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Video by The Times outlines thinking behind Olympic wraps and community reaction

August 14th, 2012 | No Comments | Posted by in Photography

The Times has published a video today on YouTube which hears from deputy editor Keith Blackmore, design editor Jon Hill and deputy picture editor Elizabeth Orcutt, as well as communities editor Ben Whitelaw, about the thinking behind its Olympic wraps. As Blackmore says:

The first one was terrifying. Once you made a commitment to do it, and we’d committed right from the start to do this every single day of the Olympic games … you’ve got to do it.

The video includes a look at the decision behind the very first wrap, which wanted to visualise the dawning of the Olympics in London. The Times sent a photographer out every morning the week ahead of the Olympics to photograph the sun coming up over the Olympic stadium, before it was decided a shot of the London Bridge with its Olympic rings was the better shot for the job.

The video, which can be played below, also talks about the reaction to the wraps on social media from the community.

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Citizen journalism: Street Photographer of the Year announced

Kheoh Yee Wai, winner of the CJET Street Photographer of the Year, poses with his photo

The winner of the Citizen Journalism Education Trust (CJET)’s Street Photographer of the Year was announced yesterday.

In a release, Kheoh Yee Wai, 23, (pictured above) described his winning photograph:

The mum and her child were strolling on the streets of a neighbourhood in Leeds, passing by a family that was having a barbecue at that time. They had a huge dog that kept jumping-up in excitement.

That was when I knew I had to stop and capture a candid street photograph.

To qualify for the prize, entries had to be taken on a mobile phone by an amateur photographer or citizen journalist.

Judges included award-winning photographer and former Guardian picture editor, Eamonn McCabe and Allyce Hibbert picture editor for Time Out.

Wei, was awarded a camcorder. Runners-up Pete Smith and Daniel Holland received framed prints of their photographs.

All 12 shortlisted photographs are being exhibited at the London College of Communication until Thursday, 15 March. More information is available on the LCC news and events blog.

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Tool of the week for (photo)journalists: ZangZing

March 6th, 2012 | No Comments | Posted by in Photography, Tool of the Week

Tool of the week: ZangZing

What is it? Photo storage and sharing site which is a good solution for anyone using Apple’s soon-to-be-closed MobileMe.

How is it of use to journalists? This week’s tool is one for photographers, particularly those who have been using Apple’s MobileMe.

MobileMe allows photographers to store photos, password protect them and allow client’s access to particular sets. Users can then invite a client to download the entire high-resolution photo set or a single image.

MobileMe is no longer accepting new subscribers and in June will close all galleries.

ZangZing allows MobileMe users to save and move their galleries before they are wiped and has many of the features available in MobileMe.

In addition to being able to add photos from MobileMe, ZangZing allows you to import from sites including Flickr, Dropbox and Instagram.

ZangZing does have an option to make a photo or gallery private but it requires anyone who wants to download the images to sign up for a ZangZing account.


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2012 World Press Photo winners announced

February 13th, 2012 | No Comments | Posted by in Awards, Journalism, Photography

A Spanish freelance photographer’s image of a woman in Yemen, holding her wounded son in her arms, has been named the World Press Photo of the Year at the annual awards.

The picture, taken by Samuel Aranda for the New York Times, was among more than 100,000 photographs from the world over that were considered by this year’s judges.

Images of protestors in Cairo’s Tahrir Square celebrating Hosni Mubarak’s resignation, rebels holding out against Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, and the aftermath of the Japanese tsunami, also received top prizes.

The full gallery can be seen on the World Press Photo website.

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AFP photographer wins political photography award

January 27th, 2012 | No Comments | Posted by in Awards, Editors' pick, Photography

The AFP has issued a release to say its photographer John MacDougall won the Rueckblende (flashback) award in Germany for 2011.

The agency says this is the first time the award, which is for political photography and cartoons, has gone to one of its photographers.

The winning picture of a German female soldier embracing a relative of one of three victims at a military funeral brought home the human aspect of the tragedy of Afghanistan, judges of the Rueckblende award for political photography said.

MacDougall first started work at AFP in 1989 as a photo editor.

According to the AFP release “his photo was chosen from among 247 entries for the Rueckblende, which was created in 1995 and carries a 7,000-euro ($9,200) prize, and which also awards a prize for political cartoonists.”

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BBC CoJo on the possibilities for ‘drone journalism’

The website for the BBC College of Journalism published an interesting post on Friday by BBC world affairs producer Stuart Hughes, which looked at how news organisations could use drones as “newsgathering tools”.

According to Hughes, “in theory” the aircraft could be a useful tool for news outlets keen to get a bird’s-eye view of certain news events, such as protests.

Photographers covering election demos in Moscow also deployed a UAV – prompting some onlookers to suspect they had spotted a UFO over the Russian capital.

The resulting images were widely used by international news organisations – including the BBC.

However, Hughes said that in reality regulations would make it difficult to operate the aircraft “in built up and congested areas – exactly the sort of places where most news stories take place”.

Understandably so – no news organisation would want to deal with the legal consequences if its unmanned camera crash-landed onto the head of a peaceful protestor.

But nevertheless he is “excited by the prospect of using Big Boys’ Toys as part of our newsgathering”.

It may be some time yet before drone journalism becomes commonplace but, potentially, the sky’s the limit.

Read the full post here.

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Wired offers creative commons images in exchange for link

Director Tim Burton surrounded by dictaphones at Comic Con 2009, one of 50 images made available by Wired as part of its new creative commons plan. Image: Wired.com

Wired.com has made what looks like a canny move in deciding to license its own images under creative commons in return for a mention and a link.

The technology site doesn’t currently sell the images, so the commons licence will cost it nothing but will probably generate some useful publicity today, like this, plus traffic and SEO in the long run.

See 50 images made available immediately here.

Wired hasn’t stipulated where the link and mention have to go, so presumably it’s fine to put it either right next to the image or bury it at the bottom of your blog post.

The licence also allows users to edit images, as I have with the one above. Just a simple crop here, but mashups and other edits are also fine.

The move also raises a long-standing lack of clarity over the CC “non-commercial” licence. When we use CC images on Journalism.co.uk, we usually steer clear of images marked “not for commercial use” because we carry ads on the site and the site is a profitable entity.

But the distinction isn’t as clear cut as that according to some. Nieman Journalism Lab’s Joshua Benton has an in-depth post about the CC issue, read it here.

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BBC: Powerful audio slideshow shows photographer’s ‘baptism of fire’

November 1st, 2011 | No Comments | Posted by in Editors' pick, Photography

The BBC has produced a powerful audio slideshow which documents the experience of Press Association photographer Lewis Whyld when he reported on the riots in Tottenham on 6 August.

The slide show, displayed on the magazine section of the BBC News site, uses Whyld’s own images and audio accountof his “baptism of fire” in covering the riots.

He describes the scenes he witnessed and how he dealt with covering such a hostile environment, often using just his mobile phone to capture images.

Later this afternoon BBC Radio 4 will broadcast “Picture Power: Portraits of five leading photographers”, the second of five programmes looking at photographers who captured images of “the most dramatic events of the past year”.

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Tool of the week for journalists – Error Level Analysis, to test if a photo is a hoax

Tool of the week: Error Level Analysis

What is it? A free tool to allow you to test whether or not an image has been digitally manipulated in programmes such as Adobe Photoshop. Paste the URL of a photo and Error Level Analysis will return results in an instant. The tool tests how many times an image has been manipulated and re-saved.

How is it of use to journalists? Journalists frequently have to verify images and work out whether they have been manipulated. It may be to test whether an image from a press release has been altered, or from social media sources using Twitter and Facebook.

Take the case of a journalist’s quest to find the man behind the world’s most expensive everything. Stewart Campbell, the deputy editor of Motor Boat and Yachting, set out to prove that a press release claiming the launch of a £3 billion golden superyacht was a fake. Campbell’s keen eye led him to the original photo, which he could prove had been doctored. Error Level Analysis would have demonstrated the level of digital manipulation, which you can see by clicking here.

The Error Level Analysis site clearly explains how the tool works – and comes with a word of warning about interpreting the results:

It works by resaving an image at a known quality, and comparing that to the original image. As a jpeg image is resaved over and over again, its image quality decreases. When we resave an image and compare it to the original, we can guess just how many times the image has been resaved. If an image has not been manipulated, all parts of the image should have been saved an equal amount of times. If parts of the image are from different source files, they may have been saved a number of different times, and thus they will stand out as a different colour in the ELA test.

It is worth noting that edges and areas red in colour are often depicted as brighter in the ELA tests. This due to the way the photos are saved by various programs. It is not proof that image was manipulated.

If you are unsure how to interpret the results, please do not claim the results of this tool as proof of anything.

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Slideshow of winning images from Picture Editors Guild awards 2011

September 21st, 2011 | No Comments | Posted by in Awards, Events, Multimedia, Photography

The Picture Editors Guild presented its awards last night, with Associated Press photographer Matt Dunham named as photographer of the year. Matt captured the widely distributed image of Prince Charles and Camilla inside their car as it was attacked last year.

We have created a slideshow of some of the winning entries for this year’s contest:

 

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