National Geographic Photo Contest

Always wonderful to get a nice message about one’s work, but when it comes from National Geographic magazine, it truly becomes special!

“Hi Edmond — Thanks for entering the 2019 National Geographic Travel Photo Contest! Your photo was selected as one of our editors’ favorite submissions”. 

It’s Their Future. Put It To The People March. Official figures put the numbers at the anti Brexit march at over one million. The demonstration, marched in central London calling for another EU referendum. The demo ends in Parliament Square. London, UK. March 23, 2019. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

To have a look at the work, please visit the People’s section in the Galleries, to see the images chosen by the editors for the photo contest.

The photograph was made on a Panasonic S1R and the S24-105mm lens. The raw image was converted to a DNG file using Adobe’s Raw Converter (as Lightroom hadn’t yet released support for the S Series, which is has done since). The Raw DNG file was then processed in Lightroom and finished in Alienskin’s Exposure X4, on an Apple Mac Pro using calibrated Eizo CG monitors.

Photojournalist Edmond terakopian on assignment with his Lumix S1, S1R and G9. Put It To The People March. Official figures put the numbers at the anti Brexit march at over one million. The demonstration, marched in central London calling for another EU referendum. The demo ends in Parliament Square. London, UK. March 23, 2019. Photo: Ian Burley

Don McCullin in conversation with Fergal Keane

Probably the most moving, revealing, honest, soul shaking and tear jerking talk I have ever been to, was last night’s event at Kings Place. Photojournalist Don McCullin opened his heart and shared his soul in a way I’ve only ever known from the very closest of friends. To say it captivated every ounce of my being would be putting it mildly.

Photojournalist Don McCullin in conversation with foreign correspondent Fergal Keane. Kings Place, 90 York Way, London, UK. 24 April 2019. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

Photojournalist Don McCullin shares a story from the Vietnam War, during his conversation with foreign correspondent Fergal Keane. Kings Place, 90 York Way, London, UK. 24 April 2019. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

Without doubt, Don McCullin is one of the very greatest photographers of our time. He was in conversation with foreign correspondent Fergal Keane OBE, as they discussed McCullin’s 60 year career, covering his extensive work in war zones across the world, his documenting of poverty throughout Britain, as well as his more recent, therapeutic landscape photography.

The evening though was made unforgettable by hearing, nay, feeling, the inner most thoughts and emotions of a journalist who has dedicated his life to showing the injustices suffered by many.

The Preoccupation With Gear

As the talk came to an end and I collected my emotions, it came as the biggest shock to hear the first question:

“What’s your favourite film stock?”…

Astonishing that the whole emotional and intellectually challenging rollercoaster ride of pure, uncensored heart felt emotions, dotted with the very best of the “stiff upper lip” humour as a temporary escape, a member of the audience’s only question was about the type of film used.

To think that the power of McCullin’s images have anything to do with the brand of film used was as astonishing as it was infuriating. McCullin of course answered patiently that it was Tri-X, but followed with his own question of “Let me ask you something; why did you come here tonight? What were you expecting?”. There was no cruelty in the question, just a genuine wonderment of why after his outpouring of emotion about the human condition, that the only thing thought worthwhile asking was about film. Of course there was no answer from the chap and the questions continued, thankfully about the actual work, not film, aperture, shutter speed or cameras.

Don McCullin’s words, on the wall in his retrospective at the Tate Britain.

Don McCullin’s words, on the wall in his retrospective at the Tate Britain.

During the talk, McCullin did share that sadly he felt that none of his pictures made a difference. Decades of wars continued, captured by his mastery of seeing and he moved onto wars which he didn’t cover. The futility in his voice was exceptionally moving. Thankfully, the final question of the night was as wonderful as it was powerful. A lady thanked him for his dedication and work. Saying that whilst when he was at school studying history, he didn’t have the advantage of seeing pictures by Don McCullin, she had the tremendous advantage of studying history and seeing the photographs by Don McCullin.

Some Thoughts

Anyone who knows me, knows that I take a huge interest in the equipment I use for my work, be that professional assignments and commissions, or personal work. However, this equipment is the tool which helps me create. Its part of the beginning process and not the be all and end all in my photography.

Photography has, what I think is a unique peculiarity about it. When some people look at an amazing photograph, they immediately jump to asking what camera and lens is used, or in the case of this chap from last night, what film was used. However, if the same person has a great meal in a restaurant, they would never ask the chef about the make of pans used, and the model number of the cooker used. When has anyone asked a great author about which pen, typewriter or word processor they used?

Its great to have nice gear. For me, when I started out as a photographer, I had an aperture priority only camera called the Nikon EM. It was great and I loved it. However, I outgrew it relatively quickly and I would miss photographs or not be able to craft them the way I had envisaged, because of it’s inadequacies. My second camera, a second hand, original Canon F1, had a terrible focusing screen and a stiff lens, which meant focusing became an issue when speed was of the essence. At that stage, as I began my career on my first local paper, the Ealing Gazette, I vowed that I would as much as possible, buy the best equipment I could, as I never wanted to miss a picture because my equipment wasn’t capable enough. I never wanted to blame my tools. I should take the blame, learn what I did wrong and improve.

Looking at photography, especially for those who enjoy this as the most wonderful hobby, or even those about to take the road to becoming a professional, I have one piece of advise; recognise the camera as a tool, for making wonderful imagery. Invest your money after having bought a decent camera and lens, at the beginning stages, into learning about photography. Books, exhibitions and articles written in proper, established photography magazines as well as magazines and newspapers which use great photography. Blogs and YouTube videos by self appointed gurus and influencers will do nothing for improving your photography. Search out workshops by real, proven photographers with real track records, not fake robot followed Instagram accounts by self appointed ambassadors. Photography becomes so much more joyous and interesting when one starts to invest time and money into the craft, rather than just the gear. The gear will always be there and once you know how to craft an image, then getting better gear and more lenses will elevate and not hinder your photography.

Mindfulness, intelligence and emotion, mixed with an aesthetic, a sense of timing and an understanding of the situation, makes the photograph. I’ve found that when a photographer genuinely starts to understand photography, then they truly appreciate the ability of their tools and this then elevate’s their imagery. It’s a long term thing and results in a life long love of photography. Those who just see the gear as being the important thing, will get lots of kit, get disillusioned quickly and leave photography. Play the long game is my advice.

Incidentally, if you haven’t yet seen his retrospective at Tate Britain, I can’t urge you strongly enough to catch it before it closes on the 6th of May 2019.

Travel Photographer Of The Year Exhibition

TPOTY 2019 At London Bridge City

Travel Photographer of the Year Exhibition, London Bridge City (by City Hall and Tower Bridge). London, UK. March 28, 2019. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

Absolutely thrilled to see the fabulous Travel Photographer Of The Year exhibition. So many stunning photographs in such a wonderful setting, just by the River Thames and City Hall, with a backdrop of Tower Bridge in London, UK. The free, open air exhibition is on until April 30th this year.

Best Single Image In A Portfolio; Special Mention. I shot the image in the Tate Modern, using my Lumix G9 with the Leica DG 50-200mm (giving a reach of 400mm). Travel Photographer of the Year Exhibition, London Bridge City (by City Hall and Tower Bridge). London, UK. March 28, 2019. Photo: Edmond Terakopian
Travel Photographer of the Year Exhibition, London Bridge City (by City Hall and Tower Bridge). London, UK. March 28, 2019. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

It’s great to have one of my images in the show. Shot on my Panasonic Lumix G9 with the wonderful Leica DG 50-200mm. If you like the image, I would appreciate if you could vote for it please 🙂 To vote, please use this link and choose image number 53. Thank you 🙂

Travel Photographer of the Year Exhibition, London Bridge City (by City Hall and Tower Bridge). London, UK. March 28, 2019. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

First Look At Sigma L-Mount Lenses

Art line prime lens lineup for full-frame cameras with L-Mount

Pre-production Sigma Art line prime lens lineup for full-frame cameras in L-Mount. L-R: Sigma Mount Converter MC-21 (allows Canon EF mount lenses to be used with L-Mount cameras), SIGMA 24mm F1.4 DG HSM Art, SIGMA 85mm F1.4 DG HSM Art and SIGMA 50mm F1.4 DG HSM Art lenses, with a Panasonic Lumix S1R full frame mirrorless camera (the lenses and adapter are prototype mockups and final production may vary). March 17, 2019. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

A joy to get a sneak peek at three of the newly announced Sigma L-Mount Art lenses and also the hotly awaited mount adapter. The samples were in large non working prototypes, but they gave a really good idea of weight, finish and handling.

My already huge fondness of the Lumix S1 and S1R took another leap upwards after initially hearing of the launch lineup, but having seen the quality of these lenses, I’m confident the future of the L Mount, with the L Mount Alliance (Leica, Lumix and Sigma), is going to be very bright indeed (as well as being pin sharp, with great tonal rendition!).

Pre-production Sigma Art line prime lens lineup for full-frame cameras in L-Mount. L-R: SIGMA 24mm F1.4 DG HSM Art, SIGMA 85mm F1.4 DG HSM Art and SIGMA 50mm F1.4 DG HSM Art lenses, with a Panasonic Lumix S1R full frame mirrorless camera (the lenses and adapter are prototype mockups and final production may vary). March 17, 2019. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

The Photography Show 2019

UK’s Top Photography Show, NEC, Birmingham

Very much looking forward to the Photography Show this year, which is on from March 16th to the 19th at the NEC in Birmingham.

Panasonic Lumix

Edmond Terakopian with the Lumix S1R. Barcelona, Spain. January 29, 2019. Photo: Yoshie Nishikawa | http://www.studionishikawa.com

I’m thrilled to be celebrating my 30th year as a photographer at the show, by sharing some images and thoughts, at my talk about my career, generously, supported by Lumix.

“30 years of photography; photojournalism and beyond”, Behind The Lens Theatre, 19 Mar 2019, 13:00-13:40. Edmond Terakopian shares images and stories from his 30-year career as a photographer, covering photojournalism, commercial photography and his passion for observing daily life with his street photography.

Edmond Terakopian shooting in a chocolate factory using a Lumix S1R with S Series 50mm f1.4 lens. Barcelona, Spain. January 29, 2019. Photo: Yoshie Nishikawa

I’m also looking forward to sharing some photographs and thoughts on the Panasonic Lumix G9, which has helped me win several awards over the year, and show my work shot on the newly launched, full-frame, phenomenal S1 and S1R. I’ve had the pleasure to work with the S Series since the beginning of the year, so was one of the first wave of professional photographers from around the world to receive a prototype S1 to work with. To say I’ve been left very impressed would be an understatement!

I’ll be sharing my thoughts on the fabulous Lumix G9, GX9 and range of superb Leica DG lenses. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

The talks are on:

  • Sunday the 17th of March at 15:30. “Three Months With The Lumix S1 and S1R”
  • Monday the 18th of March at 10:30. “Awards and Beyond with the Lumix G9”

They will take place on the Panasonic Lumix stand, D41. I’m happy to say that a few of my images shot on the G9 and S1 will be on the stand as large prints, so I hope you will have the chance to see what these fabulous cameras are capable of.

I shall also be with the Lumix team at the Pro Lounge on:

  • Saturday, March 16th, from 13:00 – 14:00.

So if you’d like to see the Lumix S Series, have a chat or see my work shot on the S1 and S1R, do pop by.

Snapperstuff

Team Snapperstuff, 2018. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

As always, it gives me immense pleasure to be with the fabulous team from Snapperstuff. We’re the only stand at the show which is manned primarily by professional photographers. Come by and see the superb range of bags and accessories from Think Tank Photo and Mindshift. Meet my friends and I at stands F101 and G101, throughout the show.

If you haven’t yet booked your ticket, here is a discount code which expires on March 13th, 2019. For 20% off, use code: SPKTPS19 (not valid with any other offers).


Winning Image In The 12th International Color Awards

Merit of Excellence

Light and shadows make patterns and shapes in the Tate Modern Turbine Hall, Bankside. London, UK. April 26, 2018. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

Very happy to share that one of my images has won second place, a “Merit Of Excellence”, in the Professional Category of the Silhouette section, in the 12th International Color Awards. The image was kindly chosen by judges from 7241 entries, from 79 countries.

Many congratulations on all the other winners and nominees and my thanks to the judges for their hard work.

It was shot on my Panasonic Lumix G9 with a Leica DG 50-200mm f2.8-4.0 lens (giving an equivalent of 100-400mm). The raw image was processed using Lightroom and finished in Alienskin Exposure X4 on my Mac Pro, using calibrated Eizo CG monitors for colour accuracy.

British Life Photography Awards Exhibition

BLPA Exhibition Opening, Mall Galleries, London

Photographer Edmond Terakopian by his winning image in the Life At Work category. British Life Photography Awards Exhibition Private View and Awards Evening. Mall Galleries, The Mall, London, UK. February 19, 2019. Photo: Linda Wisdom

Absolutely thrilled to have attended the private view of the exhibition and the prize giving last night of the British Life Photography Awards. I was overjoyed to find one of my images had won the Life At Work category and I also had three other images commended by the judges.

British Life Photography Awards Exhibition Private View and Awards Evening. Mall Galleries, The Mall, London, UK. February 19, 2019. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

The winning image and commended images can be seen on my previous blog post, along with details on the Panasonic Lumix, Leica M and Olympus OM-D cameras used.

British Life Photography Awards Exhibition Private View and Awards Evening. Mall Galleries, The Mall, London, UK. February 19, 2019. Photo: Edmond Terakopian

The exhibition is on tour at these venues (check opening times locally):

  • Mall Galleries, London 18th to 23rd February 2019 
  • Banbury Museum, Banbury 16th March to 12th May 2019 
  • The Garden Rooms at Tennants, Leyburn, North Yorkshire 20th July to 3rd September 2019 
  • Redbrick building, Glastonbury, Somerset, 14th September to 13th October 2019

Many thanks to the organisers, judges and sponsors of this wonderful competition along with my congratulations to all the selected photographers. Lovely to meet so many of you at the awards’ evening.

British Life Photography Awards Exhibition Private View and Awards Evening. Mall Galleries, The Mall, London, UK. February 19, 2019. Photo: Edmond Terakopian