PHOTOJOURNALISM: The Ultimate Guide

“Najiba holds her nephew Shabir, who was injured in a bomb blast that killed his sister”
Image courtesy –
Paula Bronstein

Do you enjoy interpreting a story through photographs rather than text? And are You interested in telling stories with your photographs? And want to report on local news or even interested in traveling the world? Then becoming a photojournalist may be a possible career option for you.

In recent years, the role of the media has been pretty controversial. There has been a lot of turmoil regarding the trustworthiness of the coverage of events by the media. Many news channels even run specific shows to reveal the truth behind a viral photo and its caption.

Photojournalism is a field that many photography students aspire to join. Photojournalism has always been a big part when it comes to news coverage. Although the role of photojournalism has changed quite a bit,  it is still an important part of modern news.

Photojournalism raises awareness of current global problems and presents them on a whole different level. How can you get started working on it? Welcome to this extreme guide on Photojournalism, where you will become acquainted with every little thing about photojournalism. Which likewise encourages you to begin your career on this path.

Knowing The Meaning of Photojournalism

Photojournalism is distinguished from other close branches of photography (e.g, documentary photography, social documentary photography, or street photography). It complies with a rigid ethical framework which demands that the work be both honest and impartial in line with journalistic standards.

There is a saying that a picture is worth more than a thousand words. Similarly, the pictures of Photojournalism have a meaning to the viewer. It not only draws the attention of the viewer but also encourages them to see the story behind it.

Earlier, Photojournalists were paid by the government to report a story that fits their agenda. But now photojournalists are an additional force to keep the government in check by showing the different sides of the society we live in and they are not dependent on the government for their financial support.

A photojournalist is similar to a journalist but uses a camera rather than written words to tell news stories. Wherever you are working, your job is to bear witness to events. Capture them in a way that will provoke something in the viewer and make them feel as if they were there to witness it.

History of Photojournalism

Long before it was very difficult to find information on current events. Or stories about other parts of the world, Photojournalism was important to tell all the untold stories of the world. Photojournalists traveled around the world to give a voice to the unheard. Their pictures show awareness of the struggle of people. In some cases, a single picture was so powerful that it changed public opinion and had a real impact on politics. Let’s have a look at the era when photojournalism had started.

1. Origin

The practice of illustrating news stories with photographs occurred in the mid 19th century. When the early form of photojournalism started, there were illustrations that depicted certain historical events. Now let’s have a look at the historical timeline of photojournalism:-

1840 – The First Photograph

The first photograph ever to be attributed to photojournalism was a depiction of the Barricades in Rue Saint-Maur-Popincourt, Paris. It during the June Days uprising taken on 25th June 1848.

An engraving of this photograph was published in the newspaper L’Illustration in July of 1848. This photograph which documents the June Uprising in Paris marks the beginning of photojournalism.

“Barricades on rue Saint-Maur (1848), the first photo used to illustrate a newspaper story”
Image courtesy – Thibault (L’Histoire par image)

1855 – The First Photojournalism Series (The Crimean War)

During the Crimean War in 1855, the British Government hired the photographer Roger Fenton not to simply document the war, but to portray it in a positive and romantic way. That’s why it can be said that the first complete series in the history of photojournalism was a means for publicity. With the positive photographs of Roger Fenton, the government wanted to create a positive image of the Crimean War.

Roger Fenton was also one of the first war photographers in the history of photojournalism. He documented the effects of the war on troops, panoramas of the landscapes where the battles took place, and portraits of commanders, which laid the fundamentals for modern photojournalism.

“Valley of the Shadow of Death with cannonballs on the road” Image courtesy – Roger Fenton

1861–1865 – The American Civil War

The American Civil War was the most photographed historic event of the 19th century. The general public witnessed the reality of warfare for the first time.

Archives from Northern and Southern photographers gave a realistic insight into the American Civil War. Newspapers had no option but to show that war is not a romantic fight, but suffering to every person.

Mathew Brady, often credited as the father of photojournalism. He rose to prominence during the American Civil War as he was not only a photographer himself, but had also acquired negatives of other photojournalists as well.

“Confederate dead soldiers overrun at Marye’s Heights” Image courtesy Mathew Brady

2. Expansion

The printing of photographs in newspapers remained an isolated event in this period. Photos were used to enhance the text rather than to act as a medium of information in its own right.

1877 – Street Life In London

In the beginning stages of Photojournalism, newspapers printed every kind of tragedy (photographed). That could be seen as a photojournalistic picture. But in the 1870s, the photojournalists started tackling other subjects as well and focused on the social aspects of society.

John Thomson was such a Scottish photographer who wanted to show the street conditions that the people of London were living in. His aim was to show the present condition of the London street folk and to supply a series of faithful pictures of the people themselves.

In collaboration with the radical journalist Adolphe Smith, Thomson created the first Social Documentary Project. He laid the foundation of journalism. He began publishing his monthly magazine, Street Life in London, from 1876 to 1877. The photographs and text documented the lives of the street people of London. They established social documentary photography as a form of photojournalism.

“The crawlers, a photograph from John Thomson’s Street Life in London photo-documentary”
Image courtesy
John Thomson

1890 – How The Other Half Lives

Photography became more dynamic and versatile with the introduction of flash powder invented in 1887. It enabled journalists such as Jacob Riis to photograph informal subjects indoors, which led to his landmark work “How the Other Half Lives”.

“How The Other Half Lives” displays the living conditions of slums and immigrants in New York. With new waves of immigrants arriving after the end of the civil war and the sudden rise in population, the housing condition deteriorated at a fast pace since the 1870s.

Jacob Riis was an immigrant too, coming from Denmark, he found himself in the slums of New York’s Lower East Side. Many social reforms were established after he published his book to improve the housing situation in New York. The power of photojournalism can be understood by this most powerful social documentary ever created which had a direct impact on the living conditions of the citizens in New York.

“Lodgers in a Bayard Street Tenement” Image courtesy Jacob Riis

1925 – Leica And Modern Photojournalism

Modern photojournalism, as we know to this day, was started in 1925, as the first compact camera was built. Leica, a German brand was the first manufacturer to produce a 35mm film compact camera with a flashbulb system.

Leica’s camera allowed the photographer to be more flexible and be more at the core of the action. Before that, photographers had to use bulky cameras that were relatively slow. Leica gave them a lot more freedom and opened up the modern approach to photojournalism.

“Leica I 35mm camera”  Image courtesy Wikipedia

3. Golden Age

A lot of photographers and photojournalists started their careers in the 1930s. Those include famous photographers such as Robert Capa, Henri-Cartier Bresson, Alfred Eisenstaedt, Margaret Bourke-White, and W. Eugene-Smith.

1930 – Golden Age Of Photojournalism

The “Golden Age of Photojournalism” is often considered to be roughly the 1930s through the 1950s. It was made possible only by the development of the compact commercial 35mm Leica camera in 1925. And the first flashbulbs, which allowed the journalist true flexibility in taking pictures.

THE 1930s – GREAT DEPRESSION

The Great Depression was a severe worldwide economic depression that took place mostly during the 1930s. And it began in the United States.

Dorothea Lange and Walker Evans were sent out to document the living conditions of rural America by the Farm Security Administration. During the Great Depression, Dorothea Lange captured one of the most historic and iconic photographs of the 20th century – “Migrant Mother”, in which Dorothea Lange produced the seminal image of the Great Depression in California.

“A Mother with several of her children in a photograph known as Migrant Mother”
Image courtesy Dorothea Lange

1936 – Spanish Civil War

The Spanish Civil War was a civil war in Spain fought from 1936 to 1939.

Robert Capa, a Hungarian-American war photographer and photojournalist covered the Spanish Civil War with his partner Gerda Taro. Magazines were more interested to adorn their magazine with photographs of famous photographer Robert Capa. Instead of primarily focusing on his work.

During his coverage of the Spanish Civil War, Robert Capa captured one of the most popular photographs of all time. It was “The Falling Soldier” on September 5th, 1936.

“The Falling Soldier -Loyalist Militiaman at the Moment of Death” Image courtesy Robert Capa

1939 – Second World War

World War II also known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945.

Robert Capa was one of the most notable photographers during World war II whose photographs not only depict the war, but have inspired countless movies, songs, and video games.

Robert Capa also shot another notable photograph, shortly before the war officially ended in Leipzig, a US-Soldier been shot in urban warfare by a sniper.

“The Picture of the Last Man to Die, an American soldier killed by a German sniper”
Image courtesy
Robert Capa

American journalist Julien Bryan photographed and filmed the beginning of the Second World War in September 1939 in Poland.

Tony Vaccaro is also recognized as one of the pre-eminent photographers of World War II. His images taken with the modest Argus C3 captured horrific moments in a war that were similar to Capa’s Spanish soldier being shot.

“Raising Flag at the Battle of Iwo Jima” Image courtesy Joe Rosenthal

1947 – Magnum Photos

In 1947, the most influential international photojournalism agency of the 20th-century ‘Magnum Photos’ was founded. Magnum is an international photographic cooperative community of thought and curiosity about what is going on in the world. The photographers Robert Capa, David Seymour, Henri Cartier-Bresson, George Rodger, and William Vandivert founded Magnum in Paris.

Since then, Magnum has built one of the most prominent collections of photojournalistic work of the past century and has a huge influence on a lot of famous photographs that are still present today.

With their help, photojournalism rose from small independent photographers, who struggled and had to pursue other jobs or work, to a professional environment, where photographers could focus on their work.

The 1950s – 1970s

Photojournalism was still one of the most influential sources. Especially when it came to the documentation of social struggle and crisis zones.

Television had a huge impact on the development of photography. But at the beginning of the 1970s, newspaper magazines had a greater reach than television.

Photographers like Garry Winogrand, Diane Arbus, or Lee Friedlander, described a new form of photojournalism. It focuses on single images, mostly in the city.

Photojournalism as a genre was still at its height in the 1950s, but through the next decades, new challenges arose, and by the end of the 1970s, other media outlets became more profitable and popular.

“Children’s playing in streets of Canada” Image courtesy Vivian Maier

The Golden Age of Photojournalism finally ended in the 1970s when many photo-magazines ceased their publication stating they could not compete with other media for advertising revenue to support their large circulations and high costs. Newspaper magazines that focused on the traditional style of photojournalism began to struggle and their sales began to decline.

However, since the late 1970s, photojournalism has increasingly been accorded a place in art galleries alongside fine art photography.

10 Tips To Start A Career In Photojournalism

While starting a career in Photojournalism, the first thing you need to do is to improve your skills by going to local events, like sports games, protests, or community fairs for practicing. You should also study papers and magazines, both in print and online, to see a trend in what kind of work is getting published.

If you think you have something worth publishing, you can approach a publication too. After that, it’s all about continuing to pitch. The more you pitch, the more chances you have of getting paid work. And start building a network of contacts with fellow photojournalists will help too. 

You may also choose to work as a freelancer if this suits you better. Apart from this here are ten tips that you should follow if you are considering this as a career path:

  • PLANNING
  • PROTECTING YOURSELF
  • SUBJECT
  • FOCUS
  • EXPOSURE
  • BE CANDID
  • DEVELOP A PERSONAL STYLE
  • STORY IS THE KEY
  • ACCEPT REJECTION
  • RIGHTS

Planning

The most important attribute to bring to your work as a photojournalist is planning. Photojournalism is rarely about capturing unexpected events, but somewhat about capturing unexpected moments at planned events.

Even if you’re not working for a publication, you must plan ahead for what you’re going to need for planned assignments. Is there an event happening in the town that you believe has the potential for journalistic relevance? Keep an eye on what’s happening, and think about who is likely to provide you with the most interesting visual opportunities.

Protecting Yourself

Photojournalism jobs can be dangerous. You might be working in a war zone, or at a protest, or even in a crowded place where anything can happen. You need to protect yourself as much as possible. 

Make sure to have insurance for both yourself and all of your equipment, and consider using Automatic cloud uploads so that your work is backed up at all times. Here are some ways using which will help you to upload your work elsewhere so you won’t lose it:-

Keep your mind on safety and try not to go beyond your limits that would cost your life or cause serious injury.

Subject

Choosing what we want to focus on is an important aspect of photojournalism. Sometimes you’ll come to an event to capture something specific in a planned way, but sometimes you’ll be roaming around to see what’s newsworthy. 

Ideally, you should always come to any photojournalistic opportunity with an idea in mind of what you want to capture. Consider the faces and reactions of the people in the audience, and the environment you’re in. You may figure out that the context (conveying the right emotions of a photograph) provides even more opportunities for photojournalistic interpretation.

Focus

Focus is used to draw attention to the elements that are the most relevant to the image. If the subject is out of focus, viewers won’t be able to see it properly.

Keep the focus manually set on the subject that you intend to be the center of attention. You will also need planning and skill to focus carefully on your subject. And if you’re too close to your subject, using a narrow depth of field can cast the background out of focus, allowing the subject to pop.

Exposure

The main step to effective photojournalism is getting your exposure right. Photojournalism is not just about artistic expression, it’s also about making sure that people can see what’s happening. It’s intriguing to look at the artistic possibilities of every scene. Viewers expect reality from photojournalism and shooting in RAW mode makes it easier.

Set your camera carefully for the exposure, as a photographer you need to take control, and preset your camera with the manual settings. Avoid using automatic exposure because it can obscure important details. Make sure your photograph is not too dark or too bright as it will repel the viewer. And remember to stabilize your camera in low light and use ISO 100 in bright light.

Be Candid

Photojournalism is about reporting real stories. And that can be done when the photojournalists simply capture what is happening in front of them.

So you should aim to get pictures candidly and if needed a posed portrait for a series, you should state that the photograph is not candid.

Develop An Unique Style

Develop your own personal style if you want to get one step ahead in the Photojournalism path. It will help you to stand out from the crowd and get noticed. Make your pitch the one the editor chooses and then do your assignments related to that. This will make you more money too!

Story Is The Key

Photojournalism is all about the stories and characters that a photojournalist depicts. A great photograph has no value if the story is not good. An exceptional story shows that the photographer was able to get really deep and intimate with the person they were photographing.

Photojournalists don’t go to Syria or Iraq, just on speculation that there might be cool pictures to take but they want a specific story or project.

Accept Rejection

Don’t be upset when any publication rejects your work. You will need to pitch images in the hundreds if you want to get published one in any newspaper or magazine publication. Don’t send a single pitch and wait for it to come back instead move onto the next one and keep going. 

Rejections can happen for many reasons other than the quality of your work, the editor might have had another submission already, or they might not be covering the story. But don’t hesitate to try again and again.

Rights

It’s important to know the rights of the people you’re photographing. While most celebrities and politicians have essentially given up their rights to privacy but as far as photojournalism is concerned, you need to be cautious about taking photographs of ordinary citizens.

Don’t take photojournalism casually. You also have to be careful where you’re taking these photographs. You may change the lives of people who are represented in your photographs.

It’s equally important too to reserve your rights in your photographs.

Post-Processing In Photojournalism

Well, we don’t want to go deep on post-processing in photojournalism. The definition of photojournalism itself suggests that photos should not be manipulated since the pictures are meant to show real scenes and the story behind it, any manipulation does break this goal. 

Photo manipulation should be strictly avoided in photojournalism. Although they are all edited in some way or another. Sometimes it is just a different crop or there are a little dodge and burning. But, those are very basic editing techniques and don’t really change the content of the image, but rather the presentation.

Therefore keep the post-processing minimal and rather try to get the image perfectly in-camera.

“A Turkish woman after knowing the death of her husband, killed by Greek militia” Image Courtesy Don McCullin

Ethics In Photojournalism

Photojournalism works within the same ethical approaches to objectivity that are applied by other journalists as well such as honesty, responsibility, accuracy, and truth. The photojournalists are ethically bound not to change the story and follow the same ethics as everyone else.

While working in an emergency area photojournalists require to have a strong mindset to not be let down by their own emotions and to be aware of the ethical conflicts they are facing. Their photographs translate emotions into actions and emotions are the strongest means of addressing people.

Photojournalists aren’t responsible for the suffering of the people they have photographed. Photojournalists have risked their lives throughout the history of photojournalism to spread the message and raise awareness that actually can have a bigger impact on society. Sometimes not publishing those images of human suffering wouldn’t mean that the world is suddenly a better place.

Oftentimes, photojournalists are accused of exploiting the suffering of others, to benefit themselves, rather than helping them directly but it is one of the most powerful mediums to raise awareness and indirectly help the people in need.

Essence of Photojournalism

Photographing the people that are suffering might not be the most ethical thing, but it is the most effective way to bring attention to their terrible situation. It does seem a bit disturbing, but without the impact these pictures are enforcing, the rest of the world would never hear their stories. Without being aware of the suffering, there may not be anyone to help them.

Photojournalism had its fair share of “magic”. One of them is of the most known photographer, Steve McCurry, who in 2016 was accused of manipulating his images by removing individuals and other elements but it was a positive and amazing way that he did it.

According to PetaPixel, the photographer Paolo Viglione noticed that part of a signpost had been cloned onto a man’s foot in a photograph of Cuban street taken by Steve McCurry. On asking about the same, Mr. McCurry said that it was a change that he would have never authorized, and the lab technician who made the mistake does not work with him anymore.

“The Cuban street- the bottom half of a man’s leg fades into the signpost” Image courtesy Business Insider

There are instances too where the power of photojournalism is shown like in the legacy of the image “Afghan Girl”, taken by Steve McCurry, the “Afghan Children’s Fund” was made and raised more than 1 Million US-Dollar till now.

“An Original Image” Image courtesy Photo Journalisme

“A Manipulated Image of above Image” Image courtesy Photo Journalisme

Modern Photojournalism

The introduction of the 35 mm Leica camera in 1925 made it possible for photographers to take multiple shots of events as they were unfolding. And in the 1960s, motor drives, electronic flash, and other camera enhancements have made photographing easier.

By the end of the 1970s, it became very clear that photojournalism wouldn’t survive in terms of reach and profit when compared to other media outlets. Information now is more readily available through other sources than that of photojournalism. Since then photojournalism has changed a lot. Modern photojournalism covers every aspect of modern society. Now, equipped with a digital camera, a mobile phone, and a laptop, a photojournalist can send a high-quality image in minutes, even seconds after an event occurs.

Modern photojournalism also includes phone journalism which is a new and even controversial means of photojournalism. Phone photography is gaining popularity as a phone is easy to carry and always accessible in a pocket. Once the pictures are uploaded to social media, photographers can quickly expose their work to a large audience and receive real-time feedback from them.

New-Age Photojournalism

In recent years, social media is playing a big part in revealing world events to a vast audience. Whenever any major event happens in the world, there are usually people with camera phones ready to capture photos on the spot and post them on various social networks. After seeing the advantages of the combination of social media and Smartphone Photography, some well-known newspapers, magazines, and professional photojournalists decided to employ Phone journalism as a new approach.

When the London Bombings happened on 7th July 2005, for the first time, both the New York Times and the Washington Post printed photos on their front pages taken with camera phones. In another instance, when Hurricane Sandy hit the East Coast, causing great damage and casualty, Time sent out five photographers with iPhones to document the devastation. Photographers dived deep into the site and captured pictures of the storm and human suffering. And one of the shots made the cover of Time’s November 12 issue. Then in 2013, the Chicago Sun-Times got rid of its entire staff of 28 photographers, and employed freelance photographers to fill the gap.

Staff photojournalism

Staff photojournalism jobs continue to decline in the 2010s and many news media outlets now rely on freelancers for the majority of their needs. For example, in 2016, the New York Times employed 52 photo editors and relied on freelancers to provide 50 percent or more of its visuals. The Wall Street Journal employed 24 photo editors and relied on freelancers for 66 percent of its featured imagery and 33 percent of its news imagery. The Washington Post employed 19 photo editors and relied on freelancers for 80 percent of its international news imagery.

Left to right: “Huge wave on NY beach during Hurricane Sandy, Shot on iPhone”- Image courtesy Benjamin Lowy (Time), “ A beachfront home lies in tatters following the destructive path of Hurricane Sandy, shot on iPhone”-. Image courtesy Benjamin Lowy / Wyatt Gallery (Time)

“Captured on phone- Passengers evacuated an Underground train in a tunnel during London Bombings”

Image courtesy- Alexander Chadwick (Associated Press)

Key Photojournalists And Their Work

Let’s take a glimpse of some of the most famous photojournalists and the work that has grabbed them many titles-

Robert Capa

Robert Capa was a Hungarian-American war photographer and photojournalist who is best known for his war coverage. The Capa was keen to get up close and personal with the action, which ultimately cost him his life when he stepped on a land mine near the road. He was a co-founder of Magnum Photos in Paris and some of his shots remain the most famous in the world.

“A member of the American Medical Corps treats a German prisoner of war” Image courtesy Robert Capa

Matthew Brady

Matthew was an American photographer, best known for his scenes of the Civil War. Also known as the father of photojournalism, Brady photographed the Civil War for Harper’s Weekly. He was always quick to cover soldiers in camps and the aftermath of battles and his images were so early that they could only be printed as engravings in the magazine at first.

“Dead Soldier in American Civil War” Image courtesy Matthew Brady

Dorothea Lange

Dorothea was an American documentary photographer and photojournalist, best known for her Depression-era work for the Farm Security Administration (FSA). Her portrait of a migrant mother is said to be one of the most iconic photographs of all time. Lange’s photographs humanized the consequences of the Great Depression. She took many shots while documenting American migrants and the poor, which was seen as a work of social awareness at that time.

“Migrant mother, photographed during Great Depression of the 1930s” Image courtesy Dorothea Lange

Henri Cartier-Bresson

Henri was a French humanist photographer and considered as a master of candid photography. His influence is felt in almost all spheres of photography, Cartier- Bresson was also considered one of the fathers of photojournalism.  He was one of the founding members of Magnum Photos in 1947.

“A group of children plays amongst rubble” Image courtesy Henri Cartier Bresson

Steve Mccurry

Steve is an American photographer, freelancer, and photojournalist. His photo “Afghan Girl”, of a girl with piercing green eyes, has appeared on the cover of National Geographic. McCurry is the recipient of numerous awards, including Magazine Photographer of the Year.

“Afghan Girl” Image courtesy Steve McCurry

James Nachtwey

James Nachtwey is an American photojournalist and war photographer. In 2003, Nachtwey was injured in a grenade attack on his convoy while working in Baghdad, from which he recovered later.

He was a founding member of VII Photo Agency. In 2001, the documentary War Photographer was released, which focused on Nachtwey and his work.

“Afghanistan, 1986 – Mujahedin praying while on an operation against the Soviet army” Image courtesy James Nachtwey

Daniel Berehulak

Daniel Berehulak is an Australian photographer and photojournalist based in Mexico City, Mexico. He had visited more than 60 countries and covered history-shaping events, including the Iraq and Afghan wars, the trial of Saddam Hussein, child labor in India, and the return of Benazir Bhutto to Pakistan. He has also documented the aftermath of disasters that include the Japan tsunami and the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. In 2015, Daniel was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Feature Photography for his coverage of the Ebola epidemic in West Africa.

“James Dorbor, 8, suspected of being infected with Ebola, is carried by medical staff to an Ebola treatment center in Monrovia” Image courtesy Daniel Berehulak

Adnan Abidi

Adnan is an Indian Photojournalist and a Reuters staff photographer based in New Delhi. His interest in photography was aroused when he was just 11 and read a picture postcard book by the veteran Indian photographer S. Paul. He had covered many events in India and even won Pulitzer Prize two times, recently in 2018 in Feature photography for showing the conditions of Rohingya Refugees.

“Mohammed Shoaib, 7, who was shot in his chest before crossing the border from Myanmar in August, is held by his father outside a medical center near Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh”- Image courtesy Adnan Abidi (Reuters)

Saumya Khandelwal

Saumya Khandelwal is an independent photojournalist based in Delhi who mostly focuses her work on gender and environmental issues. Khandelwal has built a diverse body of work in photojournalism and documentary genres of photography over the past six years.

She has contributed to many national and international newspapers and magazines. Khandelwal won the National Foundation for India award in 2017 and was a Getty Images Instagram Grantee 2017 for her work “Child Brides of Shravasti.”

“The 14-year-old bride, Muskaan being draped in a red cloth as she waits for the groom to arrive for the wedding rituals in the courtyard of her house” Image courtesy Saumya Khandelwal

Pablo Bartholomew

Pablo Bartholomew is an Indian photojournalist and an independent photographer based in New Delhi, India. He is noted for his photography. He is an educator and he runs photography workshops. Pablo is the manager of MediaWeb.

His covering in photojournalism includes the catastrophic Bhopal Gas Tragedy, the funeral of Indira Gandhi, the rise of the Khalistani movement, the funeral of Mother Teresa, the cyclones in Bangladesh, the demolition of the Babri Masjid and many other news stories.

In 1975 he won the World Press Photo award for his series on morphine addicts in India, and in 1984 he won the World Press Photo of the Year for the iconic shot of a half-buried little girl child victim of the Bhopal Gas Tragedy. Recently in 2013, he was awarded the Padma Shri by the Government of India.

“A Half-buried child victim of the Bhopal Gas Tragedy” Image courtesy Pablo Bartholomew

Tania Chatterjee 

Tania is an eminent photo artist from Kolkata- the city of joy, India. She focuses her work on photography subjects like people, culture, travel, and documentation.

Currently, she is the President of a photography club Fotorbit India and Co-Founder of the photography organization named Fotorbit. She has won about 200 awards in different national and international photography salons and her photographs have been published by several national and international agencies. Recently she has won West Bengal Government Information and Cultural Department’s State Level Photography award (2016-17).

“The followers of RAMNAMI sect tattooed their entire body with the name of Lord RAM as an act of devotion and a message to higher-caste Hindus that God is omnipresent” Image courtesy, Tania Chatterjee

Anushree Fadnavis

Anushree is a freelance photojournalist based in Mumbai, India. Having a diploma In photojournalism she believes every picture has a story and the more you observe a picture, the more it tells you.

She brings about an emotional quality to her work and she portrays everyday scenes in a certain warmth and affectionate light. Currently, she is working with Reuters. Recently, in 2020 she had won the Pulitzer Prize in the Breaking News Photography category in which she covered the Hong Kong protests.

“Passengers push their luggage past bricks and barriers after anti-government protesters blocked the roads leading to Hong Kong International Airport, in Hong Kong” Image courtesy Anushree Fadnavis (Reuters)

Damir Sagolj

Damir Sagolj is a photojournalist and Reuters chief photographer based in Beijing, China. Šagolj’s photographs have been published by the world’s leading magazines and newspapers. He has covered many international assignments including the 1990s historical events in Balkan, 9/11 in New York City, Japan’s tsunami, Pakistan and Thailand floods, the hunger crisis in North Korea, and many others.

He is the recipient of several international awards for photojournalism including World Press Photo, Pictures of the Year International, and his coverage of the coalition troop’s invasion of Iraq was among other awards, nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. 

“Betel leaves cover the face of 11-month-old Rohingya refugee after he died battling high fever and severe cough at the Balukhali refugee camp” Image courtesy Damir Sagolj (Reuters)

CONCLUSION

Photojournalism wasn’t made for profits, but for education and awareness and is still the more reliable source of news through photographs.

Photojournalism is a fast-paced career and often involves pushing one’s body to the limits. It comes with a lot of responsibilities as it can have a real influence on politics and the public view.

Nonetheless, Photojournalism is still alive today. You are on the way to good photojournalism if your shot is in focus and well exposed. Show the story with people, emotion, and context.

If you came here wondering what is photojournalism, you now have your comprehensive answer. As to whether it is the right career path for you, only you can decide that.

If you think you have some photo worth publishing send it to us, Chiiz will be happy featuring you:) Learn about various genres of photography under Photojournalism through our live online workshops on our Events Website. Go to our Blog for reading various tips and tricks about photography. You can also subscribe to our digital magazine through Magzter or Issuu to delve into more organized and well-furnished photography content. Proceed to our Contests content, to participate in some amazing photography contests there, and win astounding prizes.

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About the Author


Sourabh Tyagi
is an Engineering student and a content writer who loves to write about and on photography. He is a writer by day and a reader by night. His main focus is to write informative articles that stand on SEO needs. Recently he has decided to follow his passion while still following his career path.

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