Opinions about documentary photography

Started 2 months ago | Questions thread
j3ffw
j3ffw Regular Member • Posts: 216
Re: Opinions about documentary photography
2

dccberry wrote:

j3ffw wrote:

  1. What do you think are the skills required for documentary photography?

Writing for grant money, caring about something so much to do work not just for free but covering all the costs

  1. What commonalities documentary photography has with other photography practices?

you will be extremely poor

  1. What is the difference between documentary photography and photojournalism?

In photojournalism you can work all weekend with super expensive equipment and make $25 on a single sale of some chubby high school athlete scoring a goal. In documentary photography you can bore everyone to death about how you have sixth months of work and need to find an editor willing to work for free so they can make sense of all the garbage you brought back. ( you know it’s garbage that’s why you can’t edit/cull it yourself) and even if you do produce something and let’s hypothetically say it goes viral you will still need to borrow money for coffee while the ngo’s lawyers make a healthy six figures

Why don't you be a little MORE condescending next time?

You want to know what's disgusting Photo-Professors and University Communication programs that peddle this altruistic optimism. Dropping names from the 70's and 80's. As if you can go wherever without the money to hire a security team.

I've worked in the DC area for the past twenty plus years and have seen first hand dozens of young naive photographers taken advantage of by NGOs - my last paragraph is a cliche here because it is so true. I can literally finish their sentence once I hear "I'm a photographer returning from six months over in... "

You need to find an editor who will work for free because you have no money the the NGO really doesn't see you a part of their team until they can get a finished project and even then it won't come close to covering your real costs. But the lawyers pushing papers around get paid extremely well even though the NGO is somewhat a marketing campaign using images to get donations. I might add No lawyer can guarantee that their efforts will pay off either even though they get a pay check while doing the work not after.

Professors should be discussing licensing and how to actually have the work sustain the project. And have the hutzpah to acknowledge that if the accounting doesn't add up then maybe the project won't/ shouldn't come to fruition. (If the NGO wants it they need to pay for it including All of the costs)

I don't believe I'm condescending I believe it's wrong to sell altruistic optimism in order to take advantage of Creatives.

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My Architectural Photography Portfolio
http://www.jeffwolfram.com

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