PWNY 2013: “The Documentary Journey “- Day 4 – July 4th!

Day Four was an exciting and busy day; therefore we are posting this a wee bit late because of 4th of July holiday! The class has continued to impress us with their rapid improvements and hard work, which has made the task of choosing the best shooter of the day impossible! Everyone’s projects are starting to come together and yesterday we saw some really incredible work.

Erica addressed an issue that has come up with a lot of the student’s photographs, which is photographing too quickly and missing “the shot”. Maggie shared a story about photographing with Alex Webb in Haiti, where he would stand for 10-15 minutes in one spot, allowing people to move in and out of his frame until he had the perfect photo. Erica and Maggie both encouraged everyone to move around, get on their knees and to not be too hasty, because if you wait long enough the image will come to you. They reminded students to take responsibility for everything in their frame.

On day four Maggie and Erica also began to discuss the final editing process. Erica spoke with the class about the quote “kill your darlings”, and how heartbreaking it can be to exclude photographs that may have a meaningful history to you, or were particularly hard to capture but don’t necessarily add to the story.

Later in the afternoon, the class was fortunate to have photographer Andy Kropa present his work! Andy was a previous student of Maggie’s at a workshop in Miami, and also worked side-by-side with Erica at Occupy Wall Street. He shared a personal project he’s been working on about his mother’s battle with Alzheimer’s, created with a wide-range of social media tools, including Hipstamatic, Snap Chat, Photo Booth and his Samsung Galaxy cellphone camera. Aside from being an incredibly poignant body of work, it was intriguing to hear him speak of photography’s evolving role as technology advances and becomes more democratic. He spoke of photography becoming a “present-tense medium”, as it documents and displays daily existence in real time. Andy also shared with us his exciting entrepreneurial plans for his future, but we’ll keep that a secret for now!

Check back on the blog later today for a second blog post, there are many exciting things happening.

ALSO! Don’t forget to come to our final slideshow party, tomorrow at 7:30 pm at VII Gallery!

All photos in the gallery by Abby Kraftowitz and Lauren Schneiderman.