This Artist Will Squeeze Your Heart With These Images

We’re big believers here at Mylio in the concept of photograph as time machine. And so is fine art photographer Chino Otsuka. In the video below, she describes the concepts behind her project Imagine Finding Me, in which she digitally composites her present-day, adult self into childhood photos from the family album. Such is Otsuka’s artistry that if you didn’t know what you were looking at, you’d think these were a series of non-descript snapshots, very much like those sitting sandwiched in their billions in binders and shoeboxes everywhere. But they’re so not. Otsuka clearly understands the complex set of emotions old photos – especially old family photos – can trigger; she describes how such pictures show layers of time, and are vehicles for taking us on memory journeys. “I think that’s exactly what you do when you look at the family album; that’s what you do in your mind. There’s so many different layers, so many mental time travels that go on inside your head. To a certain extent I was able to show that in an image, in a very simplistic form.” –Chino Otsuka The results are at once quiet, unpretentious, poetic verging on mystical, and it-just-slowly-seeps-in powerful.… Continue reading This Artist Will Squeeze Your Heart With These Images

Man Proposes to Woman 148 Times. She Notices Once.

Ray Smith of Grimsby, UK knew he wanted to marry his longtime girlfriend, Claire Bramley. He also knew he wanted the marriage proposal to make an impression. “Originally the plan was to get engaged…in a hot air balloon. But then we found out the news that the little baby was coming along, so that put a spanner in the works.” –Ray Smith So instead of renting a balloon, Smith made a laminated card that read Will You Marry Me X-heart-X, carried it with him everywhere, and under the pretense of documenting the pregnancy, used it to clandestinely photo bomb his own selfies. For five months. He also loaned the card to family and friends and asked them to do the same. The plan wasn’t without its risks: like, who doesn’t want to see the picture after it’s taken? Claire did. So Ray would take a couple, then show her a redacted version. So fun. The long windup started in June, with Ray proposing Christmas Day. Here’s to a redemption of the selfie, and Congratulations to both! See the lovely tribute video that Ray put together (including all 148 photos) at the bottom of the page here, as well as an interview… Continue reading Man Proposes to Woman 148 Times. She Notices Once.

3 Artists Who Straddle Time with Old and New Photos

We’ve explored examples of photography as time travel — time slipping, time collapsing, time-telescoping, and more. With one small (but fun!) variation, the images from the three photographers below share a theme of time straddling: using a photo, in the place it was originally taken, as a picture-window into the past. (How long before VR goggles help us not only see through time in still imagery, but allow us to walk around in the past?) Notice how each artist approaches the same concept differently, and with different effect. Julien Knez’s windows into historical Paris remind us of how well-preserved the city is (and, subtly, why that is); in contrast, Babak Fakhamzadeh’s work in Freetown shows us the decay that’s set in in many post-colonial African cities. Far afield from both is Francois Dourien’s ongoing project: more whimsical, yet with a sly nod to how popular culture – as delivered by our smartphones – can become the goggles through which we view our physical environment. Links will jump you down the page: Julien Knez: Paris then and now. Babak Fakhamzadeh: Freetown, Sierra Leon then and now. Francois Dourien: Pop culture images superimposed over IRL. Julien Knez Taking advantage of living in what’s possibly the… Continue reading 3 Artists Who Straddle Time with Old and New Photos

How Mylio Helps Keep This Photographer’s Work and Life Balanced

Our Story: My wife Caroline and I run Quiver Tree Photography, based in Washington, North Carolina. We weren’t always in the photography business – we were doing missionary work in Scotland when we got married, then moved back to my native South Africa to start a non-profit. That’s when taking pictures  started being more than just documenting our growing family: when you run a non-profit, you’re the CEO, you’re the Secretary, and unless someone else steps up to do it, you’re the photographer, too. By the time we moved back to North Carolina, we were, to be brutally honest, struggling financially. I needed to make something work to put food on the table for my family. Fortunately, a professional photographer invited me to second shoot a wedding, and on the strength of that experience, my wife and I decided to start Quiver Tree. We jumped in with both feet, opening a gallery, and offering lifestyle sessions — basically chasing two- and three-year-olds around in the humidity, trying to capture something. (Being from South Africa, I’ve had plenty of practice shooting wildlife in the heat. This was a lot like that). Things were tight at first. If you’d asked me then… Continue reading How Mylio Helps Keep This Photographer’s Work and Life Balanced

How to Download and Backup Facebook Photos

I post a lot of pictures to Facebook because it’s the quickest way to share with my friends and family. But now that I am getting older, I’m realizing a few things. First, Facebook changes things up all the time, and I’m starting to get a sinking feeling that I have no idea what that means for the future of all the photos I’ve entrusted them. And second, now that I’m a new father I’m realizing just how important those photos are to me. I want access to them on my own devices so I can tell my personal story to friends, family and baby boy as he grows up. So I’ve come to the conclusion that I can’t trust Facebook to preserve these memories for me — I need to back them up for myself. And I bet I’m not the only person who wants to backup Facebook photos. In the past, I’d grab photos from Facebook by browsing through my albums, then downloading each one individually. But those days are over. A cross-platform app called Mylio can import and backup Facebook photos, maintaining the same album structure and tagging, and do it all in minutes. And best of all, Mylio is FREE! What is Mylio? Mylio… Continue reading How to Download and Backup Facebook Photos

Here’s How Many Digital Photos Will Be Taken in 2017

How many digital photos will be taken in 2017?  It’s predicted there will be 7.5 billion people in the world in 2017, and about 5 billion of them will have a mobile phone. Let’s say roughly 80% of those phones have a built-in camera: around 4 billion people. And let’s say they take 10 photos per day – that’s 3,650 photos per year, per person. That adds up to more than 14 trillion photos annually (14,600,000,000,000). Much more conservatively, if only one billion people have cameras or phones, and take less than 3 photos per day/1,000 pictures per year, that’s still 1 trillion photos captured every year. How many digital photos will be taken in 2017: InfoTrends’ most recent worldwide image capture forecast takes this conservative route, estimating consumers will take 1.1 trillion photos worldwide in 2016. This number will grow to 1.2 trillion photos in 2017. The compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from 2016 to 2017 will be 9%. These hard-to-wrap-your-head-around numbers are illustrated below, with the ever-upwards trend for more picture capture and storage projected, of course, to continue, with digits we wish could be narrated by Carl Sagan or Dr. Evil. Now what? (Have you reached too… Continue reading Here’s How Many Digital Photos Will Be Taken in 2017

Back On Great Daddy’s Beach

My great-grandfather — Great Daddy to me — was the owner of the general store in Louisville, Alabama, and spent his weekends at the fishing cabin he built with his brother a couple hours east in Grayton Beach, Florida. That area’s called the ‘Redneck Riviera’ now, but in spite of (or maybe because of) the unfavorable nickname, this quiet little beach town made for the perfect family refuge. This is where Great Daddy taught his daughter — my grandmother — how to swim, water ski, and catch blue crabs. This is where my grandmother relaxed with her own children. This is where my parents fell in love; it’s where my husband and I recently got married. That’s me on the beach with Great Daddy, though I surely don’t have an actual memory of the day. Still, I’ve looked at the photo so many times that I’ve recreated it in my mind: That summer, the shoreline was so flat you could walk out for yards without having to swim. I’d just learned to run, and was chasing the beach ball towards the water. Smitten by my excitement, Great Daddy followed me into the water, still wearing his dress shoes and slacks.… Continue reading Back On Great Daddy’s Beach

What Stories Are Coded in These Things Confiscated at the Border?

This post features an ongoing personal project by photographer Tom Kiefer, whose images can take hours, and sometimes weeks to assemble. In his own words: Working as a janitor from July 2003 until August 2014 I was greatly disturbed by the volume of food, clothing and personal belongings thrown away at a single U.S. Customs and Border Patrol facility. For many of those years, I was allowed to collect and take the food transported by migrants, that was discarded during the first stages of processing, to our community food bank, an estimated sixty tons by the person who managed it. The personal effects and belongings were another matter: Why would someone throw away a rosary or bible? Why would someone throw away a wallet? Why would a pair of shoes, for all intents and purpose “brand new”, be tossed in the trash? El Sueno Americano (the American Dream) is a photographic essay of the discarded personal effects and belongings of migrants and smugglers apprehended by Border Patrol agents, discarded while being processed at a U.S Customs and Border Patrol facility near the U.S./Mexico border in southern Arizona. My intent is to explore the humanity of the migrants who risk their lives… Continue reading What Stories Are Coded in These Things Confiscated at the Border?

If You Organized Everything You Touched in a Day, It Would Look Like This

There’s something really…clarifying about objects organized in a single view. It brings a sense of peace that can elude us in our fast, over-thingified lives. We can see an appetite for this peace of mind in the decluttering movement popularized by Marie Kondo, and in the success of Austin Radcliffe’s Tumblr. Paula Zuccotti, an ethnographer, trends forecaster and designer with the creative consultancy the Overworld, has tapped into this impulse through her book Everything We Touch: A 24-hour Inventory of Our Lives. The project captures, in a single frame, every object a person has touched – chronologically — within a day. Zuccotti’s intent, in part, was to play archaeologist for future generations, documenting our relationship to objects (including those she started to notice were becoming extinct, like calendars, alarm clocks, and cash money). She writes: “from a toddler in Tokyo to a cowboy in Arizona, from a cleaner in London to a cloister nun in Madrid, Every Thing We Touch is their story told through the objects they own, consume, need, choose, treasure and can’t let go.” “I was amazed at the honest X-rays from our everyday lives that emerged from the photos. As a result, the participants find the exercise very… Continue reading If You Organized Everything You Touched in a Day, It Would Look Like This

Before-and-After Street Portraits 40 Years in the Making

All through the 70s, 80s, and 90s, paramedic and amateur street photographer Chris Porsz roamed Peterborough, England, capturing images of working-class locals who caught his eye. “My favourite style is candid, that is natural and unposed where possible. Mainly people, old characters with weathered faces, walking sticks up against the elements and adversity. I would mainly roam the city centre, where there was lots of activity… this great cosmopolitan mix, rich with characters that make great photos.” –Chris Porsz Without meaning to, Porsz had been documenting a social record, and in 2009 decided to see whether he could track down some of his subjects, and see where the arcs of their lives had taken them. Which sounds like an impossible task: find subjects from hundreds of candid street portraits, persuade them to pose again – in the same location – then tell their stories. It took seven years. The result: his new photo book Reunions, which includes the stories behind the pictures as channeled through writer Jo Riley — stories of growing up, growing apart, and, above all, change. “It has been enormously satisfying to do so many reunions and seeing the smiles on people’s faces as they met up… Continue reading Before-and-After Street Portraits 40 Years in the Making