Socially Responsible Photography

Socially Responsible Photography

Photography has been around for more than a century and with it comes the responsibility of using photographs in a variety of contexts. As photography has changed, so have its uses and access. Everyone with a camera is capable of taking a photograph that can be used differently. It is important to be aware of the impact that photography may have in society.

As mentioned before, photography is a useful tool to study and document other cultures. As in the example of anthropology and photography, there could be conflicting issues between the photographer and the people of the culture. There are other aspects of social responsibility in the context of culture. It is important to consider what are the values and beliefs about photography in certain cultures. This is particularly important for casual photographers or tourist and travelers that use photography to document their trips. It is important to consider how the camera is perceived in different cultures and how people may be affected by photography in certain cultures.

A socially responsible photographer is one that respects other people’s beliefs about photography. Those beliefs include respecting values, privacy, address needs of society through photography, and being aware of how photography impacts others. The concept of social responsibility in photography depends in the context that photography is being used. There are different definitions for socially responsible photographers depending on what context photography is being implemented. Such differences exist in disciplines such as photojournalism, anthropology, social science research, and cross-cultural reference but also in common and casual photography.

Photography is a very powerful medium to communicate anything. With this power comes the responsibility of using photography to the best interest of society. In the context of addressing society needs, a socially responsible photographer is one that uses photography to send a message about issues that affect our society. One example is using photography to communicate climate change and create awareness about the impact that people are having on the planet. In this instance, the photographer is being responsible about his role in society as a photographer that has access to images such as the one shown to the right.

With the growing field of information technology comes the responsibility of using photography through a medium that can be widely accessible, the Internet. Yet this space is also another opportunity to use photography to address the needs of society. Social media has been widely used for several social movements through images and posts. This is another powerful medium to try to make an impact in society. Social movement such as the one described in the picture above have had a great impact on different aspects of society including creating pressure for policy makers to resolve such social issues. This particular one shown above addresses the issue of children trafficking for sex purposes, in particular the case where 200 Nigerian girls were kidnapped in 2014. This is just one example of the many social movements through social media. The use of this medium to create awareness about a particular social issue can be considered to be socially responsible photography.

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Socially Responsible Photography



Todd Hido [Monographs]


Todd Hido is a San Francisco Bay Area-based artist whose work has been featured in Artforum, The New York Times Magazine, Eyemazing, Wired, Elephant, FOAM, and Vanity Fair. His photographs are in the permanent collections of the Getty, the Whitney Museum of Art, the Guggenheim Museum, New York, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the de Young Museum, the Smithsonian, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, as well as in many other public and private collections. Most notably, Pier 24 Photography holds the archive of all his published works. He has over a dozen published books; his most recent monograph titled Excerpts from Silver Meadows was released in 2013, along with an innovative B-Sides Box Set designed to function as a companion piece to his award-winning monograph. Aperture has published his mid-career survey entitled Intimate Distance: Twenty-Five Years of Photographs, a Chronological Album in October of 2016. His next book titled Bright Black World will be released by Nazraeli Press in the fall of 2018.Ard 1In addition to Hido being an artist, he is also a collector and over the last 25 years has created one of the most notable photobook collections. His library will be featured in Bibliomania: The World’s Most Interesting Private Libraries forthcoming in 2018 by Random House.


Source: Galleria RAINDROP BLUES

Rome-based Italian photographer Alessio Trerotoli captures the melancholic beauty of rainy days in his fine art photography series, Raindrop Blues. Believing raindrops can be compared to a blues song, as they “fall with a repetitive but fascinating rhythm,” Trerotoli aims to transport his viewers into a dreamlike reality where “rain seems to fall on everyone.”

Made by superimposing glass-printed photographs of rain onto a background images, Trerotol’s rain photos were inspired by Bob Marley’s quote, “Some feel the rain. Others just get wet.” He explains, “I want to create evocative images where every element – the street, the sky, the characters, the viewer – is involved in a romantic and, in at the same time, a melancholic feeling.”

Source: Galleria RAINDROP BLUES

Cig Harvey: You An Orchestra You A Bomb | LENSCRATCH

You an Orchestra You a Bomb, explores my relationship with life itself. It is a body of work about paying attention to and appreciating the fragile present. It captures moments of awe, makes icons of the everyday, and looks at life on the threshold between magic and disaster. I have always experienced the world viscerally but this work shows a heightened awareness of the temporary nature of life. I’m trying to fathom the sacred in the split-seconds of everyday. – Cig Harvey

Source: Cig Harvey: You An Orchestra You A Bomb | LENSCRATCH

Photography’s Bond with Graphic Design

William Klein

…. As the museum writes, the dialogue between photography and graphic design “intensified between 1945 and 1969, and became ever-more experimental.” The result, inspired by the Bauhaus directive to bring together fine art and applied arts, was a generation who “saw creators as social agents furthering a dynamic expression of the contemporary.”

Christine Mathieu

Christine Mathieu

Between sculpting and lighting, Christine Mathieu photographs the symbolics and cultural meanings lodged into ordinary things. She was a prize-winner in the Polaroid-sponsored national competition for schools of photography, and then, held her first photographic exhibition in Paris. She then worked successfully in illustration, graphic design and colored design space. Her artistic work mainly explores the ways of photography only since 2002. Her photographs have been chosen for inclusion in national and international exhibitions and collections.