Stella Kramer

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Portrait Photography From Venezuela

Posted on August 1st, 2013

Carmen Graterol 2

Earlier this year, Janette Beckman and I went to Caracas, Venezuela to teach at the Roberto Mata School of Photography. We had a spectacular time, and were so impressed with the school and our students. So I thought I would take this opportunity to show some of their work here on Stellazine. All of our students are hobby photographers—although that in no way diminishes their talent. Their enthusiasm, talent and energy made working with them one of the best experiences…

More About Helping Each Other

Posted on July 30th, 2013

Ocean Beach Douglas Ljungkvist

I’ve used this space before to try to raise visibility of photo projects, especially when photographers are trying to raise money. Before I ask others to chip in, I make sure I do. But what makes some project’s successful and others not is a mystery to me. Especially when the projects are so strong, so singular, and done by photographers who have been shooting for quite awhile. They have put their sweat, their dreams and their hard work in to…

More Things Come In The Mail

Posted on July 29th, 2013

Flying Henry pages

Once again, I’ve received some wonderful photography in the mail and thought I would share them. Some came as a surprise, and others through purchase. They are varied, and wonderful each in their own way. This is Flying Henry, by Rachel Hulin, a photobook for children, inspired by her son. I LOVE the way she created a unique avenue for her photography. And I LOVE the idea of introducing little children to photography. It’s creative thinking like this that got…

Great Things Come In The Mail

Posted on July 8th, 2013

I’ve received some wonderful things in the mail lately-some I purchased, and some came as a surprise. I thought I’d show them to you, because they are impressive, and I’ve been enjoying them over and over. I always appreciate it when people think of me, and when people put such creativity into their work.

Giles Duley Afghanistant

I purchased this self-published book of Afghanistan photos by Giles Duley, and not only does the work and the care and thought put into the packaging blow me away, but when I found my book damaged by the post office, Giles sent me a new one. Wow! I got not only the fold out book with text, but beautiful postcards with information on the back as to what I was looking at. Everything about his work is thoughtful, emotional and beautiful.

Giles Duley postcards Giles Duley Afghanistan book

I have always been a fan of David Bram and Fraction Magazine, and was glad to get my copy of the 2012 Yearbook. I love the way online photography is moving into actual publishing, extending its audience and giving people a tactile experience with the photography they have previously only seen digitally.

Fraction Magazine 2012 Yearbook Jonathan Blaustein

Landon Nordeman  takes wonderfully quirky photos of events like the dog shows, and sent me a print from his Canine Kingdom project. Many months before we spoke about this during a casual consult over great coffee, but he was the one to come through without my asking. I love people who keep their word.

Laqndon Nordeman

The same can be said of Mimi Ko, who’s work I have loved for quite awhile, since I first met her when I held workshops at Mediabistro. It is soft, personal and intimate. It was a thrill to receive this print.

Mimi Ko

En Foco is an organization “dedicated to cultural diversity in photography.” I’ve been an enthusiastic supporter since they first asked me to review portfolios for them. What better way to show my support than to purchase en foco/in focus Selected Works from the Permanent Collection?

en foco/in focus Hank Willis Thomas

It’s the breadth of the work that really impresses me, and makes me glad to see work I didn’t know about, by artists that don’t often get recognition.

Rustbelt Almanac was a Kickstarter project created by photographer Noah Purdy in order to create a magazine featuring positive economic developments in a region of the country written off as devoid of promise–the part of America that used to be known as our manufacturing heartland. Beautifully photographed, it’s intended to show that there are people and energy and positive things taking place worthy of our support. I look forward to Issue 2.

Rustbelt Almanac Rustbelt Almanac2

Photographer Jason Florio has been a favorite of mine for many years, and I am always so grateful when he offers me a print. These two are from his newest work, from the last expedition to the Gambia when Jason and his wife, Helen Jones-Florio, canoed down the Gambian River from end to end. The spirit of adventure lives, and I am so glad to see that. Jason‘s connection to the people he photographs is incredible, and what his subjects give back of themselves is really wonderful. A great example of connecting with your subjects.

Jason Florio Jason Florio2

What a surprise to receive these cards of scenes from the Hudson River from photographer Joseph Squillante. Useful promo, how refreshing!

Joseph Squillante

As you can see, the variety of gifts is amazing, and the creativity impressive. I can’t wait to see what other surprises show up in my mailbox in the future.

Support: Shouldn’t It Be A Two-Way Street?

Posted on June 24th, 2013

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about support and what it means. Is it something you can ask for, but not give back? Are we obligated to return the favor, or is it even important to worry about that?
As much as I can say there is a photography community in New York, I find myself questioning how much of it is self-interest and how much of it is reciprocal.

How Many Photos Are Too Many Photos?

Posted on April 22nd, 2013

Sports Illustrated Boston cover

Last week was full of horror, disbelief and touching compassion. It was also a week driven by photographs and discussion about photography. From the iconic photo by Boston Globe’s John Tlumacki on the cover of Sports Illustrated, to the hundreds of citizen photos turned in to the FBI, the story and the events that followed were driven by photography. It’s fair to ask whether that has been a good or bad thing. Thousands of people uploaded photos and the online…

Caracas Day 4: People Are People

Posted on March 15th, 2013

Los Dos Caminos4 Stella Kramer

Today we finally met our students and looked at their personal work to get a sense of their abilities as photographers. I have to say I haven’t seen such a group of talented photographers in ages.  Every one of them had fascinating work. The work ranged from portraiture to documentary to landscape to autobiography to travel to reportage. It was so amazing to see such strong work and meet such motivated students. Janette and I were excited to begin our…

Caracas Day 3: We Go To Petare And Find Tuki

Posted on March 11th, 2013

Tuki music is electronic music that grew out of the barrios of South America. In the same way that “punk” was a slur, so is “tuki.” The dancer we saw on YouTube, Elberth “El Maestro”, seems to be a pretty well-known dancer. Tall and skinny, with rainbow kicks, his body is like a rubberband-malleable and bendable in extraordinary ways. We watched in awe as he and the other dancers in the crew showed their stuff. All around the yard were stenciled images of Chavez: as a b-boy, dunking a basketball, ever present and being whatever people wanted him to be.

Teaching & Lecturing in Caracas at the Roberto Mata Taller de Fotografia

Posted on February 24th, 2013

roberto mata taller fotografia

I’m heading down to Caracas, Venezuela to lecture and teach for a week with the incredible Janette Beckman. Having never been there before I’m really excited, and have heard great things about the Roberto Mata Taller de Fotografia, and the students there. Stay tuned to this space for more blogging as I hope to tell you all about it, and show the work of our students.

My 2012 Shout-Out

Posted on December 28th, 2012

So 2012 is finally drawing to a close, and I for one am not sorry it’s ending. In fact, good riddance! I always have ambivalent thoughts about the beginning of the New Year, but I do want to thank the people who made 2012 for me.