a new blog about photographing environmental and humanitarian issues
An in-depth look at the process of making “Postcards from Xolobeni”, an activism project designed to provide a voice to the people of a small, rural community who are at risk of losing their traditional land to an open cast titanium mine.
Part one in a series of posts about the making of The Defenders. Marivic Danyan is 28 years old and lost her Father, Husband and both brothers when their village was attacked in December 2017. For decades her father had been a vocal opponent of the neighbouring coffee plantation on the island of Mindanao in The Philippines.
The Defenders is a collection of photographic portraits that I shot as a commission for The Guardian weekend magazine. It is a series of stories that documents the lives of 10 extraordinary environmental activists. This first blog post is an overview of the project, outlining the intentions and considerations behind the making of it.
Photography can engage an audience immediately, it doesn’t need time and effort from the viewer. It can pull them in to an issue in a nano-second and plant a seed of interest or empathy that no other medium can generate in such a small space of time; often without the viewer being aware of it.
For 20 days in 2015 I travelled around South Africa and Lesotho to find and photograph the 56 sick miners who were named in a court case against the gold mines. In this post I discuss the project in depth and give a behind the scenes look at how ‘The Price of Gold’ was made.
After a career in the UK music industry I turned to photography as a way of exploring the new country that I called home. I soon realised that the passion for telling stories was always in me and that the camera was just the tool I needed to be able to do that. This first blog post is a brief introduction to the work that I do and how I got here.
Thom Pierce is an award winning photographer who is known for his powerful environmental portraits.