Documentary

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The National Archives: A Wealth of Americana Inspiration

The National Archives: A Wealth of Americana Inspiration

As creatives and photographers, it’s essential to study imagery for education and inspiration. The national archive is a wealth of archival and historical photos from America’s history.

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Artist Captures Video Portrait of Daughter Once a Week for 20 Years

Artist Captures Video Portrait of Daughter Once a Week for 20 Years

A Dutch artist has created a video documenting twenty years by taking a short video of his daughter once a week for twenty years. That adds up to 1040 different clips that combine to make an amazing piece that might leave you needing some tissue.

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Conflict Resolution: Jennifer McShane on Her HBO Doc about Policing and Mental Health, Ernie & Joe: Crisis Cops

Winner of the Special Jury Prize at this year’s SXSW, Jennifer McShane’s Ernie & Joe: Crisis Cops is an eye-opening look at the game-changing San Antonio Police Department’s Mental Health Unit through the daily activities of two of its humble leaders. It’s also a master class in policing done right. At first glance the partners-in-fighting-crime protagonists of the film’s title seem straight from Cops central casting — hetero white macho males, one a military vet. But McShane swiftly disabuses us of any preconceived notions we might have with her very first, quite shocking scene, one in which the unassuming heroes […]

“‘Follow the Money’ Became So Important to the Structure…”: Lauren Greenfield on Making her Doc about Imelda Marcos and Philippine Politics

In The Queen of Versailles and Generation Wealth, writer and director Lauren Greenfield opened up an elitist world largely off-limits to the public. The Kingmaker, her latest documentary, looks into the life and complex legacy of Imelda Marcos, widow of the former leader of the Philippines Ferdinand Marcos. It is currently in theaters prior to its exhibition on Showtime. Five years in the making, The Kingmaker evolved from what was originally a piece about exotic animals transported by the Marcoses to Calauit Island into a full-fledged investigation of Philippine politics. Greenfield and her team wound up covering the election of […]

To Kid or Not To Kid: How Do You Make a Web Series from a Feature Film?

I read once that Marshall Curry always thinks of his audience when developing his next film. And then I also know that other directors say, “Make a good film and people will find it.” Or as my old comedy boss at the BBC once told me: the audience don’t know what they want until you give it to them. There is a sense of truth in all of these statements, but Curry’s has stayed with me.    As soon as I started developing my film To Kid or Not To Kid — the first English-language film about the decision to […]

Trailer Watch: Beth B’s DOC NYC-Premiering Lydia Lunch: The War is Never Over

Beth B’s Lydia Lunch: The War is Never Over, her doc about the provocative and pummeling musician, writer, multi-media artist, social critic, No Wave pioneer and recent podcast host premieres Saturday night at DOC NYC, and the first trailer is online. Writes B about the film: Voicing the unheard and seeing the unseen are themes that have run through my films with an eye to creating dialogue, community, and a place for self-knowledge and acceptance. My documentary films are social, political and personal investigations; home movies focusing on people I know or have come to know. Lydia Lunch was 19 […]

Dictators, Predators and Magical Thinkers (and Some Combination Thereof): Doubling Up at DOC NYC

Now in its 10th year (though still in November, AKA doc-tsunami festival month) the upcoming DOC NYC is celebrating the anniversary with a wealth of nonfiction riches. Boasting a whopping 300-plus films and events — including 28 world premieres and 27 US premieres — this year’s edition will also be hosting an eclectic array of guests. On hand will be everyone from musician Robbie Robertson — star of Daniel Roher’s Once Were Brothers: Robbie Robertson and The Band, which opens the fest — to fashion force-of-nature André Leon Talley (who starred in Kate Novack’s The Gospel According to André just […]

“It’s Like the Secret Bar or Restaurant in NYC That You’re So Privileged to Discover First….”: Beth Aala on Made in Boise

When one thinks of Idaho, potatoes — not pregnancy — immediately comes to mind. Made in Boise, however, the latest from award-winning filmmaker Beth Aala, will forever change how one views this rugged northwestern locale. Following four gestational surrogates, all devoted mothers with children of their own, who carry babies for women and men (often gay singles and couples) both nationwide and around the world, the doc is an eye-opening look at how this red state-based “unofficial surrogacy capital” of the US is redefining family in surprisingly progressive ways. Filmmaker caught up with Aala (Rancher, Farmer, Fisherman, Supermensch: The Legend […]

“We Have a Contract with our Audience that We Need to Look Behind the Doors”: Marcus Vetter on His Davos Doc The Forum

When one thinks of the World Economic Forum many words come to mind: Davos, global elite, Bono. One term that decidedly does not is transparency. Which is what makes Marcus Vetter’s The Forum all the more remarkable. With this fly-on-the-wall doc the German director (The Forecaster) becomes the first filmmaker ever to be granted behind-the-scenes access to the exclusive organization. Vetter follows the WEFs octogenarian founder Klaus Schwab from the run-up decision-making (Who to pair with Netanyahu? Who’s moderating the Bolsonaro? Who gets a souvenir cowbell?) all the way through the glitzy event itself (one attended by both the Amazon-pillaging […]

Full Time Wedding Photographer Shoots Motocross for the First Time: This Is What I Learned

Full Time Wedding Photographer Shoots Motocross for the First Time: This Is What I Learned

I grew up racing motocross, so I have always had a passion for the sport. But my passion for motocross and photography have never had the chance to overlap. Until I recently got the chance to document the Ponca City National by Motoplayground.

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A Photographer’s Moral Dilemma: Getting in and out of the Field

A Photographer's Moral Dilemma: Getting in and out of the Field

Photographing a certain group of people or documenting lives and events can be really exciting. It can also be emotionally confusing, because we frequently have to enter a field and also leave it after a while.

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Instagram Deleted Three Accounts From the Same Guy and Put His Dream Lifestyle on Hold

Instagram Deleted Three Accounts From the Same Guy and Put His Dream Lifestyle on Hold

Instagram is the most popular platform for photographers to display their work and reach an audience. If you know how, you can even turn it into a business and make a living off it. Imagine now, you wake up and Instagram has deleted all your family photos, favorite memories, connections, friends, and portfolio work?

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Would You Photograph a Funeral?

Would You Photograph a Funeral?

Wedding photography is obviously big business for lots of professional photographers, but over on Reddit, Shian Bang (u/shian243) talks about something a little different: his first experiences as a funeral photographer.

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Street Photos Spark Project to Learn About Victims of September 11 Attacks

Street Photos Spark Project to Learn About Victims of September 11 Attacks

We say, “never forget” when we think of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. And while none of us will forget the event itself, it’s easy to lose sight of the individuals who lost their lives in the attacks.

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Legendary Photographer, Robert Frank, Dies at 94

Legendary Photographer, Robert Frank, Dies at 94

When I discovered Robert Frank’s work it fundamentally altered my perception of what, and how much, photography could mean. Mr. Frank passed away Monday in Mabou, Nova Scotia at the age of 94.

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A to Z of Photography: X-Trans Sensor and Xiaoxiao Xu

A to Z of Photography: X-Trans Sensor and Xiaoxiao Xu

With the letter X we move on to looking at Fuji’s highly regarded X-Trans sensor which is very different from nearly all the sensors in other digital cameras, before looking at the work of contemporary Chinese photographer Xiaoxiao Xu.

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