“The work represents my experience in recovering and understanding my parents, their life and their relationship towards myself,” says Marco Marzocchi of his series Oyster. “I never knew them well because they split when I was 6 years old, and they both died young.
“Drugs, addictions, jail, and dysfunctional environment, these were constant elements. This work is focused on dealing and replacing all the doubts and the fears that I had. Exorcising the pain and the searching for love.” A bold mix of colour, black-and-white, contemporary and archive images, presented with hand-written text, Marzocchi’s series has scooped first prize in the 2017 Gomma Grant. Marzocchi has worked on the project for a decade, honing down on the editing last year with distinguished photographers JH Engstrom and Margot Wallard at the celebrated Atelier Smedsby workshop.
Digital editor Diane Smyth sheds light on what she looks for when selecting feature-worthy projects.
What do photographic agents, curators, editors and commissioners look for on an online portfolio? Five industry professionals offer their perspectives.
“There is this feeling that if someone has won an award, then it will not be a mistake if they are awarded again. But unfortunately selecting this way does not highlight fresh gems and talents. It just creates trends, but not excitement and new-comers. We at Gomma are not afraid to prize unknown photographers,” says founder Luca Desienna. This year’s awards are now open for submissions with past winners boasting solo exhibitions, international magazine features and photobook publications since bagging the award.
BJP’s Breakthrough Sessions are open from 23 June – featuring leading industry speakers such as Vivienne Gamble (director, Seen Fifteen), Hamish Crooks (licensing director, Magnum Photos), Jaki Jo Hannan (senior creative producer, AMV BBDO) and Dominic Bell (Webber Represents) and the BJP Breakthrough Awards exhibition, featuring Ryan James Caruthers, Jocelyn Allen, Todd R Darling and Cathal Abberton
With days to go before the deadline to enter the International Photography Awards 2016, we spoke to three of the judges – Bruno Ceschel, Emily Graham and Diane Smyth – about what kind of work excites them and how getting your work seen is a career boost in itself. With decades of experience judging and curating photographic work between them, all three note the importance of presenting something new. BJP’s deputy editor Diane Smyth says: “I’m interested in seeing projects that present a new way of looking, something I haven’t seen before. I’m not necessarily stuck on innovation, but when looking at a lot of work in a short space of time, you definitely notice trends and zeitgeists running through the mass of projects. That means that the people who do something different, something more individual, really stand out.” Bruno Ceschel, writer, curator, publisher and founder of Self Publish, Be Happy agrees. “I hope to see things that are unexpected, this competition is a chance to see what you don’t normally come across because you …
The latest issue of the oldest photography magazine in the world, available to buy now, has been put together to coincide with the opening of the contemporary music photography show We Want More at The Photographer’s Gallery, curated by BJP Deputy Editor Diane Smyth, from the 17 July to 20 September 2015. It includes features on Sven Marquardt, a long-term bouncer from underground Berlin, capturing decades of nefarious activity in a global capital of live music. We speak to Sanna Charles about her book God Listens to Slayer, the culmination of ten years spent photographing the metal band’s most dedicated cult fans. And we feature Michele Sibiloni, who realises a new vision of Ugandan society by embedding himself in the vibrant cultural nightlife of Kampala, the nation’s capital. Here, Diane Smyth, editor of this month’s BJP, introduces the issue: “Photography, like literature, has many genres. And as with literature, some of those genres have more stature than others. Where literary fiction has more cachet than detective novels, documentary has higher status than music photography – which is all too often …