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Thread: Photojournalism in Singapore

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    Default Photojournalism in Singapore

    Hi, I'm keen to check out the photography that the Singapore Press does and had a squiz at The Straits Times homepage. There was a link for "News in Pictures" but it mainly had agency work. Is there a link on the website (or anywhere else) to look at galleries of work that the local paper has produced?

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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    what type of photographs are you looking at? i don't recall SPH putting up all their photographs online for viewing, other than photographs for news
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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    for example the age has a gallery with photos taken by local photographers for that day/event/etc
    http://www.theage.com.au/national/photography/

    and so does the herald sun
    http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/photo-gallery

    i was exploring the straits times website but could not find any photographer's gallery (local). i mean there's the odd photograph here and there with certain stories but do they not have such a section for their photographers?

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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    As far as I know, there is no such section for SPH.
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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    At a risk of sounding like a broken record I think this is an example of how the photographic art isn't a big thing in Singapore.

    Over here, the papers that are widely regarded to have good photographic reputation (say, the Guardian and the Independent), do a similar thing where photographers like Dan Chung, Tom Jenkins and David Ashdown have their own online column.

    I'm not even sure the SPH still employs full time photographers, with journalists having to contribute pictorally.

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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    do the journalists take their own photographs as well? that's pretty startling if true. for small dailies or weekly papers i guesss it is pretty common but i would be pretty surprised if a major broadsheet would do that as well.

    just wondering jed, which are the papers with a good reputation for photography where you are?

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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    I think AFP and Reuters have the best photos consistently. But then I wonder how many photojournalists works for them.
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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    more than 2 per event i reckon..

    there are Reuters/AFP photographers based in singapore
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    The Straits Times has their full time photographers.So does Zaobao,The New Paper,Today,etc.

    I think the MAJOR difference btwn those great papers ( NY Times,Guardian,LA Times,Independent,etc) and local dailies is the usage of photos. Whilst those afore mentioned papers treat photos with utmost respect,here newspaper like The Straits Times merely use them to 'fill up' the space. U can tell that most of the published photos are cropped. Alot badly in fact.

    A badly cropped photo is very obvious

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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    Quote Originally Posted by veuve View Post
    just wondering jed, which are the papers with a good reputation for photography where you are?
    Probably, mainly, the two that I've mentioned - the Guardian and the Independent, and their Sunday versions the Observer and the Independent on Sunday.

    The other broadsheets are reasonable (Times/Sunday Times, and Daily Telegraph/Sunday Telegraph), but the tabloids probably have other priorities.

    I always get particular satisfaction when I get a picture used in the Guardian (for a long while the agency I worked for did not supply the Independent). And as a photographer you also knew when you had a reasonable chance of getting a use in the Guardian - you know when you've got something different and there's every chance the Guardian will run it.

    With all the other papers I cannot honestly say I can predict what they will use, but with the pictures I've had in the Guardian down the years I can honestly say most of them are particular favourites, ones I "liked" on a photographic level.
    Last edited by Jed; 2nd November 2009 at 08:31 AM. Reason: Typos.

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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    Quote Originally Posted by goon View Post
    The Straits Times has their full time photographers.So does Zaobao,The New Paper,Today,etc.
    I know when I was last in Singapore and made some enquiries the representation made to me was that I should forget about it, and that the majority of photo needs were being served by journalists who were given photographic training and equipment.

    Not saying you're wrong, but that they are probably an endangered species!

    Quote Originally Posted by goon View Post
    Whilst those afore mentioned papers treat photos with utmost respect,here newspaper like The Straits Times merely use them to 'fill up' the space. U can tell that most of the published photos are cropped. Alot badly in fact.
    I've mentioned this before, but I feel that even in the local/regional newspapers over here (UK), the photographers at these publications usually take very great care in the work they produce. In 5min they can cook up a photographic portrait where it's clear some effort has been taken. Early in my career I spent a week with a local paper in Newcastle and it was very eye-opening and inspiring. The Scottish snappers seem to have a particular knack for features work and consistently do well in national press awards, but the same is probably true of other regional papers up and down the country.

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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    Quote Originally Posted by Jed View Post
    I know when I was last in Singapore and made some enquiries the representation made to me was that I should forget about it, and that the majority of photo needs were being served by journalists who were given photographic training and equipment.

    Not saying you're wrong, but that they are probably an endangered species!
    Actually, if my memory doesnt fail me, there're indeed photojournalists still around (and yes, they're a rare breed). Other than that, photographers from the respective photo desks tag along with the journalist on interviews.
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    According to a lengthy conversation with a local press photographer ( with SPH) while waiting at an event.Contrary to popular belief,only some jobs they do 'tag' along with the reporters,some they go on their own while some they offer their own photo stories.

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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    If u r a poly or watever student, i wld suggest u gather a few friends to form a group. Then write to SPH Corporate Relations to request for a conducted tour at a specific date. U must use yr school/poly/Uni letterhead. Inside the News Centre at Genting Lane, they have some of the better photos framed up along the corridors (a bit like a "hall of fame"). Once awhile, SPH will also have their own mini exhibitions. Ask their Corp Rel dept for info.

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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    Quote Originally Posted by Jed View Post
    Probably, mainly, the two that I've mentioned - the Guardian and the Independent, and their Sunday versions the Observer and the Independent on Sunday.

    The other broadsheets are reasonable (Times/Sunday Times, and Daily Telegraph/Sunday Telegraph), but the tabloids probably have other priorities.

    I always get particular satisfaction when I get a picture used in the Guardian (for a long while the agency I worked for did not supply the Independent). And as a photographer you also knew when you had a reasonable chance of getting a use in the Guardian - you know when you've got something different and there's every chance the Guardian will run it.

    With all the other papers I cannot honestly say I can predict what they will use, but with the pictures I've had in the Guardian down the years I can honestly say most of them are particular favourites, ones I "liked" on a photographic level.
    tabloids where i am are disappointing sometimes. they seem to have a preference for tight and bright. how many jobs per day would you do with they agency you are with? whats the industry like there for press photographers at the moment? there seem to be a few cuts for full-time press photographers where i am and going with freelancers at the moment. hope its just part of a cycle and things will pick up in time

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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    Quote Originally Posted by goon View Post
    According to a lengthy conversation with a local press photographer ( with SPH) while waiting at an event.Contrary to popular belief,only some jobs they do 'tag' along with the reporters,some they go on their own while some they offer their own photo stories.
    from my understanding many journalists these days do their interviews over the phone. not that it is a good thing but in terms of productivity, they are probably able to pump out more stories.

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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    Quote Originally Posted by astroboy View Post
    If u r a poly or watever student, i wld suggest u gather a few friends to form a group. Then write to SPH Corporate Relations to request for a conducted tour at a specific date. U must use yr school/poly/Uni letterhead. Inside the News Centre at Genting Lane, they have some of the better photos framed up along the corridors (a bit like a "hall of fame"). Once awhile, SPH will also have their own mini exhibitions. Ask their Corp Rel dept for info.
    Correction, News Centre is at Toa Payoh. Genting Lane office is under SPH Magazines
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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    Quote Originally Posted by veuve View Post
    how many jobs per day would you do with they agency you are with? whats the industry like there for press photographers at the moment? there seem to be a few cuts for full-time press photographers where i am and going with freelancers at the moment. hope its just part of a cycle and things will pick up in time
    I am a sports photographer so my number of shifts tends to be measured in number per week rather than number per day :P I do shoot news for a different agency but I am based in the far flung reaches of the UK so it's not often that national interest stories come my way. The regional papers have never had money to offer shifts and the situation hasn't gotten any better with the economic situation!

    The industry is a little turbulent. Newspapers have made cuts across the board, and certainly shifts are virtually impossible to come by unless you already had a working relationship with the company (newspaper or agency). We've had redundancies, both journalist and photographer, while freelancers are finding it difficult to sell images as newspapers tighten the purse strings - if they can make do with a "free" picture then they'll make do with a free picture.

    Not particularly rosy if I'm altogether honest.

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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    I would also add that a true photojournalist would look for their own stories, shoot them, record sound of those stories and have them published.

    The biggest thing now is no longer to have print editions put into news papers.

    The thing now is to have media presentations of your story uploaded onto websites. NY Times, LA Times, Washington Post, Magnum photographers are all doing that.

    If you want to know what the true photojournalists are doing, do a websearch on mediastorm and youŽll see amazing stories there including interviews and still images.

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    Default Re: Photojournalism in Singapore

    Quote Originally Posted by agape01 View Post
    I would also add that a true photojournalist would look for their own stories, shoot them, record sound of those stories and have them published.
    (Emphasis added)

    So, that suggests that I'm not a true photojournalist then?

    There are plenty of journalists (non-photographers) out there that do not necessarily undertake investigative work, or non-commissioned work. Does that make them any less of a journalist?

    A photojournalist as far as I'm aware is someone who practises journalism through the medium of pictures, without there being any requirement on them being involved in investigative work.

    Sure, investigative journalism (photographic or otherwise) is the glamourous wing of the profession, a bit like barristers are the glamour wing of the legal department. But a solicitor is still very much a true lawyer in the same way that I would hope that even though I get directed to most of my work by an office, I am still a photojournalist.

    To suggest that anyone who does not look for their own stories and have them published is not a "true" photojournalist is a bit of a slap in the face. I might get sent to cover X story, but it is my story to tell when I am there, using my insight and my photos.

    And with regards to the multimedia presentations that you are speaking of, then in theory that goes beyond photojournalism. It includes journalism, video (is videojournalism a term?), etc. If anything I could argue that "true" photojournalism remains true to its purests roots - ie utilising photos alone.

    I know your comment is not directed at me personally (or at least I don't think it was) but as I said, it's hard not to interpret it as a slap in the face for me and the vast majority of my colleagues.

    I guess there are certain types of photographers that would argue similarly that it's not "true" photography if it's not shot on a certain brand of camera equipment.


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