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The May issue

The May issue of British Journal of Photography, on sale now, is dedicated to photographers who don’t quite ‘fit in’. Our main feature is Michael Grieve’s interview with Nick Waplington, the iconic British photographer, as he exhibits his photography alongside Alexander McQueen at Tate Britain. For Waplington, the sense of being an outsider runs throughout his work, as does the idea of family. Originally from middle-class Surrey, he made his name with a series of photographs focusing on life on the Nottingham housing estate (where his grandfather had been born and still lived), capturing in lurid colour the ‘pre-Ikea’ interior worlds of two unemployed families 10 years into the Thatcher regime. The resulting photobook, Living Room, brought Waplington to international attention in 1991. And although it was talked about in the same breath as some of his older contemporaries loosely affiliated with the new wave of British documentary at the time, Waplington reflects on his approach differently. “I was inspired by the colour work of Paul Graham, Martin Parr and Tom Woods; I liked their aesthetic, though not necessarily …

Attention all photography graduates: BJP is looking for the cream of this year's crop to feature in the projects section of our summer issues. Picture shows our August 2014 issue, featuring the work of Nottingham Trent graduate Ben Swanson (left) and Middlesex graduate Johanna Churchill (right)

Class of 2015: get your work in a special print issue of BJP

If you think you’ve got what it takes to be featured in a forthcoming special issue of BJP, and you are graduating from a higher education photography course in the UK or Ireland this summer, we want to see your work. BJP prides itself on spotting new talent, each year giving a platform to emerging photographers graduating from colleges and universities across the UK and Ireland to showcase their work with their peers and photo industry VIPs. The best we see will feature in print in our Projects section in our June, July and August summer editions, and a further number given global exposure across our online and social media platforms, reaching more than half a million people worldwide. To be considered, simply send a link to your final year work, or attach a maximum of eight low res JPEGs totalling no more than 5MB, to the editor at bjp.editor@bjphoto.co.uk. It is vital that you write into the subject line of the email, ‘Class of 2015’, and that you graduating this summer from a recognised …

British Journal of Photography – in print since 1854

A lot has been said about photography, and journalism, in the digital age. We believe in, and are part of, an awful lot of it. But we also believe very deeply that photography, and photography journalism, is at its best in print. This conviction is backed by a long heritage. We’ve been printing and publishing photographers’ work since 1854 – that’s more than 160 years. We’ve charted the monumental impact of photography, from salt prints to Instagram, through ink and paper. It’s easy to get caught up in a sense of relentless change, in a fixation with speed and buzz and going viral. But maybe the photographers we feature deserve a little more; an element of permanence and tradition, a promise that we’ll do justice to their work. So, for the April edition of BJP, which we entitled Driven to Abstraction, we took a camera to the BJP’s printing press. We documented how long it took to create our magazine and how detailed the process was – even after the editorial team had finished up …

Issue #7834: Driven to Abstraction

Analogue photography is undergoing a massive resurgence right now, and the more obscure the process the better, reports Diane Smyth in the lead article for our April issue, which is devoted to process, experiment and abstraction. In London alone, there are two shows (at Tate Britain and James Hyman Gallery) devoted to salt prints made at the very dawn of the medium, and another, Revelations. Experiments in Photography at Media Space, considers early scientific imaging and its influence on contemporary artists. We talk to the curators behind Revelations, and we visit Timothy Prus of Archive of Modern Conflict to hear the thinking behind The Whale’s Eyelash, his ‘re-enactment’ of 19th century microscope slides as a ‘five-act play’ in photobook form. But it’s not just that early photographic practices are being reappraised; as the Media Space show illustrates, contemporary artists are also turning to analogue processes, and many take inspiration from the experiments and investigations conducted by photographers of their grandparents and great-grandparents generation. Smyth investigates this shift towards abstraction, talking to gallery owners, curators and …

BJP International Photography Award Launch – In Pictures

Dominic Hawgood’s International Photography Award exhibition Under the Influence kicked off at the packed-out TJ Boulting gallery in Fitzrovia, central London last night. Thank you to everyone who came down – it was a great night. The BJP would also like to thank Dominic Hawgood, who worked tirelessly in the week leading up to the show to create a genuinely atmospheric photography exhibition. The judging panel included Brett Rogers, director of The Photographers’ Gallery; Emma Bowkett, picture editor of the Financial Times’ award-winning FT Weekend Magazine; Hannah Watson, director of Trolley Books, Sean O’Hagan, photography critic of The Guardian, and Bruno Ceschel, founder of Self Publish, Be Happy. They selected Dominic Hawgood from over 700 photographers to enter the competition. Diane Smyth, BJP’s deputy editor (pictured at the centre of the second image above), was chair of both judging panels, and she organised the entire contest. “There was a huge sense of relief that everything came together; the printing, fabrication, set build and light installation,” Hawgood told BJP on the night. “It was ten days solid work installing the …

Introducing BJP’s March issue

British Journal of Photography’s March issue is about the long game, what it takes to spend a life making photographs, and what it means to return to a place that was once home. The issue is on sale in all good newsagents from the first Wednesday of February, or you can pre-order it now, directly from the BJP shop. Last month we featured the Ones to Watch, a celebration of the best emerging talents in photography. Now, we’ve gone in-depth with four photographers who have managed to keep going, even while remaining unsung. And who are, in their endurance, their dedication and their ability to adapt, each remarkable. Fame, or at least recognition, has found each differently, but it never struggled to locate Alec Soth, whose Sleeping by the Mississippi became one of the iconic series of the twentieth century. Now he talks about Songbook, a revisitation of his beginnings as a staff photographer on a suburban newspaper in Minneapolis. “To sustain myself creatively is to not give myself over entirely in one way or another,” Soth tells Lucy Davies. “And I like …

Smoke and mirrors

With just a couple of weeks until his exhibition opens at TJ Boulting Gallery, Dominic Hawgood is hard at work finalising the prints. His project, Under the Influence, is a deliberately stagey look at the theatrics of modern-day Churches, so he’s creating a carefully controlled, immersive installation to show it off. “The priority is finding a way to control the lighting in the room, to make sure we can create atmosphere for the work to sit in,” he told BJP earlier this month. “It’s about using a few elements in the space, just to change it enough to create a certain feeling.” Hawgood won the show after scooping the series category of BJP‘s International Photography Award, and is working with competition sponsor Spectrum Photographic to create it, making two lightboxes and five large black-and-white vinyl prints that will be stuck directly to the wall. “I’ve worked with LED panels, dim reflectors and bounce light, to try and contrast the glossiness of the screens and the matt finish of the vinyl,” he explains. “Hopefully, when all …

Ones to Watch – our annual survey of new talent – is out now

Ones to Watch, our annual survey of global talent, is now on shelves and available to buy direct. We asked over 80 photography experts from around the globe to nominate emerging photographers; they recommended over 300 and we picked out 25 who are about to make it very big. Hailing from Japan to Russia to West Africa to Mexico, they’re poised for international success, and we’ve devoted over 50 pages to showcasing their work. Sayed Asif Mahmud, a young Bangladeshi photographer, made our cover with a stunning monochrome image; establishing himself with a gritty exposé of his country’s cigarette industry, Mahmud’s work has now morphed into a darkly romantic, deeply expressionistic take on modern Bangledeshi culture which he describes as “a latitude of my observations, realisations and recurrences of the unknown”. Turkish photographer Kürsat Bayhan has captured internal migration in his country; young men from the impoverished towns of east Turkey travelling to Istanbul to live ten to a room, picking up any work they can and sending the money home to their families. Argentinian …

Ones to Watch: the new magazine from British Journal of Photography

We’re welcoming in 2015 with ‘Ones to Watch’, our annual survey of global talent, showcasing 25 photographers we believe are on the verge of something big. To discover the next generation of photography, the magazine will be available at all good newsagents from the first week of January, or available to buy direct here. Put together from more than 300 nominations by photography experts from around the world, we’ve devoted 50 pages to emerging talent drawn from Tokyo to Mexico City. Over the next 12 months, these are the photographers we are betting on to make the breakthrough from recognition in their homelands to international success. This issue is all about helping them on their way and, hopefully, putting them in front of the people who can help them realise their dreams, and bringing their work to wider attention. Our aim, as ever, is to make this a truly worldwide search. However, we can’t yet say that it’s truly representative (either in terms of the world, or the major centres of photography). Among the 25 photographers we’ve selected, …

The Cool and Noteworthy issue – out now

We call it Cool and Noteworthy, and it’s back again; our annual showcase of the people and projects that have caught our attention this year is on shelves now – or available to buy straight from the app store or BJP shop. It’s been a remarkable year, with photography projects the world over taking great exploratory leaps into the unknown. We take pride in championing the movers and shakers of photography land, however idiosyncratic they may be, but we’re also careful to pay due attention to the more traditional photographers to make their mark this year. It would be remiss to publish an annual photography review without paying homage to the brave new world of mobile photography, so you can find in these pages features on the secretive French collective #Dysturb, on the photographers who caught the wave of protests in Ferguson, Missouri, Thailand and Hong Kong, on the new phenomena of drone-based consumer images, on the “friendly window watcher” Gail Albert Halaban, and on Jules Spinatsch, who co-opted the state-of-the-art security of the Vienna State Opera House …