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The Opioid Diaries TIME Photography James Nachtwey (Warning! Graphic Content) April 20, 2018

Posted by bohdan.warchomij in : Metaphor Online, Time Magazine , comments closed

The opioid crisis is the worst addiction epidemic in American history. (This amazing account of the crisis from photographer James Nachtwey, TIME’s deputy director of photography, Paul Moakley and TIME magazine touches on the destructive pulse of America’s opioid saga).

Drug overdoses kill more than 64,000 people per year, and the nation’s life expectancy has fallen for two years in a row. But there is a key part of the story that statistics can’t tell.

Over the last year, photographer James Nachtwey set out to document the opioid crisis in America through the people on its front lines. Alongside TIME’s deputy director of photography, Paul Moakley, the pair traveled the country gathering stories from users, families, first responders and others at the heart of the epidemic.

Here, Nachtwey’s images are paired with quotes from Moakley’s interviews, which have been edited. The voices are a mix of people in the photos and others who are connected to them. The Opioid Diaries is a visual record of a national emergency—and it demands our urgent attention.


Graphic content could be disturbing to some readers


Like most people, I’d heard about the opioid epidemic. It was especially hard to get my mind around a statistic from 2016: almost as many deaths from drug overdoses as in all of America’s recent wars combined. But numbers are an abstraction. I had no idea what it looked like on the ground. The only way to make real sense of it, I told my editors, was to see what happens to individual human beings, one by one.

Photography can cut through abstractions and rhetoric to help us understand complex issues on a human level. Never is photography more essential than in moments of crisis. To witness people suffering is difficult. To make a photograph of that suffering is even harder. The challenge is to remain open to very powerful emotions and, rather than shutting down, channel them into the images. It is crucial to see with a sense of compassion and to comprehend that just because people are suffering does not mean they lack dignity.

Over the past 35 years, my work as a photojournalist has taken me to other countries to document wars, uprisings, natural disasters and global health crises. In revisiting my own country I discovered a national nightmare. But the people living through it aren’t deviants. They are ordinary citizens, our neighbors, our family members. I don’t think I met one user whom I would consider to be a bad person. No one wants to be an addict.

I also saw signs of hope, particularly from the people who are dealing with the crisis at the street level. Some of them are former users who have lifted themselves up and are using their experience to help others. They are refusing to allow our country to be defined by this problem. Instead, they are helping us define ourselves by finding solutions. We must join them.


TIME Photographer Contract November 24, 2015

Posted by bohdan.warchomij in : Time Magazine , comments closed


Is TIME Screwing Photographers?


Answer: Yes. But what are you going to do about it?1

John Harrington, Photographer and Author of Best Business Practices for Photographers, has a scathing takedown of Time Inc.’s new photographer contract that covers their 23+ brands. At first glance, the new “day rate” (a term that Harrington abhors) of $650 – up from $500 – doesn’t sound so bad when compared to many other publications in the industry, but the devil is in the details. And Harrington rightly makes the point that the rate has less buying power than the $350 rate from the 1980s.

Of notable objection:

  • The concept of “space” rates goes away. Photographers were previously compensated a minimum of $125 each time their photos appeared in print within a magazine. The new contract grabs perpetual rights for “space.” A photo of President Obama that might have previously been used in multiple issues and generated hundreds, if not thousands of dollars, for a photographer, can now be used without compensation in any “assigning brand.”
  • Any video shot while on a Time Inc. assignment is a work made for hire – i.e. they own the rights.
  • If an assignment is never published, there is no end to the embargo period.
  • An image that is used on a cover can not be licensed anywhere else.
  • Photographers have no injunctive relief if they believe Time Inc is in violation of the contract.
  • Payment is only paid upon “acceptance,” which is undefined. If an editor doesn’t like the photos, is it unacceptable? What if the story is killed?

Chief Content Officer Norman Pearlstine (who previously worked as Editor-in-Chief for Time magazine from 1994-2005) tried to appeal to emotion in a letter announcing the new contract by romanticizing the “power of iconic photography.” But the new contract is a rights-grab not so subtly disguised in legalese that gives the company the ability to withhold payment even when an assignment is completed. Since Time, Inc split from Time Warner last May, the company has been under enormous financial pressure with the stock dropping from a 52-week high of 25.95 to the current level in the mid- to high- 15s.

I spoke to multiple photographers who have worked for Time Inc, and the reaction has been one of disbelief and anger. One photographer told me, “This is the worst [contract] I’ve seen, and I’ve seen hundreds…It’s not close to being equitable. I bring $75,000 of equipment out to a shoot. $650 is not even remotely close to cutting it [without secondary use].”

Another long time contributor said, “The contract was written by someone who has no concept of what freelance photography is. For them to even propose this goes to show you how clueless they are about working with photographers…A place with such a great photography tradition is run by people who don’t give a shit.”

Instagram Moments from TIME December 17, 2014

Posted by bohdan.warchomij in : Patrick Brown, Time Magazine , comments closed

As Instagram hit a milestone this month, with its number of monthly active users ballooning to 300 million, TIME, in association with the photo-sharing app, takes a look back at the key moments of 2014.

The selection of images, shared by some of Instagram’s most popular and respected photographers, offers an intimate view of some of the defining events of the year: From the toll of war in Gaza to the unrest in Ferguson, Mo., and from the border between Mexico and the U.S. all the way to Mongolia, Afghanistan and Sierra Leone.

“Real moments are captured and posted on Instagram every single day, from Nana Kofi Acquah’s image of a Tanzanian doctor timing a baby’s labored breathing using his mobile phone, to Brendan Hoffman’s haunting first reactions upon arriving at the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 in eastern Ukraine,” says Pamela
Chen, Instagram’s Editorial Director. “These are just a sampling of the powerful images shared by people around the world in 2014.”

One of the images is by Patrick Brown, formerly from Perth, based in Bangkok and author of Trading To Extinction.