December 28, 2010

My attention has been caught today by a post by Rob Haggart over at aphotoeditor about a project curated by Andy Adams called 100 Portraits. He has enlisted the talents of 100 photographers whose work he has featured on his blog FlakPhoto.com over the last four years. I love his mission, which i his own words is, “to promote significant artists to a global audience of people who are passionate about photography”. And he is. His ideas about online publishing as a means to promote underrepresented work and photographers is a new way of thinking about the internet and publishing in general.

The project made me think of not only contemporary portraiture and the way things are developing both in Australia and overseas in the States, but the way people are now using the internet and FB and Twitter to market themselves. I think a lot of work is being done by a lot of talented photographers (Australia has one of the most amazing talent pools of photographers in the world) but that the audience is relatively small for what they’re doing. Projects like this from Andy Adams is a great way of pooling the resources of local and international photogs to capitalise on the power of the collective. I’d love to see more of it – and to that end – I’m asking the network out there (get this out in to the ether people!) what’s happening with local talent and any projects on a local Australian level that combine the forces of a group of like minded people to reach a greater audience?

There are some great examples of collectives in Australia and many from around the world, and I’ve mentioned a couple well worth taking a look at below, but what really interests me now is how we can gather the power of all of our friends and colleagues to seek out a greater platform and have our voices heard above the din of mediocre entertainment.

Oculi is a great example of an Australian collective – they’ve been around for ten years and have seen the rise of several of its members through their exposure on the site – namely Trent Park and Narelle Autio who have both since left the group (Trent is now with Magnum), but the tradition continues with the likes of Donna Bailey, Jesse Marlow, Jeremy Piper and Tamara Voninsky among the ten current members. The style of the group is firmly in the photojournalist camp and there is some fantastic work being done by them.

Another local agency is the Falcon Photo Agency, with photo essays by a roster of exciting photojournalists based in Australia, Europe and the States, they have stories shot all over the world and are a great example of gathering strength in numbers.

If you guys have any other Aussie groups/collectives to add to this or any projects yo’ve got on the go – lemme know!


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