Friday, April 1, 2011

Day 4

"You're the wizard behind the curtain" - Patrick Witty
Day 4

Today was our last full day of scheduled activities. As our trip wraps up, I cannot believe how fast the week has gone by. It's days like this that I know, without a doubt, that I'm in the right field. 

We started off the morning with a visit to the International Center of Photography (ICP). The main display at the center was The Mexican Suitcase, a famous collection of recovered negatives of the Spanish Civil War, considered lost since 1939. Robert Capa, Gerda Taro, and David Seymour were the main photographers to which the negatives belonged to. It was very interesting to see contact sheets of the original negatives, as opposed to selected images, because that gave us the opportunity to watch the way in which the photographer worked towards creating a great photograph. Often times, we see famous photographers best images, but do have the experience of viewing the process. 

After we left ICP, we headed to TIME Magazine. The DOP, Kira Pollack, talked to us about the importance of the cover, as well as many other issues the magazine deals with. This was, without a doubt, my favorite place we visited during the trip, as well as the most inspiring. Many of the other places we visited were great, but didn't thrill me the way TIME did. Ideally, I could definitely picture myself working there, for many reasons. The way in which the magazine functions is different from the newspaper, in that it is a little looser as far as captions, stories, and types of photography deemed acceptable. I think working for this type of platform would be a much better fit for me, because of the type of work I am most interested in. I was primarily impressed with TIME for two reasons. Firstly, the images they produce are amazingly high quality and stunning, aesthetically. Also, TIME is one of the first magazines I have seen that provides an outlet for interesting and relevant environmental imagery and stories, as well as offering a great platform for more "conventional" documentary stories. It was refreshing to see a channel of work that doesn't exclude more news type stories by providing a focus on the environment. The variety in TIME photography was quite appealing to me. 

Lastly, we ended our day with a visit to Sports Illustrated. Steve Fine gave us a few presentations of images from big sporting events that were truly incredible. Seeing these images brought my understanding of sports photography to a new level. Although I know for sure that sports photography is not a genre I am specifically interested in pursuing, I really enjoyed listening to Steve Fine talk about his expectations. I could truly feel his energy and passion for this type of photography, through the way he talked about it, which was very inspiring. It made me want to submerse myself in the types of photography that truly excites me, so that others can feel my dedication and love, through my work.

Steve Fine wrapped up his presentation by saying that "even a blind squirrel can find a nut", meaning that anyone can "get lucky" by creating an excellent image. The goal is to be able to produce this type of high caliber work on a regular basis. When you can go into any situation and make something great out of nothing, time and time again, you can be considered a great photographer.

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