talk to allard..



any minute now, William Albert Allard will walk through my door….i have not asked him, but i will put him on the spot with any of you who happen to be "on" right now….he will probably be here for a couple of hours  or so…since his name comes up quite a bit here, most recently on the previous post, i thought you might enjoy having a word with him…so ask the boy a question or two…i will try to keep him here as long as possible…..

214 Responses to “talk to allard..”

  • Good evening to the both of you.

    Off the top of my head, what is W’s take on the latest topic here, of not doing it quite as alone as it often seems?

  • david alan harvey



    the next answers are being typed by me , but the exact words of allard who is in no mood to type…david

    “i have had a great support from my wives and kids…they have given me much more than i have ever given back to them” william albert allard

  • William Albert Allard is an inspiration to many photographers. WHO does Bill look to for inspiration?

  • Bill you’ve been making photographs for a while. Do you keep a list – written or mental – of places, things, people you’d still like to photograph? Is there one you might share with us?

  • David,

    If I had one question for him it would be whether or not he is worried about leaving his mark or not for posterity…Reason I ask is that I happen to have seen several of his photographs in some National Geographic reviews but everytime I have tried to penetrate what he has done in more details, I found it very difficult. No actual site that he has on which you could easily look at his work….I know he has published a book but this is dating back to many years now. Why is Bill not trying to make his art more readily accessible and therefore maybe being able as a result to be seen by even more…I have to say that I love many of his images and this is why I ask as someone who would be keen to see more of his work whether in books or even on a site….


  • Bill – did you know your old pal, David, was going to rope you into answering questions like this??

  • Hi Bill,

    It is good to have you contribute. I hope David hasn’t had to twist your arm too far?

    As David said, you get mentioned quite a bit during the discussions here, which is good to see.

    You may remember that we have been in touch in the past by e-mail. The last time you mentioned a possible book on Hemingway. Did anything ever come of that?

    I assume that you still get out to visit your Hutterite friends? I had an very interesting and enjoyable experience spending some time on a colony in Saskatchewan. As soon as I finish my book project here in East Anglia I plan to get back out there and make some new pictures. I recently tried to tell David how exciting those flat prairie landscapes are, but he didn’t seem convinced!

    It was recently mentioned on here how almost all of your career has been with NG and how you have possibly had to sacrifice the sole ownership of your work and wider exposure in the photographic community (and possibly beyond) because of that. I suggested that perhaps the most important thing for you was living the photographic life and that being with NG allowed you the freedom to do that. Are you able to comment on this?

    Your Peru work came up in discussion yesterday. Do you still photograph there, and have you ever considered a book?



  • I can’t blame Bill for not wanting to type. I’m sure he’s a little bemused by this.

    I must say, I’m only 35 and I had and still do have my doubts about the value all this internet stuff, blogs and forums etc.

    But you’ve got something good going here David and I think if the support of the contributors continues, and I’m sure it will, things can only get better.


  • Any destination William would have liked to cover, but might never be able to anymore. In a way, any regrets, destination wise?

    Thanks. Last one from me, I see the DAH blog buddies have come aboard, it is going to get busy! ;-)

  • david alan harvey


    “I look to painters…Matisse, Picasso, Hopper…if you want to think composition, think Hopper”


    “the important thing for me has always just been the pictures…and i have definitely lived the photographic life…and i am thankful for all the pictures i did not take too..”


    “i have not been able to get to India enough…i started too late…and i totally missed Africa….”

    all quoted comments above by William Albert Allard ….ALLARD LIVE AND IN PERSON…COME ON IN!!!

  • Need another beer?

  • Lots of Q’s here already..but –

    When you shoot a story, how do you come up with the important components – for example, The Blues – I have read music is dear to your heart, and you wanted to take the time for the people you photographed to feel your positive intent – but when you wanted the shot of the prison workers picking did you think of it, and once conceived, how did you get the go ahead?

    peace and thanks for sharing your sight..

    ps david, rang you earlier, later in the week is good too, but tomorrow am works as well

  • I totally agree, I’ve always thought painters are the way to go. All you need is a good library of fiction, some artist monographs or history of art books, and perhaps a HCB book and I think any photographer is totally set for inspiration.

    Van Gogh has been one of the main inspirations behind my own work in East Anglia, especially his drawings of agricultural scenes.

    And as for Hopper, every photographer should study his work. These are things we need to discuss in more detail on here David.


  • david alan harvey


    “what throws me here Erica is your use of the word “conceived”..not sure what you mean by that….i did not do anything different or think anything different than i did with the musicians…i always had permission one way or the other…but, i could never be in one place too long…prison guards do not really “get” what i am doing…”

    William Albert Allard

  • Erica:

    that photograph of WAA’s of the prison workers has always reminded me of the old prison work songs, such as those recorded by Alan Lomax.

    I wonder if that is what he had in mind?


  • david alan harvey


    ” i know of Alan Lomax, but i do not know his music….”

    William Albert Allard

  • William..hmmm..

    what I mean, is, did you think at the beginning, maybe before you shot anything for the piece, that that shot would be an important component to telling the story and then went about getting access..or where you nearby and then it made sense or did someone else mention the short, do you plan out important elements in advance, or do they find you?

    You have to forgive me a ‘stories’ aren’t very complex nor do they have many ‘parts’..

  • You should check out the many hours of his field recordings which are available on CD by Rounder records:

    Do you know of the music and photographs of John Cohen? I think you’d be interested in him too:


  • Mr Allard,

    Have you been writing? I miss your writing. Especially when accompanied by your photoraghy. Can we expect to have this combo again soon? A book perhaps?

  • david alan harvey


    “Willian Faulker wrote a book called…hmmmm, i am having a senior moment..cannot remember the name..anyway, the book was about convicts who, taken out of prison, to help out people at the timem of the “great flood” and a lot of blues music comes out of the prisons…that book got me interested in convicts in connection with music…”

    William Albert Allard

  • david alan harvey


  • Thanks, that makes sense, a seed planted and left to germinate bore fruit down the road..

    Wild Palms/Old Man??

  • david alan harvey


  • Hi Bill and David,

    One question regarding your NG assignments… how do you prepare in advance for such work? Where do you get your inspiration from? It seems that literature is a strong influence… but do you read other specialized material?

  • ha! very nice..thanks for playing..

  • david alan harvey


    “i rarely read anything other than literature to prepare for an assingnment”

    William Albert Allard


    ok, bill and i are going out to an “art dealer party” whatever that is…sorry more of you were not around for this, but , hey it is saturday nite…live!!!!

    cheers, david

  • Thanks Bill and David! Good humor both of you.

  • Thank you Bill and David and enjoy the party!

  • Hi Eric,

    Nice pictures from Guatemala. I must say that I liked the ones under the title “around antigua” a lot. I think those capture the country’s multicultural essence!

    Its a pity I didn’t know you were coming to Guatemala…

  • Hi David and William, just returned from a sampling of a friend’s homebrew and saw this post. Last year, I saw Allard’s exhibit at Festival of the Photograph and loved it. The prints were for sale and exquisite. I should have bought one. Greetings from obx.

  • Bill – what do think of your buddy Harvey’s blog? And when are you going to start one, too? Cheers, Lance

  • Well, as Bill did not answer my question….I hope he did not find it rude…I actually meant this very genuinely. I have come across so many pictures of him that I really love (the portrait of this Italian/ Sicily woman that David has used before on his post is really great, the picture of the little boy in Peru who is crying because his lamb has been killed by a car moves me every time I see it…). Because I came across so many of his great pictures somewhat randomly or by luck in some former NG books etc, I have been hoping for a more dedicated book to really showcase his work over the years, sort of the equivalent of Divided Soul of David…. Somehow a photographer of his talent and stature should really try to publish more (book vs magazine only). I know that he had a major retrospective opf his work in Charlotte last year? Do any know if this will lead to a book (maybe it is out there already and I missed it….). Well, maybe I will ask the question differently next time….. Eric

  • Eric

    I didn’t find your initial question in any way offensive and was
    surprised that it wasn’t responded to.
    FWIW,I share your sentiments about many of WAA’s images
    and would jump at the chance to purchase a collection of
    his work.
    Perhaps,since he has a strong contractual affiliation with
    National Geographic his hands are tied for some reason.


  • “art dealer” party

    Is that New yorkese for “Dirty art” parlor?


  • ERIC…

    sorry, we (me) just did not see your question….my fault, i just flat out missed it…

    i would have love to have had Bill answer that question myself … that is my primary “worry” about him as a Natgeo photog and it was this that got the discussion going about him in the first place…

    cheers, david

  • HERVE…

    well, i just got home at little after midnight…so, the party obviously was not so hot….

    cheers, david

  • Would you believe it?? Been off and on the blog all day and the few hours I’m away we have Bill Allard on live!!!! Bloody Murphy and his law again… :-)

    If you get the chance David… Is Bill doing personal projects too? And.. if he is planning a retrospective type book then Amazon would sure be seeing my credit card!!

    There must also be a huge amount of unseen work of his too…

    Thanks for giving us the opportunity to hear from Mr Allard.

  • OK!

    I understood! You waiting when I will go to sleep and then you organize the party with great photographers and have a fun!! Ok why not…
    Ok… OK Ok…. Ok… Okkkkkkeeeyyy!

    Mr. Allard

    I hope you will visit us someday again soon.


    where have you been?????
    where I can see your new pictures??

  • Ohhhhhh that is the price of living overseas…. I was sleeping!! and just tonight due to a strange economy rule we have here, we had to change the clock at 2 a.m. that became 3 a.m. so we missed one hour sleeping. Now it is too late. William Albert Allard is gone and David sleeping…. snif snif…. I would have loved to ‘chat’ a bit with big photographer William….

    Thanks David for bringing close to us such a Photographer (in capital letters). Very interesting and encouraging!! Thank you!!!

    And well, sorry that the party wasn’t that hot :-P


  • Yes Ana, same problem for me! While “THE PHOTOGRAPHER” was answering in this blog and the time here in Europe was changing I was in a quite hot party… but not hot enough..
    Anyway.. my favourite question (about the inspiration, one day I would like to talk about it with the people in this blog) was answered so .. IT’s a wonderful sunny morning here in Rome!

  • David et al.
    A Big thanks for bringing WAA to your blog, and also another big thanks to all of you that was online, and were able to asked some interesting questions!


  • Missed him! David, get him back sometime. I really rate WAA and can only echo Eric’s comments about not seeing enough of his work. Every time I Google him all I get is Nat Geo and Blues Highway -which is good but he has done SO much more. Is it because Nat Geo own the photos? How do you fare with your photos from Nat Geo days David? Do you own them? Have access to them?

    Thanks for bringing him in here: maybe he’ll join in!


  • david alan harvey


    yes, yes saturday night in New York is probably the worst possible time to have gone “live” with anyone…but, of course, i had no choice…if you like this sort of exchange , i can try it again from time to time…


    Bill’s photographs are copyrighted by the National Geographic Society…but , i am sure there is some way through the Society Image Collection, that you can purchase prints…


    you logged on just minutes too late…but,like me, Bill hates the word BLOG… really ugly!!!

    Bill will “retire” soon i think and move out to Montana…maybe by then we can get him somehow interested in the net and get him to write a bit…

    can you imagine why i have such a headache this morning??


    well, as i said before, that was the crux of the whole prior discussion on Allard…as a staffer, the Society owns his pictures…he traded security and salary for copyright…

    i own all of my work including the published photographs….i even own the photographs i have done for advertising….with Magnum photographers most freelancers, ownership of our creative material is everything…our archives are “sacred ground” to our way of thinking…all of you really need to think CAREFULLY about your “ownership”…now, mind you, i too was very very tempted by the staff job at Natgeo, and even joined the staff twice in my career…but each time, even though the security was terrific, i just could not live without actually owning my work….

    cheers, david

  • Hey David,

    I’m in Australia and as usual missed the whole thing. I’ve been reading on and off for some months now, but I always seem to find your entries a few days too late.

    I did write a long speil once back in Nov last year…

    I must say it’s a great thing your doing with this forum, thanks, it always inspires me.

    What’s particularly interesting for me is that i’ve just finished a ‘homeless’ period of my own, living out of a backpack… I set out expecting a year or so of adventure and it’s 5 years later that (along with my wife a 2 daughters) we’ve finally settled. I never would have dreamt i’d end up in Australia, in a small town in the forest after London…

    The whole process has been fantastic.

    I have a question for you:
    when you set out on a new project you have a plan and a direction. But how FIXED is that plan? do you allow yourself to be drawn towards things (images/moments) that maybe don’t fit your original idea, but could work well if you adjusted your overview?

    I’m not finding this too easy to put across, but what i’m trying to say relates to my own experience. I set off on a photo project and it evolved into something far more personal than i’d expected. At first I resisted and rejected what was happening, but then i had a change of heart and mind and let it follow it’s own course and not my premeditated plan. I like what happened and i feel it’s helped me grow as a photographer.

    I hope you get a minute or two to reply as i’ve been meaning to ask you about this for a while, just wish i could be a bit clearer…

    all the best

    P.S. I understand that if you were shooting a magazine project you’d need to keep things tight, but when it’s strictly personal work, freedom etc.?

  • david alan harvey


    yes, i agree about Hopper..who would not? well, he is probably a bit too too much about composition for some..perhaps not “loose” enough for many…anyway, we can discuss this topic as much as you want…

    now, one thing you said that is not quite correct…i love love the flat praries and i have no problem at all with the LAND in your working environment…i was just looking for more of a connection between the land and the people…it could just be the glint in a farmer’s eye, or a subtle moment tying man to land…in any case, you are very close….i will bet you anything that your next layout will be “right on”….

    cheers, david

  • david alan harvey


    yours is a very good question….

    well, i am much much more about SERENDIPITY than i am about having a “fixed plan”…i like to go where the wind takes me…i do like to read and think and mull things over and over in my mind, but then the “action” is quite often a surprise…

    conceptually, i have things in my head about my new “mission”, but anything could happen….i really like to let my subjects dictate where things will go…let THEM speak…i will put in my WAY or my LOOK, but it is voice of my subjects that will be most important….

    it does sound like your wandering led you to family…nice trip!!!

    peace, david

  • David:

    I was not referring to your comments on my book dummy, but to when you were talking about your experience on the wheat train in Canada. But perhaps it was being stuck on the train which was the problem? I actually found that story up yesterday and it looked like you had a good time to me. Good to see you went to Moose Jaw. I spent a few days there but it was pretty cold apart from a couple of days and not many people where on the streets, but I felt there is potential there for some good pictures.

    I have to question that picture that they ran from inside the tunnel. That piece of white paper from the blown out highlight of the tunnel exit is just so ugly.

    That’s one of the things I am very cautious of being a slide shooter, blown out highlights and I will not use an image if part of it would reproduce as white on the page, unless perhaps it was a very minor area of the frame.

    Yeah I guess Hopper’s composition could be seen as not loose enough, but that has never been a problem for me. I think I’m drawn to more formal compositions anyway, apart from some of Chagal’s work.

    I’m trying to find time to work on the new layout, but there’s lots going on right now, including my mother be pretty sick in the hospital, so it’s difficult. As far as the book goes, I received some very useful advice in Oslo, but at the same time I returned home more confused than ever because everybody had a different opinion. So who do you please, all those other photographers who bring a little bit of their own ways of seeing and likes and dislikes when they look at your book, or yourself? I’ve decided I have to please myself because it would be wrong to finally get a book out after all these years and not be happy with it.

    The more I go through this process, the more subjective it all seems to be.

    I’ll just have to hope that what pleases me, pleases a publisher and at least a few other people along the way.

    Enjoy Brazil.



  • PS. David,

    I hope you’ve got some Grateful Dead on your iPod?



    ah yes, the Canadian Pacific Railroad..i did not realize that was your reference…i loved that land too, but i was on a wheat train with no passengers and two engineers driving the train and very few stops..i did get to “drive” a 100 car train, which was the best part of the whole experience…

    yes, i too hate blown out highlights and that was a problem for that picture…someone should have at least put in some 20% gray tone or something to have saved it…but i think the blown out look is even worse when it is on the edge of the frame..

    you have to please yourself…too many opinions will definitely confuse…OR, the best way is to have just one serious collaborator and make a few key decisions with that one person…but ultimately, you just have to go for it…

    cheers, david

  • Wow, WWA here live! I’m glad I missed that! The pressure to come up with an intelligent question all at once would have blown one of my mental gaskets. I have to work my way up to being intelligent and then having gotten there, ease into question mode very slowly. Otherwise I’d ask something really dumb, like whether he prefers mortadella to straight bologna or something equally silly, and everyone here would just think, Christ, what a frigging moron!

  • Settle down Please Akaky your getting way too Excited !! No; seriously though William Allard is Heart ++ !!

  • david…

    sorry i missed all the fun…wobbly today, 2 very intensive days of shooting/writing and now preparing for a big, emotional trip south to see my father and brothers and mom…

    brazil: u going to be in Rio?…if yes, let me know and i’ll try to patch u through to miriam and sergio…i’ll write u later this afternoon…

    i wouldnt have been able to ask bill a question, only just to tell him how much blue-eyed bull sticks inside my gut..


  • David,

    Following Sams question about a project and having a general idea about it… when you finally get to the field you might find other things very interesting to shoot so keeping focus is also difficult but a key element. How do you approach this? One can either take those “interesting photos” for a later project or choose to keep with your original idea?



  • Pretty funny…I was actually “here” for the Allard party last night but off in another room. I saw the note that he was on his way and went off to look at Eric’s Guatemala images and got so involved with selecting my favorites that I forgot to come back to the party.

    I would only have told him how much I admire him and love his work…no questions. Great that he was here.

  • Beatrix, isn’t this the definition of life? You start the day on the right foot, then the other comes along, then one walks, runs, jumps, steps back, sits, stalls, right, left or wrong…. etc…

    I think guys like Allard or David and pretty much anyone we care about in the field of “felt” docu/photo-journalism, most of us here included actually (as opposed to journeymen filling an editor’s command) thrive on total open-mindedness, believe in intuition, ie. the third eye/ear, and know better than to follow the blue-print, if any, established the night or week before.

    This is why their shots become potent, memorable, that freshness of intuition never quite dies, always there to see, once printed. The order of things become ordering but left for after, at the editing table, never as one shoots.

    Don’t you feel the same?

  • david alan harvey


    i will be in Sao Paolo until thursday…isn’t Miriam in SP???


    it depends a bit on the story at hand…sometimes i will do a “place” type of story , as in Bahia, in which case almost everything can or could be interesting for the story…on the other hand, in Nairobi for portraits and with Living Proof i very much had to zero in on very specific subjects…when i get so totally focused on those kinds of stories, i tend not to get distracted by other possible picture situations…in my everyday life, i can get pretty distracted by many things, but when i am “on” and “in the zone” working i have a depth of focus and eye on the prize that eludes me in my “normal life”…

    cheers, david

  • david alan harvey


    thanks for the video….they say it all!!

    cheers, david

  • David; do you find people’s personalities also affect their photography, both in style and subject?

    There is a notion that the photos you take tell more about you than the subject….No one can ever hide behind a camera and it reveals your personality…?

    Just musing….

  • i forgot to say thanks to

    check at the Jury below…:


  • Herve,

    I totally agree with you. Its not only a question of how you choose to approach a topic but more a matter of how how you adapt and make decisions in your life! Just as it happens in real life you very often get distracted and attracted by other things and then change course, and thats perfect. Its not a question about right or wrong but how you decide to live your life… its how you take the photos, the perspective you use…

    I think balance is the key but is very difficult to achieve… following your intuition is the best you can do but what worries me is that you can end doing something totally different… mmmm but maybe that will make a difference… the problem I see is that you kind of need a roadmap otherwise you get lost… my point here is that there are priorities that can guide us… don’t you think?


  • David,

    Thanks for your comment! I try to keep focus when shooting but cannot stop getting interested in other “emerging” projects that’s why I try to follow the original idea…

    You know that I found very interesting that literature is a major influence for preparing an assignment (according to WAA)…



    Do you will be disconnected in brazil?
    You have promised to tell us what ideas you have… I know i should be patient… I’m patient… I will wait for first u.s. photo. :)
    Ok. Mojito waiting for me… and some work to do.
    peace (for tibet)

    ps. I know… I will go of my computer and you invite next great photographer… :(

  • david alan harvey


    very good point….both, of course, come into play…the subject and then how the photographer interprets the subject…..the ratio of “subject driven” to “photographer driven” imagery varies from photographer to photographer…surely, the personality of the photographer comes out in the work she/he does…at least, in the very best work …the term “hiding behind the camera” is an impossibility for the most expressive and talented….


    like Allard, i too would prefer to read a good novel to learn about a subject than to go through the “reference material”…Gabriel Garcia Marquez ,for example, was more influential on my work in las Americas, than was the archive of the New York Times or Fodor’s Guidebook or any journalistic “dispatches”…even more than that, painting, music, films, sculpture, and literature, overall had more influence on me than did photography itself…

    yes, of course, you must keep your priorities straight…not become distracted…one of the ways i see really talented photographers get “stuck” is in not being able to “follow through”….this is the most most important thing of all…being able to actually “do it”…follow through….get it done…deliver…..seems so so simple, but that is where many fail….

    cheers, david

  • Beatrix, yes, of course, and David answered himself of course. I guess… It all depends… :-)

    Personally, I must say i also like the journeyman aspect of photography. Getting it right, good craft. There is nothing wrong with that. it’s like music, my fondness is more and more for these bands that play for a few bucks, even cover versions bands, every night, journeymen there too, but they do carry the torch too. As you observe them, you can feel the dimmer of an unmistakable love of music, it’s always there, like remnants of an artistic big bang that changed their lives back then. They make up the galaxy as much as big stars!

    Ross, maybe David will answer your “musing” and kill 2 birds with 2 shots. before Allard came on board, I had done my very own musing about what I believe is the subject you talk about. How the world out may in so many ways be tuning in the world inside.

    But then… David knows my questions do not really need answers, or long ones, and who is the “writer” here, damn it!?!? :-))))

  • david alan harvey


    you know how much i am enjoying torturing you!!! just teasing Marcin just teasing…

    i promise promise to tell you all about it by next weekend after i leave Brazil…

    i should be able to post from Brazil…i fly all night tonight and arrive Sao Paolo in the morning…they do have me pretty busy down there , but assuming i have some internet connect in my room, i will stay in touch here..

    my plan and idea is very simple…at least, i am trying not to make it complicated….

    cheers, david

  • Beatrix;
    Sometimes a subject will spin off into another direction. I think this can also be because you may have some preconceived idea about the way the story will work, and the subject does not in actuality meet your idea. Then it’s a case of being aware and flexible to run with the new interpretation…

  • david alan harvey


    yes, for me too, the craft is important….as you say, getting it right…and this is important to the folks who pay for photographic services as well…as i said above to Beatrix, it is about “delivery”…pure and simple delivery….the artistry is surely important, but editors, for example, are paying for “delivery” with no excuses first and the artistry is a very nice bonus….i guess really, you just must have both things going if you see yourself as a professional…..but, as i have said many many times here, you do not have to be “professional” to be good or great or to lead a very rewarding life in photography…

    cheers, david

  • david alan harvey


    these are two different topics…one about letting the story “go with the flow” and the other is about losing focus or getting distracted….you can “go with the flow” (serendipity) and not be losing focus at all…this can define focus…or, you can wander down the wrong path subconsciously looking for a “way out” or to avoid the inevitable act of just “getting it done”…


  • Hey David

    Many thanks for sharing your experience!

    I think literature is a very important influence in everyone’s life. Maybe I’m surprise that it can be helpful in preparing for an assignment because its a very subjective source of information and probably you would have had a totally different approach when reading Borges, Bryce Echenique, Sábato or Isabel Allende… perhaps I’m (still) trying to be more objective, something that I am aware is impossible…

    I totally agree with you about “following through”… its not only about being creative and having a great idea but also getting it done!


    PD I wrote you an email… answer whenever you have time…

  • Ross,

    I think flexibility and adaptability to changes in a story is fundamental for getting it right. But even when your subject goes in an unexpected direction your topic is your subject so youre still following your idea…

  • You come to brazil, right?

    I will be there.

  • david alan harvey


    yes, in my opinion, to your most recent comment…


    yes, i will be in Brazil tomorrow morning…i look forward to seeing you….


  • DAVID…

    “you know how much i am enjoying torturing you!!!”

    hmmm… I know…

    “i promise promise to tell you all about it by next weekend after i leave Brazil…”

    hmmm… Ok :)

    “i should be able to post from Brazil”

    hmmm….. I will waiting for new post from new adventure!

    “my plan and idea is very simple”

    hmmmm… yes I’m tortured!!!!

    what can I say after a few mojitos?…

    hmmmm… peace and love for all…

    David I wish you good safe fly, and a lot of fun in brazil….

    hmmmm… no… flying…


  • david alan harvey


    i did not say that i “followed” Gabriel Garcia Marquez..and i did read Borges and Allende too and Cela and Fuentes and D.H.Lawrence and Hemmingway and and and….i just get a “feel’ from all of these different authors….and THEN, i tell my own story!!


  • david alan harvey


    are you making your own mojitos in Poland???


  • hmmm… no my wife making my own mojito!!

  • David,

    As usual thanks for clarifying… I did not mean that you “followed” Garcia Marquez, just saying that other authors give us a different insight approach and therefore a special influence… the way one “integrates” all this information and portraits the story will make the difference.

    Any recommendations for reading or appreciating the difference between “subject driven” or “photographer driven”?



  • Herve;
    I think your music analogy is pretty much spot on. I often find more inspiration from music for my photography than from photographers.

    I can learn more about art ideals listening to Pete Townshend’s (not really independent, but he never has succumbed to banality)lyrics/interviews than most art/photography books.

    Especially the independant musicians…They are the ones that have kept true to their ideals, but have still suceeded commercially e.g Natalie Merchant, Suzanne Vega etc.

    One of my favourite group of musicians is Aussie band called The Waifs(Sort of folk-rock). They toured continuously for 12 years so they could stay independant and release their own CDs on their own label for total creative control. By being independent have managed to write songs that mean something to them.

    I can see an equivalent theme running through with photographers who are commercially successful (or seem to be…) but still pursue their highest ideals..

    Then again there are musicians (photographers) who have dumbed down their work to make it more commercially successful to the masses…

    Just a few more random thoughts…

  • david alan harvey


    well, we spoke a lot about Philip Jones-Griffiths in our last posts…i would say he is a more “subject driven” is Eugene Richards….whereas the work of say d’Agata or Crewdson would be more “photographer driven”…

    there are many many more perhaps much better examples…and, i think i said before, the very best work is more likely a healthy combo of the two…

    cheers, david

  • david alan harvey


    if your wife can make good mojitos, by all means marry her!!


  • david alan harvey


    ok, i am off to Brazil for a few days…i will stay in touch as best i can….back in New York thursday night…

    packing, running, forgetting!!

    cheers, david

  • David,

    Wishing you a nice trip.

    Are you going to Rio??

    eu sou carioca da gemma :)


  • Panos, Carlos, yes, thanks for the video. Good visual quality too (changes from Ytube standards), a real pleasure to watch. I just did 2006, but going back for the other years.

    Again, everyone:

  • ahhh…..David……..when you mentioned William Albert Allard in the store Sunday, it went right past me who he was. Just went and looked at his pics online. Of course I know his pics. Some really great stuff, I’ve seen over the years but honestly am just really terrible with names. Show me a pic though….I remember it forever.

    Anyhow, I guess the driving question I have…actually for both William and David…is how do you get the subjects of your pics to even let you do the shoot in the first place. I’m sure Magnum and NG names help alot, but when you first started out…as a nobody…how did you convince people to let you do a photographic record of a part of their life? Did you yourself do it………or are there organizations/people that can break the ice, so to say, to let you uget your foot in the door.

  • All…
    After comments from DAH (“thanks for the video….they say it all!!”),
    Panos (“thanks… for the VISAO INFO…”)
    and Herve (“…thanks for the video. Good visual quality too (changes from Ytube standards), a real pleasure to watch. I just did 2006, but going back for the other years”)
    and for those of you who didn’t see my info in the previous post, here it is:

    this year, Visão (a portuguese weekly news magazine) chosed for it’s photojournalism awards, a jury composed by Jean-François Leroy (Visa Pour l’Image), Yuri Kozyrev (Noor), Noël Quidu (Gamma), Susan Smith (NatGeo associate director of photography) and Philip Blenkinsop.
    on April 3, the winners will be announced (227 photojournalists and 6848 photos entered) and on April 5, the jury will give a conference.
    you cand find more at where you can see photos and videos from previous years and some great lessons on editing from former members of the jury like James Nachtwey, Sebastião Salgado, Ian Berry, MaryAnne Golan, Kadir van Lohuizen, Stanley Greene, Christopher Morris, Jane Atwood, Colin Jacobson and many more.
    um forte abraço para todos,
    Carlos Filipe

  • Jesus…what an education that was! Just did all Visao videos. My only disappointment (and it was at myself, of course!) was waiting for Salgado’s close-up and it wasn’t in English! Ugh. Oh well…it was all enlightening nevertheless.


  • FABULOUS videos indeed! :))…thanks for posting…


  • Dith Pran, Photojournalist and Survivor of the Killing Fields, Dies at 65

  • nice to see here people from Portugal :)

    and also nice to read here something about Visão photojournalism award. for us portuguese, this award is very important, (not only for the money prize) because the photojournalism in portugal in majoraty ins’t (yet) at the level to the rest of the world. and this event is motivation to do ours stories, and year after year the level is growing and the new photographers are been showing in the block :)


  • nice to see here people from Portugal :)

    and also nice to read here something about Visão photojournalism award. for us portuguese, this award is very important, (not only for the money prize) because the photojournalism in portugal in majoraty ins’t (yet) at the level to the rest of the world. and this event is motivation to do ours stories, and year after year the level is growing and the new photographers are been showing in the block :)


  • nice to see here people from Portugal :)

    and also nice to read here something about Visão photojournalism award. for us portuguese, this award is very important, (not only for the money prize) because the photojournalism in portugal in majoraty ins’t (yet) at the level to the rest of the world. and this event is motivation to do ours stories, and year after year the level is growing and the new photographers are been showing in the block :)


  • nice to see here people from Portugal :)

    and also nice to read here something about Visão photojournalism award. for us portuguese, this award is very important, (not only for the money prize) because the photojournalism in portugal in majoraty ins’t (yet) at the level to the rest of the world. and this event is motivation to do ours stories, and year after year the level is growing and the new photographers are been showing in the block :)


  • nice to see here people from Portugal :)

    and also nice to read here something about Visão photojournalism award. for us portuguese, this award is very important, (not only for the money prize) because the photojournalism in portugal in majoraty ins’t (yet) at the level to the rest of the world. and this event is motivation to do ours stories, and year after year the level is growing and the new photographers are been showing in the block :)


  • nice to see here people from Portugal :)

    and also nice to read here something about Visão photojournalism award. for us portuguese, this award is very important, (not only for the money prize) because the photojournalism in portugal in majoraty ins’t (yet) at the level to the rest of the world. and this event is motivation to do ours stories, and year after year the level is growing and the new photographers are been showing in the block :)


  • nice to see here people from Portugal :)

    and also nice to read here something about Visão photojournalism award. for us portuguese, this award is very important, (not only for the money prize) because the photojournalism in portugal in majoraty ins’t (yet) at the level to the rest of the world. and this event is motivation to do ours stories, and year after year the level is growing and the new photographers are been showing in the block :)



  • Twas my youngsters 6th birthday yesterday and so couldn’t partake of the Allard visitation. More such encounters would be well cool. Thanks David.

  • If you want to contact me, 6743-3652 (sao paulo)


    i am now in Sao Paulo and will stay here until thursday…where are you??


    i will do this from now on as the situation permits…


    Steve McCurry and i both came to Lisbon a few years ago for a double exhibition…i also did a workshop in Lisbon at about the same time….i felt that a good community was growing…i do hope to come back to Portugal soon…

    cheers, david

  • If you need help walking by sao paulo call me …


    I will be at a conference at Fotografer on the 2nd from 2-3:45pm….i am going to be too busy overall to hang out much or shoot…perhaps i will see you at the conference??

    cheers, david

  • DAH wrote:
    “conceptually, i have things in my head about my new “mission”, but anything could happen….i really like to let my subjects dictate where things will go…let THEM speak…i will put in my WAY or my LOOK, but it is voice of my subjects that will be most important….”

    This sounds a lot like how this blog is working. eh?

  • FABULOUS videos indeed! :))…thanks for posting…


    Wow, Bob…. Impressive! ;-)

    PS: :-))))))))

  • Herve: :))

    i’m trying to turn a new life, simple posts nothing bombastic, staying simple and on key.



    p.s. portugal is my home away from home…

  • I’m with you Bob.
    Too much gets made out of comments here.
    KISS (keep it simple stupid…my new mantra) or at the very least non-controversial.

    Thanks for the link. Wonderful information.

    I went right to the Nachtwey editing video. Found it interesting that Christopher Morris spoke about images needing to have emotion…I have an emotional response to his “My America” images but are the images themselves emotional? They strike me as almost devoid of emotion…everyone is zombie-like…which I believe is his point. So is lack of emotion emotional???

  • CAthy,

    Thath’s very interesting that you just mentioned the name of James Nachtwey. I just saw few minutes ago his pictures in the Time magazine about the Dalai Lama. I didn’t like his set of pictures at all (I am usually a big fan of him). To me it shows that no one photographer can deal with each and every subjects.


  • SF Jason…where the hell have you been? Have I just missed your comments or are you playing the lurker these days? What’s up?

  • ARIE,
    I so agree with you…
    I’m in the dentist right now.
    I just got the latest “TIME” magazine,
    with the Dalai Lama cover from
    James Nachtwey…
    I can’t believe he shot that story…
    probably the most mediocre work I’ve seen ….
    ever…. It looks so canon zoom, so not prime work,
    so average so dissapointing…
    Everybody loves James ,
    but… this time,
    I’m sorry… James, you didn’t work any magic…
    good luck next time..

    Ps: I think I’m very tough with my work lately..
    I almost thought I had a disconnected index finger…
    but after I checked on the latest JN’s work…
    my work doesn’t look so bad after all..
    mr. James Nachtwey you are lucky, I’m not the one editing your
    Dalai Lama deserves a better coverage than a canon LSD
    with a 10-1000 mm plastic zoom..
    cmon James, don’t get lazy and comfortable…
    work it

  • It’s not online yet…I’ll have to check it out.

  • Panos, I would like to add that I am very impressed by the essays that Peter Turnley did for Harper. I found that the editing was much more refined. Did you have teh chance to look at his essays?


  • ALL:

    you can see Jim’s entire essay at VII: under new stories

    you can also see at least 1 of the pics online at time:,9171,1724385,00.html

    it is a very interesting comparison: comparing the pic in TIME with the same pic on the VII…i prefer the tonality, shadow and nuance of the VII site pic, BY FAR…

    this may have more to do with the pictorial represtantion of Jim’s pics in the TIME…

    seeing our work in print (or even on a website) is often very disconcerting ;)))…believe me, and I aint no Nachtwey ;))))…(when i first saw my own pics here under the emerging photog, my heart broke ;)) )…

    have a look at VII’s site…

    hugs all


  • sorry Arie,
    but my dentist doesn’t have the Harper..
    I will check it though,
    because I need some inspiration today,
    need to see some good work…
    I’ve seen a lot of “disconnected Index”
    work lately…
    sad but true..
    oh well, I guess even James is a human too..
    but I can’t help to observe that is really harder
    to photograph “PEACE”, than “WAR”…
    but then again… I might be wrong…




  • very interesting discussion on influences coming from sources other than photography. I’ve been an illustrator and a painter for more than 15 years now and I can only confirm that we all learn and find inspiration from so many sources, a song, a photograph, a film, a novel, an essay or whatever. So if photographers look at painters it’s also true the other way around, at least for me. On the other hand I know photographers who only talk about and get interested in photography, illustrators who only look at the illustration world and barely could quote a photographer’s name, musicians who only care about music.
    As William Allard quoted a painter, Edward Hopper, I’d like to tell how I came across this “blog” (dont like the word either..), through another painter. Sometime ago I was reading an old NG’s article about the Wyeths (a family of american artists for three generations), with beautiful (b&w!) photographs by David Alan Harvey.
    I wanted to learn more about the photographer… and found your blog, David. I’ve been a silent reader for a while….until now.
    Anyway, I think Andrew Wyeth is not a lesser artist compared to Hopper and I’m sure his depiction of the American landscape influenced at least one or two photographers.
    So David, I’d very much like to hear how you remember that experience, expecially about your relationship with Andy Wyeth, I guess great artists can be a little peculiar sometimes. I love his opening portrait behind the mosquito net. Was it a portrait or you were just lucky and found him there?
    I’ve enjoyed your discussions very much. keep it up!

    greetings from italy

  • Here’s the entire Nachtwey gallery online at Time:,29307,1723964,00.html

    I originally thought you were talking about a new issue that’s not online yet.

  • pics at VII are much richer, subtle with more melancholic tonality: a cool example in the how important light and what light alters/conveys means, emotionally and iconographically in an image…almost like 2 different photogs ;))

    ok, off for the night…


  • for moderator of DAH blog. (Michael?)

    This dividing of comments for parts is not a good idea.
    I have to click four times to see new comment. Why?
    This is my opinion. Please don’t change something what working good…

  • david alan harvey


    the black & white essay i did on Andrew Wyeth and his family was one of the most memorable of my career…and i will bet that you are the only one here who remembers it or knows about it!!!

    Andrew Wyeth is totally underrated….i found him to be one of the most interesting people i ever met…well, is whole family is just , well, mysterious and magnificent…Andy’s wife Betsy is the “businessperson” in the family and this allows Andy to be Andy….a little boy all grown up…a child who never left home…never had to….his paintings are mostly of things that he can walk to , including his work from Maine where he spends his summers…

    Andrew is a “game player”, a “prankster”, as is the whole family…i do not have enough time here to tell you all the pranks he played on me…once he realized i was a “game player” too, i was IN….because of my willingness to play, i think i have the only picture ever of Andy with his mysterious Helga…and then only one frame!!!

    in my whole 6 or 8 weeks trying to photograph Andy, i only shot about 20 rolls of film…..he made me work for each and every picture…the one in the window, the lead shot in the magazine, he “gave” me….i did not pose the picture, but i am sure he did….he loves drama….he knew what he was doing and he knew i would jump on that “pose”..again, only 2 or 3 shots and he was gone!!!

    this was the only black & white story i ever shot for Natgeo….i want to do more….

    cheers, david

  • Hey David!!!

    Im currently in Guatemala but heading to Europe in a couple of days…

    Hope that you enjoy Brasil… send some pics…

    muito obrigado :)


  • david alan harvey


    nobody changed anything…i do not know why it is like this…driving me crazy too!!!

    we will fix it…believe me, it is not US…it is THEM!!!!!


  • david alan harvey


    we just found out that Typepad, my blog service, suddenly decided to not allow more than 50 comments per page…this kills us!!! this is a new thing they just came up with today…and i can see no advantage….they also are offering some new custom designs, so we are going to look into all of our options to see what can be done….progress??? hmmmm, not for me!!!

    cheers, david

  • david,
    thanks a lot for taking time to write and remember. I wouldn’t suggest it but I had some feelings that assignment became a special experience for you. Yes, Andrew Wyeth is certainly underrated by the “art world” but despite these people he certainly has his place in art history.
    Have you had further contacts with Wyeth since? he must be 90 or more…
    I forgot to tell you that, after I arrived to your website and Magnum’s, I found out most of your photos were not new to me.
    My parents were subscribers to NG for most of the 80’s and i had probably memorized a lot of beautiful pictures…

    enjoy brasil!


    PS I agree with marcin. Only one page and, if possible, the most recent comments first.

  • david alan harvey


    we tried the most recent comments first…as it turned out everybody hated it….everybody got confused and wanted to go back to the “old way”…

    my comments above to Marcin should explain the situation we are in now…we will try to fix it if possible…i would rather scroll than click and scroll some more..bad idea…i think most people would agree….

    cheers, david

  • the only “problem” I see is that this community is growing more and more…we’ll have to click six or seven times to the last messages.
    The only solution is that you, david, write something new every day or so… :))

  • DAVID! :))))

    THE FIRST BOOK I WAS EVER GIVEN ABOUT AN ARTIST WAS A BOOK OF WYETH’S PAINTINGS….AND WHEN I WAS A CHILD, MY parents took me to the Brandywine museum every month…..and i met him as well…and, when i was in university, and was asked, which painters mean the most to you, i told my painting instructor: schiele, van gogh, vermeer, matisse, rothko, diebenkorn and wyeth…my fellow student nearly laughed me out of the studio (that was in ’84)….i couldnt agree more: I FUCKING LOVE HIS WORK….and i love his thinking…and his son Jaime aint 1/2 bad eithe r;)))))…

    were can i see your portraits/pics of him??



    they would sit on the porch of his maine house and just sit there and listen to the sky and drink upon the spent sea…without the need to talk, endlessly…

    right now im looking for the doc i saw on him in which he spoke about her…

    heartbreaking, funny and ripe…


  • david alan harvey


    my portraits of Wyeth were in an issue of Natgeo in 1991…they are not in my Magnum archive, but should be…my neglect…i do not know how you can see them, unless you get a copy of that issue…some of the Natgeo “best of” anthologies feature the lead portrait of Andy..

    i also spent lots of time with his son Jamie, and his now deceased sisters, Carolyn and Henriette…all talented best images were actually of the tormented Carolyn and the thoughtful Henriette…

    see if you can find that issue…i think you would very much enjoy….

    cheers, david

  • Andrew Wyeth is one of my all-time favorites. I saw a beautiful retrospective in Kansas City once, and one summer while driving around the NE, made the pilgrimage to the Olson House. It was almost spooky to walk through the house and surrounding land — so familiar, while I’d never been remotely close before.

    Thanks for sharing the backstory on the shoot with the family.


  • david: :)))

    im looking for them now…found 2 at magnum:

    will look for the others…

    typepad now thinks im a spammer, so i keep getting blocked ;))


  • all…
    i guess the vast majority of people reading/writing in this forum doesn’t know Nelson d’Aires (he was here, a couple hours before). he was the winner of the 2007 Visão photojournalism awards – category news stories, and you can see the work that earned him that prize at or go check is webpage to find more about him.
    for an update on the Visão awards i must mention the prize money for this year edition – first prize for photo of the year € 15.000; hard news (stories and singles), daily life, news, portrait, sports, entertainment, nature (stories and singles) € 2.500 for each one of eight categories.
    and don’t forget to see the best photos from previous years and watch the videos with members of the jury at
    Michael Kircher (“Jesus…what an education that was!”), bobblack (“FABULOUS videos indeed! :))..”) and cathy scholl (“Wonderful information.”) have already done that.
    funny thing, (i think) people at Visão don’t even know that i’m doing this…

    i’m working now to make this happen… it’s my turn to give back to you and this wonderful community… let’s bring the Emerging Photographers Fund to Portugal… maybe a “franchising”… and a longer workshop… now it’s time to talk (everybody will be together this week)… what do you need to come back?
    um forte abraço para todos,
    Carlos Filipe

  • Carlos :))

    great thing you are doing :)))…

    I know Nelson from Lightstalkers :))…he’s a fabulous photorapher….big ups for his award…


  • Carlos,

    Beautiful pictures and very valuable videos and recommendations!!

    Thanks for sharing with all of us,



  • before going to bed, another update to Visão awards, with a new video – “Conheça o júri de 2008” (introducing 2008 jury) at
    skip the first three minutes (a formal introduction in portuguese), cause you all know them – Jean-François Leroy, Yuri Kozyrev, Noël Quidu, Susan Smith and Philip Blenkinsop – and listen to what they have to say concerning the subject “what makes a good photojournalist?”
    um forte abraço para todos,
    Carlos Filipe

  • david,

    i missed william… looks like there were some good conversations on this though.

    jumping on your highlight conversation here… i do find that with digital it seems to be more of a problem. i am not by any means more tech savvy than anyone else on here but i find i miss shooting slide film because highlights were not such a problem before as they are now.

    i mean i do try to compensate by exposing for the highlights itself but working in limited lighting situations can effect the overall outcome when you are only exposed for the brightest spot… and loose all the detail in the image.

    well i am sure in the next 15 min another camera will be released where highlights will no longer exist.

  • I really enjoyed below Philip B’s definition of what is a GREAT
    ( listen to his ideas about a digital camera and a couple
    business cards..)… and all the retards out there acting like Big-shots…
    He does keep it real… Thanks again BOBB for
    introducing Philip to me..)

  • Michael K wrote: “SF Jason…where the hell have you been? Have I just missed your comments or are you playing the lurker these days? What’s up?”
    Yep, Ive been lurking, instead of goofing off. The lurking started when I failed to submit a photo essay.

    Still doing the DAH shuffle though. :-)
    [small camera+ beverage+ dancing shoes= bliss]

  • by the way ,
    thanks again CARLOS FILIPE
    for all the above knowledge…

    drinking wine … local winery wine.. “STRANGE FRUIT”…
    check it, below…

  • I think we all came to the realization that the youtube video on Blinkensop was not the best introduction to the guy, and had me erring a bit too far, though it was worth seeing for the moment of humanity from the nepalese sergent.

    Nachtwey’s Dalai lama is defintely nothing new as coverage of him (the Dalai L) goes. Funnily, he comes out very much mandarin-looking, filling official functions, plus a bit of private practice. Maybe there was a reason to portray him exactly as one would a chinese leader. Serious, invested, statemanlike, since Beijing won’t respect nothing short of that. Just an idea….

    gee, I wouldn’t hold it against Nachtwey, though. Like it’s better or worse. Given the type of photographer he is, there was certainly a part assignment to it, which he was glad all the same to be trusted with(as far as his own sensibilities, all along his alley), while not exactly being able to give it the same amount of time and depth as other projects.

  • my question still remains Herve…!


  • SAO PAULO , BRAZIL… sorry

  • Panos;

    You just reminded me of a quote from Don McCullin:

    “I agree. In fact I feel as if the last twenty years of my life had been a total waste. People will not change. But that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t fight to create a better climate, possibly by making statements about other subjects than death and misery. I didn’t want to be a war photographer in the first place, I wanted to show landscapes and peace, which is what I am doing now – and which I find much harder than photographing war. It doesn’t take much eyesight to photograph someone dying in front of you”.

    I think he’s being very hard on himself. He is a photographer with a huge social conscience & surely must have found it difficult to be in some of the situations he put himself in. His autobiography “Unreasonable Behaviour” is pretty chilling…

  • I think he’s being very hard on himself.
    Posted by: Ross Nolly | April 01, 2008 at 01:48 AM

    thank you Ross.

  • Probably peace, Panos. Just a guess, though. there are a lot of war photographers. Not one peace photographer. Just to show you how hard it is!

    PS: your violin e-string is out of tune, btw…:-)))

  • Would Martin Parr be classed as a peace photographer?

  • Ross,
    Martin P., would do…
    How about DAVID… ?

  • Bob,

    The Natgeo issue featuring the Wyeths was July 1991, in case you want to find a copy.



  • Dear Friends,

    I thought you would like to be kept updated of life from China so just wanted to let you know of a couple of new essays I have published on my website, that I thought you may like to view. Both of these have been completed in the past couple of months post-David’s fund. I have to say that the fund provided (and continues to give) so much encouragement for me personally, both from David’s backing and all the forum’ participants.

    The two essays are quite different but both linked in their ties to the natural world. The first essay is on the treatment of animals in captivity in China and the second is about the Yangtze river which I spent a view weeks traversing.

    I hope to get back to the desert at some point soon but large parts of the areas I previously photographed are sensitive areas due to recent, shall we say, ‘uprisings’ here in China. Shall keep you all posted nevertheless.

    As always any feedback, criticism, thoughts…blood, beer ;) is always appreciated.

    David, hope you’re having a great time in Brazil…it’s a wonderful place.


  • david alan harvey


    the question came up i see regarding Nachtwey’s coverage in Time Magazine this week…many of you were disappointed in the “mediocrity” of his work (your words)…i must do a whole post on this soonest, but suffice it to say that peace is much harder to photograph in a dramatic way than conflict or war…you are all so used to seeing Jim shoot black & white DRAMA….”color peace” ain’t easy , as you can see…and getting editors to choose a photograph that WE like ain’t easy either..

    i will do a post on “subject matter” next…war or conflict requires guts and bravery or whatever, but yields kudos to the photographer who gets in and does it…this is the addiction for many who shoot in these situations…

    i have seen Jim’s work in war and peace and in black & white and in color…he will always get something “good” and often “great”..


    you are a “class act” by any standards…thank you for the update for all of us..

    you are going to be featured, along with many others here, at the Look3 photo festival in Virginia in june…is there any chance you will be in the U.S.??? i would love to have you up on the stage at the Paramount Theater receiving your proper due, but i have no money to get you there!!! anyway, think about it….every magazine editor in the country and many from Europe will be there etc etc etc….big screen, big audience….

    cheers, david

  • For Sean Gallagher–

    Great essay on the Yangtze. I wonder if you’ve had a chance to see Scientific American’s recent article (below) and if you plan any further essays concerning the Dam, environmental impact, government’s response, etc? Thanks.

  • Hey Sean :)))

    got the email and very happy youre sharing here too :)). Great work. The zoo story is really heart-breaking and surreal: the photos of the dogs, particularly the photograph of the magisterial and sad Dalmation is really disconcerting (as at first it is surreal to see a picture of a dog in a zoo) and the 1st photograph of the Crocodile is magnificent and brilliant and, in fact, seems almost as a metaphor for all that is currently undergoing in China…

    ditto the Yangtze essay. I particularly loved the 1 photograph of the men halloed by light exiting his shack at night, like ghost scorned by the development…if you havent seen them already (most likely very hard to see in china), check out too recent films. My beloved Jia Zhangke (for me the greatest of the young chinese filmmakers)’s film about 3-gorge damn and the Yangze: ‘STILL LIFE’..although, it’s 2 years old, you will understand the resonance of that magisterial and profound film…and a recent doc by a Chinese-Canadian filmmaker ‘Up the Yangze’, arresting stuff too…

    very happy the David’s grant has spurred you own…and if you go to Look3, i’ll make the trip ;))…and will try and bring Arantxa with :))


  • I rather enjoyed Nachtwey’s Dalai Lama essay. Well… I liked many of the photos. Don’t know how well the whole story would have held up under the scrutiny of those jury members (including the man himself!)in the recent videos. But many of the photos were top notch, I thought. Especially given what the man usually does and is known and renowned for!

    And speaking of the Portugal videos, Blenkinsop’s commentary about empathy is spot on. But then this is really true for all photographers (all artists for that matter). Whether you are a nature photographer or wedding photographer or street photographer, empathy is a critical ingredient.

    I would have liked to hear him elaborate a little more on the “digital camera and business card” bit. What exactly is the “danger” that he suggests? He talked about not knowing the political agenda of said photographers. {?} Is that necessary? Important? What political agenda does one need to have? None? What is his? Do we need to know if a political agenda even exists within the photographer? In his view, what is acting responsibly? And precisely how is all of this different from any other time in history?

    Anyway, it’s all very interesting.

  • {I would have liked to hear him elaborate a little more on the “digital camera and business card” bit.}

    Now there’s a top quality sentence! “I would have liked to hear…”? Ugh. I’m a lousy enough writer as it is…don’t need to continually pad the resume like that! ;^}

  • hi david,

    how are you? good i hope. i just got back from a little trip to north wales….where the internet doesn’t seem to exist. actually that probably not a bad thing.

    anyway, i wanted to catch up on the the thread that was running at the end of last week which featured subjects such as the mythologizing of some photographers after the blenkinsop video was added and the great idea that steve came up with. but they all seem to be missing.

    any idea what’s happened to them?



  • ALL

    I wonder if anyone else will be traveling from the New York area to Look3 – I’d love to be there, but have no car..if anyone is up for a ROAD TRIP, please send me a message..

  • DAVID,

    If I can get to Look, I should buy a regular pass and that will get me in to your presentation..and without taking any workshops, it would still be a good thing to come and have fun, but is there anything to ‘do’ to prepare to meet and greet all these editors?

    thanks so..

  • hi all,

    now i feel like a techno-idiot. i just saw the previous/next buttons which break up the postings. all has been revealed.


  • Jason…

    Yes, it’s now 50 comments per page. And it really SUCKS! Apparently Typepad sprung it on David and Michael C without warning. They–and most everyone else!–are not thrilled with it!

  • hi michael,

    how’s it going? thanks for that, i wondered what the hell was going on. i go away for one weekend and things are screwed. and you know what, you’re right, it does SUCK……what was wrong with the old system. if it aint broke don’t fix it! come on typepad get you act together!


  • About peace vs war photography, It is probably akin to actors admitting it’s a lot harder to do comedy than drama. When the “message” becomes subtle, which it is less shooting war, it’s definitely more difficult to pass it on.

    Parr would cringe at the idea of being a peace photographer. Peace is not “at peace”. Otherwise, US being at war (smirk!) since 2003, I’d be a war photographer too, even when shooting lilies in the park. ;-)

    Michael, right on empathy, maybe Philip shot a blank…insop? :-)

  • I now think, that if you read what John Vink does in Cambodia, what he covers, he probably comes very close to what we could call, not just for fun, a peace photographer.

    ie.Now that the war is over, what happens with the peace. And this is definitely not easy to convey as a big picture, whereas i will venture that one good/great shot can “take care”, define of a whole war.


    I think PB’s comment on the “digital camera and a business card” implies that many people think it is easy to be a photographer. You just get the camera and card and off you go. To me it seemed that PB and the other jury members where getting at the idea that photography is very much a craft which needs to be practiced with dedication over a long period of time, only then can you call yourself a photographer. And they make a good point, don’t they?

    SEAN: Nice work. Like Bob, I was amazed to see dogs in a zoo. The sadness in your pictures from the zoo is perfect. The Yangtze river pictures are strong too. For some reason I’m drawn to the one of the big tree. One slight criticism though, I would have liked to have seen something of the small rural communities and villages which are along the river and how they use the river, if at all.

    Coming back to the comment on “peace photography” being harder than war photography, I think that’s a bit ridiculous. I can’t see how having to make good pictures while at the same time trying to make sure you don’t get blown up or shot is easier than photographing a landscape or on the streets of New York. I know where I’d rather be.


  • Justin, you say: “To me it seemed that PB and the other jury members where getting at the idea that photography is very much a craft which needs to be practiced with dedication over a long period of time, only then can you call yourself a photographer. And they make a good point, don’t they?”

    Well, one can call oneself a photographer or a painter or a writer etc…if one wants, without a long period of practice and dedication. Doesn’t make you a good *fill-in-the-blank*.

    These are obvious truisms that apply to many things. What I wonder is… what’s the “danger?” Who’s to say? Who determines who is a “photographer” and who is not? Who gets to go to the craziest parts of the world to photograph the horrors? Who does not get to go?

  • I just want to give a quick shout out to SEAN Gallagher – I just went through your new work and I’m a big fan… for the animal/zoo story to start with a Gandhi quote was very effective. I think the elephant picture hit me hardest, but there is a telling selection there for sure. I’m glad to see that you’re doing what most photographers don’t do: putting text slides at the beginning of the stories… why don’t we do this more often on our web-sites???

    MARCIN… I don’t know if you’d be interested, but I’d love to do a print exchange.. let’s talk about it off-line. As for recent work I’ve been working on some lit environmental portraiture – I’m finding it fun yet maddening. After talking to many editors and agencies I believe it’s a valuable if not required skill here in the U.S. freelance world.

    DAVID – I made some recommendations to your LOOK3 workshop.. I hope I make it to the festival this year, I know Ben is going and so is Kelly. Wait, with that thought I better go for sure.


  • Justin,

    I think the point about “war” vs. “peace” photography was that while war photography is obviously more challenging, harder on so many levels … physically, mentally, etc … the opportunity to make memorable photos full of emotion, even ones perhaps lacking in other more “artistic” qualities, is easier. That said, rising to a higher level to make really, really good photos (compositionally, etc) under those situations falls to the very, very best.

    Sorry, feel like I’m chasing my tail here … perhaps someone could say this more clearly if they understand.

    Or maybe just … when the situation is more “boring” you have to look harder to make images with impact. Cathy mentioned Christopher Morris’ “My America” before … good example I think, especially since he was once “war” and now “peace”.

  • Lance,

    Your DAH workshop essay is one of my all-time favorites … skill sets are good but please don’t cave-in too much to editors :))

  • Tom, I think you’re on to something. It may be the word “easier” that’s the sticking point.

    Maybe it’s simply “easier” to do what you’ve done for so long (even if that’s war photography.) Doing something completely different, opposite of what you normally do…that’s not as “easy.”

    What could be easier in life than to follow around this peaceful quite man in a peaceful buddhist setting and make pictures…make the same kind of dramatic, compelling pictures like you make when in Iraq!

  • Lance

    Yes, yes… print exchange! I remember…

    in this month I’ll print next part of sign prints on Hahnemuhle archive paper. Choose photography please and give me a note.

  • Michael, right … “easier” is the hang up … easier in what way?

    Thinking of Christopher Morris … I still find one of his images of a glassy-eyed young Republican looking up with such mindless reverence, “zealotry”?, to the President may sum up the post-911 fervor that drove America into such a mess, domestically and internationally … war, politics of fear, rising nationalism, Patriot Act (even the name is intended to squash opposition), FBI checking who read what book, or what blog … (Morris’ photo appeared in a JPG mag essay but I assume it is in his book as well) It took a lot of thought to put together these type of images, they say an awful lot while being very simple and historically may mean more than a war photograph because I think they speak to “why,” part of the cause as opposed to the effect, what happens when we stop questioning our leaders.

    This is an “easier” photo to be there to make but perhaps more difficult to conceive. Hmmm, still not sure if I am communicating this well.

  • Tom, yes…perfectly well!


    Tom, click on that link then go to photo gallery then click through to image 8 of 13. This HAS to be the photo of which you speak! Wow.

  • Oh SEAN,

    get this Zoo story published terrible. can you please send links to it to PETA and such as well? I don’t know how you stood it. I do hope that the animals sensed your kindness while you were in their company, and that they had a better day because of it.

    Is you site new? I don’t remember it from before..

  • Erica…
    Amtrak is another option, penn station to charlottesville $80 each way if I remember…

  • Michael, yes that’s it :)) Interesting, had more impact larger and in print.

    Good article, hadn’t seen that, thank you :)) … he even shifted his style and technique to convey his message, what he saw … “everything had to be very clean and Republican, straight and perfect.”

    … and controlled. As he said, the complete opposite of war photography. Interesting, this “hyper-realism” in photography that seems to be so popular now in the U.S. … is that somehow related to our times I wonder?

  • David,

    As I was away in Antigua I had missed the news that you had secured time at Look3 to show the work from Sean and others from the ‘Young Emerging Photographer fund”. This is fantastic news!. Like Erica, I am planning to go to LOOK3 and hopefully meet several of the bloggers in persons. It would be great to plan a get together with as many from the forum as possible during theb festival. Will you (David) be planning something (planning is a big word, getting together at a bar is probably all what is needed….). Cheers, Eric

    PS: I saw the comments from others on Nachtwey coverage in Time of the Dalai Lama. Like Bob suggests, I will check it on the VII website but I can only echoe the points previoulsy made by some that somehow, I was also disappointed with the essay. Sometimes, I wonder how easy it is to keep making great photography and do something different when you are so known as James and everyone expects you to keep doing the same. I do not sure if others will agree but I have not seen as much from photographers like Salgado since he has become so known and the same syndrom seems to get to Naghtwey…Their early work was so so powerful that somehow, the work that comes after fame and “relative celibrity” seems to not quite live up to the same standard…. Still great but maybe hard to keep renewing yourself….


  • Sean,

    Just saw your essay on the China Zoo and like many above I tought it was a brilliant essay! Great quote to start it and overall so many great images. I love the first Crocodile shot! Congratulations!


  • Coming back to the comment on “peace photography” being harder than war photography, I think that’s a bit ridiculous

    I think Justin you probably think we meant on a physical, danger plane.

    The “peace” photography was more of a pun, done in jest, but I maintain that John Vink in Cambodia is a very good example of someone striving to help people grasp the complexities of living and rebuilding once war is over, and peace is “signed”. Read (or you may know), his many entries on the Magnum blog. See his pictures. This is very important work, and not obvious to pull off, because the idea is not to state a fact, arise emotions, but get people to think beyond these emotions. Something like that…

    Personally, I think both are hard work. I don’t think one is easier than the other, in terms of the photographic result.

  • Wow Panos, 1994, Cave, ‘Do you love me’… It brings embarrassing tears to my eyes ever since…well, when this came out I was in besieged Sarajevo, cut off from the rest of the world already for more than 2 years, than friend sent me this CD through a foreign journalist, Cave meant hope…
    Dig Panos Dig!

  • Nick Cave is one of the BEST EVER !!!! singer//songwriter

  • A quick note about John vink and his work in Cambodia. As I have written him many times over the last 3 years, in public at Lightstalkers and in private emails to him, and in personal conversations with Photo Editors I know, John’s Magisterial work is one of the most important of the last 20 years, and it’s virtually unknown. His monumental, 8 year project Quest for Land (if ever published in a book, which i hope and trust will happen) will eventually come to be understood as one of the most significant photojournalistic post-war bodies of work produced: PERIOD! He knows what i think of him and the work (so John, I wont embarrass you any more here ;) ). It means so much to me that It was the First work that i used (documentary wise) to begin my PhotoProjection project here in Toronto. Also, his work on the KR trials, thought entirely different in style and scope to the Land Issue, is also significant, and plays a very interesting juxtaposition to the land work: they belong side by side, unalterably.

    As i told a great Photo Editor in October over wine (who used to work for Magnum), John’s work will eventually be understood as seminal and essential, not only for its debth and breath and for its visual acumen and poetry (he’s carved down his aesthetic to that of such a remarkable simplicity, that his pictures are really like haiku: the words of the dead that still live upon that land), one day others will get it. I can honestly think of virtually no other photographer who has so richly and humanely and closely observed and documented a place and people post-war, and all that this entails, in the last 20 years. Philip Jones G set the goal with post war Vietnam, and John’s work is of the same calibre and commitment.

    Herve is 100% correct on this :)

    off to bed

    sorry for the embarrassment of riches John…


    ps. ditto on all things CAVE! :))

    I’m proud to say that i personally know Nick…
    back from Athens… ’89…
    I eventually met him at the bar i was working as a D.J.. 1992.. i think..
    back in athens greece… “club DECADENCE”… that was the place…
    he came to me and requested me a song he wanted to listen to…

    anyways i have a few “personal” photos… ( needs to be scanned)

    anyways.. i didnt mean to change our “photo subject”… here..
    sorry, soooo



  • panos :)))))))))))))))…

    nick is that (peace and war)….everything…

    and this is a weeping song ;))))))

    running to write…


    by the way…!
    I can’t believe what you been through those “2 years”
    Can i please see your photos ????
    so i can learn something…!

    let me ask you a question…?
    You see , Paolo P. or James N., run to “cover” the war???
    In your case the WAR CAME TO YOU….!!!!!
    How frightening…!
    How did the photojournalists in your country REACTED ????
    what is the priority ????????
    SAVE YOUR FAMILY…?????? or COVER THE EVENT ???????

    VELIBOR , i choose to admire you…

  • BOBB…

    THIS ONE FOR YOU, b***h


    who is the TARZAN in your story…
    still can’t sleep at nights….

  • Lance,

    Your DAH workshop essay is one of my all-time favorites … skill sets are good but please don’t cave-in too much to editors :))

    Posted by: tom hyde | April 01, 2008 at 01:05 PM

    BRILLIANT… or should i say, well spoken

  • HERVE said:
    “…John Vink in Cambodia is a very good example of someone striving to help people grasp the complexities of living and rebuilding once war is over, and peace is “signed”.

    Posted by: Herve | April 01, 2008 at 08:11 PM…”


  • MICHAEL K, said:
    “…Maybe it’s simply “easier” to do what you’ve done for so long (even if that’s war photography.) Doing something completely different, opposite of what you normally do…that’s not as “easy.”

    Posted by: Michael Kircher | April 01, 2008 at 01:09 PM…”

    that was my point! too…!
    but then again paycheck is paycheck…

    but honestly,… after Bob gave us the link… so i saw all the photos… i have to admit…

    when i got the “TIME” – Dalai Lama issue ( dentist desk )…
    i was only able to see the TIME” EDIT option or side…
    not the whole “essay”…
    thanks to BOB i saw all his submitted photos.. and i have
    TO AGREE with myself… that the TIME MAGAZINE EDITORS…
    ARE SIMPLY retarded…

    James N… did some great job… but “TIME” chose… the mediocre
    sorry JAMES N.
    f**k YOU “TIME”…

    peace ( if you can)

  • Tom, Michael, all…

    Tom Said: Re Christopher Morris-
    “he even shifted his style and technique to convey his message, what he saw … “everything had to be very clean and Republican, straight and perfect.”
    … and controlled. As he said, the complete opposite of war photography.”

    I asked about this when I brought Christopher Morris up earlier but didn’t get any response so I will rephrase…In the Portugal Nachtwey video Christopher talks about how an image must have emotion. Do these “Bush” images of his HAVE emotion? I believe his intention was for them to be emotion-less. I saw him present this work at the VII Seminar in LA and they EVOKE emotion in the viewer (along the lines of what Tom said) certainly that was the case for me…but they themselves are devoid of emotion…to make a point.

    How does this relate to his comment about an image needing to have emotion?

  • Cathy, that was a pretty informal gathering, really. No laying the Tables of the Law, IMO.

    I remember the “My america” essay. I went back to it again, I found and still find it “lacking” (and there were an awful lot of dems voting/going for that war back then anyway).

    The link I had for it has 22 shots, BTW:

  • To Bill and David,

    the atmosphere and the content of the picture are the most important thing in every photographs for me. From your pictures, somehow I can feel the feeling which both of you has brought in you picture. And I began to question, how can you bring the life trough the lights? how can you live in the moments, even if it were a second or less?
    And everytime I face a situation, there is a ghost in my mind. This ghost is shadow of your works and other master’s works. And it haunts me. Like the picture of the sicilian lady from Bill or the boy with the ball in South America from David. Did it happen to you? and How can you get rid of it?

    I hope I would be able to meet one of you or both of you someday.

    thanks in advance.


  • david alan harvey


    i know where i would rather be too, but that is beside the point…

    i was merely paraphrasing and referring to the Donald McCullin comment posted earlier on this thread…i think Don probably has seen more actual “combat” (the scenario you describe) than most….

    go back and re-read the McCullin comment please!!

    cheers, david

  • david alan harvey


    this is an “aside” , but something to think about too…

    i have had two friends killed taking “war” pictures…Richard Cross and John Hoagland….i have had four friends killed taking “peace” pictures…Ethan Hoffman, Bill Weems, Gordon Gahan and Jonathan granted, this is just a random sample of photographers i happen to know…so obviously war is dangerous…but , just taking pictures period is dangerous…photographers who go “out there” are exposing themselves to so so many unknowns that it is impossible to be “safe”…a poorly trained helicopter pilot is just as bad for your health as a man with a gun…

    but, i will save my thoughts on this for a new post looking at this from a broader perspective…stay tuned…


  • david alan harvey


    when i am not “working”, that is actually shooting, i often feel the “weight” of many other photographers and artists in general….when i am actually shooting, all of that disappears and i feel free and confident and totally “on to it”…

    good work is a balance of feeling the “weight” and yet being at peace with yourself and your work…

    where do you live? perhaps we will meet…

    cheers, david

  • david alan harvey


    i think if you saw most photographers “takes” and compared them to what you see “chosen” for the magazines, you would usually think the editors had made more than a few “mistakes”…

    the editing process for a magazine is a funny thing…first of all, editors choosing images for a magazine are not thinking about “photo world” at all…they are thinking about the story and their subscribers and their advertisers…period…

    i used to always say when i saw a story published in Natgeo, for example, that if you were to bring in to an editor the very same pictures that they actually published in the article, that those very same editors would say “this is not good enough to publish..”

    whatever you see in a magazine by anyone at anytime is most often just the “tip of the iceberg”…..that is why we do books!!!!

    cheers, david

  • @ the post about “peace photography” and war photography: there is an old proverb, “everyday is a war/fight/struggle”. I think, if people say that peace photography is harder than war photography, that’s because of the lack of ability to see what’s worth to be shot/captured. Such people would always love only the exotic pictures, which were happened far away from them, and forget to learn how to see and admire what’s around us. well, that’s my humble opinion…

    @ DAVID: I live in indonesia. Last year, I’ve posted a comment in your post about luck and hard work. You have mailed me then, but I couldn’t answer your mail quickly.

    I thank you for the tip. I think, I have to chew it first before swallow it. freeing my self is somehow difficult (especially when external pressures exist). all the time I tried to forget those great pictures and then somehow failed when I copy it and missing the point. So, only technically good, and bad content.

  • Cathy,

    Not sure if what Morris said is different from what he presented in his America essay. Do the images “have” emotion, you ask? The fact that they evoke emotion in me suggests they do.

    DAVID…a big favor to ask! (sorry)

    I’m off to Paris in a day. Ten days there. It is a vacation so I must balance serious shooting with spending quality time with friends and wife. But there will be some serious shoot time!

    Favor: how would you suggest I go about it? More directly, knowing what you know about my photography what would you like to see from me that is differently/better? from my typical stuff? I’m interested in stretching myself…obviously. And I guess I’m wussing out by asking for direction but it really does help the creative juices to get that little push in a certain direction. Anyway, if you (and others in here!) have thoughts…I’d love to hear them!

    Many thanks.


  • Follow up on what David has written about Magazine Editor’s choice vs actual pics. As I tried to point out, the Nachtwey pics at VII are so much more beautiful and sublte, the tonality and hue of the color itself has lots of emotional and visceral suggestion about the current state of things for the DL, and the pics in Time just look terrible, which i totally dont see as an indictment against Nachtwey. But also, many magazines (horror, horror) CROP pics. I know NG does this as well. David, maybe you can speak about this. I never knew this until i started to know photographers who shoot for them, for example Chris Anderson and now David. Some of the most beautiful of Chris’ work in his magnificent essay on Jerusalem were not shown in their entire frame in the mag. Take a look at the NG online: there you can see the “actual” images. This has to do with space of course and a reality of “publishing.” I also have a friend (david,you might know her since she used to work for Magnum, Bree) here in Toronto who is one THE FINEST PE’s i’ve ever met (smart, insightful, passionate, cool) and it’s interesting to talk to her about the needs of a magazine. I’d love to publish something in her magazine, but no way in hell would it ever happen: cause pe’s think about, not photography world, but: art directors, add space, readers, publisher, graphics dept, etc. a few months ago, Walrus had (bree’s idea) a brilliant photo concent dealing with colors magazine, and right after the spread, the Ad department place an add with the EXACT SAME COLOR SCHEME and it look like part of Bree’s photo essay….so, even the PE’s dont always have control ;))

    david, i’d love to hear how you feel about pics being “cropped”: do you bite the bullet and remember: someone will see the real pic?..perspective, right


  • Panos… to answer one of your questions above… NOBODY in the right mind would pick up his/her camera before saving his/her family… In that regard photographers are no different than carpenters, dentists, miners, housewives, teachers or anybody. But you know that.

    Also, the most significant “body of work” (horrible expression but better one escapes me now) from besieged Sarajevo came from a local photographer Milomir Kovacevic who now lives in Paris, and if some of you are there, you can see the latest exhibition of his in April. Here are the details:

    Le Président et les membres
    du Conseil d’Administration de l’association
    Pour Que l’Esprit Vive
    seraient heureux de vous accueillir
    au vernissage de l’exposition


    Photographies de Milomir Kovačević

    LE MARDI 4 MARS 2008*
    de 18H30 à 21H00

    Exposition du mercredi 19 février au samedi 26 avril 2008


    du mardi au samedi de 13H30 à 18H30
    58 rue Quincampoix – 75004 Paris Tél. 01 42 74 26 36

  • Herve said: “I remember the “My america” essay. I went back to it again, I found and still find it “lacking” (and there were an awful lot of dems voting/going for that war back then anyway).”

    Now Herve, with all due respect to you (and I do greatly respect your opinion), don’t you feel you’re shutting down the discussion here when you make dismissive pronouncements like this? I can almost see you waving your hand … okay, so why are they lacking? … and what do Dems voting for the war have to do with it? … if anything, that proves the point, people stopped asking questions, or were afraid to in the charged air of patriotism, nationalism and the new America of Homeland Security … which is a difficult mindset to portray visually. I understand … the photos themselves are sterile, straight, seemingly unemotional, controlled … but NOT to be controlled … sure I’ll take a photo op of the President, without his head, or just his feet with his taped tag on where to stand, or an empty podium with scenes from the war on the tele or … in essence, a photographer’s revolt to cynical media manipulation which has been raised to an art form in today’s media savvy political realm which runs on to beg the question, are you a fan of Alec Soth? :J

    Cathy, I agree with Michael … the images evoke emotion by having something to say … even if they are not full of emotion, per se. That is one thing I like about them. And perhaps they resonate with me because at the time I had a very small newspaper in a very small town and I did question things, nationally and locally, and I was called unpatriotic and traitor … very tough when your advertisers are literally next door, subscribers a few blocks away, and you are always losing friends … and I saw the fervor of “patriotism” translate all the way down to local politics … many people stopped asking questions of local leaders, or were attacked when they did … “we are at war, we have to all pull together, think the same, suspend free speech, asking questions undermines our singular purpose …”

    But I was never “smart enough” to translate this visually.

  • Hey, no, Tom, not shutting the discussion, “I found…” is not “it is” or “he is”, squarely on the side of subjective opinion…

    And then I ended my post with a link to the essay with even more shots, for people to make up their own mind, if they wish.

    Clearly, a supreme example of begging for participation and…free speech! ;-))))

  • Dear Friends,

    Thanks for all the comments about the new photos. Am especially pleased about the feedback you gave about the zoo story. I really feel strongly about this story and hope it gets picked up by somebody.

    David…I’m definitely looking into going to Look3. It’s a bit of a hike from Beijing but I think it would be well worth it. Am looking at flight nows. Will let you know for sure as soon as I know!

    Justin…I do have more shots from the rural areas but tried to be pretty tight with my edit. There are lots more shots in my archive.

    Erica…I hope the animals felt my compassion to them too. It was pretty hard to photograph yes but my anger at the way they were being treated me pushed me to do it.

    Lance and Eric…Thanks for your words. Really appreciated.

    Bob…I didn’t know you knew Bree too?! We have quite a few friends in common. I worked with her for a year when she was in London. Say hi to her from me!


  • david alan harvey


    if i were you, i would not “separate” the vacation from the shooting…go with the flow….allow yourself the “freedom” to hang with your family and yet make some photographs of which you will be proud…unlike many photographers, i have always had, and will always have, family or friends around…some of my best “work” is when i am not “working”….sitting at a Paris cafe with your wife may yield a really interesting “moment” at the next table…i shoot a lot sitting down..just being a customer….ask for another coffee….relax…sure, find the “best seat” right away…i compose pictures in my head while i am asking for the table next to the window next to an interesting couple…shoot “one handed”….loose….your work could “loosen up” a bit….do not “control” yourself….just relish Paris…feel it….do not think you need lots of pictures….one would be just fine….make friends with someone new…anyone…they will lead you down some sort of interesting path….you will go somewhere you never imagined and you will make a photograph you never imagined….have fun my friend!!! having fun is not at all contradictory to making good photographs…


    you asked about cropping….Natgeo has only cropped two of my photographs in over 40 stories and that was when they took two of my horizontals and turned them into verticals for the cover…they then ran both pictures inside the story full frame…normally no crop …except maybe by the few centimeters that it takes to get 35mm aspect ratio to make a double page bleed spread…

    Magnum always calls me or writes me when any client wants to crop one of my photographs…usually, for a book cover….so, i either give my permission, or i do not…if it happens to be one of my “iconic” works, i do not give permission…if it is a picture from the archive, an unknown picture, a “second” or a “third” in the edit, i sometimes give the “go ahead”….

    when Gabriel Garcia Marquez recently wanted one of my photographs for his newest book cover, and it required a crop, i relented because he is one of my greatest influences for all of my Latin America work…i found it hard to turn down GGM!!! i went back and forth with the art director and we came up with a compromise of type placement and crop that seemed to work just fine for everyone…

    all in all, i do not feel that cropping has ever been something i had to worry about much…even in my newspaper days, i do not remember being cropped….even then, i was always very cognizant and careful to print my work in such a way so that nobody would “have” to crop the picture….i knew the column widths, for example, and spacing for the text, so i might crop myself just a bit to fit without having an editor get out the scissors….

    studying design and typography was one of the best things i ever did…understanding the problems of an editor and being able to communicate with editors and art directors and help them solve their problems, usually solved mine….

    cheers, david

  • PANOS,

    Tarzan is Tarzan, or more specifically, Johnny Weissmuller, who I always think of as the real Tarzan, unlike the other guys, who always seemed fairly ersatz to me, although now that I think of it, Buster Crabbe was all right.

  • Dear All,

    This seems like the best place to place this for archive sake. I stumbled across this Allard video. I have not seen a lot about him on the internet, so here for you…

    He shoots at half a second!? Wow! Technically, how do you get acceptable sharpness? I know that the painterly movement is partly what this kind of work is about. I love it, very inspiring.


  • Hi Again,

    I recently bought Allard’s Portraits of America, and what a treasure it is. The more I see of his work, the more I like it. He’s got the Cartier-Bresson feel for the moment and geometry, but also has such a wonderful grasp of light and colour. His photos have such a intimate personable presence that you can tell they were the result of a relationship with his subjects and not just a quick grab. I wish I could buy that skill in a bottle!

    Anyway, I recently discovered National Geographic is opening an assignment wing which will represent their staff photographers and others who have worked closely with them. Along with that there is a stock collection that can be searched. I know that it is hard to find Allard photos on the internet, so I was quite excited to see so many of his pieces available for viewing here. (It is really enjoyable to look through.)

    There is no way to link directly to his work because of how they set-up the site, but if you go to the following link and do a search for Allard, you will find many pages of his work.


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