Photojournalism takes center stage in West Palm Beach

South Florida Sun Sentinel's Michael Laughing image of Carlos Arredondo for our look at the man in one of the many compelling images from the Boston Bombing.

South Florida Sun Sentinel’s Michael Laughing image of Carlos Arredondo for our look at the man in one of the many compelling images from the Boston Bombing.

This day was the day i needed. NPPA was coming to my backyard with all the great images that reminded me why i followed this path as a career. The ultimate storytellers where coming to West Palm Beach and i needed to be there. For someone who has eaten, drank and slept photography for most of his life but has gotten “distracted”, i needed to get that jolt to remind me it still matters. No matter how bad it may seem that others “don’t get it”, i needed to get it and thanks to all the folks at National Press Photographers Association i was re-energized with a sense of mission.
My challenge now is to really work on finding ways to keep that mission alive in my daily routine, but i love challenges. I wanted to share some quotes from Saturday’s speakers i hope you find as inspiring as i have.

Sean Proctor of the Midland (MI) Daily News, the NPPA Small Markets Photojournalist of the Year
On his philosophy of covering his community;
“It’s a matter of trust,” on working with people. He feels you must be coming from a place of “pure intentions” in telling their stories or they will see right through you.

His goal is to try and have the viewer connect with what he saw.

NPPA profile on photo team at Midland Daily News

Niko Koppel of The New York Times, the Newspaper Picture Editor of the Year

On his responsibility and approach as a photo editor;
“Let unexpected things creep into the images you work with.”
As an advocate for photographer’s work we must not let “the compelling work get lost.”
Jim Colton added that photo editors have to sometimes wear kevlar.

Winning entry for Newspaper Picture Editor of the Year INDIVIDUAL

Nicole Fruge of the San Francisco Chronicle, a member of the Newspaper Picture Editor of the Year (Team) winners

On managing her team of photojournalist;
“Photographers are the heart and soul of telling the story of their community.”
On the Chronicle’s philosophy on importance of photography;
“It’s an immediate buying in on any big events for telling our readers this is something special. It’s in the DNA of the Chronicle.”
Content rules the day at the Chronicle, “If the pictures are better than the words, we’ll cut the words, and vice versa.”

Winning entry for Newspaper Picture Editor of the Year (Team)

Chang W. Lee of The New York Times, winner of Best Use of Multimedia for “The Jockey”

On his shooting philosophy:
Chang wanted to get us to experiment with the way we “see” by closing our eyes and imagining what we have seen, what we expected to see and what we would see.”You can see you with your eyes but it’s too late.” I think he really wants to understand the story before he goes out so when the right image that will tell the story appears, he knows it. He talked about The Jockey, a profile of horse racing legend Russell Baze, that took months to produce. “I didn’t know what it was, but i knew i didn’t have it,” referring to the “The shot”. It finally came late into the project when he saw the love Russell had for his horses. “I knew that was the moment, the story wasn’t the breaking of the record, it was his love for horses.”

New York Times: The Jockey

Al Diaz with the Miami Herald and winner of NPPA’s Humanitarian Award

On getting “the moment” day in and day out working for a newspaper
“The decisive moment is fleeting, so be ready.”
“I want to capture the emotion and bring it home to you all.”
“If you’re distracted by being upset for something like a person getting in your shot you’ll miss the moment.”

Al Diaz website

Michael Laughlin with the South Florida Sun Sentinel

On his life changing assignment in Haiti:

Michael has spent over a decade covering Haiti from elections, hurricanes and earthquakes since being shot while working for the Sun Sentinel.
“While most photographers bring back trinkets from assignments, i brought back Natalie,” referring to a young girl he met during one of those assignments. Nathalie Jean needed medical treatment after being shot in the face and blinded so he found a hospital to help her and had her flown to South Florida, he would eventually adopted her.
“This day changed my life,” he said of the day he took three bullets in the shoulder, neck and ear.

Michael’s pictures from Haiti 

NPPA Best of Photojournalism exhibit

If you did not get a chance to visit the exhibit this weekend you still have some time as the winning entries will be on display at the Palm Beach Photographic Centre until August 30.

Exhibit information

You can follow me on Twitter Photero

The official South Florida Sun Sentinel photo staff Twitter account PhotosSentinel

On Tumblr SunSentinelVisuals


Re-work Wednesday 31

Ed Mooney Photography

Carbury Castle2

For this weeks re-work we go back to last year and a stunning ruin that I found after two failed attempts to locate. Carbury Castle rests on a hill top in Kildare, near the Offaly border, which goes back in Irish history over several millenia. A stunning place to explore, and spend a few quite hours. The original Castle dates back to a sept of the O’Neill clan, then after the Norman Invasion of Ireland it came into the hands of  Meiler Fitzhenry before passing on to the DeBermingham family whom held vast lands and numerous castles along the Kildare/Offaly border. Although in a ruineous state, its still easy enough to have a good look around and explore the lower levels. It is possible to climb certain parts of the walls but caution is advised. You can read more about its history and see the original shots by clicking the…

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Taking a moment to enjoy the view

Suburban Sunset

Suburban sunset over Target store. You don’t always need a beach for a backdrop to a beautiful sky.

One of the things i came to realize after my kidney transplant was to enjoy the moment. I tend to let so many obstacles roll through my brain, job security, safety of my Marine son, my elderly mother that is a million miles away. But, once i started carrying my iPhone with me everywhere i went it made me stop and take a look around and realize that life has so many treasures and we can only control so much.
The newly found joy my iPhone camera has given me has opened my eyes again.
As a photographer at heart when i see something i need to stop and capture it. And that has been a blessing in disguise for me and made me really enjoy the moment.
This picture is a great example of that. I was just making a quick stop at our local Target store to get some ingredients for the next day’s luncheon at work when i looked up at this amazing sky and i had to capture it before it was gone.
There is beauty all around us and how ever trivial it may be, for that moment it’s a beautiful moment that is yours and yours alone, soak it in.

You can follow my journey on Instagram at lostangelino and see the amazing images of the South Florida Sun Sentinel photo staff on Twitter at PhotosSentinel

My image has been stolen!


Making your way home

So it finally happened, or at least the first time i’ve caught someone. If you follow me on Instagram, @lostangelino, you know i love to capture images from my daily commute on the local commuter train here in South Florida called Tri-Rail. I then use various hashtags to get some attention. Apparently it worked pretty well as a train enthusiast took a liking to one my images and posted it on Twitter without any attribution to myself.
I must admit i’ve been pretty lackadaisical about watermarking or even specifying the copyright to my images. My thought being that i post my images on social sites because i see them as my thoughts and observations on any particular day. I am, though, a professional and these are original works be they thoughts or award winning images. So, while i want them to be shared with people who will appreciate them, when no attribution is given and they are merely posted for the sake of posting that really pisses me off!
The nuts and bolts of it was @railyardhobo on Twitter went into Instagram saw my image, downloaded it and then posted it on his Twitter account. I happen to be trolling Twitter using the #trains and saw my image. I often post the same images from Instagram to Twitter so i was perplexed whether or not i had done that. When i discovered i had not posted i began an hour long journey of trying to figure out how to extract my justice.
Twitter does not make it easy, or at least for a novice like myself, to notify the proper authority. In the end i posted a WARNING to all on Twitter about this thief and sent him a message asking him whyyyyy? I felt a bit like a friend betrayed, thought we where all photographers who understood each other?
There are various schools of thought on sharing your work, and you have to find the one that satisfies you, but one thing is always a must; ATTRIBUTE! No matter the level of the creator, never ever share someone’s work and not give them the credit that they are due.