Author: Anya Lawrence

Meet California: The winners

“California is the land of plenty. People tend to see it through its clichés: Hollywood, the roaring success of Silicon Valley, boundless natural wonders and the ever-present palm tree,” writes photographer Ricardo Nagaoka. “However the Golden State is so much more than just its loudest components.” It is the quieter, arguably more unassuming side of the state that will be the focus of Meet California. The British Journal of Photography commission, run in partnership with Visit California, will see four photographers travel across California and each create a new body of work that explores a different facet of its identity. While the iconic landmarks of the state will no doubt feature, the photographers will also shed light on the daily occurrences and extraordinary realities that give California its distinctive character. The winning photographers – Ricardo Nagaoka, Francesca Allen, Clément Chapillon and Brant Slomovic – will fly to San Francisco on 05 September and spend 10 days travelling across California as a group. The trip will be split into two chapters – northern and southern California – and …

2018-09-11T10:42:51+00:00

Meet California: The shortlist

Following a lengthy initial judging process, the shortlist for Meet California has been announced. The commission will see four photographers fly to California and road trip across the Golden State on a 10-day British Journal of Photography commission, in partnership with Visit California. The four competition winners will each produce a photo series that responds to their experience traversing California. Steering clear of generic picture-perfect travel photography, each body of work will delve beneath the surface of California and reveal the daily occurrences and unexpected nuances, as well as the people and places, that give America’s Golden State its distinctive character. A prestigious panel of industry experts is currently judging the competition with the winners due to be announced in mid-August. The panel comprises four judges: Simon Bainbridge, editorial director of British Journal of Photography; Zelda Cheatle, an independent curator and photography consultant; Max Whittaker, a California-based photojournalist and Visit California’s official photographer; and Charlie Pinder, international photography manager at Red Bull Media House.   Below, we present the final shortlist, from which four winners will …

2018-08-03T09:52:49+00:00

Meet California: A handful of the strongest submissions so far

Meet California will give four photographers the opportunity to road trip across the Golden State on a 10-day British Journal of Photography commission, in partnership with Visit California. All trip expenses will be covered and, among other prizes, each photographer will receive a £2,500 project grant. While in California, the four competition winners will each produce a photo series that responds to their experience traversing the vast and diverse destination. Steering clear of generic picture-perfect travel photography, each body of work should delve beneath the surface of California and reveal the daily occurrences and unexpected nuances, as well as the people and places, that give America’s Golden State its distinctive character. Entering the competition is easy. Simply submit some examples of your work before the deadline – Thursday 28 June, 11.59pm (BST) – to be considered by the judges. Meet California is open to all photographers, at any stage in their career, from any country. Your work can be shot on film or digital and be of any style or subject matter. Below we share …

2018-06-27T14:32:30+00:00

Behind the scenes of a travel commission

Postcards from Copenhagen invited three photographers – Marco Kesseler, Peter Holliday and Laura Stevens – to travel to Copenhagen over a long weekend and create a new body of work inspired by the Danish capital. Following the publication of the three series on British Journal of Photography’s website, here, we take a look behind the scenes of the commission. In the weeks leading up to a trip, checking the weather forecast becomes an almost obsessive preoccupation. Two weeks ahead of Postcards from Copenhagen, Danish weather reports warned of plummeting temperatures. Yet, against all odds, on the four days that British Journal of Photography travelled to the city, the sun shone throughout. Copenhagen, it seemed, was intent on presenting itself at its very best. For a group of photographers on commission, however, such unseasonably mild weather presented its own set of challenges. Both Laura Stevens and Marco Kesseler started each day at sunrise. “Things seem to have a slower pace in the mornings, there is a meditative quality. But there’s also a much more beautiful light,” says …

2018-06-26T11:07:06+00:00

Lakewood: A modern day utopia

Meet California will give four photographers the opportunity to road trip across the Golden State on a 10-day British Journal of Photography commission, in partnership with Visit California. To introduce the competition, BJP is profiling a number of photographers who have created work in the state. Twenty years ago, if you told photographer Tom M Johnson that Lakewood – the Californian city where he was born, raised and continued to live for much of his adult life – would be the subject of one of his most compelling bodies of work, he would have not believed you. Growing up it seemed as if there was nothing particularly special about the Los Angeles County community. Its leafy streets, single storey houses, and perfectly manicured lawns were the norm. It was only upon returning from his travels that Johnson began to see his neighbourhood in a new light. “It was necessary to leave Lakewood in order to appreciate it,” he says. “Growing up, it was just so normal but it seems special now. All the little things – …

2018-06-26T10:02:32+00:00

Laura Stevens: The beauty of getting lost

Postcards from Copenhagen invited three photographers – Marco Kesseler, Peter Holliday and Laura Stevens – to travel to Copenhagen over a long weekend and create a new body of work inspired by the Danish capital. Here, we publish the third and final project in the series. When visiting a new city you often arrive with a handful of preconceptions. It is well-known that Copenhagen boasts a rich cycling culture, and any guide book will tell you about its charming canals and narrow streets. It is impossible, however, to grasp the feel of a city before standing there on your own two feet. For Paris-based photographer Laura Stevens, the sense of calm in Copenhagen was particularly striking. “Everything seems peaceful here,” she writes in a journal entry reflecting on her first day in the Danish capital. “There is a distinct lack of aggression or paranoia, which I feel in Paris so often. It feels easier to breath here.” Postcards from Copenhagen marks Stevens first time in Copenhagen. On day one of the commission, the photographer chose …

2018-06-05T10:48:17+00:00

Meet California: Enter now to win the opportunity of a lifetime

For a photographer, the state of California is a wonderland. Its sheer diversity presents endless opportunity and inspiration. There are few places in the world that offer the vibrancy of its iconic cities – serving as global centres for art, entertainment and technology – and the beauty and tranquility of its Pacific coastline, sprawling redwood forests, vast deserts and towering mountain ranges. British Journal of Photography has teamed up with Visit California, the state’s official tourism board, to launch a brand new competition: Meet California. This September, four winning photographers will be flown to the Golden State where they will embark on a 10-day photography commission. During their time in California, each competition winner will produce a new body of work that responds to their experience traversing the vast and diverse destination. Steering clear of generic picture-perfect travel photography, each body of work should delve beneath the surface of California and reveal the daily occurrences and unexpected nuances, as well as the people and places, which give America’s Golden State its distinctive character. The road trip …

2018-05-23T09:45:53+00:00

Peter Holliday: Edgelands

Postcards from Copenhagen invited three photographers – Marco Kesseler, Peter Holliday and Laura Stevens – to travel to Copenhagen over a long weekend and create a new body of work inspired by the Danish capital. Here, we publish the second in the series. “Copenhagen is one of the few cities in the world where you can build and test rockets in a car park.” Peter Holliday is referring to a stretch of tarmac situated on the northern tip of Amager East, an island neighbourhood just a short bike ride away from central Copenhagen. This vast industrial area is the perfect setting for artists’ studios; its close proximity to the water makes it an ideal place to launch rockets. Copenhagen Suborbitals, the world’s only amateur space programme, has been based in the area since its founding in 2008. Funded solely by donations from space and rocket enthusiasts around the world, to date, the organisation has launched four home-built rockets and space capsules from a ship in the Baltic Sea. Its ultimate aim? To fly an amateur astronaut into …

2018-06-01T15:51:38+00:00

“Be patient, self-aware and have humility”

Rena Effendi has spent years steadily building a successful career in photography. A social documentary photographer, her work is driven by human-interest stories and has taken her to Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey, among other places. It is all about telling stories that deserve to be told, she explains. “I try to focus on the world’s least represented issues and communities,” says Effendi, whose work can be seen at this year’s Photo London. “For example, with today’s #metoo movement having finally galvanised women around the world to come forward, very little is being reported on the cycle of sexual abuse in Native American reservations; people are silenced by stigma and the trauma festers. […] I seek out stories of people whose voices are not heard enough.” Effendi is one of five female artists – alongside Catherine Leutenegger, Letizia Battaglia, Tanya Habjouqa and Newsha Tavakolian – whose work is being brought to Photo London by Rome-based ILEX Gallery. This will be the gallery’s third time at the fair, says founder and director Deanna Richardson, who was compelled to …

2018-05-15T12:11:58+00:00

BJP Staff