In the age when everyone can take photos, what is the significance of photography?

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 In the age when everyone can take photos, what is the significance of photography?


Scrape from memory casually, there will always be a few classic photos, firmly imprinted in our mind.

u00b7 The Fallen Soldier, Robert Capa, on the battlefield of the Spanish Civil War

u00b7 Victory Day in Times Square, taken by Alfred Eisenstedt in New York City, declaring the end of the war

Nowadays, photography technology has made great progress. Everyone can take pictures, but the exquisite composition and accurate exposure do not seem to replace the emotions and thoughts conveyed by the photos themselves.

What is it that makes some photos more impressive?

The golden age of documentary photography

Before the invention of the 135 portable camera in 1914, outdoor photography was suffocating.

In the age of wet-plate photography, outdoor photography requires a carriage of equipment. In addition to cameras and tripods, there are photosensitive panels, chemicals and shading tents. In addition, in order to keep the plate moist, photographers often have to carry a large bucket of water at any time.

u00b7 In the 1860s, photographer Felix J.A. Moulin and his complete equipment

With the progress of science and technology, the camera is becoming smaller and smaller, and the photography process is becoming simpler and simpler.

While Kodak continues to shrink the size of its box camera, the pioneering 135 camera entered the stage of history in 1914. These cameras allow photographers to walk out of studios and around the world for the first time, recording real-time, mobile social landscapes.

War, conflict and urban life have replaced ancient relics and relics and become the main content of documentary photography.

u00b7 Box Camera and 135 Camera

Compared with words and cartoons, photographs have a strong sense of reality and persuasion. Once published, they capture a large number of newspaper and magazine readers.

After all, no picture of the atrocities committed by Belgian public forces in Congos Free State is as eye-catching as any other text on the suffering of colonial people; no more description of urban poverty during the Great Depression is as touching as a picture of immigrant mothers.

u00b7 Migrant Mothers, 1936. The protagonist in the photo is a poor mother during the Great Depression. She had seven children, aged 32 at the time. This photo is included in the history textbook of the teaching edition.

Documentary photography played an unparalleled role in the subsequent Spanish Civil War and World War II. Battlefield photographers, born or killed, allow ordinary people to see the progress and details of the war in newspapers and magazines for the first time.

Their works can even influence the publics emotions about social events and change the direction of war.

On August 28, 1937, when Japan bombed Shanghai South Railway Station, more than 700 innocent civilians died. Wang Xiaoting, a Chinese-American journalist working for American Hurst News Agency, filmed the scene in the chaos. This picture, named Chinese Doll, was later published on the cover of Life magazine on October 4, bringing great shock to American society.

Not only has the Japanese army been denounced by the American society, but public opinion has also promoted the change of Congresss views on the War of Resistance against Japan, indirectly prompting the United States to change its foreign policy and support Chinas anti-Japanese war.

All this, as Robert Capa, a well-known war correspondent, said of photography: The camera itself can not stop the war, but the photographs taken by the camera can reveal the war and prevent the development of the war.

u00b7 Chinese Dolls, 28 August 1938

Robert Capa is one of the most famous war photographers in the 20th century. He participated in almost all the important wars of the time, including the Spanish Civil War, World War II, the First Middle East War and so on. Through the condensation of decisive moments, his works truly reproduce the cruelty and brutality of war.

Seven years before he died in Vietnam, he condensed his dream of photography into an organization. In 1947, Kapa and Brisson, the advocate of Decisive Moment, and several other friends, each contributed $4,000 to the creation of Magnan Pictures, the worlds first free photographer cooperative.

Magnans dream is to faithfully present the video documentary after World War II. Photographers travel all over the world to take pictures of war, famine, natural disasters, family life, social scenes and celebrities. Magnan also hopes that photographers can record the current consciousness, emotions and story images, not only instantaneous reality, but also the self-expression of the photographer.

The photographers behind these scenes are called the eyes of the world. With distinct views and attitudes, they have traveled all over the world and recorded countless important events in the 20th century.

Sociologists Behind Cameras

Where in the world does Magnums picture hit the hearts of the people?

As for photographs, Capa once made another more well-known assertion: If your photographs are not good enough, its because youre not close enough.

In todays highly developed technology, we have been able to use the latest shooting technology such as mobile phone photography 10 times zoom or even 60 times zoom to obtain a close-range sense of the scene. Sixty years ago, however, Magnums photographers had to take the most primitive physical approach: getting close enough.

Magnums photographers are never afraid to go deep into strange or conflicting areas. They traveled all over the world, satisfied the curiosity of Westerners with a large number of pictures about exotic social customs, and at the first time brought the scene of partial hot war to the eyes of those who were in the cold war peace.

u00b7 Source: magnum photos, 1948, Ugandan girl with braided forehead

u00b7 Flower Girls (Source: marcriboud.com) in Anti-War Demonstrations during the 1967 Vietnam War

But Magnums real attraction is not just fast enough and close enough. People love to see Magnum because the photographers vivid self-expression is solidified in the photos.

Peace and anti-war sentiments, like those in the Girl Flower Girl photographs, are the eternal themes of Magnan photographers. Another theme concerns justice: in the 1960s, during the protests of black South Africans, it was these photographers who cleared up the accused demonstrators of attacking police.

u00b7 Magnan Photographer Steve McCareys Afghan Girls. The sharp-eyed girl appeared on the cover of the International Geographic Journal in June 1985 and became a symbol of the refugee image in the Afghan war of the 1980s.

The Magnum photographer of this age was a post-camera sociologist. They use the lens to record the society, and also use the lens to analyze and judge the society.

However, Magnan, who once took the paper media development express, encountered an unprecedented crisis in the 1980s and 1990s. The vigorous development of television media has played a subversive role in paper media.

As early as 1957, Magnum photographer Ray Brie was aware of the crisis that television media had brought to photographers: he filmed in Greece and returned to his hotel to find that what he had shot was being broadcast on television.

His photographs, have not been sent out, have not been developed and enlarged, has become obsolete things.

u00b7 Che Guevara in Bries Eyes

Magnans photographers, its hard to be the fastest runners again.

The advantage of being nearest is also hard to maintain: by the end of the 20th century, photography technology and equipment had entered the ordinary family. Someone is always closer to them where they cant get in.

Nevertheless, the era when documentary photography has reached a low ebb is also a time when the artistry of photography has been discovered and good photographs have become more and more expensive works of art. Excellent photographers will not only travel thousands of miles, but also use different perspectives to examine daily life.

Magnan has emerged as a group of new generation street photographers. They are good at mixing strong artistic styles with real street scenes, which replaces the real and rigorous lines in documentary photography, becoming their most typical symbol and bringing them commercial success.

However, no matter how the style and composition change, Magnum photographers still maintain a strong desire for self-expression. These street photographers, turning the lens to the daily society, record the social life and the things behind it.

u00b7 South African boy skateboarding, Lua Ribeira, Magnan Photographer, shoots with OPPOReno

Lua Ribeira, one of Magnans youngest and most creative photographers, brought an OPPO Reno to London to record what she saw as the present London.

In Luas eyes, multicultural London has a unique charm. People on the streets of London come from different time zones around the world and live in the same place with the jet lag of cultural tradition. From these moments of peoples daily lives, Lua tries to express what she sees as the inclusive and dynamic multiculturalism of Londons streets.

Although the form and content have changed greatly, the background of photography advocated by Magnum remains unchanged: the image is not only instantaneous reality, but also the self-expression of the photographer, which is beyond the horizon of SEEBEYOND.

In an era when everyone can take photos, good works are out of sight.

This is an age of information flooding. Anyone can easily create new image works in the holding room. However, when we open the mainstream photography websites in China, the legends of Magnum photographers still circulate. Magnan in the new century is still the spiritual beacon in the minds of photographers.

Magnans image, as always, represents the core value of photography: observing society and expressing oneself. Each photograph contains the photographers current consciousness, mood and story. And the meaning contained in the photograph is still waiting for the viewers interpretation.

From the original documentary photography to more diverse content, Magnum Pictures has always maintained authenticity, artistry and creativity in the image. Besides, Magnums photographers are also willing to share their experiences and teach more people who love photography and hope to become top photographers to create.

Magnans image spirit is highly consistent with OPPOs image concept.

Mobile phone photography is a life recorder. Thanks to the ever-evolving image technology, we can record the wonderful moments we see in front of us more instantly and freely when we need to fix the frame at the fastest speed. But beyond more, what we need is expression: what do you see? What do you want to express?

Thats what OPPO and Magnan want to do - hopefully, OPPO phones will bring more possibilities for young people to create.

OPPO jointly launched OPPO Magnan Image Creation Competition to provide a free and open mobile phone image communication platform for contemporary filmmakers. From May 17 to July 17, photographs created by mobile phones can participate in the image creation contest.

OPPO attaches great importance to and supports the training of young creators and provides more learning opportunities for young talents. Your excellent works will have the opportunity to be seen by hundreds of millions of people through film exhibitions, OPPO Lock Screen Wallpapers and outdoor brands, and more opportunities to be displayed in top-level film exhibitions in cooperation between OPPO and MAGNUM.

Young people with creative enthusiasm and talent can also participate in the image education project OPPO Magnan Imaging Academy, which is jointly created by OPPO and Magnan. Magnan Photographer directly acts as a mentor to help you further from the image.

Potential young photographers can not only get the support of the Creation Fund, but also learn more powerful ways of expression from Magnans experience in OPPO Magnan Imaging Academy.

Everyone sees a different world. Everyone has a completely different understanding of the world.

With the help of the photographers eyes, even the scenery we are familiar with can show different charm.

OPPO works hand in hand with Magnan to explore the beyond horizon world with you.

On May 17, OPPO held OPPO Image Salon in Shanghai Chagong Mansion, announcing that OPPO Magnan Image Creation Competition was officially launched.

At this salon, OPPO shared its understanding of the image and the concept of shooting. At the same time, OPPO invited three creators, Lua Ribeira, actors Chunxia and Vlogger Flypig, to interpret the theme of the competition in their eyes with three different films: SEEBEYOND.

There are five contest units in this contest:

In this age of information explosion, excellent photography has never been so rare. Surrounded by various images, we are still looking for the photo that can bring us thinking and feeling.

News may be out of date and trends may fade, but the photographers thoughts and emotions will always shine behind the photos.

Source: Elephant Association Responsible Editor: Qiao Junjing_NBJ11279