Friday, September 21, 2012

Nick Ut on Napalm Girl picture

Just spotted this on Leica Camera blog. Vietnamese photojournalist Nick Ut on how he survived and shot the picture of the Napalm attack in Vietnam and the picture went on to become the face of the Vietnam war. Ut won the Pulitzer for his work. His interview 

Kim Phuc, the little girl in the photograph howling in agony as napalm burns her back, defected to Canada, and has now set up the Kim Foundation International 

happy reading!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Mumbai photojournalist wins MFI YES BANK National Press Contest grand prize

                                          Mandar Deodhar's Picture of the Year image

Winners of MFI-YES BANK National Press Photo Contest 2012 Declared

Mumbai, August 21, 2012: Media Foundation of India (MFI) in association with YES BANK, India’s fourth largest private sector bank, today announced the winners of the MFI-YES BANK National Press Photo Contest – 2012.

Mumbai-based photojournalist Mandar Deodhar of India Today news magazine was adjudged the winner of the “Picture of the Year” award for his photograph of a lone shopkeeper battling a massive fire at Sara-Sahara and Manish market shopping malls in South Mumbai. The picture was unanimously chosen by an eminent jury that comprised of award-winning international photojournalists Pablo Bartholomew, Kevin Frayer and Arko Datta.

The contest received over 6500 photographs submissions, sent by more than 200 photographers for the six categories under contention. Mandar Deodhar will be awarded the grand prize of Rs 75,000 at an awards ceremony scheduled in October. Additionally, three cash prizes worth Rs 50,000, Rs 30,000 and Rs 20,000 will be awarded to category winners in each of the six categories.

“I am extremely happy to have won the grand prize. I was not expecting it at all as the MFI contest is a national contest and some of the best photographs from Kashmir and other places compete for the top prize,” said 40-year-old Deodhar in his first reaction.

“I was on the terrace of a building when I noticed that some firemen were reluctant to climb on top of a metal roof because it was hot and a bit dangerous. But, an ordinary shopkeeper snatched the water pipe from them, climbed on that roof and started bravely battling the fire. I found that interesting,” said Deodhar, who has done stints with publications like Lokmat, Bombay Times, and Mid-Day before joining India Today in 2007.

“This photograph of a single man fighting the fire went beyond the realm of just spot news and spoke to us on many levels. The jury unanimously felt that this image needed to be recognized and honoured as the Picture of the Year 2012. And while it won 3rd place in the spot news category, it surpassed both in its category and every other winning image in the competition,” said Jury member Pablo Bartholomew, explaining the jury decision.

“It was very strong and layered, both beautiful and terrifyingly tragic. Adding to its beauty was  the near monochromatic colourlessness of the tones, the bleak sadness of an unwinnable war against the fire, of a stark consumed, devastated urban landscape, at the point of no return and within this is setting is  this human figure  that one cannot help but gape and laud the courage, spirit and strength. The body language of this figure engaged in battle, the immense tenacity to fight on against all odds was what made it a compelling and enduring winning image,” he said on behalf of the three-member jury.

Jury member Kevin Frayer of The Associated Press observed “The picture of the year is striking in many ways. But for me it is simply one man fighting alone something far bigger then himself...a kind of a "David and Goliath" scene. The fire has razed the entire market yet he battles on. The viewer can study the sheer determination as he fights to save what he can. It is strong photojournalism in its most simple form."

Ranjit Hoskote, Media Foundation of India Chairman and poet /art curator said, “I am happy that YES BANK has stepped forward to partner MFI National Press Photo Contest from this year. I am certain that this partnership will help strengthen the MFI National Press Photo Contest brand and help broaden its activities across India. I would like to thank our eminent jury for doing such a fantastic job for the second consecutive year.”

Commenting on the association and the contest, Dr. Rana Kapoor, Managing Director and CEO, YES BANK, said, "We are pleased to be involved with this unique initiative which is highlighting the importance of photo journalism in print media, as their exemplary efforts need far greater appreciation and recognition. These photo media stalwarts consistently narrate to us highly relevant stories predicated on images which at times cannot be expressed as effectively through words. We look forward to making this an annual event in association with MFI.”

About Media Foundation of India
Media Foundation of India is a not-for-profit trust started byfour Mumbai-based media professionals as an independent platform to organise media-relatedactivities that could extend beyond journalistic endeavours to promote a knowledgeexchange on wide-ranging contemporary issues. MFI National Press Photo Contest is India’s only national-level contest for professional press photographers and is in its second year.

About Yes Bank
YES BANK, India’s fourth largest private sector Bank, is the outcome of the professional & entrepreneurial commitment of its Founder, Dr. Rana Kapoor and his top management team, to establish a high quality, customer centric, service driven,  private Indian Bank catering to the Future Businesses of India. YES BANK has adopted international best practices, the highest standards of service quality and operational excellence, and offers comprehensive banking and financial solutions to all its valued customers. YES BANK has a knowledge driven approach to banking, and a superior customer experience for its retail, corporate and emerging corporate banking clients. YES BANK is steadily evolving as the Professionals’ Bank of India with the vision of “Building the Best Quality Bank of the World in India” by 2015.

MFI Yesbank National  Press Photo Contest 2012

List of all Award Winners

Picture of the Year: Mandar Deodhar/India Today

General News
First Prize  - Arijit Sen/Hindustan Times
Second Prize – Manish Swaroop/The Associated Press
Third Prize – Prasad Gori/Hindustan Times
Honorable Mention 1 - Ajay Agarwal/Hindustan Times
Honorable Mention 2 – Raj k Raj/Hindustan Times
Honorable Mention 3 - Ajay Agarwal/Hindustan Times

Spot News
First Prize – Salil Bera/The Week
Second Prize – Sachin Kadvekar/Fotocorp
Third Prize – Mandar Deodhar/India Today
Honorable Mention 1 – Anshuman Poyrekar/Hindustan Times
Honorable Mention 2 – Dar Yasin/The Associated Press
Honorable Mention 3 – Partha Paul/The Indian Express

Daily Life
First Prize – Vijayanand Gupta/Hindustan Times
Second Prize – Sivaram V/Reuters
Third Prize – Prasad Gori/Hindustan Times
Honorable Mention 1 – Shankar Lattur/The Times of India
Honorable Mention 2 – Sachin Vaidya/Saamana
Honorable Mention 3 – Swastik Pal/Freelance

First Prize – Senthil Kumaran/Trikaya Photos
Second Prize – Sudipto Das/The Times of India
Third Prize – Manvender Vashist/PTI
Honorable Mention – KR Deepak/The Hindu

Art & Culture
First Prize – Raul Irani/Open Magazine
Second Prize – Rajesh Singh/The Associated Press
Third Prize – Shantanu Das/Bombay Times
Honorable Mention – Chhandak Pradhan/Freelance

Best Photo Stories
First Prize – Rafiq Maqbool/The Associated Press
Second Prize – Dar Yasin//The Associated Press
Third Prize – Zishaan Akbar Latif/Freelance
Honorable Mention – Nishant Ratnakar/Freelance

To view all the winning images, log on to Media Foundation of India website

Thursday, July 05, 2012

2011 deadliest year for journalists

2011 turned out to be the deadliest for journalists. 72 journalists were killed worldwide. A report from International Press Institute Congress in Trinidad. IPI Congress had several interesting interactions which you could read here 

Another wonderful article by James Estrin of NYT Lens -- Iraq war through the eyes and the work of photojournalists

Interesting story on BBC - Riding NY's A train 

One of the largest photo festivals, Chobi Mela's eighth edition will be held in Dhaka, Bangladesh in Jan 2013. Last date of submissions for the festival is July 31. So hurry!

Happy reading!

Monday, May 21, 2012

The white paper on Black Money or the 108 page bikini!

The UPA government today tabled the white paper published by the Finance Ministry headed by Pranab Mukherjee. BJP's Jaswant Singh described it as a "bikini" that conceals the essentials and displays the non-essentials! Here is the full text of the document in pdf sourced from the news website, You can download this document and read.

Happy reading!

Friday, May 11, 2012

RIP Horst Faas

                                             Picture Copyright: AP
                                             Horst Faas on assignment in Vietnam

I had never before seen Horst Faas' work till a photojournalist friend post a link to this mind blowing series of photographs on Denver Post website to mark the 30th anniversary of The Fall of Saigon in the Vietnam war. There are some stunning shots by Faas in this series posted in a previous post on this blog. But, Faas was clearly more than just a war photographer covering Vietnam. As this obituary on National Public Radio points out, he also trained a number of young photographers during the war coverage who went on to create iconic images. Two of them are significant. The Saigaon police chief executing a captured prisor by Eddie Adams, and the "Napalm Girl" by Nick Ut. In fact, he is widely credited as the picture editor who pushed these image past AP editors to the AP wire.

Couple of Faas' pictures are here
His interview with Digital Journalist where he speaks about the Saigaon Execution picture which is a must-read.
Do also read an obituary by Richard Pyle, former AP bureau chief and Faas' colleague, on Lens Blog

My salute to the great man. May his soul rest in peace.

Media Foundation of India announces photo contest 2012

Media Foundation of India announces photo contest 2012

Mumbai, May 10: Mumbai-based Media Foundation of India has announced its second national press photo contest for full-time professional press photographers.

The MFI National Press Photo Contest 2012 invites entries from professional press photographers working with media organizations to send in their photographs shot during the calendar year of 2011. Photographs shot during January 1, 2011 and December 31, 2011 would be eligible as entries in the contest. 

(This contest is open only for full time professional photojournalists who earn a living from photojournalism, and is not open to amateur photographers)

Contest Categories:

General News (GN): Pictures of scheduled events or planned events
 Spot News (SN): Pictures shot on the spot without any advance planning
 Daily Life (DL): Glimpses of richness and diversity of daily life
 Sports (SP): Pictures capturing sporting moments
 Arts & Culture (AC): Pictures of the literary and performing arts; festivals etc
 Best Photo Stories (BPS): Picture sequence of a minimum of 2 and maximum of 12 images narrating a story pictorially. Photo stories shot in any of the five categories could be entered here.

Awards structure:
Picture of the Year award: Rs 75,000 and a trophy
First Prize: Rs 50,000 and a trophy
Second Prize: Rs 30,000 and a trophy
Third Prize: Rs 20,000 and trophy

A three-member eminent jury consisting award-winning photojournalists would judge the images submitted. This year the jury includes senior photo journalists Pablo Bartholomew, Kevin Frayer and Arko Datta.


Entries could be sent in a CD to MFI registered address or sent on email to on or before the extended deadline of June 7, 2012

Website: For more information about the contest, please log on to

Contact: Vikas Khot 9820039847/Satish Nandgaonkar 9820942662

About Media Foundation of India
Media Foundation of India (MFI) is a trust started by four media professionals as an independent platform to organise media-related activities that could extend beyond mere journalistic endeavours to promote a knowledge exchange on wide-ranging contemporary issues. As a broader media and cultural platform, it plans to undertake activities that include journalism fellowships and awards, workshops, publishing, travelling exhibitions, art shows, music concerts, film festivals among other things.

MFI launched its activities with MFI National Press Photo Contest 2011. The contest received over 6,000 photographs as entries from 290 photojournalists across India. Kashmir-based freelance photojournalist Showkat Nanda won the “Picture of the Year” award for his image of three widowed sisters who lost their husbands to different causes arising out of the violent conflict in Jammu and Kashmir.

                                                                 Jury Profile

Kevin Frayer

Born in Canada in 1973, Kevin Frayer is chief photographer for the Associated Press in South Asia based in New Delhi, India. Frayer began his career in 1991 in the former Yugoslavia, and worked for the Canadian Press before joining the AP in the Gaza Strip in 2003. He has covered major stories across the Middle East and South and Central Asia, and his work has been published in leading newspapers, magazines and websites around the world.

Over the years his work has received numerous awards, including from World Press Photo, POYi, the Headliner Awards, and the APME. His work was part of the AP’s finalist entry for the Pulitzer Prize twice in recent years- in 2006 for the war in Lebanon and in 2009 for the agency’s coverage in Afghanistan.

Arko Datta
Pulitzer award nominee and winner of the Picture of the Year at the World Press Photo 2004, Arko has extensively covered news and sports events across the world for the last two decades, including wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the kargil conflict, Summer Olympics, cricket World Cups to name a few. Hid work has regularly appeared in leading newspaper and magazines like The New York Times, Washington Post, Guardian, International Herald Tribune, and on the covers of Time magazine, Newsweek, The Economist etc. 

Arko Datta was featured among the 20 photographers in Rotovision’s coffee table book “World’s Top Photographers”. One of Arko’s award-winning images also appeared on a postage stamp in Europe. Twice recipient of the “Photographer of the Year” award by Asian Photography magazine, Arko started his career at The Indian Express in 1991 and has since worked for The Telegraph, AFP and Reuters. Arko is also a member of the faculty at Udaan School of Photography.

Pablo Bartholomew
Influenced greatly by his father, Pablo Bartholomew is a self- taught photographer who learnt his first photography lessons at home.

In his early teens he photographed in the documentary tradition-family, friends, people and cities around him. At the age of 19, he was awarded the first prize for his series on morphine addicts, by World Press Photo in 1975.

Represented by Gamma Liaison for over 20 years, he worked as a photojournalist recording societies in conflict and transition. Published in every major magazine and journal in the world, he was awarded the World Press Photo, Picture of the Year, for an image of a dead body of a child, a victim of the disastrous Bhopal Gas Tragedy in 1984.

He won the World Press Photo award for his series Morphine Addicts in India (1975) and the World Press Picture of the Year for the Bhopal Gas Tragedy (1984). He has taken part in several international exhibitions & published in New York Times, Newsweek, Time, Business Week, National Geographic and Geo amongst other prestigious magazines and journals.

Between 2001 and 2003 as a time to give back to the younger generation of photographers in India, he ran workshops with the support of the World Press Photo Foundation in Amsterdam.

With strong belief in the exhibition space, he has widely shown in galleries in India, photography festivals and museums internationally. Recent shows include Noorderlicht Photo Festival “Another Asia”, Netherlands,2006; ChobiMela, Dhaka, Bangladesh 2006; Angkor Photo Festival, Cambodia 2006; Month of Photography, Tokyo, Japan 2007; Recontres d'Arles, Festival of photography, Arles, France, 2007; Private Spaces Public Places, Newark Museum, USA, 2007 & Noorderlicht Photo Festival “Act of Faith”, Netherlands 2007.

His first one person exhibitions in New Delhi in 1980 and in Bombay in 1981, dealt with themes of the fringe and the marginal worlds that he then lived and traversed in and shown at the Art Heritage Gallery, New Delhi and at the Jehangir Art gallery, Bombay

His recent exhibition, OUTSIDE IN! 70’s & 80’s A TALE OF 3 CITIES… a visual diary of his teenage work, has shown at the Rencontres d’Arles, July 2007, At the National Museum, New Delhi, January 2008 and at the National Gallery of Modern Art, Mumbai, March 2008. Bodhi Art in New York May 08 -14th June 2008. And at Bodhi Berlin in March 2009 in conjunction with the Berlinale. This concluded in Kolkata in 2010 as a joint show the Harrington Street Art Centre with his fathers photographs “A Critics’ Eye”.

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Vietnam war pictures

                                                      Picture Copyright: AP Photo/Horst Faas

(Photographs used in this blog are used purely with the intention of creating awareness about great photojournalism. I specify the name of the photographer and the source of the photograph to acknowledge the copyright. This blog has no commercial purpose.)

A friend posted this link from a Denverpost blog on facebook, and I am reposting it here as I feel these are very powerful images and reportage that underlines the crucial role played by photojournalists on the Vietnam war front in creating public opinion. Several iconic images here, but also several pictures that perhaps have not been seen before. April 30 marked the 35th anniversary of the fall of Saigon, and these photographs strongly bring back pain of the Vietnam war.

Also posting a fascinating link from Nieman Lab about how 15 news organisation collaborated to narrate a single story

Happy reading!