Day 3: Diving into the life of strangers

by Madiha Kark

MEXICO CITY — When one looks at projects of renowned photojournalists, it’s easy to assume that all photojournalists have brilliant minds that form amazing ideas. It’s easy to assume that they don’t have any difficulty getting access or talking to strangers or that they don’t have to work hard at their skill because they are already great at what they do.

The truth is that it takes a lot of practice to gain trust, convince people to allow a stranger to document their life. It takes courage to go out everyday and put your heart and soul into creating work that matters. Day three at the workshop and students experienced the rush to create a piece of work within the next three days. The pressure was palpable in the air as most students visited their subjects for a day of immersion and capturing the moments integral for their stories.

Adriana Zehbrauskas guides a student on her story. Photo © Neal Jackson

The evening presentations by Adriana Zehbrauskas, Rodrigo Cruz, Michael Robinson Chavez, Natalie Keyssar, Pedro Valtierra, allowed students to view current projects and a behind-the-scene of how the images were formed. The panel discussion that followed focused on how to work in Latin America, security issues and protocols. “We need to have a larger discussion on teaching young photojournalists on how to be safe,” said Keyssar, talking about her own struggles and methods to be safe when working in dangerous places.

In a jam packed hall, students listened in awe, taking notes and finding inspiration for their future stories and dreams.

Panel discussion on Working in Latin America. L-R Dario Mills-Lopez, Rodrigo Cruz, Michael Robinson Chavez, Natalie Keyssar, Adriana Zehbrauskas and Pedro Valtierra. Photo © Neal

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