I Blended 105 Exposures to Create This 620MP Night-to-Day Photo of NYC

I blended 105 exposures to create a 620-megapixel photo of New York City transitioning from night to day after a snowstorm. “New York Transitions I” captures the dawn of a new day in New York City.

I wanted to portray the magic of the skyline at both nighttime and daytime in a single image so I planned to create a VAST photo that transitioned from night to day as you move from left to right in the image. Furthermore, I wanted to create the photo at a special time when the city looked particularly radiant, so I waited for a snowstorm to gild the city in white…

Heavy clouds thick with snow blanketed the sky on an unusually cold morning. After reviewing the forecast for many inches of snow followed by a sudden clearing of the sky at night, I decided to prepare for a photo shoot of the city from the top of one of the tallest buildings between downtown Manhattan and the iconic Midtown Manhattan skyline.

A cropped version of the panorama.

As the day turned to night, the snow continued falling, coating the usually-dark rooftops of the city with a sheen of white powder. Then, in a matter of minutes, the snow ceased and the clouds whisked away to the east, leaving a perfectly clear sky. The moonlight sparkled off of the snow-covered buildings and the clear atmosphere provided amazing views for miles in every direction. The city stretched before me, filled with glowing windows, energetic arterial avenues, and Saturday-evening festivities.

Reveling in the scene, I began exposing the long-exposure images that make up the left-side nighttime portions of the final photo.

The fervor of cars racing up the avenues into the heart of the city rendered a beautiful glow on the buildings. Over the course of two hours, I meticulously recorded every last high resolution detail of this nighttime winter wonderland using a long telephoto lens mounted on my Canon 5DS, which I rotated using an extremely precise gimbal.

The sky began to illuminate with the faint glow of the swiftly oncoming sunrise and so I started shooting the regions of the image to be used for the center and right sections of the final photo.

The sky grew brighter with each passing minute, casting the entire city in a heavenly light. Complementing this were the typically-drab rooftops that were now now shining with their thick coats of bright white snow. A handful of cars meandered up 6th avenue, some early-risers strolled down the West Village’s sidewalks, and plumes of steam danced from faraway rooftops. The storm had quieted some of the usual activity, so the city was even more peaceful than it normally is on a Sunday morning.

As sunrise transitioned to daytime, I wrapped up shooting the very far-right sections of the image and packed up my equipment.

Then began the long process of stitching and blending the 105 raw images into a final polished VAST photo. No detail was left untouched during this arduous process that took me well over 100 hours due to the exceptionally high resolution of the photo’s canvas.

It was time well spent because the clarity of the final VAST photo cannot be overstated. Buildings many miles away are clearly visible; tiny details such as people walking down the sidewalks are easily discernible; fascinating rooftop structures covered in snow drifts are revealed in striking resolution; facades of numerous architectural masterpieces such as the Empire State Building are exquisitely rendered; and the diverse characters of famous New York neighborhoods like the West Village, Chelsea, SoHo, and Gramercy can be palpably felt.

Details like these fill every nook of this VAST photo, nestled among the melodic rhythm of the city’s iconic skyline transitioning from night to day.

Click here to see the photo in a much higher resolution.

About the author: Dan Piech is a pioneering photographic artist, entrepreneur, and founder of VAST, a company devoted to advancing the art and craftsmanship of ultra high quality image-making. His photographs and artwork have appeared in publications including The New York Times and The Huffington Post, in Hollywood films, on national television, and on walls across the world. You can find more of his work on VAST, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. This article was also published here.

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How to Selectively Sharpen Photos with Photoshop’s High Pass Filter

Photoshops High Pass filter can be an effective photo sharpening tool, but its effect can be too drastic for certain areas of your photo. Here’s a 9-minute tutorial from photoshopCAFE that looks at how to more effectively use Photoshop’s “High Pass” filter for sharpening.

This method for sharpening photos is great because it can be applied both non-destructively and selectively. That means that you can remove the changes you make later on in your editing process as well as applying them only to specific areas of the photo.

First, it is recommended that you record a Photoshop Action when setting up the layers and other settings for using the High Pass filter. This saves you a lot of unnecessary clicks every time you want to use this technique.

The initial setup involves duplicating the target layer, applying the Overlay blend mode, applying a High Pass filter to the image, and then setting up the swatches ready to start painting a mask.

Interestingly, you can toggle each step of an action to ensure Photoshop pauses to let you make adjustments. For example, toggling the step for applying the High Pass filter will allow you to adjust the radius applied each time you use it.

After that, you can simply paint your mask onto the image. For portrait photos, you’ll want to protect the hair and skin details from the High Pass filter, so just paint black over these particular parts of the image.

(via photoshopCAFE via Fstoppers)

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Apple’s $4,999 iMac Pro Has Arrived, and It’s Looking Good

Apple’s new $4,999+ iMac Pro just hit stores today after being announced back in June. Based on initial hands-on reviews that are starting to appear, this computer looks like a solid option for photographers looking for a monster computer upgrade.

While the MacBook Pro and Mac Pro start at $1,299 and $2,999, respectively, the iMac Pro has a staggering starting price tag of $4,999. Include all the available spec and performance upgrades offered by Apple, and you’re looking at a computer that costs over $13,000.

“Pros love iMac. So we created one just for you,” Apple says. “It’s packed with the most powerful graphics and processors ever in a Mac, along with the most advanced storage, memory, and I/O — all behind a breathtaking Retina 5K display in a sleek, all-in-one design.

“For everyone from photographers to video editors to 3D animators to musicians to software developers to scientists, iMac Pro is ready to turn your biggest ideas into your greatest work.”

The top-of-the-line features and specs you’ll find in the iMac Pro include up to 18 cores (with options for 8/10/14/18), Turbo Boost speeds up to 4.5GHz, a cache of up to 42MB, Radeon Pro Vega graphics with up to 16GB of memory and 22 teraflops, up to 128GB of memory across 4 channels, up to 4TB of all-flash storage, four 40Gb/s Thunderbolt 3 ports that let you connect two 5K monitors, 10Gb Ethernet, and a Retina 5K 27-inch display with 14.7 million pixels and one billion colors.

The dedicated webpage on the Apple site boasts of the iMac Pro’s performance in handling photo editing software such as Photoshop CC and Pixelmator Pro.

Reviewers and notable creatives who have gotten their hands on the iMac Pro early have great things to say about it. Here’s a roundup:

Vincent Laforet

Pulitzer Prize–winning photographer Vincent Laforet calls it “a wonderful machine that will satisfy all users out there.”

Overall this is a wonderful machine that will satisfy all users out there – with the exception of the 0.1% of users who work in the 8K RAW RED world for example and want to transcode at 1:1 or faster with purpose-built machines. If you’re shooting 4K or pretty much any still camera available today, this Mac is unlikely to let you down. I know it’s tackled everything I’ve thrown at it and it’s the first machine that can keep up with me in an still edit of thousands of images or hundreds of minutes of video footage.

Marques Brownlee

“It feels like the ideal high-end YouTuber, Final Cut Pro machine,” says technology personality Marques Brownlee. “The main question will be, is it worth the extra money.”


“Given the up-to-date high-level components, it’s not surprising that it’s probably faster than any Mac to date,” says CNET’s Lori Grunin, “but I really feel that unless you’ve got a pent-up need for an iMac on steroids, I’d wait and see what the new Mac Pro looks like.”

You can order the iMac Pro on Apple’s website and through retailers such as B&H.

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5 Rules for Better Bird Photos, or: It’s All About the Eyes

It’d be cliche to say that the eyes are the window to the soul, but they’re certainly the key to a compelling photograph. This is intuitive when photographing people and pets, but no less true for birds. It’s just that with small, fast-moving subjects, it takes more care and skill.

Always aim to photograph an eye with a bird attached. When the eye is properly captured, the rest of the bird usually follows. This post lays out 5 rules for capturing a bird’s eye, and thus a beautiful, compelling bird photograph.

Rule #1: An eye should be visible and in the sharpest focus of the image

In a creative endeavor like photography, it seems odd for there to be rules. Isn’t the goal to show something unique? Well, I could count on one hand the number of interesting bird photographs I’ve seen that either don’t show an eye or show one that isn’t in sharp focus. And I’ve certainly never managed to take one.

One of the most painful things I’ve had to do is to throw away a photo of a rare species or an otherwise perfect in-flight photo because the eye was just on the wrong edge of the depth of field.

Bad: Focus point on bill
Good: Focus point on eye

When shooting a perched bird, it usually works well to use your lens’ widest aperture with single point focus trained on the eye. This gives the sharpest possible eye with maximum background blur or bokeh. When the subject is moving fast or flying, it’s often necessary to use a wider depth of field, f/8 or so. This, along with continuous autofocus, a faster shutter speed (in the 1/1000 to 1/2000 range), and multiple focal points, gives a better chance that the eye will be sharp.

Rule #2: The direction of the beak should be within 90 degrees (left or right) of the camera.

In other words, the bird should be looking towards the camera or in direct profile. Beginning bird photographers, myself included, tend to find this less intuitive than keeping the eye in sharp focus. But think about it terms of portraits of people. We don’t tend to photograph the back of people’s heads or people looking away from the camera.

Bad: Head titled away just beyond profile
Good: Head in direct profile

That being said, there is slightly more room for creative expression here (e.g. in an action shot or multiple subject shot), but this is an important rule to know before you attempt to break it.

In order to get the right head position and overall pose, it’s almost always necessary to shoot in burst mode (aka continuous shooting). Birds often dart their heads in all directions, usually too fast for us to react to the right pose with a single click. When you see your subject, just focus on the head and start the burst in anticipation of its movement. Many species (especially insectivores like flycatchers) can’t help but look towards the interesting snare sound of the rapid shutter.

When going through the many exposures, just quickly delete the ones where the beak isn’t towards the camera. At the limit of a profile pose, a slight vertical oval shape of the eye betrays when the head is just slightly over 90 degrees away from the camera. It may seem subtle, but just that little turn away from the camera can severely degrade the interest of the image.

Rule #3: The camera should be the same height above ground as the eye

Not shooting at eye-level is the most common differentiator I see between amateur bird snapshots and engaging bird photographs. Birds, with their pesky wings, are often above us. Or sometimes, particularly with waterfowl, they’re below us.

It’s easy to just tilt the camera up or down, so that’s what many people start out doing. In doing so, they capture a familiar sight — the way we’re used to seeing birds every day.

A photographer’s goal is to highlight their subject in an uncommon light — to show their viewers a new way of seeing the world. A great way to accomplish that is to put the viewer in the bird’s perspective by shooting at their eye-level.

Bad: From standing head level
Good: From toe level through tilted viewfinder

Now, getting the camera at the bird’s eye-level is easier said than done. There’s no silver bullet. It takes creativity, patience, and luck. Here are a few tricks I’ve found work well.

For birds in flight or that like to be high in trees, try going somewhere with a steep hill. The slope often works to your advantage.

From a hill

Some bird preserves have viewing towers which are tailor-made for this, but also consider that a second story window into a garden is basically the same thing.

From a second story window

When all else fails, back up. It’s really the angle on the bird rather than the absolute height difference that matters. So using a long telephoto that lets you get a little distance away can compensate for some amount of camera tilt.

For birds on the ground, and especially floating on water, get the camera as low to the ground as you can manage. Even squatting is often not enough. A tilting view screen can let you put the camera on almost water level, or failing that, it may be necessary to lay on your stomach.

Rule #4: The light should catch the eye

That small reflection (called a catch) gives eyes that literal sparkle that makes them pop. As a nice benefit, if the light is right to catch in the eye, it usually follows that the side of the bird facing the camera is nicely lit as well.

Bad: Head facing away from sun
Good: Head facing sun

Capturing the perfect catch usually entails just going out in the right light and keeping the sun to your back. The best light for photographing birds is low and direct. That means there are very long, sharp shadows usually found during the first and last hour of daylight. Resisting the temptation to go out photographing during other times leads to less agony over having to delete some good, but poorly lit photos.

When stalking birds, be aware of the sun position and try to keep yourself between the sun and the bird. This can be hard as it often means ignoring half of your field of vision, even if there are great birds there. The good news is that birds move around a lot, so sometimes it pays to just find a spot with good light and wait for the birds to come.

Rule #5: The eye should be properly exposed

Birds have a huge variety of eye colors, some of them striking. I love when a photograph highlights the beauty of the avian eye. There’s nothing worse than a black, lifeless disk where a pupil and iris should be.

While it’s obviously best to get the right exposure in the field, I find that most photographs benefit from increasing the eye exposure (and sometimes saturation) in post-processing. The brush or selective editing tool found in most photo editors works perfectly. Often just +0.3 or +0.7 stops makes all the difference in the world.

Bad: Underexposed, lifeless eye
Good: Eye exposure boosted in post production

As I’ve been honing my bird photographs, these have been the most important rules I’ve discovered.

About the author: Tony Gentilcore, AKA the Nerd Birder, is a photographer who’s on a quest to photograph every living species of avian dinosaur. He shoots with an Olympus OM-D. You can find more of his work on his website and Instagram. This article was also published here.

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How DSLR Phase Detection Autofocus Works

Most photographers rely heavily on the capabilities of autofocus systems in DSLR cameras, but knowing how they actually work is something that even experienced photographers may not have learned. Here’s a 4-minute video by ZY Productions that helps decode the mystery of DSLR autofocus by explaining the technical details behind it.

As light enters the camera it is sent both towards the viewfinder and also the AF module via the mirror. Some internal optical elements split the light on its way to the AF system, forming two separate images.

This is part of the camera’s phase detection autofocus, where the autofocus system will try to converge the two versions of the scene. Once it only sees one image, that tells the camera that the scene is in focus.

However, traditional focus points just look at vertical sections in an image. So when the scene is split, sometimes they can’t tell the difference if the scene is symmetrical enough to look the same as the converged scene. That situation arises with vertical lines, for example.

Cross-type and dual cross-type AF points allow the camera to see a number of different sections of the image, comparing them against each other. This makes the autofocus more accurate.

Wach the full video above for a closer look at phase detection AF systems.

(via ZY Productions via Shutterbug)

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Famous Album Covers Recreated as Cat Photos

Brooklyn-based photographer and graphic designer Alfra Martini has been taking famous album covers and recreating them with cats instead of humans. She calls the project The Kitten Covers.

“Legendary albums from a world dominated by kittens,” says Martini, who owns two cats herself.

You can follow along with Martini’s project on The Kitten Covers.

(via The Kitten Covers via Bored Panda)

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Taking Pictures of Strangers in Downtown LA

Photographers Jessica Kobeissi, Rachel Gulotta, and Daniel Inskeep decided to approach strangers in downtown Los Angeles and offer free portraits. The 11-minute video above shows what happened.

The group held up “Free Portraits” signs to attract prospective subjects, but it’s difficult to get people to stop with signs — halfway through, the group decided to ditch their signs and simply approach people directly.

For people who were interested in stopping and having their photos taken, some were turned off when they were presented with a model release to sign.

In the end, the three photographers managed to find a decent number of portrait subjects who were willing to offer some time and sign releases. Here’s a selection of the photos that were made:

Jessica Kobeissi

Rachel Gulotta

Daniel Inskeep

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Memistore is an SD Card Holder That Mounts to Your Camera

Memistore is a new camera accessory that claims to be the world’s first SD card holder that attaches directly to your camera.

Memistore will work with any DSLR or mirrorless camera; it can be attached via a hot shoe or 1/4 inch screw. Since it has a male adapter on one side and a female on the other, it can be mounted in-between your camera and tripod.

Memistore can be twisted independently of the tripod and/or camera, allowing you to stow away the holder when it’s not needed.

The holder is capable of storing two SD cards, and it is also splash-proof to protect the important data held within. The cover only requires one hand to remove, allowing for easy access.

Here’s a 1-minute video introducing Memistore:

Memistore is available for a $15 contribution on Kickstarter (assuming the project funds and delivers), and aims to begin shipping in June 2018. The retail price will be $30 if the project reaches that point.

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Nicola Lo Calzo finds freedom and community in the Afro-Cuban legacy

For the past seven years Nicola Lo Calzo has worked tirelessly on CHAM, a project exploring the enduring impact of colonialism and slavery on the African diaspora. In capturing different manifestations of these lingering memories of exploitation, and the fight against it, the Paris-based Italian has spent time in Benin, Togo, Ghana and Senegal (Cham), Louisiana and Mississippi (Casta), Haiti (Ayiti), Guadeloupe (Mas) and Suriname and French Guiana (Obia).

Most recently he made four trips to Cuba to examine Afro-Cuban societies and communities which were previously ostracised and marginalised but now operate – mostly – freely. The resulting book, Regla, includes striking documentary photographs and portraits, images of iconography and archival objects, and insightful commentary.

Examining the cultural, religious, and ceremonial practices passed down through generations of African descendants in Cuba, Lo Calzo highlights the variety of identities within the country, and the ways in which they complement one another. Cohabiting “within a personal culture of exchange”, he says, they “borrow each other’s visions, customs and narratives”. He points to the “precarious balancing act” between the familiar Cuba, largely defined by the communist revolution and the society born out of it, and the diverse communities that actually make up the country.

Spending time among the Abakuá all-male secret society, Freemasons, the Cabildos de Nación Africana black brotherhoods, the carnival comparsas, three Afro-Cuban religious communities, and the contemporary Afro-Cuban raperos of underground hip-hop, this work required intense planning and research, he says, and a different approach to CHAM‘s previous chapters.

“It’s complicated to work in Cuba,” he explains. “If you want to go beyond street photography and actually explore the lives of the people you meet it takes a long time, because you have this filter of the revolution and its ideology. It’s difficult to break the wall between an outsider like me and the Cuban people. There’s a kind of apprehension.”

Aberisún íreme moves through the crowd gathered in excitement of the members. Muñongo Efó lodge, Regla. © Nicola Lo Calzo – L’agence à Paris. A plante, by which the Abakuá mean a “religious activity” or ritual of drumming, dancing, and chanting, is a very important time of celebration for the entire Abakuá community. It creates a network of connections between all the “powers”. Those from the oldest to the youngest, and followers of other “powers” as well, move in droves to attend the ceremonies. Some arrive at the place of the activity at the night, while others arrive during the day.

On previous trips for CHAM he worked with the support of local artistic institutions, but in Cuba he decided to go it alone – wary of being put under pressure to take a particular political stance. “The only way for me to work on the Afro-Cuban legacy, and research the freedom and the connections between all these communities, was to work alone and discretely,” he says.

By way of an example he references the Abakuá, a secretive society which formed in 1836 in the port of Regla. Originally founded by slaves of south eastern Nigerian ethnicity, it was ostracised into secrecy until a decade ago, but has since become a popular group for young men, welcoming both African descendants and people with other heritage. Even so its followers remain reticent about strangers, so getting permission to photograph their ceremonies was enlightening but challenging.

“There had to be trust,” Lo Calzo explains. “I presented myself as a photographer and showed them the work I had done in my previous journeys. When you work on post-colonial topics like this it’s very important to be aware of your own position and approach, and the complexity of the reality you are working with.”

Lo Calzo wanted to capture a wide variety of groups and societies, determined to show practices in Cuba that are rarely seen outside the country, but the access he was granted varied. He found it relatively easy to photograph members of the Santería religion, for example, given its mainstream status, but could only get a small selection of photographs of the Cuban Freemasons, who run important schemes in food distribution, community service, and mutual aid with a “negotiated freedom” from the state.

When granted access, Lo Calzo took as many portraits as possible, keen to use the people he met as the “pillars of the story” he was trying to tell. “Behind each portrait there is an interview,” he explains. “And these are very important stories for me to tell because most of the images that exist of Cuba are street photography. I respect that but, at the same time, it gives a kind of stereotypical image of the country. I want to be far from stereotype, from the Dolce Vita. To me that is the opposite of reality.”

Lo Calzo’s photographs show ceremonies and streets, individuals and groups of all ages, and could not be further from the “revolutionary” cliches he speaks of. There are photographs of the young men and women of the hip-hop movement such as La Reyna and La Real, a ceremonial Abakuá masked dancer (íreme), and many more besides. He believes that these societies and cultural movements, whether they’re guided by rap or religion, allow Cubans a sense of individual expression and identity.

La Reyna and La Real, Centro-Havana, Havana. “We are La Reyna and La Real. There are not many women rappers in Cuba, we are among about fifteen of them. We wish to talk to all women, to all Cuban women, without distinction. We identify primarily as Cuban. That said, our discourse is very attached to the history of Cuba, including the black experience. Discrimination and racism are a legacy…We address women’s issues, the status of women and black women in particular, their place in Cuban society, and racism. Everyone here is mixed, but despite this there is always fear. This is not a state-sponsored racism. It is rather a popular racism inherited from colonialism. You see it in what people say, for instance a statement like, ‘Him, he is not like all the other blacks, etc.’ The colour of one’s skin is fundamental for access to the workplace: the lighter one’s skin, the more opportunities there are. The standard for beauty here is the mulatta, another racial category developed during colonisation. There are not many black role models or black women heroines, because the heroes of Cuban history are never presented from this perspective. The heroes of the national narrative don’t have colour, and are admired for their service to the national unity.” – La Reyna. © Nicola Lo Calzo – L’agence à Paris

“They give to Cubans the opportunity to express themselves as individuals, far from the state power rhetoric,” he says. “You see there is no symbol of revolution in their ceremonies.”

What he finds interesting is the way these societies blend with one another, solidifying a broad Afro-Cuban legacy in these smaller pockets of society. “There’s a crossover of the cultures,” he says. “In Europe the crossover of religion and rap, for example, would be seen as contradictory but in Cuba not at all. You can be a Santero, an Abakuá follower and a rapper at once.”

With more chapters planned for Sicily, Columbia, Brazil and Angola, the anthology Lo Calzo is assembling is of mammoth proportions, but he feels it’s acutely relevant today. He points to the work of French philosopher Edouard Glissant, who spoke of the need for global communities to “remember together” if “we want to share the beauty of the world, if we want to show solidarity with its suffering”.

“We remain with little knowledge about [the descendant African] legacies in the Atlantic World, but I deeply believe that we can not grasp the complexity of the present in which we live without an understanding of them,” says Lo Calzo. “I hope this project can show just how fragile they are but how important they are to preserve.”

“When we think of memory we think of it as being in the past,” he concludes. “But in my practice I’m seeing memory that is still active today”

Regla is published by Kehrer Verlag, priced €35 http://ift.tt/2AoJq40http://ift.tt/1GdDXfd

Ireme Aberisun during an Abakuá ceremony in the temple courtyard, Erume Efó lodge founded in 1874, Guanabacoa. © Nicola Lo Calzo – L’agence à Paris. Ireme’s attributes have been constants of the Abakuá liturgy from the beginning: pointed cap, a circular hat, a cowbell belt at the waist, a stick in hand (iton), clothing with burlap decorations.

A dove attached to the entrance of the temple of the Erume Efó lodge founded in 1874. Guanabacoa. Each ceremony includes animal sacrifices (a sheep, roosters, doves) and consumption of ritual food and drink. For that, “Each member contributes 5 pesos per month, the state is there to check, but it is not involved in the activity and does not help us. One plante, by which the Abakuá mean a “religious activity” or ritual of drumming, dancing, and chanting, costs between 3,000 and 5,000 Cuban pesos” – President of the Abakuá office of Regla. © Nicola Lo Calzo – L’agence à Paris

Release of Ireme for a ceremony, on the patio of Muñongo Efó lodge, Regla. The Ireme, pejoratively called diablito, is surely the most picturesque and representative character of the Abakuá religion. It is a supernatural being who comes to earth to intervene in Abakuá ceremonies, and ensure the accuracy of what is done. There is an Ireme for each different time of the ceremony. The Ireme needs a character to guide him throughout the performance, called the Morua, who speaks and sings using elements of the Efik language. Sociologist Tato Quiñones defines the Ireme as “beings from beyond the grave … that see and hear but do not speak and express themselves through their gestures and choreography.” © Nicola Lo Calzo – L’agence à Paris

A group of soldiers in mambi garb (former anti-colonial combatants in the war of independence), arrive at fort Castillo del Morro for the daily Cañonazo ceremony, Santiago. This ceremony was practiced during colonial times just before the closure of the defensive walls of the Spanish colonial cities. Today, though no longer retaining its original signification, it is still practiced by real soldiers, dressed in mambises, the anti-Spanish Cuban guerilleros during the war of independence. The symbol of anti-Spanish resistance is thus integrated into the national discourse. © Nicola Lo Calzo – L’agence à Paris

Eba Emerida Augustin and Sergio Ramo, Queen and King of the Carabalí Olugu founded as the Cabildo de Nación Africana in 1783. Santiago Carnival. Originally, the Cabildo de Nación Africana was a gathering of black African freed slaves, belonging to the same ethnic group, whose role was to provide mutual aid, support in times of sickness or death, and the transmission of their traditions. The cabildos de nación in Cuba will always have two guardians, the State and the Church. © Nicola Lo Calzo – L’agence à Paris

“The Lamento Cimarron trio is a government project run by the Miguelito Cuni Music Center in the Pinar del Rio province. It was created 17 years ago, not by current members but by others, one of whom lives in England and the other in the Canary Islands. Our purpose is to reconstruct the lives of maroon slaves in this cave for a public that is, for the most part, comprised of tourists. Many tourists are interested and ask questions about our ancestors and their suffering during the slavery era. Others think we do this just for culture and fun. We have explained to them that it’s also a way of honoring them. They are stunned at the treatment suffered by maroons who wanted to be free.” – Oneida. © Nicola Lo Calzo – L’agence à Paris

REGLA cover © Nicola Lo Calzo – L’agence à Paris

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Lua Ribeira, Sam Laughlin, and Alejandra Carles-Tolra show new work in Jerwood/Photoworks Awards

Inspired by personal identity, the natural world, and the fear of dying, the three young artists in this year’s Jerwood/Photoworks Awards exhibition are presenting very different work.

Picked out as winners in January 2017, all three have received a year of mentoring on their work from industry specialists such as photographer Mitch Epstein, publisher Michael Mack, and gallerist Maureen Paley. They each also received a bursary of £5000 and access to a production fund of another £5000, to make new work which goes on show in London’s Jerwood Space from 17 January-11 March then tours to Bradford and Belfast.

Born in 1990 in Spain, and graduating from the Documentary Photography BA at Newport, University of South Wales in 2016, Lua Riberia is best-known for her series Noises in the Blood, an exploration of femininity and dancehall culture. Her new project, Subida al Cielo [Heavenly Ascent], draws on the fear of dying to present an allegorical exploration of human mortality.

Untitled © Lua Ribeira. From the series Subida al Cielo, originally commissioned through the Jerwood/Photoworks Awards, 2017

Also born in 1990 and a Newport Documentary Photography BA graduate, Sam Laughlin’s new work is inspired by the natural world and titled A Certain Movement. Focusing in closely on the behaviour of several animal species, he has depicted some of the natural processes which go on around human society, but which are becoming increasingly marginalised because of it.

Alejandra Carles-Tolra, who was born in Spain in 1988, is presenting a series titled Where We Belong, which explores individual and group female identity via images of Jane Austen devotees. Originally studying Sociology at the University of Barcelona, Carles-Tolra went on to take a Photography MFA at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design and has already been published and exhibited by institutions such as Vice,  The Independent, and the Circulation(s) Festival in Paris.

The full mentor panel this year comprised: James Barnor, photographer; Rut Blees Luxemburg, photographer; Bruno Ceschel, writer and curator; Tim Clark, editor and curator; Carolyn Cooper, writer; Celia Davies, director of Photoworks; Mark Durden, writer and photographer; Mitch Epstein, photographer; Fariba Farshad, curator; Anna Fox, photographer; Ori Gersht, photographer; Francis Hodgson, writer and art adviser; Mårten Lange, photographer; Michael Mack, publisher; Maureen Paley, gallerist; Mark Power, photographer; and Sarah Williams, head of programme at Jerwood Visual Arts.

Founded in 2015, the Jerwood/Photoworks Awards are a collaboration between Jerwood Charitable Foundation and Photoworks, supported by Arts Council England and Spectrum Photographic. After going on show at the Jerwood Space, the exhibition will tour to Impressions Gallery, Bradford from 06 April-23 June, and at Belfast Exposed, from 02 November-22 December.

jerwoodvisualarts.org photoworks.org.uk impressions-gallery.com http://ift.tt/2atmzvC

Untitled © Alejandra Carles-Tolra. From the series Where We Belong, originally commissioned through the Jerwood/Photoworks Awards, 2017

Untitled © Alejandra Carles-Tolra. From the series Where We Belong, originally commissioned through the Jerwood/Photoworks Awards, 2017

Adders basking (Vipera berus) © Sam Laughlin. From the series A Certain Movement, originally commissioned through the Jerwood/Photoworks Awards, 2017

Emperor Dragonfly laying eggs (Anax imperator) © Sam Laughlin. From the series A Certain Movement, originally commissioned through the Jerwood/Photoworks Awards, 2017

from British Journal of Photography http://ift.tt/2kv0pdU