Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The first 100 days in pictures

Much has been made about the first 100 days of Barack Obama's presidency and the White House photo staff has now jumped in as well. White House photographer Pete Souza has unvelied a group of behind-the-scene images from the first 100 days on Flickr. 

Access is a wonderful thing. Having to weed through the photo ops on the picture desk everyday, it is refreshing to see so many real moments.

There is even a RSS feed to subscribe to, so one would assume images will be added going forward.

The softer side of spot news

The "King of Spot News" has once again showed his Mutual of Omaha side as Marshall Gorby of the Springfield New-Sun turns his camera from flames to feathers. 

Gorby's photo of a goose knocking on the door of a local business is one of the finalists for MSNBC's The Week in Pictures

Gorby needs your votes for the top prize. He's currently in third place behind the apparent runaway winner, a squirrel hanging upside-down drinking from a water faucet, shot by Jim Damaske of the St Petersburg Times. 

You can't make this stuff up. See for yourself and help Gorby out.  He keeps this up and he'll have his own "Wildlife Tricks" spot on David Letterman.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Diego James Robles attends Sports Shooter Academy VI

ONPA Student Photographer of the Year Diego James Robles wanted to improve his sports shooting skills and has learned some valuable lessons to do so at Sports Shooter Academy IV. 
Robles, a student at Ohio University, took advantage of free tuition grant from Nikon to attend the event earlier this month in Southern California.

Robles shares his experience in the current Sports Shooter newsletter

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Sam Abell to present his work at Akron Art Museum

National Geographic photographer, Sam Abell will present his work, featuring images from his new book, "The Life of a Photograph," at the Akron Art Museum on Sunday, May 3 from 3 - 5 pm.

The presentation is open to the public and is hosted by the Cuyahoga Valley Photographic Society and sponsored by Canon USA and the Explorers of Light Program. Tickets will be available at the door. The cost is $7 for Akron Art Museum and Cuyahoga Valley Photographic Society members, $10 for non-members. 

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Life Member Don S. Mathews dies

ONPA Life Member Don S. Mathews died Monday in Newark at age 88.

Mathews worked at the Newark Advocate for eight years and was a reporter/photographer at The Columbus Dispatch for 25 years. Mathews obituary in the Newark Advocate today states that Mathews was the first newspaper journalist in Ohio to be granted permission to take pictures during court trials.

Mathews was one of the first on the scene at the collapse of the Silver Bridge in Gallipolis, Ohio, which killed 46 motorists according to a story in today's Columbus Dispatch.

He is survived by his identical twin brother David Mathews, who also worked at the Dispatch, and brothers John Mathews of Tiffin and Robert Mathews of Cleveland. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday at the Eisnaugle-Lewis Funeral Home in Jackson, Ohio with burial to follow in the Fairmount Cemetery with military graveside services being conducted by the Disabled American Veterans chapter 45. Friends may call Friday, April 24, 2009 from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. at the funeral home.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Odds 'n ends on a Pulitzer Monday

The Pulitzer Prizes for Journalism were announced this afternoon. Patrick Farrell from The Miami Herald was the winner in Breaking News Photography for his photographs of Hurricane Ike's devastation in Haiti. Damon Winter from the New York Times was the winner in Feature Photography for his photographs of Barrack Obama's run for the White House.

The New York Times won five Pulitzers Monday, the second-most in history. Plain Dealer writers Diane Suchetka and Regina Brett were Pulitzer finalists for feature writing and commentary, respectively.

The Associated Press has a new feature on its multimedia page called Depth of Field, where AP photographers talk about their work around the world. You see their work and get the back story that goes with it.

Former ONPA member Michael King shares a mention of another former ONPA member, Pat Jarrett who was featured in a story about Gannett employees furlough house swap. Jarrett, now working at The News Leader in Staunton, Va. is looking to swap his Shenandoah Valley apartment for some New York City digs. 

Kings knows a thing or two about Gannett cutbacks as he was a victim of downsizing in Appleton, Wisconsin before landing a job at the Green Bay Press-Gazette, also a Gannett property.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Keystone Multimedia Workshop registration open

Former ONPA member Curt Chandler, who is now teaching multimedia reporting at Penn State University, shares news of the upcoming Keystone Multimedia Workshop to be held June 4 - 7 at State College, PA.

Participants can choose a track that focuses on producing daily pieces or choose to do a project over three days. Last year the workshop as held in Gettysburg during Bike Week. This year's event will be held during the Pennsylvania Special Olympics championship at State College.

The workshop focuses on producing quality audio, stills and video to build multimedia stories on deadline. Here are some examples by Matt Stanley, who shoots for a paper in the Philly suburbs.

The faculty includes John Beale and Curt Chandler from Penn State, Steve Mellon from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Susan Kirkman Zake from Kent State and an experienced video journalist (who Chandler can't name yet) from the Washington, D.C. area.

Half of the workshop participants wil be students, half professionals. Last year they found this created a pleasant synergy, with the students learning how to find the heart of a story from the pros, and the pros learning how to be fearless with technology from the students.

The workshop costs only $95 for students and $195 for professionals. Hotel rooms are available for less than $100 a night and can be shared by those on a budget. You can registration online through the Pennsylvania Newspaper Association.  

Chandler says, "Ohioans are welcome to attend, rumors about passports being required have been greatly overstated." If you have any question Chandler can be reached at 412-779-2370 (cell) or

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Convention wrap-up

As an ONPA member I always looked forward to the annual educational seminar and since becoming an officer always look forward to seeing it in my rearview mirror.

Even when you’re not doing all the work there is always a worry that something will go wrong. Convention chairman Craig Holman always makes sure that doesn’t happen and this year was no exception. Thanks also to Bill Gugliotta, Phil Long, Lisa Marie Miller, Chris Parker and Lori Cecil for their efforts with this year's convention.

All seminars are judged by the quality of speakers and Bill Gugliotta didn’t disappoint us with this year’s lineup. It wasn’t intentional, because you never know what direction a speaker might take, but at the end of the day there was a common theme coming from the panel. A great portion of the work shown by the speakers were stories that no one else had an interest in. Photographers went out and let their pictures do the talking after their ideas were panned in planning meetings.

The weekend began on a down note, as Friday was the last day of work for those who were laid off from The Columbus Dispatch. Among those was photographer James DeCamp. We wish all these journalists nothing but the best, but will have to accept the fact that many of them will be changing careers as our industry continues to shrink. 

This was the first year without a formal awards dinner and I for one didn’t miss it. My wife and I joined Fred Squillante and his wife Kris for a very fun evening at the Shadowbox theatre at Easton. It was a much-needed night of pure laughter, which we could all use a little more of these days.

The awards were presented at the end of the day’s program after a bit of a delay. This was the first year with this format and we weren’t as organized as I would have liked. In previous years we had time to prepare between the seminar and the dinner. We’ll get the bugs ironed out next year.

On the business side of things ONPA is surviving financially thanks to our annual disbursement from the estate of George S. Smallsreed Jr.. The financial markets have reduced that amount for 2009 with a 35-40% decline in the fund itself.

Going forward we know that membership income will be down with the layoffs and buyouts in the industry. On the plus side we no longer have the expense of the print version of the newsletter, which was a major expense. We will have a clearer financial picture after the convention bills are all paid. 

During the business meeting several items were brought to the table involving the year-end contests. It was suggested that it might be beneficial to move the deadline up a week for the television and multimedia contests to give contest chairs some additional time to prepare entries for judging.

There was also a suggestion from Marshall Gorby to look at splitting a few more categories based on circulation to get more participation from the smaller papers. The board will most likely take action on the contest issues and its next meeting.

Karl Kuntz from The Columbus Dispatch suggested that we might get better student participation in the organization if we took our program to them. All in attendance agreed that it would be worth the effort. Kuntz will meet with Ohio University's Terry Eiler to see what the school's interest in the idea might be and report back to the board. 

The last item on the agenda was the nominating of officers for elections later this year. Karl Kuntz was nominated to fill the pending vacancy for chairman of the board. The remaining officers were all nominated by acclamation. Additional nominations may be made by submitting a petition signed by no less than six active members to ONPA secretary Chris Parker by August 1. Ballots will be mailed on Nov 1. Officer’s terms begin April 1, 2010.

Last week I received word from Craig Holman that next year's convention will be April 9 and 10 once again at the Columbus Airport Marriott so while one convention may be in my rearview mirror there is another one on the horizon.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Multi-tasking in the field

Once again Associated Press photographer Tony Dejak has found a worthy subject by directing a camera towards a news gatherer as opposed to a newsmaker. 

This time around his victim was Plain Dealer photographer Marvin Fong who was juggling a cell phone, an umbrella and an editor all at once.

We thank Tony for sharing and remind him that paybacks are hell.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Plain Dealer wins a pair of Best of Photojournalism editing awards

Judging in NPPA's Best of Photojournalism picture editing categories at the Ohio University School of Visual Communication (VisCOm) has been completed and the winners have been announced.

The Plain Dealer had two wins in the Newspaper Special Section or Reprint category.  The paper placed 2nd and won an honorable mention.

The second place win was for Beyond rape: A survivors journey, a story which also won the James R. Gordon Ohio Understanding Award in this years ONPA annual contest.

The project's editing team was comprised of photographer, Lisa DeJong; director of photography, Bill Gugliotta; designer, Emmet Smith; assistant managing editor/visuals, David Kordalski; deputy director of photography, Jeff Greene and design and gaphics editor, Michael Tribble.

Their honorable mention win was for a special section on the election of President Barack Obama, The photo editing team was comprised of Gugliotta, Kordalski, Tribble, Smith and assistant managing editor, Daryl Kannberg.

Brad Loper of The Dallas Morning News was named the NPPA's Best Of Photojournalism 2009 Newspaper Picture Editor of the Year (Individual). The team award went to Justin Rumbach and John Rumbach of The Herald in Jasper, IN. 

The Herald also won the Best Use of Photography category for newspapers with less than 75,000 circulation, and The New York Times won Best Use of Photography for the category of newspapers with more than 75,000 circulation.

Winners list

Monday, April 6, 2009

Newspaper economics and rumors

If you thought huge executive bonuses where just a financial sector issue, guess again. AIG and other financial institutions are making headlines while paying out lavish sums while receiving bailout money. Equally as puzzling is how media executives are being rewarded when their only answer to industry problems are staff reductions.

Photo District News has compiled a list of some of the major players in this game of executive rewards. Years ago the typical CEO of a company made 40 times what a worker did, now it's not uncommon for that figure to be 500 times a workers salary.

This isn't something new in the play books of media companies. Even when profit margins were very healthy companies would site the increasing cost of health care and ask their employees to pay more, all the while ratcheting up salaries and bonuses for top executives.

Recently The Plain Dealer was one of ten newspapers on a list of those who would close or go to online only. The paper responded in print immediately and pointed out that the story had no basis and was written by a blogger and picked up on

All eyes were on the newspaper again when Advance Publications instituted furloughs and salary reductions on the heels of the company closing one newspaper in Michigan and reducing the print cycle at three others. Plain Dealer editor Susan Golberg talked about the newspaper's future in an interview with WKYC-TV anchors Carole Sullivan and Eric Mansfield recently.
There is a tone in many of the stories written about newspapers that people don't want a print edition with the amount of free news available online. Yes the online audience is growing, but for the most part print circulation isn't tanking. It's a revenue problem and Golberg points that out in her opening remarks.

Something has to give. For the life of me if I can't figure out how a group of newspapers in Ohio can enter into a content sharing agreement, yet they can't come up with a plan to create some sort of model to charge for online content. If they don't want to spend money to make their print products better so they will be more attractive to readers and advertisers alike, they need to find another revenue source.

Further staff cuts aren't the answer. Investigative stories like those discussed in Golberg's interview will be no more, and we will be left with citizen journalists and bloggers that Golberg takes on in her opening comments as having no credibility.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Roh and Torchia are Fullerton Scholarship recipients

James Roh from Ohio University and Laura Torchia from Kent State University are the recipients of the 2009 Larry Fullerton Photojournalism Scholarship. The two students will split the $5,100 available to this year's winners.
Slideshow of student's portfolios

The Larry Fullerton Photojournalism Scholarship was established at The Dayton Foundation
through contributions from Larry Fullerton's family and friends to assist students pursuing careers
in photojournalism. Larry Fullerton was a long time member of ONPA and both a photojournalist
and assistant managing editor of the Hamilton Journal-News.

The scholarship is open to undergraduate students enrolled full-time attending an accredited Ohio college or university. Students must enter a portfolio and furnish a statement discussing their philosophy of photojournalism, current career goals, work experience, and financial need.

Matt Detrich wins fifth NPPA Region 4 POY title

Results are finally in from NPPA's Region 4, December clip contest with former ONPA member Matt Detrich from the Indianapolis Star winning his fifth Regional Photographer of the Year title.

Detrich had three wins in the final month, but really didn't need the points, as he finished 342 points ahead of second place finisher David Stephenson of the Lexington (KY) Herald Leader. Ryan Garza from The Flint (MI) Journal placed third.

The lone Ohio photographers to crack the top ten were Marshall Gorby and Barbara Perenic from the Springfield News-Sun. Gorby placed 4th and Perenic placed 8th.

Link to winning images

December results

Spot News
1st - David Harpe / David Harpe Photography, “Car Chase”
2nd - Erik Holladay / The Jackson Citizen-Patriot, “Porch Fire”
3rd - Barbara Perenic / Springfield News-Sun, “Roll-over Rescue”

General News
1st - Matt Detrich / The Indianapolis Star, “Bleeding Blue”
2nd - Jim Rider / South Bend Tribune, “juan”
3rd - Matt Detrich / The Indianapolis Star, “Troops Deployed”

Feature/Single Picture
1st - CoCo Walters, “Santa's Lap”
2nd - Go Takayama / Ohio University, “Birthday Worth Celebrating”
3rd - Doug McSchooler, “Waterboys”

Feature/Multiple Picture
1st - Dave Weatherwax / Jackson Citizen Patriot, “Fighting the odds”
2nd - Clayton Jackson / The Advocate Messenger, “Blessing of the hounds”
3rd - Charlie Nye / The Indianapolis Star - “Snow Capital of Indiana”

1st - Matt Detrich / The Indianapolis Star, “A Perfect Dive”
2nd - Barbara Perenic / Springfield News-Sun, “Sunset Practice”
3rd - Barbara Perenic / Springfield News-Sun, “All Together Now”

1st - John Tully / Midland Daily News, “Snow Shoe”
2nd - Denny Simmons / Evansville Courier & Press, “Nutcracker”
3rd - Hilly Schiffer, “MVP”

Final Standings 2008
1st - Matt Detrich/The Indianapolis Star - 914
2nd - David Stephenson/Lexington Herald Leader - 572
3rd - Ryan Garza/The Flint Journal - 554
4th - Marshall Gorby/Springfield News-Sun - 502
5th - Charlie Nye/The Indianapolis Star - 424
6th - Cory Morse/The Muskegon Chronicle - 422
7th - Erik Holladay/The Jackson Citizen-Patriot - 390
8th - Barbara Perenic/Springfield News-Sun - 374
9th - Clayton Jackson/The Advocate Messenger - 364
10th - Denny Simmons/Evansville Courier & Press - 294

Thursday, April 2, 2009

ONPA seminar registration fees waved for out of work journalists

Recognizing the business climate these days ONPA is offering free registration to any member who has lost their job in the continuing downsizing in both television and print media newsrooms. If you have already paid your dues contact ONPA treasurer Kimberly Barth and a refund will be arranged. 

I can kick myself for not coming up with this idea earlier, but better late than never. I sent quick e-mail to other officers late last night and they also agreed this would be a good thing to do. Don't let being temporarily out of work stand in the way of learning.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Life photo archive now online

The Life magazine photo archive is now online offering a chance to see what would arguably be the "greatest hits" of the photography world in the last century. One could spend hours looking through the galleries. The site was developed in collaboration with Getty Images who will add 3,000 additional images per day.

This is amazing look at history from W. Eugene Smith's WWII gallery to the many celebrity galleries from Hollywoods golden era. 

What's creating quite a stir is that the images can be used without rights fees for any non-commercial use. That would include this blog. 

Photographer Vincent Loforet writes on his blog: Perhaps what I find more interesting in all of this - is how Time and Getty Images are in effect encouraging the use of their images via e-mail, blogs, and social networking sites - without charging for that use (as long as it’s a “non-commercial” use.)   I think it’s very important to really study that - as they are in effect setting a precedent that images shared via those avenues should not lead to any income for photographers or agencies.   It stands to reason that and Getty Images stand to gain something from having thousands of eyeballs driven back to their sites - but haven’t the photographers lost yet another way of making potential income - even if these images were to be licensed for a nominal fee for personal use?  Are blogs and social networking sites in effect being granted a de facto right to publish images for free from hereon out?

I'm quite sure that opinions similar to Loforet's will be many in the coming days. The mindset of people will be if they can use a historical photo from the Life archives your images are fair play as well.  The barn door has been cracked for sometime - this will blow it off the hinges.

The only good thing to come out of this is a look at some amazing and memorable photography.