A more subtle message

Following up on our discussion of horrific iconic images yesterday.  The kind of images that we have been speaking about are evoke a visceral aka gut-wrenching response.  However, there is a more subtle approach to getting the message across and often this is the more powerful.  Consider, as a poignant example, this story from the San Francisco Chronicle about “Lost Childhood,” by Paul Szoldra, and the associate images by Hamid Khatib for Reuters.  It tells the tale of a ten year old Syrian boy who lives in Aleppo, Syrian.  He and his father fix weapons for the Free Syrian Army.  Issa works ten hours a day and not unlike the children in Jacob Riis’ photograph, “The Children Sleeping on Mulberry Street,”  his story is one of lost childhood.



This entry was posted in Essays on Photography, Reviews and Critiques.


  1. Rajn September 22, 2013 at 9:29 pm #

    Didn’t someone famous say (Joan Miro – I think):
    “You can look at a picture for a week and never think of it again. You can also look at a picture for a second and think of it all your life…”

    Indeed the images you refer to remain etched in memory, they occur in dreams, they become your despair and thought in low moments.
    Take for example the recent riots in India and some very sad but evocative images taken by a NY Times reporter. I also think that the way the photographs are presented reminds one of the riots which tore India-Pakistan apart in 1947 – those images have the same look and feel -sense of deja vu.

    • David September 22, 2013 at 9:44 pm #

      Yes, Joan Miró!