the Magnum Agency siteHonoree Małgorzata Niezabitowska is the award-winning co-author with her photographer husband Tomasz Tomaszewski of Remnants – The Last Jews of Poland, one of the first books to recognize and explore contemporary Jewish life in Poland, Solidarity activist, and a Council Member of the award-winning Museum of the History of Polish Jews, whose core exhibition opens in October (2014) in Warsaw. National Geographic published a cover story about Remnants in September 1986, when Niezabitowska was a Nieman Fellow at Harvard; but until now, she has never publicly told the story of how the manuscript was smuggled out. (Tad Taube, Chairman of Taube Philanthropies and Honorary Consul for the Republic of Poland in San Francisco.)
I happened to read the above quoted article back in 1986 and had the courage to contact Tomasz Tomaszewski in 2008 after a visit to Poland:
For some time ago I came across your and your wife’s article The Last Jews of Poland in National Geographic.I found it very interesting. Last May I gave it away to a Polish friend, living in Sopot. Her husband has Jewish roots. My wife and I were fortunate and had the chance to visit Poland with some friends in 2006. We had a great week. I bought a book, “Poland 1946” by the American photograph John Vachon, in Warsaw. I only know Polish history from your article, Vachons book and a visit in Muzeum Powstania Warszawskiego. I’m a devoted amateur photographer constantly striving to be better and “crack the code”. I’m always looking for potential mentors who might be willing to give me some feedback. I admire your work. May I ask if you would be so kind and spare me a moment of your time and look through my “Poland Gallery” and, give me your honest opinion and if I may hope so, an advice on how to progress.Kind regards, Stein
I think more People than me should read TT’s answer and advice to me:
Dear Mr. Stein,
thank you for your email. I’m late with the answer because I was away for a month on a trip to Africa. I’m back now going rough may emails, so the answer to yours will be quick. You should come to one of the workshop I do with National Geographic. The next one is in Tuscany, Italy in May. You should look at the NG site to see the Schedule. You know a great deal concerning the technical aspect of photography, but your pictures are more of a document of how things look like rather then the interpretation of them. It is 21 century, so we pretty know how the planet looks like but what remains interesting is the private, intriguing, strong visual interpretation. Look at the Magnum Agency site, or the site of agency VII and you will understand what I’m talking about. Or simply come over to the workshop. All the best to you,
I never did go to Tuscany, but I have I’ve kept his advice in my mind.Remnants
“The Last Jews of Poland” – This book is available for download with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device, and with iTunes on your computer. Books can be read with iBooks on your Mac or iOS Device.
I see/discover pictures everywhere.
But why isn’t it enough to store these impessions in my brain, why do I have to share them on SmugMug, Instagram and Twitter??? Publish BLURB-books and send articles to photography magazines (I have got a few published)???
On Digital Photography School I found this that partially answers my question:
Perhaps there is a deeper psychological explanation. Our time on this earth only lasts for so long, and a camera allows us to preserve memories far past when they might have slipped our mind. It helps us pass those memories into the hands of future generations. Our photos are little legacies of the life we have lived – our travels, experiences, food, family, friends, work relationships and more. Each photo is a window into a moment, and the collections of images we take over the years are a window into who we were and what we valued. Ultimately it comes down to a simple truth – seeing that moment captured makes us genuinely happy.
Photography should make you happy. Never let someone impede on your personal happiness. You love HDRs and someone else doesn’t – who cares? You are enamored with landscapes but your friends think they’re droll – don’t let it bother you. You’re a fashion nut but no one gets your style – just keep being you. Enjoy your photography for what it is – your own. Know that not everyone will appreciate it, but if it personally fulfills you, that’s all that truly matters. Be true to yourself and you’ll never regret a day of your life.
Additionally creative urge is an important impetus (boost) for me.
I’m a lousy drawer and I cannot Paint – my camera is my pencil and paintbrush.
If cut to the bone – ‘struggle for recognition’ (kampf um anerkennung) may be the answer.
Up till now I have categorized most of the Pictures I share as “Street photography”. From now on I am going to call it Humanist Photography. I base this on that I primarily want to show:
- Human interaction
- The beauty of man.
- Poetry in life
This do not happen only in the street. 🙂
Of course I am a realist and aware that the world is not equitable and that sorrow is more common than joy. I am sure, however, that other channels keep you informed about this.
Secondly I think and hope it is more easily forgiven if I share an show pictures that the peson depicted would be happy to share her/himself. My dilemma is that it usually not is feasible to get a “model release” from the persons that happens to find themselves in my Pictures.
And, if I should ask permission in advance, I would have no Picture to photograph.
I doubt it is enough, but I have a passus on my sites that say “Please contact me if you find yourself on an image on this website and do not want to be presented at photobeyer. I’ll consider removing it. 🙂 ”
I welcome Your points of view.
July 2014 was the warmest (and laziest) I can remember.
The greatest effort has been to take down the bathing trunks from the drying line and hang them up again to dry after swimming. 🙂
But, I have managed to press the shutter release a few times (to many times according to someone).
Her you can see some results.
At the Public Library in Strömstad I borrowed theese great photobooks:
Stereo_typ. Photographs by Misha Pedan. Text by Mara Lee. A special and beautiful book.
Annie Leibovitz at Work Allways New Things to pick up in this book.
OCH TIDEN BLIR ETT FÖRUNDERLIGT TING Fotografier av Sune Jonsson
Olov Sune Jonsson (December 20, 1930 – January 30, 2009) was a Swedish documentary photographer and writer.
Even if you do not read Swedish, the Pictures do the necessary talking.
My Street Photography
(You will find Sample-images with comments after this introduction.)
I consider myself a Street Photographer – in a somewhat extended understanding of the term. If you include “people” and “candid” you come closer to where to file me.
Continue reading My Street Photography
I feel alive at Las Canteras in Las Palmas.
Want to be reborn as a surfer there. 🙂
Hope this February-visit wasn’t my last visit to Grand Canaria.