All posts tagged: Portraiture

Michelle Sank’s portraits of young people in Britain’s Black Country

When Michelle Sank approached young people on the streets of Sandwell, asking to take portraits of them in their bedrooms, most were happy to be photographed. It was trickier to negotiate with their parents, who were sceptical for obvious reasons. “I had to explain why it was so important for me to photograph them in their bedrooms,” says Sank. “What’s on their walls is a metaphor for their identity and personality”. My.Self is a collaboration with Multi Story, a local charity that works with artists to make work for and about the people of Sandwell. The charity hadn’t produced any work yet on young people in the Black Country – a name for this region of the British West Midlands believed to have come from the layer soot it was covered with in the Industrial Revolution – so with her past experience of working with young people, Sank decided to make portraits of them in their bedrooms, wearing the clothes, and surrounded by the items, which help to confer their identities. The book is dedicated to …

2018-11-16T13:41:40+00:00

Portrait of Humanity: Meet the photographer exploring a New African Identity

Sarah Waiswa is a Uganda-based documentary and portrait photographer, whose key interests are people and their stories. Much of her work focuses on identity, and explores themes surrounding isolation and belonging in her native Africa. In particular, she is concerned with documenting what she calls the New African Identity – a term she coined to describe a new era of cultural freedom on the continent – and what this might mean for Africa’s future. Born during Idi Amin’s dictatorship in Kenya, Waiswa and her family were forced to flee to Uganda shortly after her birth. This formative experience has affected both Waiswa’s worldview, and her photographic aims; exploring her connection to place is still a central theme in much of her work. Waiswa’s photographs are pioneering in the way that they illustrate social issues in Africa in a contemporary and non-traditional way. She focuses on every aspect of African culture; from religion, to the isolation of people with albinism. Through her work, Waiswa has reclaimed her narrative; she is able to document Africa from an …

2018-11-05T10:27:23+00:00

Portrait of Humanity: “Stories are everything and they are everywhere”

Danielle Da Silva is a photographer, activist and filmmaker, and the Founder and CEO of Photographers Without Borders, an initiative that connects volunteer photographers and videographers to grassroots causes, NGOs and non-profit partners, in the hopes that new possibilities will be manifested through the power of visual storytelling. Her work embodies the ethos of Portrait of Humanity, and seeks to show the individuality, unity and community of people across the globe. Danielle is passionate about using photography to connect people to the earth and to each other. Her personal projects have taken her around the world, and she has worked with hundreds of NGOs, bringing important issues to light through her lense. Her work has led her to be nominated for the 2018 Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Award, and she has also done two TEDx talks; ‘Grassroots Narrative’, and ‘Connection is the Key to Conservation’. Her passions are rooted in conserving parklands, fostering equality, and encouraging ordinary people to find their power. The main aims of her work are to communicate the extraordinary efforts of people …

2018-10-30T12:16:09+00:00

EyeEm Photographer of the Year announced

The winners were announced during Berlin Photo Week in Germany (10 – 14 October) where all 100 finalists were exhibited in Supermarkt, a repurposed supermarket and exhibition space. Pachnanda received a trip to Berlin for the event, as well as a Sony Alpha camera. As part of the award, Pachnanda will act as the EyeEm ambassador during 2019. Much of his work centres on bold portraits of unusual people, often in urban areas of London. On receiving the Photographer of the Year title, Pachnanda said, “winning an award with so much calibre from an organisation so pivotal to the world of 21st century photography is amazing”. The EyeEm Awards, run by global community and marketplace for photography EyeEm, currently stands as the world’s largest photography competition. This year marked its fifth edition, and it welcomed a record 700,000 entries from 100,000 photographers, hailing from more than 150 countries across the globe. Covering nine diverse categories – ranging from ‘The Creative’ to ‘The Great Outdoors’ – the award attracts a huge breadth of subject matter. This …

2018-10-31T14:36:52+00:00

Sophie Harris-Taylor explores the invisible toll of skin conditions

During the Wellcome Photography Prize submission period, which closes 17 December 2018, British Journal of Photography is profiling photographers who are exploring the importance of health in society and the impact health issues have on people and communities worldwide. In line with the Social Perspectives category, BJP spoke to Sophie Harris-Taylor about her series on Epidermis. Throughout her teens and early-20s Sophie Harris-Taylor suffered from severe acne. “At the time I felt shame and embarrassment,” says the London-based photographer. “It affected my self esteem in those critical years when you are desperately trying to fit in.” It was this experience that prompted Harris-Taylor’s latest project. Epidermis comprises a series of portraits of women with varying skin conditions. Photographed in natural light in the intimacy of Harris-Taylor’s home studio, the images are striking in their honest and relatable nature. In each portrait, a young woman stands topless; her face make-up free. There are no studio lights or exaggerated expressions. “I didn’t want to shock,” says Harris-Taylor speaking of her approach. “The photographs are a beauty shoot …

2018-10-24T14:31:48+00:00

Portrait of Humanity: “I wanted to rethink the way we photographed migration”

Chris Steele-Perkins began The New Londoners four years ago, a project reflecting the individuality, community and unity of Londoners today. “The idea behind it was to think of a different way to photograph migration,” he explains. “Migrations have always been photographed very extensively in a dramatic, photojournalist sense, but I wanted to change that.” The project encompasses portraits of families from over 180 countries across the globe, who have all settled in London. Before it’s culmination into a book in Spring 2019, Steele-Perkins hopes to photograph 20 more. “It’s one of those projects that could go on forever,” he says, “But I have to draw the line somewhere.” He chose London as the setting for the series because, in his own words, “London is leading the way as a multi-ethnic, multi-cultural city.” Home to people from every nation on the planet, there are currently around 200 nations listed in the city, according to the UN, making London the most ethnically diverse place in the world. This push to globalisation has occurred over the last 20 …

2018-10-19T17:18:43+00:00

BJP Staff