A Legend Of A Friend To Many, An Inspiration To Many More and A Legendary Photojournalist To The World
It was with exceptional sadness that I found that earlier today, Tom Stoddart had passed away. Absolutely devastating news.
One of the most amazing people I had the absolute honour and pleasure to meet and count as a colleague and a friend.
We first met when I gatecrashed the National Geographic magazine’s party at Visa Pour L’Image, some time in the 1990s. Found Tom at the bar when I went to get drinks. With our beers in hand, we just started chatting like best friends, for probably over an hour! Kindness, wisdom, patience, all for the 20 something year old kid he’s just been practically accosted by! I was a huge fan of his exceptional work and from that evening onwards, became a huge fan of the thoughtful gentleman behind the camera.
I’m heartbroken. The world of journalism has lost a true great and all of us who were fortunate to know Tom, have lost a true and inspiring friend. Every conversation with Tom was always interesting and usually, had a lesson in life too, garnered from his experiences photographing some of the worst in humanity, whilst always finding how the best in humanity can shine through in those dire moments and places.
When I got in touch with Tom last year, to say we were putting together a fundraising print sale for Médecins Sans Frontières’ Covid-19 fund, he didn’t hesitate to offer one of his amazing photographs. More than any one of the 42 photographers involved, he would constantly check in to see how things were going leading up to the sale and if he could help in any way.
The first time I had heard of MSF (Médecins Sans Frontières), it was through Tom’s extraordinary work, documenting the famine and humanitarian crisis in Sudan in 1998. He had based himself at an MSF aid station, but had taken all the food and water he needed for his stay, as he refused to use up any resources which were there for the local population and the medical team who had gone to their aid. On his return, The Guardian newspaper published a selection of the images in August 1998, with one displayed prominently on the front page. At Tom’s request, the text included a phone for readers to donate to MSF. As a direct result of people seeing these images, more than £100,000 was raised for the charity. If memory recalls, Tom insisted the same conditions on other major publications and much more was actually raised. In fact the print that Tom donated to our print auction, was from this trip. A wonderful photography showing a rare moment of joy between siblings at Ajiep, in Bahr El Ghazal Province , south Sudan.
Through your exceptional work, ethos, compassion, empathy and depth, much admired and a true inspiration to us all.
We have all lost a legendary friend and a legendary photojournalist.
Rest dear Tom.
This short film interview with Tom is an absolute must watch.
Three Honourable Mentions at the 16th Annual Black & White Spider Awards
Very happy to share that several of my monochrome images have had awards success at the BW Spider Awards. During the online Gala Ceremony, attended by by over 11,000, I was thrilled to receive three honourable mentions and also discover that five other images had also been nominated.
Shot on a Lumix S1 and a Sigma 85mm f1.4 DG DN Art lens.
Shot on a Lumix S1R and Sigma 85mm f1.4 DG DN Art lens.
Shot on a Lumix S1 and S Pro 70-200mm f2.8.
Shot on a Lumix LX100M2.
Shot on a Lumix G9 and Leica DG 50-200mm.
Shot on a Leica SL2 and Sigma 85mm f1.4 DG DN Art.
Shot on a Sigma fp and Leica 35mm APO Summicron SL.
Shot on a Sigma fp and Leica 35mm APO Summicron SL.
All the images were shot in raw and processed on an Apple Mac Pro (2013 model) in Adobe’s Lightroom. The monochrome work was then finished in Exposure Software’s X6. To maintain absolute and precise control during processing, calibrated Eizo CG monitors were used.
The new season has a fresh, new approach to podcasting and I hope you can listen throughout. If you’d like to jump straight to my segment, skip forward to 00:54:51 minutes. I’m discussing my passion for photography, street photography, wedding photography, shooting video and a new hobby I started during lockdown which has led to an entirely new genre of photography for me! I would urge you to listen to the entire episode though as it’s very enjoyable and informative.
Part 2 will be published the following week and I will make sure to post about it. The entire episode is interesting with a fresh, new approach to podcasting and I hope you can listen throughout. If you’d like to jump straight to my segment, skip forward to 0:45 minutes. I’m discussing our new group exhibition called Unlocked as well as various aspects of being a photojournalist, what photography is for me, social media and also the pandemic. I would urge you to listen to the entire episode though as it’s enjoyable and informative.
With huge thanks to all who contributed, especially our main sponsors, Gogar Services and Fujifilm UK.
“UNLOCKED” – a public art project by the Ealing satellite group of London Independent Photography, with the generous support of Ealing Police Station, to stimulate reflection and discussion of the impact of the pandemic on our daily lives and ways forward. This unprecedented project will be on five storeys, on the front of the Police station, providing a canvas, the likes of which have probably never been seen in London before.
We need to ask a favour! This is a huge exhibition project planned for September, as part of BEAT. It’s a project that has taken over a year of planning and discussion.
Alongside generous support by FujiFilm UK, we’ve applied for an arts grant to help with the funding. As part of that application for the grant, there is a crowdfunding aspect. The grant committee will monitor how many backers we have and from that, gauge interest in the outdoor exhibition and decide to back this unique project or not. We would hugely appreciate your support in making out 5-storey public art project become a reality.
Please back our project and make your pledge, regardless of how large or small: https://www.spacehive.com/ealingunlocked Every individual pledge will bring us closer to getting the grant and bringing this to life.
Kindly share the link or this post far and wide. Thank you.
Alongside the exhibition, we are also planning a talk and workshops given by photographers in the group, about this project, in conjunction with OPEN Ealing.