Monday, 26 September 2011

The Power of One

Author: Oded Bality
Picture date: February 1, 2006

A lone Jewish settler challenges Israeli security officers during clashes that erupted as authorities cleared the West Bank settlement of Amona, east of the Palestinian town of Ramallah. Thousands of troops in riot gear and on horseback clashed with hundreds of stone-throwing Jewish settlers holed up in this illegal West Bank outpost after Israel’s Supreme Court cleared the way of demolition of nine homes at the site - from the Pulitzer Prizes website.

This fascinating photo shows the essence of struggle and sets two ideologies against each other. A woman which had nothing to lose fights against ruthless government wanting to destroy her home. She is willing to defend her cause with all her powers, and the picture shows she is doing it successfully.

The picture won the Pulitzer Award in Breaking news photography category in 2007. Author's interpretation of the photo is the modern version of David against Goliath. Even though he did not meet her, he adores this woman for her courage and bravery.

Monday, 19 September 2011

Tank Man

Author: Jeff Widener
Picture date: June 5, 1989

Picture depicts an unknown man who stopped a column of armoured tanks on the morning when Chinese military forces removed protesters from the Tiananmen Square on June 5, 1989. This man achieved widespread recognition in newspapers around the world and is also known as Unknown Rebel.

This photograph received worldwide recognition because it showed that an unarmed man with only shopping bags was able to stop armoured tanks. Video footage of the incident shows that the man jumped on the first tank and had a short conversation with tank driver. The picture brought hope that there may be a way for a non-violent in communist China.

On the day of the incident, four different photographers shot the scene, but Mr. Widener's photo was most used by newspapers. His version is tighter that other photographs and was made from a lower floor of the hotel, closest to the ground, and captured a face-to-face meeting between the lone man and the driver of the first tank. It was shot with Nikon FE2 camera by Mr. Widener who was injured and suffered from flu.

To this day, the identity and fate of the man in the picture remain unclear. A riveting documentary, The Tank Man, by PBS Frontline in 2006 explored his fate. Yet still no one knows for certain who he is or what exactly happened to him. The image is largely blocked on the Internet in China. Despite its iconic status and historical significance elsewhere, most young people there do not recognize the photograph.

Monday, 12 September 2011

Raising the Flag at Ground Zero

Author: Thomas E. Franklin
Picture date: September 11, 2001
Published: The Record front page, September 12, 2001

The picture was taken hours after terrifying terrorist attack on the World Trade Center in New York City. It depicts firefighters raising the American flag at ground zero of collapsed skyscrapers. The Record's original name for the photograph is Ground Zero Spirit. Photo appeared also on the covers of several other newspapers around the world.

Photograph was shot shortly after 5 PM with a telephoto lens. Mr. Franklin came to Ground Zero by the Hudson River around noon after the towers collapsed. Firefighters were raising the American flag coming from a yacht named Star of America which was docked on the Hudson River.

The picture became the symbol of the American solidarity after terrorist attack on New York and Washington. It shows hope that the USA will reborn and become as united and stronger than ever. The United States Postal Service featured this photo on their "Heroes" stamp. Additionally, profits from stamps, which estimated over ten million dollars, were transferred to families and rescue workers of 9/11.

Monday, 5 September 2011

Lunchtime atop a Skyscraper


Author: Charles C. Ebbets
Picture date: September 29, 1932
Published: New York Herald Tribune, October 2, 1932

This famous picture depicts eleven workers eating lunch and seating on a girder above New York City streets. Photo is very spectacular as men are sitting without any safety protections very high above city landscape. This dizzying picture shows courage of men working on construction sites.

Photograph was taken on 69th floor of the RCA building, which was later renamed as GE Building, during its last months of construction. Author of the picture was unknown for many decades until 2003 after months of investigation. Identities of most workers were provided by their descendants or relatives. Mr. Ebbets took a similar picture named Men Asleep on a Girder.

Picture became one of the most famous posters of the world and shows the spirit of risk-taking New York builders and their bravery.