Thursday, March 18, 2010

Charles Moore (1931 - 2010)

This week, photographer, Charles Moore, who "changed the course of history" with his powerful documentary images of the civil rights movement while working under contract for Life, has died at age 79.

Looking at his work, Moore's impactful images bring me back to the subject of photojournalism & reportage and art. There is an inextricable link, I'm sure of it. (Moore's amazing photos are strong evidence of that.) BBC quotes Moore on his work, "Pictures can and do make a difference. Strong images of historical events do have an impact on society."

According to former U.S. Senator Jacob Javits, Moore's pictures "helped to spur passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964." There is a lot to take away from his attitude as a photographer. On any level: How meaningful is your work to you and others? What story do you want to tell with your images? What is the best composition to get that message across? Moore put himself in harms way to shed light on the civil rights movement -the truth of it- thrusting himself in the middle of riots, protests, and KKK gatherings. I think learning and carrying on his technique is a respectiful way to commemorate Moore's life and keep his spirit alive.

sources: la times, kodak, black star photo agency, bbc news
images: Charles Moore, Black Star photo agency. From Top: Martin Luther King, Jr's arrest, Mongomery Alabama 1958; Protesters and high-pressure fire hose, 1963.

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