Explore a digest of the best third-party op-eds, articles and research or criticism readings on photojournalism and visual culture.


Explore a digest of the best third-party op-eds, articles and research or criticism readings on photojournalism and visual culture.

Sight Unseen


Lynsey Addario captured, picture by picture, the death of a US marine in Afghanistan. “Who should see them, who gets to decide who should see them, and what can pictures like that do, to those of us far away from the horrors of war and those of us who are all too close to it?”


Ansel Adams: Photography with Intention

Aeon Mag

“What can Ansel Adams’s enduring photography teach us in the age of Instagram?”



The Uncertain Future of Photojournalism

The New York Times

A pessimistic conversation between James Estrin, NY Times Staff Photographer and Lens Blog Co-Editor, and Donald R. Winslow, former editor of the NPPA’s News Photographer magazine and website: “Only the rich kids get to play at photojournalism today”

Read the interview in full

Can Brands Save Photojournalism?

The Drum

Verbatim, a new picture agency attached to Getty, believes to have found a way to build an alternative business model “that will appeal to marketers and brands without compromising the integrity of the photographers.” Is this the best way to regain readers’ trust? Probably not.

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Empathy and Photography

Magnum Photos

Magnum photographer Olivia Arthur, Save the Children’s director of creative content Jess Crombie and writer and photographer Colin Pantall discuss the role of emotional connection as both an objective and a tool in documentary photography.

Read the article in full

A Life of Wars: Don McCullin Reflections

Lens Culture

Drawing on over a half-century of experience, this award-winning photojournalist reflects on a career “wasted photographing wars.”


For freelancers, timely pay could be a matter of survival

Frontline Freelance

“A furore played out in media circles last week after Condé Nast announced new payment terms. Initial reports stated that a fee would be charged for the privilege of prompt payment.”

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Content vs Technology

Salvatore Vitale

Defining the Contemporary Photographer: “The old order is about to end and a new era is ready to begin, actually, I don’t think this new era has really begun yet. We are in the midst of change and, as many of you have already found, it is all very complex.”

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Photojournalism’s Uncertain Future? She Begs to Differ

The New York Times

Leslye Davis, a young video journalist & photographer for NYTimes came with a differing, more optimistic point of view: “I do believe all these changes will continue to promote people who traditionally have not been empowered”.

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The problem with Photojournalism and Africa

Al-Jazeera – Neelika Jayawardane

“Africa remains a monolithic space of violence and poverty (…) because the images and narratives chosen by powerful news agencies and newspapers continue to speak to foundational myths that Europe manufactured about Africa in order to better ease their conquest”.

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Dispatches: Istanbul


“In this country, which occasionally tops the New York–based Committee to Protect Journalists’s annual list of the world’s leading jailers of journalists, taking pictures is an increasingly political and dangerous act.”

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The Treacherous Medium

Boston Review

“The undeniable limitations of the photograph, especially its inability to reveal relationships or explicate causes, don’t negate its distinctive essence: unlike a painting or a piece of writing, it is a document of the real.” By Susie Linfield

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How and why photographs matter

Conscientious Photography Magazine

Jörg M. Colberg: “We ought to realize that a large part of the problems that are attached to photography come from the outside and have nothing to do with the medium.”

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The Purpose of Photojournalism in a Post-Truth Era

Time’s Lightbox

Former AP Photos VP Santiago Lyon analyses the role of photojournalism in the Trump Era, when “even documentary evidence is disputed and the battle for the information space is chaotic and fought on a thousand fronts.”

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The Role of Photography in Syria’s War

Time Lightbox

Will publishing too many images from Syria’s war risk desensitization? Will cherry-picking, out of fear of the former, induce sanitization?

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Sebastião Salgado’s Advice For Young Photographers Today

By Severin Matusek, Medium

“If you’re young and have the time, go and study. Study anthropology, sociology, economy, geopolitics. Study so that you’re actually able to understand what you’re photographing. What you can photograph and what you should photograph.”

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The Algorithmic Photojournalist

By Lewis Bush, Witness

“Are we witnessing the start of a radically different newsroom, one which is algorithmically led, and where human journalists play an increasingly uncertain, perhaps irrelevant, part?”

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Talking Photography With Elliott Erwitt

The New York Times

New York Times Staff Photographer Todd Heisler talks with Elliott Erwitt in Perpignan, France (2005).

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