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Viewpoint – Don’t Take a Photo Today

Don’t do it. Don’t take a photo today. Not with your phone, not with your camera.

Don’t even draw with chalk.

Today, August 19, is World Photography Day. It’s the day we celebrate France thinking they came up with the idea of photography. Ok that’s not fair. Photography, as we know it today, did find its footing in 19th Century France, and Messrs. Daguerre and Niepce deserve tremendous credit for sorting out how to create permanent images.

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Photo lesson – Stephen Wilkes – Day to Night

Let’s step away from the commentary on social photos and take a quick look at a technique we call multiple exposure.

I came across this article on CNN about a photo book, Day to Night, by photographer Stephen Wilkes. It’s a book of landscapes and they are stunning. What is remarkable about them is they are composites – multiple photos taken of the same subject at different times of day and night and then blended together to make an almost otherworldly photo.

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Viewpoint – An Ole Miss Snapshot

It came to light this past week that three University of Mississippi fraternity members posed with guns in front of an Emmett Till marker. In this same stretch of summer, tragically, a student from Ole Miss was gunned down, allegedly by a fellow student, her body dumped on a road near Sardis Lake, north of the college.

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Quick Snap – Don’t touch the jellyfish

Dear lord. Look at the size of that jellyfish.

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Viewpoint – Franky Flies a Firearm

It appears, as the French were celebrating Bastille day, the 1789 storming of said place, that inventor Franky Zapata showed up on his FlyBoard Air thing overhead (this was planned) of the parade route to, well one, show off his wickedly cool toy, and to get in on the whole militarization of parades thing.

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Photo Lesson – Photographing food

First, a caveat – there are many many ways to shoot food. Angles, lighting, plating, etc. So this is just a walk-through on one shoot I recently did for a pecan farm. And man, their products were absurdly good.

Second, I really need to do a live video on this topic, but it might need to wait until the next food shoot so I can get permission and set up to film.

With that said, hope this helps.

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The end of an iconic silhouette – VW Beetle

It’s 2019. Ford no longer makes sedans. You will buy an F150 or a Mustang and you will like it mister. Norway is puttering around with electric Teslas. Millennial types are, for the love of god, SHARING rides with each other. Germs, criminals, eww. And for those people actually buying cars, every other vehicle sold in America these days looks like a rounded off brick, convincing you that you live some sort of Sport Utility life.

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Quick Snap – Apollo 11 Landing Site 50 years later

June 20, 1969 humans landed on the moon. Full Stop. Period. 50 years ago two American men, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin (poor Michael Collins back in the Command Module) set foot on the moon.

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Quick Snap – Photographing fireworks

So how did you celebrate our nation’s birthday yesterday? July 2, 1776. Yep, you missed it. It was July 2, 1776 when the Continental Congress (reps from the 13 colonies in Philly trying to sort things out) voted to declare independence from England. NOT July 4. Here, let John Adams speak from the grave…

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The Emmett Till Story – Photographing the Sites

In 1955 a 14-year-old African-American boy from Chicago named Emmett Till walked into a general store in Money, Mississippi. Six days later he was dead.

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Five Minute Photo Lesson – Contrast

Look at the difference between the two. One looks like a hot mess and the other is pleasing. Taken within 10 feet of each other. So when you photograph your kids, find that even, soft light, usually shade. Do it, do it for the children.

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Quick Snap – Iran you so silly

We have this idea in American Journalism, and yes people it still gets taught in journalism schools – of not faking images. No excessive crops (looking at Trump inaugural pics) or “photoshopping”. People have lost their jobs at every level of American media for fooling about with images.

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Quick Snap – NOPE NOPE NOPE

That is a Huntsman spider eating a pygmy possum in Tasmania, Australia. Seriously Australia, WTF is going on down there? And total credit to the couple staying in the lodge that took the time to take a photo.

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swin cash

Quick Snap – Swin Cash photo…

In this case odds are it was just some mid-level someone in a hurry. And it sucks. But in a world where women, and women of color, are judged unfairly by their appearance, this image was a true disservice.

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robert capa

D-Day

Today marks the 75th anniversary of what the military in 1944 called D-Day – the Allied invasion of Normandy, on the French coast. People forget that by 1944, Hitler had conquered most of western Europe. The Brits were probably next….

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ford quadracycle

Quick Snap – look closer

As this is a photo blog, let’s just concentrate on one thing… This photo was supposedly taken in 1896 when Ford was debuting his new car – a tech still in its infancy. Ford didn’t invent cars, but he was at the forefront of development and ultimately mass production.

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tank man

30 years ago – a man, a tank…

I have to wonder, over in the People’s Republic of China, as the first week of June unfolds, if the men and women of my generation – graying, potbellied, an eye cast slightly back, contemplating events from our youth – talk about that final week in the square.

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Quick snap – Your life in one photo

It’s 2019. We shoot and upload and share something like 3 billion photos a day. A DAY.
Amidst all that noise, could you post one, just one photo that sums up your life? Not just a piece of it, but really encapsulates who you are, what you do, what you love?

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these faces are not real

You Won’t Believe your Eyes…

Remember that phrase? Doesn’t get used much any more, but at one point is was a term of in-credulousness, which I’m not sure is even a word.
But you get the idea. There was a time when seeing something meant it had to be real, or at the least, unexplained, you know, like this Amityville Horror photo.

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Quick Snap – Photog takes one in the lens

One of the lessons I used to instill in my students, or at least talked about out loud in class, was the idea of situational awareness. What am I shooting, where should I be? What are the potential hazards?

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decoration day

Happy National Decoration Day

Memorial Day, as by an act of Congress in 1968, is officially on the last day in May. That’s what we know, and the three day weekend has become the unofficial start of summer – cookouts, pool parties, auto races, baseball games, road trips. We use the weekend as a springboard to summer baby.

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Quick Snap – The power of perception

But the mob can also turn, in a virtual, and sometimes physical way on those undeserving of such treatment. We have of course come a long way from a physical mob destroying another human, which happened far too often in our history, but we have not moved on from the mob mentality.

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mount everest

Quick Snap – Top of Everest

I’m always on the look for unusual images, and this one will make the Freeze Frame sunday column. Feast your eyes upon the top of Mount Everest…

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department store Gordon Parks

NYT – Lens

In building this site I want to include as many links to outside photographic material – series, publications, resources, etc – as possible. Hence the week in photos links.

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For Old Glory, Size Apparently Matters

Oh my. That is a big flag you got there, Camping World. Makes me want to stop by and pick up a bunkhouse travel trailer, 28 ft with a slideout please.

It would seem though that the city of Statesville, NC isn’t a fan of the 40×80 flag and has filed a lawsuit against the company to take it down. They are also fining the company $50 a day.

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tornado

Storm/Photo Chasing/Get the Shot

One of the points I have made with students over the years is that to take really interesting, dramatic, gorgeous photos – pick your adjective – it takes a little bit of effort. Ok often a lot of effort.

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Farewell Grumpy Cat

One of the remarkable things about the internet is its, well at times, democratic ability to lift certain stories or images above all else. Called going viral, we as a collective vote on the interesting content of the day, and share, and share, with some content achieving the Michelin Star of the internet – a meme.

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Jesus in the clouds

As we grow this site, one of the things we will regularly do is look at images that pop up in the news.

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images of the week

About the links to media images in the sidebar

Readers, both of you, I want to point out the links to various media outlets’ photos of the week, etc. In my time teaching as an adjunct in a university journalism department, I found it helpful to review images from the news once a week or so.

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trolleys at night by jay adkins

Welcome to Snap-Look

This site is a photo/news/commentary site, built to teach you about photography and all its facets, but to also look at the news and imagery of the day and discuss both how it was made, and its impact.We will also look to others – creators and educators – and share their work and insights.

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