm kids who fell in love in high school and took what came their way. I was born in San Francisco two years after this 1942 picture.

For 59 years these two had the most amazing relationship. For real. Alan and Maryanna met at Moville High School. She fell in love with  him because he was tall, handsome AND he had a car she says.  Oh yes, their parents became friends too, lived nearby, had same life. So how many reasons do you need?

My father passed right in this house on Christmas day 2000, family gathered to say goodbye, about a year after my mom and I got into this now 12 year old super competitive dominos marathon. We keep score. In detail. She is 6 games up after all this time. We are a game playing family, with me losing most games most of the time. I travel the world. Lots of adventure. Yet hanging here, with family, is THE  place to be. I have never missed a Christmas at home,  often leaving “important” assignments to do so.

Right after I took this shot, my mom said “Oh David, you had better move that picture out of the light. It might fade”.

I don’t think so mom, I don’t think so.

G.M.B. Akash – The Bitterest Pill – A New Danger for Child Sex Workers in Bangladesh

[slidepress gallery=’gmbakash_thebitterestpillanewdangerforchildsexworkersinbangladesh’]

Hover over the image for navigation and full screen controls 




G.M.B. Akash

The Bitterest Pill – A new danger for child sex workers in Bangladesh

play this essay


800 women and girls live and work inside the fortress-like brothel in Faridpur, central Bangladesh. Many of them are underage, and most receive no pay because they are chhukri – bonded workers. That girl as young as 12 should be condemned to a life of sex slavery is bad enough, but they also face a new horror, one that could snuff out any chance of a future they might have had.

The horror is a steroid called Oradexon, a drug identical to one used to fatten cattle for market. The girls are given Oradexon by their madams in order to make them look older and more attractive to prospective clients. One of its side effects is water retention, oedema, which can result in a ‘plump’ look that is considered attractive by some Bangladeshi men.

The drug is highly addictive and has severe long-term health implications, impairing the kidneys, increasing blood pressure and interfering with normal hormone production.

Nodi 15, is one of many girls who use the drug. She says she doesn’t have another name – ‘I’m just Nodi – it means River’ – and she has been in the brothel for two years. Many of the girls here have been sold by their stepmother or even their own mothers – and some are second-generation sex workers, born to a prostitute and an unknown client. ‘I started taking the cow drug a year ago, and I take two tablets a day,’ Nodi says. She thinks it makes her look healthier. ‘The customers like us to look healthy. I got a little plumper when I started taking the drug.’ The existence she describes is a miserable one. ‘How can I be happy here? God knows – there is no happiness here,’ she says.

In a conservative country prostitution is will of fate. No one knows the Story of those faceless girls who may be sold by their boyfriend, husband or parents. No basic right, having no admiration for own self & torture of uncertainty made them unvoiced. Whenever I met those young girls I tried to be one of them. They have no dreams; they only live in reality which is killing them ever.



My journey to the world of photography began long ago. For years I have been travelling widely, covering various social issues faced by the lesser known people, particularly in my country Bangladesh.

My work has been featured in many major international publications including: National Geographic, Vogue, Time, Sunday Times, Newsweek, Geo, Stern, Der Spiegel, The Fader, Brand Ein, The Guardian, Marie Claire, Colors, The Economist, The New Internationalist, Kontinente, Amnesty Journal, Courier International, PDN, Die Zeit, Days Japan, Hello, and Sunday Telegraph of London.

In 2002 I became the first Bangladeshi to be selected for the World Press Photo Joop Swart Masterclass in the Netherlands. In 2004 I have received the Young Reporters Award from the Scope Photo Festival in Paris, again being the first Bangladeshi to receive the honor. In 2006 I was awarded World Press Photo award and released my first book First Light.


Related links

G.M.B. Akash

A photojournalist’s blog

Laura El-Tantawy – Cairo

Reda Abdelaziz Mohamed, 19, is seen before and after his injuries. He is seen a few months after earning his diploma in Tourism and Hotel Management, when he was 17, and a week after he lost sight in both eyes.

photograph by LAURA EL-TANTAWY

Reda Abdelaziz Mohamed is not crying.

His left eye constantly weeps, his right, blinded forever.

Nineteen-year-old Reda (Arabic word meaning ‘contentment’) was shot in his eyes on November 19, 2011. He was in Mohamed Mahmoud Street in central Cairo to support protesters in an ongoing battle against security forces off Tahrir Square. Reda was not throwing rocks at police — he was kneeling down to pick up a protester’s dead body when he was shot. “I don’t remember feeling anything. I ran and knelt down to pick up a dead body. Next to me stood a police officer. Suddenly I was thrust backwards and I have not seen anything since.”

As the story of a new Egypt continues, it’s extremely hard not to tell the story of people like Reda and hundreds others who have suffered the life changing consequences of fighting for freedom and dignity. Last month alone almost 50 people died in violent clashes on Mohamed Mahmoud Street and at least 1,000 others were injured. Most suffered pellet wounds to the head and eyes, some died of suffocation from excessive tear gas. The Ministry of Interior denies using live ammunition and tear gas against protesters on Mohamed Mahmoud and claim a “third party” is responsible. No one has been punished for killing and injuring protesters.

Almost 10 months have passed since I stood in Tahrir Square to celebrate Mubarak’s resignation — the best day in my life. It is hard for me to see a new Egypt given nothing seems to have changed.

Egypt post January 25 looks and feels exactly the same as Egypt now: corruption, failed policies and mistreatment of the general population remain standard procedure. This is the reason for a constant upheaval of emotions and anger among protesters who founded the January 25 movement that ousted former dictator Hosni Mubarak. On Saturday (December 10), Tahrir Square was reopened to traffic after nearly three weeks of a sit-in demanding an end to military rule and introducing an elected civilian government. Many of the protesters have moved camp to a sit-in outside Parliament, but everyday their numbers are dwindling.

Pro-democracy activists say they are being slowly exterminated in the same way as they were during Mubarak’s rule. Some have been secretly kidnapped and tortured and others are being put in jail to undergo military trials.

Freedom silenced?

The consequence has been resilience and determination to finish what started on January 25.

Reda says if he ever manages to see again, he would return straight to Tahrir. His parents, who never took part in politics, say they will join him, so does his uncle and aunt.

One casualty of Egypt’s unfinished revolution has given birth to at atleast 10 activists — revolutionaries — who are ready and willing to join the frontline.

I left Reda smiling, talking to his fiancé on the telephone, but I walked out, I noticed his left eye softly weeping.

I wondered if he was crying.


38 Responses to The Wall as of December 19th

  1. Gerhard says:

    Phenomenal! Have a safe trip back!
    Happy Holidays to the whole team!

  2. Charles Peterson says:

    Great looking “wall.” Lots of fantastic images not seen before. I get the feeling that there are still many for you to “discover” as the edit begins in earnest – as some fall out of favor they might be replaced by some overlooked in the intensity of being too close, or as the “story” matures. Fun process….

    I like the police car (albeit with different type treatment – maybe at the top for that one) and the beach ball for covers with the bejeweled hand around the shoulder a close runner up. The Yemanja photo would make for a great back cover to contrast the front. Actually the hand around the shoulder with the Yemanja for the back make a great pair – similar gestures but in entirely different milieus.

    To be frank, my least favorite pictures from the month I’ve seen are the dress shopping ones – they look really posed to me, and not posed in the sense that the other posed ones are obviously posed and therefore work in a direct aware manner. My 2 cents (for now) :)

  3. ch13 says:

    there are some photos in there we haven’t seen before – looks great, love the editing. I had a great time following along David…always, always something to learn. And just an fyi, your Rio mag motivated me to finally get on with creating a magazine for some people I spent some time with earlier in the year – they loved it – and I got it done before xmas! I’m looking forward to the book.


    Chris H

  4. Herve says:

    Have a safe trip home, David, catch some sleep and hopefully, the workshop is not over, since there is much to learn from the process between now and the book. That was the idea too, no? (cannot remember)..

    Merry Xmas to anyone in Brazil who got close to you by less than a foot and more than a minute!!!

  5. jsinclair says:

    Great learning process for me! It’s been informative seeing how you approached this.
    In one way, it’s simply restating what you’ve tried to teach your students all along but some of us…me…learn by seeing it done. One thing that stands out is how much weight some photos take on when paired with others. I love your stand alone work and many of your images have that power, but when they are combined with others…the layers your’re building really work for me! Love what this is becoming!

  6. Carlo says:

    Great looking wall….and all of it only from this trip. That is almost hard to believe!
    Really really looking forward to the book. I was in the bookshop last night and came across divided soul. Saw your Brazil photos in there and these do not look the same. True to what you say about not repeating yourself.
    Safe travels and hope to hear from you soon!

  7. eva says:

    Yet another wall, plus glimpses on ‘Wrap Party’.. I admit, I’m rooting hard for some of the pictures to make it.. will be interesting to see the final edit..

    As for the cover, while the carnival pictures are great, esp. like the one with Renata and Roberta, Rio and night and carnival is such an obvious combination that I, if it was mine, would avoid it.. but it is not, and that’s just good so.. really looking forward to see what a little time will bring..

    Hope you packed your socks, it’s winter on this side of the globe!!

  8. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Phenomenal. Unbelievable, quite frankly, and I’m speechless (for a change). Impossibly hard to select down, to edit. I hope we’ll be in on that process and if not, that you’ll have a show in London as well as New York and Sydney!!! :-)

  9. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    An not forgetting a BIG show in: RIO DE JANEIRO (maybe to coincide with the Olympics?)!

  10. Frostfrog says:

    Never seen a wall like this before.

    The question that keeps bothering me is how do I incorporate the lessons learned here into trying to put some kind of cap on the really rather immense but still terribly incomplete package of work I have been creating in the Arctic and encapsulate it into the book that very much needs to be made, soon.

    I have no idea. No idea at all.

  11. Milli says:

    Frostfrog- print them out and pin them up ….alllll of them :)
    and then take a shot of that for your blog. I do not joke! seriously would love to see that.

    (ps. I am still hunting through my old natgeos for FEB’82.
    You may be getting a visit from me if I find it …I will need your signature on it:)

  12. Frostfrog says:

    PS – David – the odd thing is that when I was in NY at the loft presenting you with the projects I am working on and want to complete, my Arctic work never factored into the discussion at all. I guess that is because I think it is an obvious part of me, whereas the things I presented to you mostly no one knows about.

    But when I think about, really, to the larger it remains mostly unseen. Not even you really have any idea. I should have brought it up at the loft. I need to figure it out.

    Milli – February ’80.

    Come and visit me anyway, whether you find it or not. I can sign my book for you. And a couple of issues of Uiñiq Magazine. We can go out to dinner and you can meet my wife and cats. We all be very happy to have you here.

  13. audrey bardou says:


    Thank you! You are such an inspiration*

    Big hugs, audrey

  14. Milli says:

    FF- so glad for the correction, you saved me some heartache:)
    & Thank you for the invite! I love snow :)

    I can’t stop reviewing this wall and all the earlier posts. A feat.


    as far as i am concerned, our discussion of your work has just begun..please make me aware of any work you think i do not know, or have not critiqued…let’s go back over your motives, aspirations etc…sometimes this all comes out in class, sometimes later…that is why i tell all my students, theirs is a class that goes way beyond the scheduled week….let’s talk soonest please

  16. EVA

    unlikely a Carnaval picture would be the cover..i am sure everyone knows which cover i will pick…don’t they?

  17. Carlo says:


    “i am sure everyone knows which cover i will pick…don’t they?”


  18. eva says:


    All I know is that of all the pictures we’ve seen so far I have my favourite.. no idea what’s still up your sleeve though..

    And talking about that, it would be interesting to know how this month has changed your idea of the book.. what I mean, you have pictures from previous trips, I guess there are far more from this one (in numbers) that you would have expected.. so I wonder if there will simply be a major number of pictures in the book.. or, and I’m prone to believe this variation, that also of the pictures you previously had put in that fantomatic 85%, that there’s been a change, perhaps not so much in terms of percentage, but in different choice.. putting in some you left out of the edit, and now leaving out perfectly great photographs because they do not fit the ‘One Night In Rio’ theme.. and, if so, that leads to the question: what will be of those ‘leftover’ photographs?

  19. Frostfrog says:

    Will do, David. And soon. They are very flawed and probably too much for you to look at in their entirety, but for starters I will send you my latest copies of Uiñiq magazine along with a few thoughts. Thanks.

  20. Panosskoulidas says:


  21. Jenny Lynn Walker says:


  22. Yalda Pashai says:

    I feel so attached to this blog in the last month and I’m pretty sure this is not just my case. It feels sad knowing the RIO blog has come to an end! I know this is just a beginning of another step in RIO project, but for us audiences, this past month have been an amazing experience. Is there any chance you could continue this blog and take it to the next step of making RIO? I would love to know what’s next?! Now what?

  23. vivek says:

    the one above the tube station ….is my choice for cover ….. honey bee sunglasses and a hat ……….

  24. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    “Hot Cotton Candy” is my top favourite among the images presented on the wall that are selected as tentative covers (those with “One Night in Rio” on them although I’m not keen on the font). It’s such a clean image with lots of space for the title and the image itself impacts on the meaning of the title – taking it from being one night in the literal sense to it being the start of “a story” akin to “once upon a time” but with the time being centered around one night. A COOL image: ZEN FRESH!

  25. Frostfrog says:

    Oh, Panos… there you are.

  26. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Will keep my personal favourite a secret… :-)


    oh yes, i understand your reservations about what you call the “dress shopping” pictures..we call that series the “mannequin” series and hence the intentional super posed look….some of the wall pics are just “place holders”..this wall is the trunk of the tree…it has branches….i did a lot of “mini stories” inside this overall night in Rio..sometimes a branch becomes part of the trunk…i am not sure about the mannequin series which is about 8 pictures i think….may drop it…may keep just one…may keep none of them…but for sure they led to other interesting evolutions…


    that is for sure my inclination at the moment…could change my mind, but i don’t think so…i figured everyone would imagine that to be my choice…type fonts have not been decided…this is just dummy type…you must realize we did all of this at the one hour photo shop!!!

  28. VIVEK

    yes, this is a “sleeper”…love this too..i had it in my original little piece i did for Look3…i did a 250 run mini tabloid portfolio…not sure i see it as a cover, but might try to dummy it up…the picture definitely grows on you…

  29. EVA

    well all changed a lot on this last trip…you must remember that before the trip the book was just RIO…a tale of one night sort of came up when i signed in magic marker the little brochure i did, but never thought about it seriously for the book until this time…the title could still change, the cover has not been picked, but the basic thrust is the imaginary (or not!) tale of one night in Rio…

    i am going to do large panels with many pictures for the exhibition..large contact sheets and large groupings with no borders presented as one picture….i have been wanting to do this for a long time…this is the opportunity….i will do this four or five times i think…the rest of the show will be single large prints…so single very large prints mounted flush and off the wall ….and say 4-5 large collections of prints presented as a “single”

  30. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Amazing there was time to put the title of the book on the photos at all! One among the mannequin shots – Candy gazing at the dress/the bright light – is intensely powerful, atmospheric and stirring to the mind (and it made me laugh at myself).

    Okay, I have to go buy a couple of bottles of Bucks Fizz as a Christmas present… but shaking an invisible bottle of bubbly right now… spraying it all over the desk, out of the window and everywhere! Congratulations AND thank you so much! :-)

  31. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Just one… because I can’t go to Christmas at my brothers family and give nothing in return. Like you said, it’s give and take, a balance..

  32. eva says:


    Yes, I definitely can imagine what the show will look like.. was flipping through the whole theriobook archive, scrolling top to bottom and backwards, interesting also visually.. do you realise the amount of pictures you produced, the almost 140 posts without counting the comments you put up over the past 30 days.. amazing.. and yes, I know you DO realise.. : )

    Still.. those pictures that don’t fit.. I hope you at least will have them up either on Magnum or your site.. and not buried in the harddrives.. also for an economical reason, you can’t sell things people don’t know it exists..

  33. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    “you can’t sell things people don’t know exist…” How true! LOVE you Eva! x

    DAH: I shared the link “men in pin-up poses” on Per-Anders P’s wall this morning. I hope it will be considered for inclusion on Burn magazine! The full series includes the photographer himself!! It’s so cool, a classic!

    Season’s Greetings everyone! Hope to get t meet you! xxx

  34. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    PS Please send my best wishes to Laura (LET). I would like to have added a comment on Burn magazine since I have been following the Arab spring revolutions pretty closely on the news throughout the year but, my account remains closed. My thoughts are with ALL who are fighting for freedom, for their rights and dignity – standing up for what they believe in. It is tragic that during Egypt’s first “free elections” in decades, violence continues to be perpetrated by the security forces against protesters who can see that the military has NOT relinquished its stranglehold on power since the fall of Mubarak. Here’s an interesting article with some background on this theme both relating to Egypt and other Arab nations:

  35. eva says:


    I think this comment of yours would be better placed on either facebook or twitter or on, under Laura’s project, where you can add a comment even without being a backer, and reach her directly.

  36. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Thanks Eva! It is a direct response to the comments on Burn.

  37. eva says:


    This is a closed site, as you know.. if it was me and I wanted to let somebody know something, I’d do it directly, since the possibility exists, and the subject matter has nothing to do with this site here.. but that’s me.

  38. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Thanks Eva. I may do that but I expect she occasionally looks into this blog and believe we usually receive the information that we are “meant” to receive. It was just a general comment and since this is one world that we live in, the news is a matter that concerns us all. No story exists independently, in fact, all stories are connected, not only around the world but across all time (as are we all).

    Merry Christmas, sister! x


86 Responses to DONE…

  1. eva says:

    Safe travels.. so hard saying goodbye.. but you’ll be back..

  2. JohnP says:

    Thanks for this month, your time and insight David.
    Have a nice flight, looking forward to the book and exhibit. And will come back here a hundred more times to fish out all the little things that surely have been missed.
    All the best.

  3. vivek says:

    safe travels ……. look fwd to d book …..cheers

  4. eva says:

    Museum of Modern Art.. sounds like a good plan :D

  5. eduardo sepulveda says:

    boa viagem, muito obrigado!!

  6. David McGowan says:

    Rock on!

  7. Frida says:

    Safe travels!

  8. lostart says:

    Congrats! If you have time, let us know how it worked for you. Did you have enough people sign up to cover your costs? Was the interaction helpful/useful/worthwhile? Did it affect your work? Impressions about the experience? Would you have done anything differently.

    Thanks for sharing! Bon voyage!

  9. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    What a great end to this whole on-line experience – the wrap-up party and this last image with Luiz Camilo, Head Curator of the modern art museum! An exciting and magical end.

    You are phenomenal DAH! Travel well!


  10. Carlo says:

    I’m going to miss the updates.
    Buen viaje y descansa. Lo necesitas.

    All good things come to and end.
    Thank you!

  11. pAtrIcIO m. says:

    DAH: Have a nice trip back to the US. We will missed Rio wheather, parties, wall, shooting etc…
    Jaja, the curator picture is fuuuuuuunny. It only happens in Brazil!! Can’t imagine that in France…

    Viva Rio, Viva The Book, Viva those nights, Viva DAH, Roberta, and the rest of the crew.
    I can’t say “Viva Brazil” ’cause I’m from Argentina… and friend would kill me…

    PS: Switch to BurnMagazine right now. Great experience here.

  12. eva says:

    THE lesson?

    Dream big, believe it and work your butt off!

    The curator taking off prints isn’t funny, it’s THE RESULT of the above lesson!

  13. paul says:


    Thank you! I do hope you realize what this trip has meant to many of us. This has been a life changing experience and Rio is going to rock the world of photo books.

  14. paul says:

    Roberta and Renata…

    Thank you for the amazing example of your loyal, undying, inspiring enthusiasm on this blog.

  15. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Dream big, believe it and work damn hard for it. Exactly, Eva. This is the recipe. Time to get my nose to the grindstone on the heels of this uplifting and inspirational expose. May Rio rock the sox off photo books in 2012 and long into the future.

  16. chinaski11 (César) says:

    It was a pleasure to follow the last part of this project. Very, very interesting to see how DAH works.
    Many, many thanks to him because it´s no normal a photographer with his reputation (a magnum photographer!) shares his work with everybody with such sincerity and immediacy…
    And thanks also to his beautiful and professional assistants. THANKS
    Thank you for sharing this story that has not left me indifferent.
    Abrazos y gracias desde España a todos!

  17. paul says:


    Oh I saw you as the brightest fire in the Rio night, my favorite muse in this astounding story. I can’t wait to see you shinning bright in this book.

  18. miro says:

    HELLO to all of you, I’m Miroslav (28)
    (I know some of you ever since Road Trips, but never introduced myself)..

    This workshop was like a novel… now it’s over and I feel sad, but I am happy at the same time, ’cause that whole was a big lesson for me… absolutely priceless!
    So I wanna say:

    THANK YOU, MR. DAVID ALAN HARVEY to let me be part of your trip!!! You keep the fire BURNING!!!

    Thanks to all the contributors.

    Hugs, Miro :)

  19. Arif says:

    David, Roberta, Renata, and Candy,
    A very big thanks from me as well. I am with all others who will miss this as the first thing to do every morning (Japan is 14 hours ahead) and this addiction will be hard to let go. I learned a lot over the past few weeks and got many new ideas to implement for my project. Thank you for sharing everything and I am sure it will make a big difference for so many photographers. Have a very safe and very happy holiday season with your loved ones.

  20. JOL says:

    I went to your loftworkshop(2), with the big question.
    How to make street photography a work ?
    And You give me a 4 week answer !
    Thanks DAVID.
    Thanks ALL.

    Love Jonny

  21. jhonydh says:

    Thank you David for the best workshop! Thanks you girls, you are wonderful! Look forward to Rio book

  22. gclindsey says:

    Thank you David! It was great to see this book develop.

  23. Jim Powers says:

    A wild ride in a psychedelic bus! Probably the best $1.99 I’ve ever spent. Safe travels.

  24. Roberta Tavares says:

    I just arrived after scouting David to the airport. And while I watch him leaving, he is trying to make me laugh predicting the end of my lines. Tears .And even that seems emotional exacerbation, an example of overestimated sentimentalism cliché, I wouldn’t avoid them.I owe them, I’m proud of being dragged to those feelings while waiting in the gate. In that moment, I’m the cliché itself. Tending to the predictable and agreeing that exposure seems a valuable option. Tears. I have this last month so vivid in details, it seems so recent once it’s easy to get distracted in time when you are so absorbed, focused,committed. 30 days were gone and the realization came with the goodbye. David, Renata, Candy were my closest example of a successful marriage. We made it. 30 days of intensity felt in several levels building relationships : intimacy, stress, arguments, learning, celebration. Specifically in theriobook, it needed to come from inside with the right atmosphere, balance, mutual understanding to reach somewhere-something-someone outside. And the results came. Every single day I was sure that David, and hopefully our collaboration were doing something bigger than any initial expectation. I witness the right persons, the right colors, the right situations and when they come together is almost an unbelievable ballet if it isn’t David ‘s camera giving them sense in reality. Watching an artist creating his next greatest masterpiece, to be there in the middle of the process (“watching Picasso painting” as Tony Skater once described), to be allowed opinion and space, to know so well the effervescent mind behind and the meaning of that expression of art to his practice, that is priceless. It is the privileged addicted place to be. I’m aware of it and uncountable thanks to David for having us so close, for the patience and care, for each advice molding the best of me or the aspiration of it. Thanks for his constant generous gratitude display leading us to this space, to have our names here, to be introduced to an audience I respect so much for putting art community in such high standard and who have my total attention for the weights on my way of thinking and the new dynamic of perspectives . It is a honor and so rewarding to receive your lines and the consideration of each one of you. That’s the maximum of recognition I could wish.The prize. David while reading the comments says that “there is nothing more worth than to know you changed someone life, to be a influence or bridge for inspiration. It pays the hard work, the struggle. So, thanks David, Renata, candy, and you guys, the commentators, for have changed my life this month .

  25. wendy says:

    big hugs…
    tears here too…
    what not to love???
    embrace it all…

  26. Roberta Tavares says:

    Addictional Notes are a super star of this project.That wouldn’t be the same without you
    -Carlita- you were one of the best surprises
    -Eva – such admirable woman, as mind, as thinker, as supporter
    – Paul- Your last comment Abracadabra in the previous post fits perfectly and it is such a pleasure to read your comments. There is your strong point of view followed by sensitiveness,care and opening .And Thanks Paul for your words to me and Renata. It really touches us
    -Patricinho;I’d also never say “Viva Argentina”, but you’ll hear me saying “Viva Patricio”
    -Gordon,nice to have you here.Im with you on this one. Civi..I know you are there,I can hear your heart beating from here. Sing please!
    -Jenny “Rio rock the sox off photo books in 2012 and long into the future”. I definitelly agree . I bet on that
    -Arif,JOL and Mero- statements like yours are kind of fuel driving this project
    – jhonydh- thanks for the sweet words. We tried not making David so crazy. I failed many times:)..So thanks for the “wonderful”
    – Jim, your opinion means a lot, a lot and it has us happy cause I know you arent easy to please or to convince(this is a compliment)

  27. Roberta Tavares says:

    Wendy,you had such a voice along this month!So optmistic, positive, heartful, warm (are you sure you arent a carioca? :) We needed one Wendy around as refugee,energy,smiles…Happy we got you!

  28. Gerhard says:

    Roberta, your comments throughout this past month were a most valuable addition to seeing the results of what David, with the help of you all, his team, was able to accomplish. In fact, what you shared was a key ingredient in the process, the process itself, with all its emotions, that goes into making great art. And the context, including all the situations and participants, from which art comes is the foundation without which it is not possible. So big congratulations are due to David for this accomplishment, but certainly also to you and all the collaborators for facilitating it, analyzing it, and sharing it with us. The ability to watch such dynamic work evolve over an entire month, from far away, is a real first, especially because of the interactivity that went on. And I think the glimpses we got were very rich indeed to inspire us in our own work!

  29. David McGowan says:

    Aww, Roberta… how nice.

  30. mike peters says:

    lovin’ all the good energy!

  31. Frostfrog says:

    When I saw curator Camilo taking down the wall, I got that sad feeling when something good come to an end. But then, I know you will soon pop back up with something else. Maybe now you can also inject some more life back into burn.

    It has been so quiet and still there since you left this time.

    Oh – and tomorrow, I will finally begin my little, much-delayed, series on my experience at your loft. After all this time, you would think I would know just what I want to do with it and what I want to say.

    But in all this time, I have had no time and so I have no idea. Maybe it will be good, maybe it will be bad. The immediacy will be gone, but then all projects soon lose their immediacy and some still stand.

    Safe travels.

  32. Roberta Tavares says:

    Gerhard,Im so flattered, not only result of your thoughts (alone they’d make the job), but who these thoughts are coming from. You seem to understand so well the creative process , the artistic keys to achieve something beyond the ordinary way to face the whole ,to do and to have what takes…the defining line to the extraordinary, to choose what to use in your favor. It needs a lot of sensitiveness, awareness, opening, and passionate view to have it so right and find the right way to share it. So, I repeat: It’s really flattering having these thoughts from you

    David M..thanks so much..very kind! always the nice perspective of a nice guy

  33. eva says:


    You are a great mind with a most generous heart, a rare combination! You wrote on Burn, I think, that now you know what you want to do. This is just another lesson coming out of this thing that was given the name of workshop.. it is yes, about photography, how to approach and develop an essay, how to work with subjects and cameras and whatnot, but to me, that’s the minor part here, important, but minor.

    Not that much of a great mind on my side, for sure much much less generous than you.. a thinker, yes, that I can agree about.. that is why I realized very early on that tangible collaboration and support here was crucial.. I was VERY worried it would be a burden to keep up theriobook site, for David, and therefore also for you all who would have to support him on yet another level, and be a safetynet. It could have turned out as a give give give and emptying from one side, so filling in and giving back was the only way to make it work as a circle, as a spirale up, high up.. and it worked. A big thank you from me to all who did realise this, came out of silence and made tangible.. it is not easy, I know that, usually I hold back.. but this was not the time..

    Tears. Yes. Of course. This is not fiction, this is real. Fool who’d think not. : )

  34. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    A breath-taking pink sunrise on this cold winter’s morning… tuned into the Rio blog… Roberta’s lines from the journey to the airport make me happy… what not to love?!

    “He who loves, flies, runs, and rejoices; he is free and nothing holds him back.” ~
    Henri Matisse

  35. Haik says:


    You are crazy – from an idea to a book.
    All of this, besides being a lesson on the secrets of your approach to the work you produce, it is also a step forward in all photography.
    You have invented social photography, a connected photography. You have added a whole new chapter to the ages old process and I can bet you will soon be copied.
    And sorry for not having “recent comments” a la burn :) . It had to be a comment soup, a la RIO.

    You can come in, see it, and leave leaving an impact. What can I say?

    Without your help I would have been in deep ____. You were crucial.

    What you have done was fundamental to say the least. Thank you.

    I owe you $3.something for the hard shipment of digital goods you would never receive in your shiny mail box :) . I am buying you a beer … Hope to meet you someday.

  36. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Yes, it would be great to hear from Anton on here and DAH too after he has had some R&R and time to reflect on the whole Rio and Rioblog experience. And let’s not forget that David has other books in the pipeline – at least two underway I think?!

    How about a flashback to the blog that got things rolling 3 years ago at around this same time of year I believe – from the original “Road Trips” headed with this picture of Laura el Tantawy who has gone on to achieve great things and I believe her blog of travels around Egypt starts soon, if not already underway? “Road trips” led to “Burn”, and “Burn” led to “Rio” this “social photography network” as Haik put it. In this link, a Happy New Year message from 2008 from the maestro himself including work by Sean Gallagher winner of the first EPF grant who has also gone from strength to strength. DAH is a force in the industry to be reckoned with! :-)

  37. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Yes, it would be great to hear from Anton on here and DAH too after he has had some R&R and time to reflect on the whole Rio and Rioblog experience. And let’s not forget that David has other books in the pipeline – at least two underway I think?!

    How about a flashback to the blog that got things rolling 3 years ago at around this same time of year I believe – from the original “Road Trips” headed with this picture of Laura el Tantawy who has gone on to achieve great things and I believe her blog of travels around Egypt starts soon, if not already underway?

    “Road trips” led to “Burn”, and “Burn” led to “Rio” this “social photography network” as Haik put it. In this link, a Happy New Year message from 2008 from the maestro himself including work by Sean Gallagher winner of the first EPF grant who has also gone from strength to strength.

    DAH is a force in the industry to be reckoned with! :-)

    Copy and paste into the browser, this:

  38. vivek says:

    many thanks Roberta and haik ……….

  39. rafaelhappke says:

    Thank you all for all this inspiration…comments, development process, examples, doubts, feelings, things that did not work, things that did work, all of that simply confirm that what really matters in not the end but the process of build the whole thing…I am also sad that the blog is coming to and end and for sure i will come back again and again to read it again and try to get more and more from this unique lesson…Not only David but all the crew and blog visitors add a lot of positive inputs to this blog…thank you all!

    Rafael Happke

    PS.: I would not mind if DAH could add some more status of how the things about this work/book is going till the book is on store shelfs :) Let´s see :P

  40. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Home is where the heart is!

  41. Mike Rawcliffe says:

    Thank you David and everyone,


  42. i am just changing planes in Miami….i will come back as soon as i get home to answer any questions…many many thanks for your interest…yes, this was definitely a one of a kind experience for all of us….no way to bottle this one….well, it does give some ideas for future work models, but this was the ONE for sure…

  43. Carlo says:


    So touching reading your report.
    Can’t thank you enough for helping put all of this together and making it run smooth!
    An achievement all in itself.
    All of you were like “The Dream Team” from the olympics!

  44. andrew sullivan says:

    Thank you all for such a deep learning experience this past month! It’s just the right energy to take into the New Year.

  45. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Yes! :-)

  46. HAIK, thanks a lot but without you we would actually have sent emails between us ;) you are the man,who makes this infrastructure work. a special applause for you.

    this was a one of a kind experience to me. in the beginning, it was like light speed, and I thought I am not able to catch up with David’s speed. Wow, what an energy. Overall, it was a very inspirational experience for me, and even I am not travelling since quite a while, I think I shot the cover for my own story – 5 to 9 – during these 4 weeks of online workshop. Viva!
    So, I have to thank all of you, for the positive energy, the collaboration and inspiration, which was beamed from Rio until cold and snowy Bonn :)

    Civi, you can sing now, please!

  47. Roberta Tavares says:

    Haik…you’re a genius. You worked so hard with David, believing in the project, giving everything to build a tool to put in practice and to make reality this new model of “social photography network”(great definition).If it isnt that,since the beginning,details and adjustments, we wouldnt have the right space to direct our enthusiasm and turn it out in collaboration.You have a big fraction of blame here :)

    You have such particular signature in this workshop.It makes us feel you so close , the understanding, the questions and points,the interest,sense of humor.David says whatever you seem to be by your writing is exactly the man you are. So, you are one of the good ones and happy having you here

    We consider you part of the crew,and how many times i instinctively had my silent gratitude ready to you while reading your comments.Today it comes loud -THANKS-And you are more than welcome in Rio

    Eduardo Sepulveda
    Such a pleasure having your presence and portuguese notes makingus feel at home, as someone can read us so accurately as identification on behavior, culture, response.Esperamos te encontrar logo aqui no Rio. As portas estão sempre abertas para você. Obrigada pelo apoio

    The journey itself would loose the magic if it was straight plan from start till start over, the begining,the ending without being able to bump into the ones who make us stop in the middle,to replan again,to gain energy, to relax and enjoy the coordinate, to change or to like another direction,the joy ,the pushing and the freedom. You were aways included in this “the ones” list too

    Waiting already for you! We love you but put yourself in front of your Mac and write some notes to tell you arrived safe and you are already missing us and Rio! :) yes..As predictable …separation anxiety and the first morning seems so nonsense and empty.Crazy! A month shared with the best leader, menthor, friend and what more to say about you as professional, as photographer. How to recover from that?A beautiful chapther was written. Let’s wait for Carnaval!

  48. Roberta Tavares says:

    I just read your notes right now. I couldnt say enough thanks to you , cause that is not the first time you come out with heartwarming,kind and optmistic deferences. It means a lot to me, to us, to theriobook. It make us feel we reached the right people, and we did a good thing or a differet one. It also makes the idea, the process, the result,worthier enough to keep going.Evolving,provoking,rousing, evoking. Nice to meet you here

  49. Roberta
    I’m very touched by your comments here, what a lovely soul you are.

    I’m sure in the next week you will by doing laundry, petting the cat, hugging your mommy, and trying to come down from the incredible high you must be feeling.
    This has been a very unique experience, I’ve been thinking how personal the book will feel to all of us who have been here. I can’t wait to see it. I also can’t wait to see what you come up with next. As always, you’re an incredible inspiration.

    So,..Christmas shopping all done?

  50. Roberta Tavares says:

    We dont know how… but you always manage to be helping and supporting David and crews directly, indirectly, or even in silence. You’re always there and it’d be hard to express how special you are because of that. Hope you know that, hope you can constantly listen our “thanks Thomas”(it is always there too)

  51. Roberta Tavares says:

    And Gordon…I was on my way to say the same about you…”what a lovely soul you are”.I would say thanks to you for putting up with my English(the mistakes and jumbled confusing setences sometimes)and for the patience and attention when my posts tend to be long and tiring. Specially for understanding my pleasure and the point at all in my attempt to report (That way, I hope the English mistakes become forgivable)

  52. Carlo says:


    Although the internet tends to be a cold place and it’s hard to read “between the lines” (no facial expressions to see sincerity) your vibe here made this place so warm!

    Likewise it was great to meet you here.
    In my own way I feel like if I know you and your sister Renata and Candy through David’s photographs.

  53. Gerhard says:

    A very fine trio in Rio!

  54. Renata Tavares says:

    I’ve been a loyal reader all the posts and comments here since the first day it was launched. I’m also a silent reader. You can notice that is my first public message. Maybe because of some insecurity about my English in a territory full of native english speakers,thinkers and smart minds , or maybe because you all did such a great job, that what i could say wouldnt be so necesary or add more than what you were already bringing here. Besides of that, Roberta’s writing is like reading my mind. Today it is different, cause Im so touched by the nature of the messages here carried by the end of this wonderful phase and the expectation in the next one. I really want and need to say Thanks. I owe to much to David, to be there everyday, to help somehow even Arts and Photography isnt my professional area. To be close of my sister and witness so much hard work and things being developed and walls being fulfilled and things that happened in front off my eyes that i couldnt believe, but david’s camera recorded all of them. That was a magic time. I didnt regret to have had my vacation after two years non stopping work, based on the time David would be in town. I knew it would be so much fun, and at the same time inspiring,and to spend my time with my sister, to help her (even im not professionally qualified for that..only if someone got hurted or in pain, or got some disease..what not happened..Hold on..David fell in the table in his devotee times taking pictures of the photos in the wall and he somehow broke all the glass..when i arrive he was like a fetus inside the table ‘s wood structure.It took me 30 sec to believe in what happened and to say something “-David, is your ass ok?” Something hurted, cut or bleeding?” David was fine..not even a scratch and bursting out laughing. Classic DAH in the last day with the head museum curator knocking the door ahahah ) There is no price for that. I never had a more intense time than that.Competing with those amazing moments, just days like today, reading these warming comments ,having my name here with David and Roberta .Thanks so much guys for making us feel so special!

  55. eva says:


    Such a pleasure to read you!! Thanks for writing, and never ever worry about English, if the natives can’t decipher we’ll help them out, reading Roberta and you is heartwarming :)

    Ok, so Paris was a glass door, Rio is a glass table.. wonder what’s next.. well, bandaid is on the strobe.. uhmm.. wonder if there’s a reason to that, always handy, just in case!

  56. Renata Tavares says:

    And David, thanks for all the sick jokes specially in the breakfast,your pearls and wisdom, debate about the female universe (When you write the book “Inside the female’s brain” I’m the first one going for it, for being the man who more saw me naked in the name of the great art and being the most trustful, respectful, gentle man and photograper(who could imagine that? ahahah So proud amigo). For helping my super Roberta in what matters the most, and for being our greatest friend! We love you

  57. Renata and Roberta, no worries about your English. As a unilingual I always feel in-adequate. When I read your posts, the voices in my head have an ever so charming Brazilian accent.

  58. Renata Tavares says:

    Thanks Eva. You are one of the reasons I think this comment section is so wonderful. And bandaid, how we never thought about this joke? That’s a good one. Glasses and spilling cofee.Never saw anyone drink and spill so much coffee on furniture, floor,tables. Funny disasters moments!

  59. Jeff Hladun says:

    Why Eva, have you forgotten David also broke the glass ceiling by conducting this experimental workshop? Also, what about his shattering of the glass walls, and the way he demystified the creative process for us? (Well OK, maybe only a little bit of demystification.)

    I just hope the glass of his lenses will stay whole, pure, and unbroken for a long, long time to come!

  60. Carlo says:


    You are not an image anymore now we have a voice!
    Nice to read your impressions….your english is perfect. BTW english is not my first language either ;-)
    That glass table story is priceless! Scary but priceless.

  61. Frostfrog says:

    Roberta – thank you for the good words, given to everybody, including me. This will sound silly, but yesterday I hurriedly left a comment without reading others. Today, I came back and read. And now my eyes sting and water. And it was confident specifically that first brought that water to my eyes, although I feel touched all around. Somehow, we who frequent here and on Burn really are not only a community of sorts but a family.

    When you told me what David said, I could picture him so clearly and I felt but one thing – love. In seeking out the help and advise of a master, as I have sought David’s one does not expect to necessarily find the kind of thing that David has shared with all of us here, and, subsequently, we have shared with each other.

    Yet, that is what is here. I want to name everybody like you did, but I fear I would leave someone out.

    What I am wondering is, where is Civi?

    Civi, we need your words! This experience cannot come to an end without your words! Other than David himself, you are the great dispenser of love and community on this forum – not a bad word for anybody. Just love and consideration.

  62. Frostfrog says:

    “And it was confident specifically…”

    Roberta, this was supposed to read,

    “And it was your comment specifically…”

  63. Roberta Tavares says:

    Only David and The Rio Book to allow me more time with Renata in one moth than what I had in those last two years. None was more helpful,handful, fun, party queen,the last one stop dancing,organizing food,decoration, my lists, my papers,and constant advices, and still ready beautiful when David needed, thefirst one at david’s door, taking care everyone as Renata did. Resinha (known as Renata) I love you so much sis

    FROSTFROG:you only endorsed what i mentioned and thought about you.Sweet…

    And CIVI and PANOS..where are you? So important to know you are here, the expectation that your adorable lines will come.Make that happen ! Please? :)

  64. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Thanks a million Haik!

  65. Roberta Tavares says:

    Gordon and Eva..thanks again for making us feel so welcome.And Gordon, it is a strong but sweet brazilian accent

    Jeff..How couldnt I extend another super thanks to you for all the enlightening artistic input inside the contents, context and accessory tracks for better visual digestion? I reflected a lot reading your comments and opinions

  66. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Viva sisters!! xx

  67. Mikolaj says:

    Thank you DAH for sharing with us this great photographic adventure. I will miss it. I’ll definitely come back to see it and read it again from the beginning to the end.
    Roberta, Renata, Candy- you’re gorgeous.

  68. Herve says:

    The last month has shown that we do not need to be in North Korea to have our own Great Lea…DAH! :-)

  69. jhonydh says:

    Maybe before we got parted we should know each other better. Let me start with myself. I live in Jakarta, Indonesia. Age 51, photography as hobby, have two children age 18 and 11… Not impressive right? :D

  70. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    I will miss it too. I hope we can somehow be involved in the sequencing/editing stage.

    Love to all!

  71. eva says:


    Why get parted? Even if this would be the last post here (I do hope it is not), there’s BURN one click away. Not the same of course, not the same intensity, could not be, no way to keep going forever like this, but still photography, discussions about and around our passion, lots to learn not only about pictures, but life and the world (just look at the last post about Egypt)… worth to check out the site for sure, David’s other baby.. and keep in touch and get involved..

    Hmmm.. I wonder, what was the first frame David took on the northern hemishpere..

  72. eva says:


    Still thinking about what you wrote.. still not sure, but you could be right.. or not?

  73. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Burn is an amazing on-line magazine being a showcase for photography and a FORUM for photographers to learn and share. But the Rio blog is/was mesmerising in a different way, being so connected with the passions and life and work of the ONE maestro each day..

  74. Frostfrog says:

    Yes, Panos, too… where are you, Panos? …with Civi, perhaps?

    If so, please care of each other…

  75. eva says:


    Civi is traveling, chasing the sun.. but I’m sure we’re all in Civi’s big heart : )

  76. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Eva wrote: “Hmmm.. I wonder, what was the first frame David took on the northern hemishpere..” Ditto.

  77. ALL

    for all of us in Rio and for all of you this was just the damndest thing….electric…vibes in all directions….from us to you , from you to us….i am still answering a few questions under the last wall post…and i will make one last post here from home to answer any more…but yes yes this just worked …whenever something really cool happens our inclination is to try to repeat it…but i am not so sure we could ever do it….this was a one of a kind…perhaps we print this whole month out as something useful for others…i do not know..we will see…now i just need to rest…i did not sleep for the whole month as you can imagine…if Christmas was not upon us, i probably would still be there…but you know the deadline is always a good thing…forces one to completion..given too much time and things might not be the same…the clock running out is the thing we hate the most and yet the thing that makes us friggin MOVE….love it!!

    you all have been just terrific…and honestly a PART OF IT FOR REAL…we all knew you were there… so much fun all around….

    peace, Happy Holidays to all…big hugs all around….

    cheers, david

  78. Jordan Weitzman says:


    Welcome home! it was truly an amzing ride. This was one of THE BEST learning experiences for any aspiring photographers. I have not commented much, but have absorbed everything and have just taken it all in. Thank you for giving so much of yourself back passing it on to the next generation.

    I am sure the excitement that comes from the actual EXPERIENCE in the past month (and few years) is enough soul food to keep you going for a while…Not only for you, but for everyone that has been involved in it and following along…My question to you is that now that you have put in all the HARD work, assembled all of your raw material, and have the major framework for the book: What is the plan now in terms of getting it published? It seems that the next stage is just as important as the last three years of work considering it is THE BOOK itself that you get to hold when all is said and done, right?



  79. Panosskoulidas says:

    im just pissed coz i made it to the fountain and i managed to stay thirsty..
    i almost made it to Rio but bureaucratic bull/visas passports etc stopped me at the gate..This last month was (and still is) all about family to greece, in the States etc..but but but another part of MY family (Roberta and the amazing RIO CREW )ARE still in magical RIO..
    yes yes..our family, my family that thanks to DAH is expanding!
    big thanks to all..but biggest THANKS to Roberta…She is bigger than life, bigger than Pele…
    viva Roberta…see u soon…!!!

  80. Panosskoulidas says:


  81. pouria says:


    Thanks to you, your friends, and theRIObook’s commentators for this thirty days! I had a lot of fun during this time, learned a lot, hopefully, and laughed out loud, a lot.


  82. a civilian-mass audience says:

    I AM HERE…and THERE…as EVA says…I am traveling up,up and high…
    I am crossing waters…

    LOVE,LOVE and RESPECT for ALL of your amazing good spirits…


    YOU are all in my heart…I am smiling when I think of you…
    and sometimes I laugh out loud…and when I laugh I fart…I guess it comes with the
    I am so happy…no words to express my feelings…
    only this I have to say…

    one day you will all come to your civilian’s house and the rest …will be in History…!!!

    VIVA amigos…and don’t forget…WE ARE ALL BURNING together…
    your civi

    P.S Spread the news…like garlic on fresh bread…:)))))))))))))))))))

  83. Jenny Lynn Walker says:

    Safe travels, Civi! I think we are all on a high! Almost too high…

    Did Bob Black post a round-up comment?




Yes, three years ago right about now I launched Burn Magazine as an evolution of my Road Trips blog. I as the publisher and curator, and out of a pool of eager helpers, Anton Kusters became the creative director/tech guru. Together Anton and I allowed Burn to evolve in its special way, flying by the seats of our pants. Chris Bickford, Tom Hyde, Erica McDonald, David McGowan ,Eric Espinosa,  and Andrew Sullivan were all on hand at my place in New York to help launch Burn. We were drinking, smoking, laughing and working really hard to make Burn a reality. Sleeping bags all over the floor. Ideas were popping up all over. Everyone contributed. Kelly Lynn James came up with the name Burn. I knew when I read it, that was it. We all did. Anton came up with a logo design I liked. Tom Hyde secured our domain name. Game on.

In the last three years on Burn (and 1 yr. prior on Road Trips)  we have given away $52,500. in grant money (tax exempt donation status through Magnum Foundation), published two limited edition print magazines Burn 01 and 02 featuring legends and emerging photographers alike, paid photographers for original work published here on Burn , and have done it all with reader support. Lean and clean. We thank you for this support.

Any help you can give Burn in 2012 would be most appreciated. If every reader here donated 50 cents a month, we would be functional in the business sense. Right now a very few of you give a whole lot. The $15,000. EPF grant that we have awarded three times and a new one coming in 2012 is supported by a handful of generous donors. Same for the payments to photographers.

My Riobook online workshop which just ran for a month with a buck99 paywall worked. This was not a profitable venture of expenses against income if you just look at it narrowly , but I learned a lot. It can only be described as a rather magical experience for all of us. It was like when we started Burn itself. Audience participation. I did what I do, yet the audience jumped in with opinions, critique, and I answered all questions put to me. Everyone was happy (almost everyone) and I was able to produce the One Night In Rio book, or at least a major part of it (see below a sample of the working wall).

Few knew about this effort , yet I still had a paying audience. With content on the net.  I think there are many ways to educate, inform, and yes entertain. I am just trying to help get some things done right in this now helter skelter world of photography. I refuse to believe that the world of serious photography is either over nor that talented photographers cannot be compensated. I might be wrong, but I will go down swinging and trying new ideas or old ideas done in a new way…Whatever works.

I do not want to be big, I just want to be good. I have had enough success now online to be able to garner nice support for my work and for Burn, yet again it is those who put in such long hours for me like Anton, and Diego, and Michelle who need just a bit of help. Burn  is a labor of love.

Frankly, a labor of love is what I want to buy!! Anytime and every time. A house, a car, a meal , you name it…if it is a handcrafted personal labor of love, I want it!!  So, that is what we do here. Our print magazines, our books , our workshops, will always be small in numbers, always limited one of a kind,  and always done with care…Sure we will make mistakes. Yet, our intent will always be a perfection.

Well, almost. To take the picture above  my good buddy at the Outer Banks  Frank Brown and I had a fun afternoon. You can imagine what led up to this shot. Hey it is Christmastime. Don’t you wish you had been there? I live in a wooden house. Need I say more? All is just fine as it turned out. Popping another cold beer, getting a little crazy, first day back home from RIO (see below) .

I truly wish all of my loyal audience the most joyful holiday please. Forget the commercial stuff. Well at least minimize. Relish your friends and your families. Stop by my place for a cold one. Some of you will. Fire going, under control, and always a nice place to hang.

Tamas Dezso – Here, Anywhere

Tamad Dezso

Here, Anywhere

The map of Hungary is speckled with capsules of time. During the political transformation twenty years ago, as the country experienced change, some places were simply forgotten… Streets, blocks of flats, vacant sites and whole districts became little self-defined enclosures, in which today a certain out-dated, awkward, longed-to-be-forgotten Eastern European feeling still lingers. These places seem to be at one with other parts of the city, but their co-existence in time is only apparent; Each place fades in accordance with its own specific chronology, determined by its past. That what remains is then silently reconquered by nature, or enveloped by the lifestyles of the generations of tomorrow. Of the original inhabitants, who’ve never fully integrated with society, soon only traces will remain, until they, too, will inevitably disappear over the course of time.

I do not observe these mini-universes in the hope of recording them in their entirety, but I rather try to capture the essence of these worlds by elevating certain chosen details of this disappearing existence. The series, begun in 2009, examines the typically transitional period and symbolic locations of post-communist space which, due to disinterest or thoughtlessness, is slowly vanishing, and fading into images. But for the time being, they are still around. Here.

Here, anywhere.




Tamas Dezso is a documentary fine art photographer working on long-term projects focusing on the margins of society in Hungary, Romania and in other parts of Eastern Europe. His photographs have been published in The New York Times, National Geographic, TIME, GEO, Le Monde Magazine, Ojo de Pez, Polka Magazine and many others.


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Tamas Dezso


Shooting here in Rio is almost over. Actually I think it is over. I only have about five days left here and those days are mostly going to be taken up with organization. Yes, there is back end organization which is just as important as the front end. Since ONE NIGHT IN RIO is coming fast, I must be constantly on it. Between now and March when the printing for the book will be done, I will have to be paying close attention to many things. The basic concept, the basic flow, sequencing, final choices, is happening now. On location.

There will be a time to reflect as well, but the raw immediacy of doing it NOW is i think a good thing. For sure making prints now and having them on the wall is a very good thing. There is no way I could think about this as a book or show from just looking at pictures on a computer screen. They are too disconnected that way even if all the “good ones” are on one folder. Not the same as the tactile experience. Even the young people around me who only really know the computer experience are looking at prints on the wall as if prints were some kind of new invention. Everybody likes hard copy.

Four weeks ago I just had RIO as a working title. I knew of course, and the purpose of this last trip, that the diary approach was what would happen. The more visually literate evolution has evolved from just daily shooting, looking at the wall, thinking things over and well just bursts of energy that turn into ideas, a print goes up , moved over here, the light comes in the window just right, somebody says something that triggers something else and bam you just know hell THAT’S IT!!  the whole book, this whole two years off and on of shooting in Rio will come down to one mythical night. Will it be a complete picture of Rio? No. It is getting narrower by the minute.  It was only about a week ago that I knew it was over. Done. Finished. The book was done. I had it. For better or worse just over.

Stuff I wish I had thought of on the first day, I am just now thinking about. Why couldn’t I have come up with some very obvious things right at the beginning? Why do I have to be at the end for some things to reveal themselves? Just doesn’t seem right, but yet that is the way it is. The way it always is. At least for me.

So a cotton candy day will turn into a mysterious night. No big deal. Not much to it. Pretty simple structure/plot. Just one book. Only one look. Not definitive. But you will know what I was thinking and it will have authorship and it did get done.


Amnon Gutman – The Promised Land

Amnon Gutman

The Promised Land


In June 2002, the government of Israel decided to erect a physical barrier to separate Israel and the West Bank in an attempt to minimize the entry of Palestinian terrorists into the country. This has partially solved today’s terrorist infiltration problem but has caused grief and pain to innocent Palestinians in every area in which it was constructed, along the 1967 Green Line. In the southern region of Mt. Hebron, the movement of Palestinians who are coming into the country to find work has been disrupted. These people and their families are paying the price for the system of collective control that Israel has decided to implement with the erection of the Separation Barrier. Typically, a day’s work in the West Bank for a builder usually comes to about $18, while a day’s work in Israel brings them $60 – $110. Their families have come to rely on this income. Ironically, these Palestinian men, who are determined to keep providing for their families are the ones who are physically building the State of Israel. They endure terrible conditions as illegal workers, sleeping rough in river creeks, under bridges, on building sites and under highways in the Beer Sheva area, trying to avoid getting caught. If the Palestinians are apprehended, they go through a security check and when found innocent of terrorist intentions, they are sent back to their homes. And so the wearisome cycle continues. Israeli border patrol police and the army are in a constant but only partially successful race to apprehend these Palestinians. Every wall has its weak points. For a young man determined enough, it becomes a way of life- waiting for the right moment, for the prepaid accomplice driver waiting on the other side, depending on his faithful cell phone and on his buddies, all of whom are adjusting strategies to accommodate for the Separation Barrier.




Growing up in a war conflicted region, I have always been deeply aware of the possibility of loss. Photography empowers me to share this insight, demonstrating the horrible, equalizing moment of the possibility of loss, the universality of vulnerability. There is nothing clearer, nothing more precious than the preservation of the life force in the face of violence and disease. This is what I am attempting to articulate with my black and white images of the world.


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Amnon Gutman


Here is just a quick sneak peak at what’s going on over at Rio Book. Honestly it is a rather amazing experience in all directions. This will never happen again. Anybody can see this is a one time event..Come on over and hang.

For those of you who have never been here before, what is happening over here is a $1.99 pay wall website where I am right now finishing up my work on a book, tentatively titled One Night In Rio. This follows a NatGeo assignment completed and also ready for publication.. Why the paywall? To test this model for others for one thing. Yes there is free content all over the web. Most of the content I produce is for free as well. However, some things are unique. We pay for uniqueness every day for everything. For a buck99 I think I am giving a one of a kind experience. Those who are there seem to think so as well. Is it as good as a one week shooting workshop? Probably not, but it is the very best explanation I could ever give for building rapport, working a situation and building out the essay concept. I could never really do this in class as I can here.

Anyway, check us out. We have almost two more weeks of live on the scene several updates per day.

Oh yes, the photo below is by Carla De Conti, a Harvard Univ photo student, who is shooting the behind the scenes pics as below. A lot going on. We hope to see you…

I take a late night shot of Candy trying to get the moon in the picture. Those are the kinds of things I try late night.