Throwback – meeting Ed Kashi

So this new Facebook feature reminded me that exactly a year ago today I met and talked to Ed Kashi.

Ed Kashi & Lucy Waheed

He had an exhibition in London and I was so happy for this opportunity, because I had been following his work for years. Ed is in the narrow top of the top for me, doing social documentary photography exactly how I wish I could be doing in future. Big role model and a person to look up to. I strongly recommend checking his blog: http://edkashi.com/blog/

I think this ”throwback” is a nice idea and I will probably do more of it, as I’ve already had quite a few of great photographic adventures 🙂 Watch this space.

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Morning Adventure – Meeting Sama Alshaibi

I can’t remember getting up so early was soooooo worth it. And although I’m writing about last Thursday, I’m still as much in awe as I was that day.

Sabkhat al-Milḥ (Salt Flats), digital chromogenic print, 2014, ©Sama Alshaibi

Sabkhat al-Milḥ (Salt Flats), digital chromogenic print, 2014, ©Sama Alshaibi

I had a pleasure to meet Sama Alshaibi at Ayyam Gallery in central London during press morning. It was the first day of her exhibition and I strongly recommend you go and see it if you can (http://www.ayyamgallery.com/exhibitions/sama-alshaibi/press-release). Also the book – Sand Rushes In, her first monograph, has just been published by Aperture.

 

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Purchase here: http://aperture.org/shop/alshaibi-sand-rushes-in-book

It’s worth mentioning that it’s the first monograph of the Arab artist published by them (Sama is half Palestinian, half Iraqi). No surprise here –  Sama is Chair and Associate Professor of Photography and Video Art at the University of Arizona, her work has been exhibited many times and among other achievements she was awarded the prestigious Fulbright Scholar Fellowship. Read more on her website: http://www.samaalshaibi.com/

Mā Lam Tabkī (Unless Weeping), 2014, © Sama Alshaibi

Mā Lam Tabkī (Unless Weeping), 2014, © Sama Alshaibi

Fātnis Al-Jazīrah (Fantasy Island) , 2014, © Sama Alshaibi

Fātnis Al-Jazīrah (Fantasy Island) , 2014, © Sama Alshaibi

On Thursday there was a talk between Sama and her curator Isabella Hughes. To be honest, every sentence I heard was fascinating and inspiring, but some things I will particularly remember. She stressed how important it is to do something you’re unsure about, you’re scared of. She said she wanted to share stories of who she is and who the people she meets are. With her work, she wants to encourage cooperation, being together, to make us imagine the possibilities. It’s interesting that Sama was into theatre in her youth, but then decided she needed to tell her own stories. And starting photography degree, she wanted to be a war photographer. That’s close to my heart. Now she’s not only fine art photographer, but also multi-media and performance artist.

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Sama Alshaibi Sand Rushes In from Aperture Foundation on Vimeo.

Adventure Two – ”Get The Picture” campaign launch

I’m entitling it ”two”, because it’s the second one I’m writing about here, but certainly there have been many more adventures than two. That’s the reason for setting up this blog finally. I need to write about all those events and people that I meet, present and past. So, the adventure number 432 (or something like that), the second one to be written about on the blog:

Yesterday, on the 17th of March, in London premises of the Shell Foundation I attended the launch of the Get The Picture campaign. It’s part of the bigger Time To Change campaign run by a few charities helping people with mental health issues. It’s aim is simply to end mental health discrimination and stigma. The Get The Picture campaign goal is to stop the stereotypical photos illustrating mental illness stories being published (particularly the ”headclutch”). The people behind it produced alternative images ready to be used by picture editors and anybody else who needs them. How certain issues are pictured in the photographs is a wider and fascinating topic, deserving more writing and discussion. Maybe I’ll tackle it one day. In the mean time you can read more about the campaign here: http://www.time-to-change.org.uk/getthepicture

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Learning more about the campaign and meeting it’s organizers was great. But I was also lucky (as usual) to meet bunch of other amazing people. First was a fellow photography student – Sarah-Louise Kaner. A proof that there are no coincidences in life. We share the interests in activism, human rights, social issues etc. Always great to meet a soulmate! Check this project she started: http://www.photoislam.co.uk/

I also had a pleasure to meet the experienced photo editor – Alan Sparrow (http://www.picturecoach.co.uk/) who is the Chairman of the UK Picture Editors Guild, an association for picture editors throughout the UK and Europe. The Guild supports the Get The Picture campaign.

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Then there were the army guys! I was very happy to learn more about the photography within the British Army from Richard Watt – experienced photographer and picture editor (https://twitter.com/richardwatto) and his younger fellow Rupert Frere (https://twitter.com/Rupert_Frere). I’m very much looking forward to seeing this two again and learning more from them.

Overall I had a great time. Wish the organizers success with the campaign.

Next adventures shall be very soon, at the weekend!

Adventure One – ”What next?” event organised by The Printspace

Let’s do this! My first post!

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Last Saturday I had the pleasure of participating in a great event (https://www.theprintspace.co.uk/whatnext/). Aimed at students, graduates and anybody who wants to know more about photography industry, it consisted of talks by great photographers and other people involved in photography. I think the managers at The Printspace came up with an awesome idea, cause there’s definitely a need for such events. The people who came had a chance to listen to very experienced photographers and to ask them questions. All four of them were brilliant: Richard Seymour, Ross Kirton, Spencer Murphy, Travis Hodges, but I was particularly impressed by Richard, because of his energy, enthusiasm and speed of sharing large chunk of his experience.

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The other speakers were equally interesting. Stuart Waplington from The Printspace told us more about the company and it’s services and the income potential of selling our prints. It was very informative and eye-opening. Also the photo-agent Skye Trayler Graham said a lot about how to get noticed, when to look for an agent, how to approach one, how the portfolio should look like and so on. The amazing people from Artmedia London shared stories from behind the scenes and gave insight into what technical jobs are out there.

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Finally there was a panel discussion with Simon Bainbridge (British Journal of Photography), Carole Evans (Portrait Salon), Nick Turpin (iN-PUBLIC) and Christine Santa Ana (Curator) that summarized some points raised earlier and added more food for thought.

There was also a chance to chat, both with the speakers and fellow students, over coffee or wine/beer during the breaks and in the evening. It’s nice everybody was so open, willing to talk and advise. I truly hope The Printspace will organize similar event again, preferably even in a bigger space and for more people. It was spot on!

Watch this space for more adventures!

P.S. The organizers were recording, so when I see the video published I will link to that. Maybe those of you that couldn’t make it and now regret will be able to catch up 🙂