PDN Photo District News


The Snider Prize Celebrates Graduate Students in Photography


Karen, Hotchkiss, Colorado, © 2014 Trent Davis Bailey

As part of an ongoing commitment to support new photographic talent, the Museum of Contemporary Photography (MoCP) at Columbia College in Chicago has awarded California College of the Arts MFA candidate Trent Davis Bailey with the 2015 Snider Prize. This annual purchase award, sponsored by Lawrence K. and Maxine Snider, is given to emerging artists as they leave graduate school. Bailey, who uses photography to piece together a map of his experience of The North Fork – a Colorado valley whose landscape and inhabitants inspire him to explore a complex terrain of memory and family, will continue this work over the summer during a a six month Artist-in-Residence at Elsewhere Studios in Paonia, Colorado.

“Paonia is one of a handful of towns in the North Fork Valley, where I’ve been working on this project,” says Bailey. “This residency will enable me to immerse myself in the community and make work over a longer period of time, following the growing season through the harvest. After the residency, I intend to work on a book and an exhibition of the work.”

Israeli artist Tal Barel, an M.F.A candidate in fine arts at Pratt Institute, and Canadian Rachelle Bussières, an MFA candidate at the San Francisco Art Institute, were both awarded honorable mentions. Bailey will receive $2,000, and Barel and Bussières will each receive $500 for the purchase of work to be added to MoCP’s permanent collection.

The Snider Prize accepts submissions from all MFA photography students in the final semester of their graduate studies. Best of all, it’s free to apply. For further details, click here.




Join the Eddie Adams Workshop Challenge


Are you up for a real challenge? Then put your expectations on the line and submit your best work to the Eddie Adams Workshop. Attendees at this tuition-free boot camp spend four days working with the industry’s top photographers, directors, photo editors and industry professionals. Fifty emerging photographers and 50 talented students are picked each year, based on portfolios that show a mix of talent and potential. At the end of the ride, you’ll reemerge with the realization of having mastered a career-altering experience that will remain with you for life. Don’t miss the chance to get on year’s roster. The only way to be considered is to apply. Click here and submit online before May 29.


Immerse yourself in Photography’s Past, Present and Future with AIPAD’s Student Discount

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From April 16 to 19, fine art photography takes center stage in New York, when the Association of International Photography Art Dealers (AIPAD) touches down at the Park Avenue Armory. Now in its 35th year, more than 80 of the world’s leading photography art galleries will present an exciting mix of museum-quality work, ranging from contemporary photo, video and new media-based art to rare prints by 19-century masters. Of particular interest to students is AIPAD’s discounted admission price of $20 with a valid student ID.

In addition to exploring the gallery and dealer booths on the show floor, attendees can also take advantage of a full day of public programming on Saturday, April 18. Held in the Armory’s Board and Officer’s Room, six hour-long presentations include a discussion with artist Mary Mattingly; two selections of short films that highlight contemporary photographic artists (both produced by ART21); the panel Photography and Its Reproductions with artist Kate Steciw, ICP curator Carol Squiers and CUNY professor and director of the Software Studies Initiative Lev Manovich and two showings of the documentary From Darkroom to Daylight by Harvey Wang, which explores how changes from film to digital has affected photographers and their work. The Saturday program is included in the cost of admission, however space is limited and seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis.

AIPAD’s hours run from from 11am to 8:30pm on Thursday, until 7pm on Friday and Saturday and 6pm on Sunday. An illustrated catalogue and AIPAD membership directory is also available for $20. For more information about the exhibitors and select featured artists, click here.


The Curator Seeking Fine Art Photography Projects

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image © Patricia Vulgarism

We’re on the hunt for outstanding fine art photographers for The Curator’s student category. We’ve extended the deadline to April 9, so you still have time to submit your best projects for a grand prize of $3,500 cash! Six photographers will also be selected for a group show that opens in New York this summer, plus a $200 B&H gift card, a $250 Moab paper gift card, a VIP Expo pass to PDN PhotoPlus Expo, publication in PDN‘s July issue and in an extended online image gallery. View the student winner from our 2013 Curator competition here to size up the competition, then submit your latest masterpiece and prepare for your New York debut!


An Innovative Program Seeks Visual Storytellers on the Environment

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Those with a passion for both photography and environmental studies should put the Environmental Visual Communication (EVC) program at Toronto’s Fleming College on their radar. Led by conservation photographer and educator Neil Osborne, EVC has introduced a visual communication curriculum to universities across North America and assembled an impressive roster of associated industry professionals who provide an outstanding educational experience for Fleming students.

According to a recent story on PDN Pulse, Osborne saw an opportunity to match students with nonprofit organizations that need photography, video and other visual communications assets. Over the past three years EVC has developed a “placement partner” system, which gives students real-world experience (and, in some cases, payment) while putting their talents to use for good causes. For more on this unique program and the valuable field placements it affords students, read the full story here.


The First Sign of Spring


We just received advance copies of PDNedu‘s Spring 2015 and we can’t wait to show off Tamara Lackey’s lovely cover. The magazine should arrive at your school sometime next week, when the issue will debut at the Society for Photographic Education’s (SPE) 52st national conference at the New Orleans Hyatt Regency, in the scenic Garden district.

While the conference is a ticketed event, the SPE exhibits fair is open to the public and we’ll be there distributing a limited quantity of PDN‘s April issue (the PDN’s 30 issue) at booth #48. If you’re in the area on March 13 or 14, please stop by to say hello, pick up some magazines and learn about our other current projects.

We’re currently putting the finishing touches on an online gallery featuring the grand prize winners and honorable mentions in PDNedu’s 12th annual student photography contest, which will also launch next week. We’ll share those details and post a link to PDNedu‘s digital edition—enhanced with streaming videos and hotlines—in our next post!







Winter Blues? Enter our Contest!

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image © Julia Fullerton-Batten

Have the record low temperatures and mounting snow banks given you the winter blues? Perhaps it’s time to hunker down in front of your computer screen, select your best work to enter it in PDN’s Photo Annual. This is our biggest opportunity of the year and offers both professionals and students a chance for industry recognition and valuable prizes. In addition to the regular prizewinners, all student finalists have an added chance to win the Marty Forscher Fellowship, which awards a $1,500 cash prize to one student photographer for outstanding achievements in humanistic photography. Last year’s award, presented during a ceremony at the PDN Photo Annual party, went to Souvid Datta for his documentary series on the 2013 revolution in Egypt. All contest winners receive an invite to this exclusive party and will have his or her work published in June’s PDN Photo Annual issue. Students also benefit from a discounted entry fee of $35 for up to six images, with no limit to the number of entries you can submit. For an overview of last year’s student winners, click here for the 2014 Winners’
Gallery, then size up your best efforts, register here and upload your masterpieces before our final deadline on February 24.


Graduate Students Need to Know about the 2015 Snider Prize


Image: 2014 Snider Prize award recipient Hyounsang Yoo, from Smoke and Mirrors, 2013

Next week, Columbia College Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Photography (MoCP) will begin accepting submissions for the 2015 Snider Prize, a purchase award given to emerging artists as they leave graduate school. MoCP’s curatorial staff will select three artists for this award: one winner will receive $2,000 and two honorable mentions will each receive $500. These funds will go toward the purchase of work to be added to MoCP’s permanent collection.

This award forms a part of the museum’s ongoing commitment to support new talent in the field of contemporary photography. The prize is open to MFA students currently in their last year of study at an accredited program of study in the United States and is sponsored by MoCP patrons Lawrence K. and Maxine Snider.

The 2014 Snider Prize award recipient was Hyounsang Yoo, whose works explore relationships between history and ideas of production of reality through photography, video, installation and sculpture. His work has been exhibited in the Bridge Art Fair, NY; EXPO Chicago; and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, among others. Yoo is a recent MFA graduate from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Submissions will be accepted from January 15 to midnight on April 1, 2015, and the three award recipients will be announced on May 1, 2015. More information about the prize and how to apply can be found here.



Photo Educators, give us your feedback … for a chance to win a $250 B&H gift certificate!


View from the podium at the 2014 PDNedu/Nikon Panel discussion, © 2014 Jill Waterman

It’s hard to believe that 2014 is quickly coming to a close. PDNedu has spent 2014 hard at work to provide you with valuable educational resources, from publishing content-rich print and digital magazines in spring and fall semesters to producing our third annual PDNedu/Nikon photographer panel at PhotoPlus Expo this October. As we gear up for 2015, we’d like to invite you to offer us some feedback on these efforts by completing this short survey. Please click here to provide us with your feedback no later than December 15, 2014:

Your responses, which will be kept anonymous, will help us to gather valuable details about how you use PDNedu in the classroom, in order to better understand the effectiveness of our efforts in relation to your educational needs. Our goal is to boost the relevance of future issues and deliver more of what you and your students need and enjoy the most.

Your participation in this electronic survey is voluntary and the questions should take you less than five minutes to complete. By submitting your response, you’ll also be entered to win a $250 gift certificate from B&H as a token of our appreciation. To be eligible, please complete the survey by midnight on December 15, 2014.

If you have any questions regarding the survey or the magazine in general, please contact PDNedu editor, Jill Waterman at jill.waterman@emeraldexpo.com.

Thanks for your attention and your insightful comments!


Adobe Spotlight: Tim Landis’s Extraordinary Instagram Scenes

Sponsored by Adobe / All photos © Tim Landis

While many photographers say they picked up their first camera before adulthood, creating beautiful images is a skill that can be acquired at any time. Photographer Tim Landis is proof of this—while hesays that he has always been drawn to visual storytelling, it wasn’t until after the birth of his children that he became interested in the medium. His wife, Staci Landis, began her own wedding and portrait photography business, and after relocating from Pennsylvania to Wisconsin in 2008, Tim became her second shooter.

“I began to really love telling stories and wanted to work hard at developing my skill in photography,” he recalls. “There was a beauty I was drawn to of capturing moments that were unique and wouldn’t happen again. Bringing real moments and scenes to life in a photo was intriguing for me.”


Above: Two outdoor scenes showcasing Landis’s knack for capturing and enhancing beautiful light.

Landis began to study the basic rules of photography and hone his composition and lighting technique. But it was through constant picture-taking that he was really able to learn about his camera and the tools he was using. And, as most photographers do, Landis looked to successful photographers for inspiration in developing his own visual style.

Today, Landis has over 632,000 followers on his @curious2119 account on Instagram, an achievement that he never expected. “My Instagram following began like everyone else: I downloaded the app and started taking photos.” His direction into stunning landscape photography began out of practicality: at the time, Landis was traveling daily around Northern Wisconsin and Minnesota for work, providing the perfect setting to be able to practice and improve his shooting technique.

It wasn’t long before his Instafame was set into motion—a particular landscape image caught the eye of an editor at The Huffington Post’s Arts section, and Landis was contacted to feature his mobile work on the site. Shortly after, his account was also featured on Instagram’s blog, followed by an addition to the site’s Suggested User list. As his following grew, Landis says, “I realized I had an amazing opportunity to do something I love and feel connected and passionate about.”


Above: The wintery image that first drew the attention of The Huffington Post.

Landis finds that his followers are drawn to the simplicity of his imagery. He aims to capture as much as he can in camera, and while editing his images, he enhances what is already there. “For example,” he explains, “taking the existing light in a photo and using post processing to enhance and sometimes even change the mood of that light to portray what I was seeing in my mind as I photographed the scene.” And sometimes, he says, he discovers a new direction while he’s in editing mode, and changes the image in an entirely new way.

Even though Landis’s visual style is to keep his images natural-looking and authentic, he relies on tools like Adobe Photoshop Lightroom and Photoshop CC to bring his stories to life. “No matter how good of a job you do taking photos and achieving a certain look in camera, it’s important to be able to have post processing aids such as Lightroom and Photoshop.”


Above: Before-and-after shots highlighting the changes that Landis makes in post with Lightroom.

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom has long been Landis’s program of choice, but he recently picked up Photoshop CC for when he needs “more extensive manipulation.” Lightroom, he says, is most useful for organizing photos, creating collections and editing a large number of RAW files straight from his camera. The program also has the ability to sync to mobile devices, which comes in handy for Landis’s social media shots. Photoshop CC, he explains, is better when he needs to spend a bit more time focusing on specific edits. “I like the ability to work with layers and the photo retouch tools in Photoshop,” Landis says. Layers allow users to have more control over their edits, working on top of the image without affecting the original. Photoshop CC’s retouch tools include the Clone Stamp, Healing Brush, Spot Healing Brush and Patch tool, all which assist in precise editing of pixels within an image, and can be performed on a separate layer.

Landis also utilizes a couple of Photoshop’s tricks for streamlining workflow. Custom actions for repetitive processes (such as resizing images or saving all images as a different file type) are easy to make, and he also finds Batch Editing extremely useful for creating a consistent look in his series in a quick and efficient way.

Developing a consistent style is one of the most important aspects of photography, and post processing is key to achieving a personal voice. Landis says: “Post processing is essential for anyone serious about digital photography because it gives you the opportunity to put finishing touches on your work and put your own signature on your style.”

To learn more about Adobe Photoshop Lightroom and Photoshop CC, visit www.adobe.com.

The Creative Cloud Photography plan, offering both programs and more, is 9.99/mo.